The Aldrich Family (Old Time Radio)
"HENRY ALDRICH" (1939 - 53)
Ezra Stone stars as16-year old Henry Aldrich, "Period of the '40's," who turned ordinary situations into complete chaos and disaster. Each week for 13 years, Henry was summoned into millions of living rooms to the wailing of his mother: "Hen-reeee! Henry Aldrich!"
The show was a big success. By 1941, it rated in the top ten with Jack Benny, Bob Hope, and Fibber McGee and Molly.
This was one of the most popular teenage situation comedies on radio. In 1941 the program carried a 33.4 Crossley which placed it solid in the top ten along side Jack Benny and Bob Hope. First heard as a summer replacement for Jack Benny, it began on Sunday 07/02/39 over NBC and lasted until 10/01/39. The program was given its own time slot on Tuesday nights at 8-- 00 p.m. for Jell-O from 10/10/39 until 05/28/40 was heard again on Thursdays from 07/04/40 to 07/20/44. The series then moved to CBS from 09/01/44 to 08/30/46 sponsored by Grape Nuts and Jell-O on Fridays. The final move was back to NBC for two runs-- 09/05/46 to 06/28/51 on Thursdays and then on Sundays from 09/21/52 until it went off the air on 04/19/53. Ezra Stone originated the role on stage and was even heard playing the role in several appearances on both the Rudy Vallee and Kate Smith's programs. Ezra originated the role on radio until he left for service in the Army and then the role fell to Norman Tokar (1942 - 1943), Dickie Jones (1943 - 1944), and Raymond Ives (from mid 1945 until November 1945). Ezra Stone then resumed his roles until 1952 when Bobby Ellis took over the role as the final Henry. Supporting players heard were Agnes Moorehead, Mary Shipp, House Jameson, Katharine Raht, Jackie Kelk, and Jack Grimes. Among the announcers heard was Harry Von Zell and Dwight Weist.
Stars: Ezra Stone (except during his
WWII military service and after 1951), Jackie Kelk (except during his WWII
military service and after 1951), Jackie Kelk, Clyde Fillmore (or House
Jameson), Lea Penman, Betty Field (or Jone Allison), Ed Begley (or Howard
Smith). Ezra Stone was replaced in World War Two by Dickie Jones and
Norman Tokar; Bobby Ellis took over Henry's part after 1951.
NB: One of the many shows in which children never got older! Its final season (September 1952 through April 1953) was over a year after the last program with Ezra Stone and Jackie Kelk aired (6/28/51). It featured an entirely different cast. Ezra Stone would gain quiet fame for his work as a director for situation comedies on television for many years. He died in a one vehicle car accident in 1994.
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