Monday, September 29, 2008

And the Winner is...


We had a total of 16 entries. I went to and requested a random sequence, made the decision before pushing the button to pick the top number in the list.

The numbers were as follows:

1, 12, 11, 4, 9, 7, 3, 16, 2, 10, 6, 5, 13, 14, 8, 15

The number one position is owned by the very first poster, Sheila. So, if you're out there, Sheila, shoot me an e-mail with a mailing address so I can mail your Gift Card for $10 worth of SPAM! Here's the e-mail address: If I don't hear from you by the end of October, I'll have to award the prize to the person in the second position.

Thanks to everyone for your comments and for playing the game. We'll do it again in October. So keep coming back to check what's going on.

Big Spam Giveaway Entries Have Closed

Our first giveaway for the $10 worth of SPAM (or anything else you wish to purchase with your $10 WalMart Gift Card) has ended. We will announce the winner later today. Be sure to check back and see if it's YOU!

We will have another giveaway coming in October, so keep checking back to Read All About It!

Thanks to everyone who entered our first ever Giveaway on the Fifties Nostalgia Blog.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Into the Wayback Machine

And back to the fifties . . .

It's going to be a long journey. There's a lot to talk about. And whether you're a Baby Boomers or not, it was an interesting time in American history. This first post is just a summary of what I have in mind and the types of things you'll be seeing on here as we continue.

First of all, there are multiple subject areas we need to cover. And we'll cover all of them. Things like current events, food, science and technology, sports, movies, television, Disneyland, Route 66, toys and games, music and teen idols. And, of course, those great automobiles of the 50s.

By the way, if you're into Corvettes, check out my other blog,

So let's hop into the Wayback Machine, buckle up, and hang on for a ride back to a simpler time. I'll be driving, but I would love to hear your comments along the way. Don't forget to use that COMMENT link at the bottom of this post so you can tell me what you think and what you'd like to see on here. There's probably a lot of things I don't remember. I'm a Baby Boomer, and we tend to forget things.

What Time Is It?

It’s Howdy Doody Time!

The Howdy Doody Show was one of the first and the most popular children's television show in the 1950s. While Howdy and his friends entertained American children, they also sold television sets to American parents and demonstrated the potential of the new medium to advertisers.

The original Howdy marionette (he was a puppet?) was designed by Frank Paris and in a dispute over licensing rights Paris left the show with the puppet. The new Howdy, who premiered in March 1948 was an all-American boy with red hair, forty-eight freckles (one for each state in the Union), and a permanent smile. Howdy's face symbolized the youthful energy of the new medium and appeared on the NBC color test pattern beginning in 1954.

Other marionettes included Phineas T. Bluster, Doodyville's entrepreneurial mayor. Howdy's grumpy nemesis, Bluster had eyebrows that shot straight up when he was surprised. Bluster's naive, high-school-aged accomplice, was Dilly Dally, who wiggled his ears when he was frustrated. Flub-a-dub was a whimsical character who was a combination of eight animals.

The live characters included the native American Chief Thunderthud and Princess Summerfall Winterspring, played by Judy Tyler. Tyler went on to co-star with Elvis Presley in Jailhouse Rock in 1957.

Smith (born in Buffalo, New York) was transformed into Buffalo Bob when he took his place in the story as the great white leader of the Sigafoose tribe. Chief Thunderthud (played by Bill LeCornec) of the mythical Ooragnak tribe ("Kangaroo" spelled backward) introduced the word "Kawabonga," an expression of surprise and frustration, into the English language. One of the few female characters in the cast was the beloved Princess Summerfall Winterspring of the Tinka Tonka tribe, who was first introduced as a puppet, then transformed into a real, live princess, played by Judy Tyler.

The Howdy Doody Show also reflected America's fascination with technology. Part of the fun and fantasy of Doodyville were crazy machines such as the Electromindomizer that read minds and the Honkadoodle that translated Mother Goose's honks into English. Howdy also ushered in NBC's daily color programming in 1955.

Much of the mayhem was perpetrated by a lovable, mischievous clown named Clarabell Hornblow. Clarabell was played by Bob Keeshan who later became Captain Kangaroo. His pratfalls were generally accidents, and the most lethal weapon on the show was his seltzer bottle.

Although extremely popular, the demise of The Howdy Doody Show occurred due to financial reasons, and the last show aired on September 24, 1960, after 2,343 programs.

The most famous moment in the history of The Howdy Doody Show came during the closing seconds of the final show when Clarabell, who did not speak but communicated through pantomime and honking his horns, surprised the audience by saying, "Good-bye, kids."

If you remember what Buffalo Bob called the audience (the kids sitting in the bleachers on the stage) click the COMMENT button and tell us.