Radio Drama This Week: Before TV Selling, Betty Furness Went Uncredited on Radio

Betty Furness became well known in living rooms as a Westinghouse spokeswoman on television.

This weekend brings to a close two dramatic programs first heard over WHAV during the late 1940s.

The “Haunting Hour” and “Box 13” were brought out of the sound vault in time for the 70th anniversary of WHAV in Haverhill and the dedication of the new 97.9 WHAV FM. When WHAV AM signed on in 1947, it was too small and too late to attract a major national broadcasting network like NBC, CBS, ABC or Mutual.

WHAV, however, did the next best thing—buying pre-recorded radio shows on the syndicated market. “Haunting Hour” was produced by NBC and heard in 1945 before going into syndication. “Box 13” was first-run in syndication and produced by movie star Alan Ladd’s own Mayfair Productions.

Ladd’s star power was clear when his show launched in 1948. NBC, on the other hand, rarely credited the cast of the “Haunting Hour.” Though not named, the show would feature such one-time big names as Frank Lovejoy and Betty Furness. Lovejoy was known for his crime dramas and soaps on radio besides playing bit parts in such Hollywood films as “Goodbye, My Fancy” with Joan Crawford and “The Hitch-Hiker,” directed by Ida Lupino, Furness, though, became a household name for a time as television spokeswoman for Westinghouse, President Lyndon B. Johnson’s special assistant for consumer affairs and NBC Today Show anchor.

This week’s Radio Drama
Tonight, Saturday, Feb. 9

Gunsmoke: “Sundown;” Haunting Hour: “Breakdown,” Saturday, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.


Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: “The Harried Heiress Matter;” Box 13: “Three to Die,” Sunday, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.


Suspense (classic): “A Week Ago Wednesday,” 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.


Dimension X: “Shanghaied,” 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.


Great Gildersleeve: Gildy’s Great Dane Causes Trouble, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.


Our Miss Brooks: Mr. Boynton’s Moustache, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.


Couple Next Door: Locked in Display Window, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.

Saturday, Feb. 16

Gunsmoke: “Dirt;” Saturday, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.


Yours Truly Johnny Dollar: “Flask of Death Matter;” Sunday, 10 p.m. and 1 a.m.

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