W2XBS Schedule, Week of October 1st, 1939

Here’s the schedule for NBC’s experimental station W2XBS in New York City for the week starting Sunday, October 1st, 1939, straight from the weekly television listings printed in The New York Times. It was the second week of NBC’s new “uniform” schedule, introduced on Tuesday, September 26th. In short, there were two blocks of programming Tuesday through Friday, the first from 2:30-3:30PM and the second from 8:30-9:30PM, plus a two-hour block on Saturdays from 2:30-4:30PM. Depending on the day, studio programs or mobile pick-ups were shown during the afternoon block and dramas or variety during the evening block.

The first mobile pick-up was a football scrimmage featuring the Brooklyn Dodgers at the World’s Fair. Unfortunately, the weekly listings I have access to don’t indicate what the second of these pick-ups was. The Saturday program was a football game between Manhattan and St. Bonaventure. Two plays were broadcast on Tuesday and Thursday, the first of which starred an actress with a delightful last name: Helen Twelvetrees. Tuesday’s afternoon block included a segment on making crepes suzettes while Friday’s afternoon block had another chapter in the 1934 film serial The Lost Jungle (which, as an aside, I am interested in seeing).

Tuesday, October 3rd, 1939
2:30-3:30PM – Red Barber, sports interview; films, “Shockproof”; “Sky Billboard”; “Fishing in the Fjords”; Maurice chef, and George, maitre d’hotel, making crepes suzettes.
8:30-9:30PM – “The Butter and Egg Man,” George S. Kaufman’s comedy, with Helen Twelvetrees.

Wednesday, October 4th, 1939
2:30-3:30PM – Brooklyn Dodgers, professional football team, in a scrimmage at World’s Fair.
8:30-9:30PM – Variety hour, with Fernandez and Grenada, dancers.

Thursday, October 5th, 1939
2:30-3:30PM – Outside pick-up, to be announced.
8:30-9:30PM – Play, “The Night Cap,” by Max Marcin and Guy Bolton, with Claudia Morgan, Harry Bannister and others.

Friday, October 6th, 1939
2:30-3:30PM – Kindergarten of the Air; film serial, “The Lost Jungle”; film, “Football for the Fan–The Wedge Play”; Charles Sheeler, American painter, interviewed.
8:30-9:30PM – Film, “Champions of the Gridiron.”

Saturday, October 7th, 1939
2:30-4:30PM – Football, Manhattan-St. Bonaventure, at Randalls Island Stadium.

Works Cited:

“Televiews of Pictures.” New York Times. 1 Oct. 1939: 146.


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