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Amanda of Honeymoon Hill (Series History)
Topic Started: Aug 16 2007, 10:39 AM (477 Views)
Steve Frame
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Posted Image Amanda of Honeymoon Hill

Posted Image
Cal-Aspirin mixed aspirin with calcium;
12 tablets could be purchased for 20 cents.


Sponsors: Cal-Aspirin; Haley's MO; Phillips Milk of Magnesia; Phillips Toothpaste; Ironized Yeast and Mulsified Coconut Oil Shampoo
Network: NBC-Blue Network (until Aug 1942); CBS (Aug 1943-1946)
First Broadcast: February 5, 1940
Last Broadcast: April 26, 1946
Theme Song: Stephen Foster's Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair
Producers: Frank and Anne Hummert
Announcers: Howard Claney, Frank Gallop and Hugh Conover
Organist: Ann Leaf
Tagline: The story of love and marriage in America's romantic South. The story of Amanda and Edward Leighton. Amanda of Honeymoon Hill... laid in a world few Americans know.

Known Cast Members:

Joy Hathaway as Charity Amanda Dyke Leighton
Boyd Crawford, George Lambert, Staats Cotsworth as Edward Leighton
Helen Shields as Sylvia Meadows
John Brown as Mr. Lenord
Muriel Starr as Susan Leighton
John Roy as Roy Calvert
Linda Watkins as Dot
Florence Edney as Aunt Maizie
Edward Andrews as Nat
Ruth Gates as Mrs. Lenord
Arlene Francis in an unknown role in 1941
Evie Juster (role unknown)
John Archer (role unknown)

Brief Summary

Amanda of Honeymoon Hill was a 15-minute daily radio soap opera produced by Frank and Anne Hummert. Broadway actress Joy Hathaway had the title role, sometime described as "the beauty of flaming red hair."

Sponsored by Cal-Aspirin, Haley's MO, Phillips Milk of Magnesia, Phillips Toothpaste, Ironized Yeast and Mulsified Cocoanut Oil Shampoo, the series was broadcast from February 5, 1940 until April 26, 1946, initially on the Blue Network at 3:15pm until August 1942. It then moved to CBS, airing at 10:30am until 1943 when it was heard at 11am. The opening introduction:

The story of love and marriage in America's romantic South. The story of Amanda and Edward Leighton. Amanda of Honeymoon Hill... laid in a world few Americans know.

The story followed the travails of the beautiful Charity Amanda Dyke Leighton (Joy Hathaway), who lived on Honeymoon Hill in Virginia with her husband, wealthy Southerner Edward Leighton (Boyd Crawford, George Lambert, Staats Cotsworth). As an artist, Edward made many portraits of Amanda. They had a son, Robert Elijah, but they were separated by events prompted by World War II. He left for Abbeyville to run his factory, converted for war production, while Amanda remained in Honeymoon Hill to supervise her nursery for the children of war workers.

Sylvia Meadows was portrayed by Helen Shields (1900-1963), and Arlene Francis was a cast member in 1941. Also in the cast was John Brown (as Mr. Lenord), later a familiar radio voice as friendly undertaker Digger O'Dell on The Life of Riley. Organist Ann Leaf supplied the program's background music, and the opening theme was Stephen Foster's 1854 tune, "Jeanie with the Light Brown Hair." The announcers were Howard Claney, Frank Gallop & Hugh Conover.

Posted Image
Another sponsor - Phillips Toothpaste/Toothpowder

Information on Some Episodes

1940. Blue Network. Sponsored by: Cal-Aspirin (calcium and aspirin). Eunice Powell is about to take Olive's and Walter's baby. Rosa says the baby is going home with her, but Maureen Dale has her own plan! The date is approximate. Joy Hathaway, Ann Leaf (organist). 15:00.

July 24, 1940. NBC net. Sponsored by: Haley's M-O, Mulsified Cocoanut Oil Shampoo. 3:15 P. M. Joseph Dyke is to stand trial for murder and things don't look good. Amanda and Edward discuss the coming trial and Amanda visits her father in jail. He insists he did not kill Charlie Harris. He won't lie to save his life. Frank Gallop momentarily stops reading the program closing as if he loses his place in the script. Joy Hathaway, Frank Gallop (announcer), Ann Leaf (organist). 15:00.

August 2, 1940. NBC net. Sponsored by: Hally's M-O, Cal-Aspirin. 3:15 P. M. The story is "laid in a world few Americans know." Edward has struck down the district attorney during the trial, and was held for contempt. Mrs. Latham, Edward's mother, chats with the lawyer. Amanda gets a mysterious phone call and plans a meeting tomorrow morning, the trial is about to end! Joy Hathaway, Frank Gallop (announcer), Ann Leaf (organist). 15:00.

June 1, 1944. CBS net. Sponsored by: Phillips Toothpaste, Ironized Yeast. Edward comes home, Amanda has no luck apartment hunting. What's Betina up to? The first 45 seconds have been deleted. Joy Hathaway, Ann Leaf (organist). 15:00.

June 6, 1944. CBS net. Sponsored by: Phillips Milk Of Magnesia. Commercials suspended. Betina Foster has eyes for Amanda's husband Edward, and has tricked Jeanette into writing an evil letter to her soldier husband. 11:00 A. M. Joy Hathaway, Ann Leaf (organist). 15 minutes.

Some Episode Titles

07-24-1940: Van Dyke Stands Trial For Murder
08-02-1940: Edward Strikes District Attorney
06-00-1944: Grandmothers Fight Over Grandchild
06-01-1944: Amanda Has No Luck in Apartment Hunting
06-06-1944: Betina Has Eyes for Amanda's Husband

Unknown Date: Eunice Powell About To Kidnap a Baby

Trivia

Cast member Staats Cotsworth was labeled "radio's busiest actor" in 1946. Cotsworth began his day with an 8:30 a.m. rehearsal for Lone Journey. The day sometimes ended after a repeat live performance for the West Coast audience of Mr. and Mrs. North, in which he played Lt. Bill Weigand. Between the two he would appear on several of the 10 daytime dramas in which he maintained running parts, although not all were concurrent. Amanda of Honeymoon Hill, Big Sister (he was the male lead for a while), Front Page Farrell (he was the best known actor in the title), Lone Journey, Lorenzo Jones, Marriage for Two, the Right to Happiness, the Second Mrs. Burton, Stella Dallas, and When A Girl Marries. Despite those, he was perhaps better recognized as the nighttime supersleuth Casey, Crime Photographer. And in his spare moments Cotsworth turned up on The Man from G-2, Mark Trail, The Cavalcade of America, The March of Time Quiz, Rogue's Gallery, and various other series.

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Steve Frame, July 27, 2007

Sources: Old-Time Radio: Music Theme List; Museum of Broadcast Communications: Arlene Francis; Wikipedia; SpartaOTR.com; Old Time Radio Researchers Group; Old Time Radio Print Ads; Bucks County Playhouse Productions; The Easy Ace: A Journal of Classic Radio; "Obituary of John Archer", Independent, The (London), Dec 14, 1999; Serials: Part 2 - Soaps on Radio by Terry G.G. Salomonson; The Yesterday USA Radio Networks
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