The Ted Mack Family Hour
In a cabinet at the far end of the Keeping Room there is a record player. There are no records in the cabinet except for one still on the spindle of the record player. The wording reads:
American Broadcasting Company, Inc.
Stephen Mather Tribute
Delivered by Ted Mack on the
Family Hour. Sun. June 4, 1951*
Before there was American Idol, The Voice, or America’s Got Talent, there was the Ted Mack Amateur Hour. And in 1951, ABC launched a Sunday night show—The Ted Mack Family Hour.
In June, in a segment called the Album of Great Americans, Mack recognized the contributions of Stephen Mather concluding…
“…to the man who gave mountains and forests – natural blessing and historical shrines back to the people. A truly great American – Stephen T. Mather.”
In a trunk in the attic are four copies of the segment script complete with Video instructions and Audio text.
In the trunk there is also a letter from Ted Mack’s secretary, M.B. Witt, to Stephen’s daughter, Bertha McPherson. Witt writes “…We do regret that you were not informed of the fact that your father was to be the subject of our Sunday Family Hour so that you could have been in our audience.”
In an era before On Demand, Bertha Mather McPherson waited until October 1951 before receiving another letter from Witt, along with the recording.
*June 4, 1951 was actually a Monday. Witt’s first letter has the correct
June 3, 1951 date.