Sunday, May 21, 2017

More Contenders for the FIRST Bible Kids Program.

Last month I excitedly (and cautiously) declared that KTBI's Aunt Martha's Children's Hour from 1926 MIGHT have been the first broadcast children's Bible program in North America. More research has led to the discovery of  not one but TWO programs that were on the air two years earlier.

So, going chronologically backwards here are two of the oldest ministries for children in American broadcasting. Both are also listed on my radio page.

Songbook cover (partial close-up) with a picture of Harry "Dream Daddy" Ehrhart
of "How Granny Told The Bible Stories". From the Author's Collection.

How Granny Told The Bible Stories -  (October 19, 1924 - c. 1925, WDAR Philadelphia; WLIT 1925).

Most likely this early radio series was based on the 1921 children's book of the same name by Eleanor Herr Boyd. Boyd was an author of several Bible teaching books which are still used to this day.

The "Granny" program was hosted or narrated by "Dream Daddy" Harry Ehrhart, one of radio's earliest children's "uncles" over WDAR - LIT on alternate Sundays. The station was later renamed WLIT in favor of the Lit Brothers who were co-owners of station.

Interestingly, today WLIT is WFIL-AM "Philadelphia Christian Radio" AND the call letters WDAR now belong to a FM contemporary Christian station in Darlington, South Carolina.

Children's Bible Story [a.k.a. Children's Bible Stories, Bible Story For The Children] - Children's (1922 - c. 1923, KDKA Pittsburgh)

This program aired Sunday afternoons usually around 2:45pm EST. This was the radio ministry of Rev. W. A. Logan of the Alpha Lutheran Church of Turtle Creek, Pennsylvania. Being at the historic KDKA, the first commercial radio station, may mean it was the first children's bible program every broadcast. It is unknown if Rev. Logan started this program and if each and every Bible story broadcast was conducted by him. From reviewing multiple newspaper schedules his name is the only one connected with this program.

Rev. William A. Logan (1884 - 1966) was the pastor of the Alpha Lutheran Church of Turtle Creek, Alleghany County, Pennsylvania. He was born in Pennsylvania, the son of Scottish immigrants. He attended the Pennsylvania College at Gettysburg, earning his bachelors degree in 1910.  According to the 1930 US Census his wife was Elsie M. Logan, and the couple had at least 9 children. According to some newspaper articles, Rev. Logan was active in concerns for Sunday School and youth ministries. This researcher would like to learn more about his life and ministry for children AND the events that led him to be perhaps the first children's minister in the history of broadcasting.

Find A Grave - Grave of William and Elsie Logan 

Monday, March 6, 2017

First Children's Bible Program(s) on Radio????

While researching radio magazines I learned about the historic radio station KTBI in Los Angeles. KTBI was the station for the Bible Institute of Los Angeles, or Biola University as it is known today. A weekday afternoon staple of this station was "Aunt Martha's Children Hour". Who was Aunt Martha and what were the contents of her radio hour? I absolutely would love to know!

Pg. 52 from Radio Doings magazine, January 8, 1927, that highlights radio station KTBI,
when the Aunt Marth's Children's Hour was on the air. 

Since KTBI is believed to be have been the first radio station devoted entirely to ministry, "Aunt Martha" may have been the first person with a broadcasting ministry for children in North America. So far radio logs that I have examined show that her program was broadcast every day of the week except for Saturdays over KTBI from as early as 1926 until sometime in 1927 or 1928.

Sometime in 1928 KTBI began broadcasting a different program called "Uncle Freds' Biola Children's Club" which aired weekdays around 8:00am. So far I am unable to find information about these programs beyond the standard radio log listings. I will be seeking more information on these early programs that I've also added to the "Radio Programs" page.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Updates To Begin 2017

I have been in several transitions from December to the present and have been away from blogging for quite a while. If the Lord is willing there will be more resources and media throughout 2017. However, I am happy to note several updates to the Family Bible Storytelling Media Pages.

- Thanks to Majesty Music and Bible Broadcasting Network, I have updates on the Patch the Pirate and Children's Music Room radio programs on the Radio Programs page. Also on this same page I have added a link to the Keys For Kids YouTube Channel where a user can view classic episodes of the Children's Bible Hour TV series

- The "Children's Television" page is now called simply "Television" as I will try to include dramatic Christian programming that was also geared to a general audience. All the children's programs that were listed before are still there along with brief descriptions of "Circuit Rider", "Greatest Story Ever Told (TV Version)" with more summaries coming soon.

