Poor Little Annie!

Saturday, August 25, 2012 - 01:00 PM


During the 1945 newspaper deliverymen's strike, Mayor Fiorello La Guardia kept the children of New York City up to date on the adventures of Dick Tracy and Little Orphan Annie by reading the Sunday comics over WNYC's airwaves.

Why should the children suffer, he asked, because of "a squabble among grown-ups?"

La Guardia performed the feature only three times on his weekly radio show, "Talk to the People," but most everyone living in the metro area at that time recalls his enthusiastic vocal impressions. Comedians soon took over the act and "Comic Parade" became a regular series on WNYC until the newspaper trucks started rolling again.

In this recording from July 15, 1945, Little Orphan Annie is on trial for murder. For the benefit of his young listeners, La Guardia deciphers the civics lesson therein. 


This article originally appeared as part of the From the Archives show.


Audio courtesy of the NYC Municipal Archives WNYC Collection.


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About Annotations: The NEH Preservation Project

In September 2010, WNYC's Archives and Preservation Department initiated a two-year archival digitization project funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities. Its goal is to reformat 660 hours of choice recordings from the NYC Municipal Archives WNYC collection found on lacquer disc and open reel tape.

For more information, please visit the 2010-2013 NEH-Funded Preservation Project page.

Browse the collection

The 2010-2013 NEH-Funded Preservation Project has been made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the Human Endeavor. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this web resource do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.


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