CBS has canceled the long-running As the World Turns, the last soap opera owned by Procter & Gamble. The program will end in September 2010 after more than 13,000 episodes. Another CBS soap opera, Guiding Light, went off the air on September 18th, 2009. Read about the cancellation at Broadcasting & Cable, The Hollywood Reporter, Variety and The New York Times. The official announcement can be read here and a statement from Barbara Bloom, Senior Vice President, Daytime Programming, here.
As the World Turns premiered on Monday, April 2nd, 1956 as one of the first half-hour soap operas. I am not aware of any complete episode guide or any list of which episodes are known to exist. The Paley Center for Media has roughly 150 episodes, many of which are from the 1990s or the 2000s but there are quite a few from the 1960s as well. UCLA’s Film and Television Archive has a few dozen episodes, including some from 1958 (the earliest of which seems to be from March 20th of that year). You can watch two episodes from the early 1960s at Archive.org. Here’s the March 29th, 1962 episode:
And here’s the November 22nd, 1963 episode (at the 10:00 mark Walter Cronkite breaks in with a CBS News Bulletin to announce that shots have been fired at President Kennedy):