Dr. George Kimble, Marcia Davenport, and Ernest Henry Gruening

Wednesday, January 19, 1955

This episode is from the WNYC archives. It may contain language which is no longer politically or socially appropriate.

A WNYC announcer introduces program.

Host Irita Van Doren introduces Dr. George Kimble, who talks about his book "Our American Weather," first published in 1943. Kimble was a one-time Royal Navy meteorologist who went on to become First Professor of Geography at McGill University in Canada and Director of the American Geographical Society. While not calling us to action, Kimble raises many of the issues we now hear about daily regarding global warming and extreme changes in the weather.

Van Doren introduces Marcia Davenport, who talks about her novel "My Brother's Keeper," and the public fascination with recluses like the hording Collyer brothers. The work was inspired by the 1947 New York Times articles detailing items taken from the Collyer's brownstone after their deaths, Davenport constructed a tale of the Holt brothers, one a failing concert pianist and the other a naval architect, and the events that prompted them to become recluses in later life.

Van Doren introduces Ernest Henry Gruening, who talks about Alaskan history and the need for statehood in the face of federal neglect and treatment like a colony. Gruening was an American journalist and Democrat who was the Governor of the Alaska Territory from 1939 until 1953, and a United States Senator from Alaska from 1959 until 1969. Gruening also touches on climate change and receding glaciers in Alaska at that time.

WNYC announcer closes program.

Audio courtesy of the NYC Municipal Archives WNYC Collection

WNYC archives id: 71252
Municipal archives id: LT6893

Hosted by:

Irita Taylor Van Doren


Marcia Davenport, Ernest Gruening and George Herbert Tinley Kimble


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About Books and Authors Luncheon

Hear, first-hand, the thoughts and voices of some of the greatest thinkers, adventurers, and characters of our nation.

Legendary New York Herald-Tribune book review editor Irita Van Doren, moderator of the series [1949-1968], has an intellectual largesse and a genuine interest in the American literary arts, which produces engaging, sometimes off-beat discussions with both first-time and veteran authors. 

In addition to literary writers like Louis Auchincloss, James Michener, and Rachel Carson, listeners are enthralled by nonliterary experts speaking on their autobiographies.  Sammy Davis, Jr., expounds on Yes, I Can!; burlesque star Gypsy Rose Lee entertains audiences while promoting Gypsy, A Memoir; and sociologist Vance Packard defends his groundbreaking exposé on advertising, The Hidden Persuaders. 

Those notable personalities join a slew of others like Steve Allen, Marian Anderson, Bennett Cerf, Noel Coward, Jules Feiffer, Edna Ferber, A. E. Hotchner, Fannie Hurst, Jane Jacobs, Somerset Maugham, Vladimir Nabokov, Gore Vidal, Jessamyn West, and Marguerite Young.  An indispensable catalog of craft talk and biographical context, the New York Herald-Tribune Books and Authors Luncheon series explores all manner of disciplines and issues in American arts and history.


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