- I was very sad to hear of the passing of BBN Radio founder and president Lowell Davey. He went home to be with the Lord on February 18, 2017 at the age of 83. My growing knowledge of Biblical dramatic storytelling and this blog would have been much, much, smaller without the ministry of BBN.


Friday, December 9, 2016

Christmas Library 2016 : A Bible For Christmas

I was probably about 12 when I received my first Bible storybook. It was one those 365 story a day readers that would wind familiar Bible stories down to a few paragraphs that fortunately included the actual verses to reference for each story. It was a small beginning for me in Bible studying, so I encourage parents to give their child a Bible for Christmas if they do not have one of their own.

From my personal collection I want to share some examples of Bible books given to young children from Christmases long ago.

Faris, Lillie A. 1936. New Testament stories for children. New York: Platt & Munk. Co.

Title Page with the inscription "William Edward Bile (or Bihe), From Grandpa & Grandma Silsby, Christmas 1943."

Holy Bible. World Publishing Company. Date not given. 

"To Laurel Ann, By Grandma Difford, Date: December 25, 1955".
From the Blogger's Collection.
I actually saved this Bible (above) from a thrift store outlet bin in Winston-Salem, NC. It was after seeing this gift from a grandmother to her granddaughter over 60 years ago that inspired me to influence others to give their child a Bible for Christmas. The images below are of a "Books of the Bible" card that came inside that Bible.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!! - Scriptures For Prayer & Reflection and The Mayflower Compact

"The First Thanksgiving" (1915), by Jean Louis Gerome Ferris (American painter, 1863-1930).
From Joyful Heart Ministries, Thanksgiving and Pilgrim Art and Artwork, by Dr. Ralph F. Wilson.

Psalm 26:7 That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works.

Psalm 50:14 Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High:

Psalm 69:30 I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving.

Psalm 95:2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.

Psalm 100:4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

Psalm 107:22 And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing.

Psalm 116:17 I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and will call upon the name of the Lord.

The Mayflower Compact - November 11, 1620 (From William Bradford's handwritten history, Of Plymouth Plantation, c. 1630)

(It is olde English, so read it with a slight Irish-Scottish accent and the spellings will become more clear). One of may historical documents that I never actually read while attending school.

In ye name of God Amen· We whose names are vnderwriten, 
the loyall subjects of our dread soueraigne Lord King James 
by ye grace of God, of great Britaine, franc, & Ireland king, 
defender of ye faith, &c
Haueing vndertaken, for ye glorie of God, and aduancemente 
of ye christian ^faith and honour of our king & countrie, a voyage to 
plant ye first colonie in ye Northerne parts of Virginia· doe 
by these presents solemnly & mutualy in ye presence of God, and 
one of another, couenant, & combine our selues togeather into a 
ciuill body politick; for ye our better ordering, & preseruation & fur=
therance of ye ends aforesaid; and by vertue hearof, to enacte, 
constitute, and frame shuch just & equall lawes, ordinances, 
Acts, constitutions, & offices, from time to time, as shall be thought 
most meete & conuenient for ye generall good of ye colonie:  vnto 
which we promise all due submission and obedience.  In witnes 
wherof we haue herevnder subscribed our names at Cap=
Codd ye ·11· of Nouember, in ye year of ye raigne of our soueraigne 
Lord king James of England, france, & Ireland ye eighteenth 
and of Scotland ye fiftie fourth. Ano: Dom ·1620·|

John Carver
William Bradford
Edward Winslow
William Brewster
Isaac Allerton
Myles Standish
John Alden
Samuel Fuller
Christopher Martin
William Mullins
William White
Richard Warren
John Howland
Stephen Hopkins
Edward Tilley
John Tilley
Francis Cooke
Thomas Rogers
Thomas Tinker
John Rigsdale
Edward Fuller
John Turner
Francis Eaton
James Chilton
John Crackstone
John Billington
Moses Fletcher
John Goodman
Degory Priest
Thomas Williams
Gilbert Winslow
Edmund Margesson
Peter Browne
Richard Britteridge
George Soule
Richard Clarke
Richard Gardiner
John Allerton
Thomas English
Edward Doty

Edward Leister

"Thanks Be Unto God" by Jack Hamm - From the Grace Bible Fellowship Collection

I have already posted this image, but it perfectly fits the day. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!!!

- James R. Stewart Jr.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Cliff Barrows (April 23, 1923 - November 15, 2016)

Billy Graham Richmond (VA) Crusade Songbook, 1956. Scanned from the Author's Collection.
An autographed page of Billy Graham from the same songbook is part of my graduate school digital collection on Bible Storytelling media.