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Pictures on the Prairie:
The First Ten Years of Mid-Illinois Television

$19.99 plus tax

Mid-Illinois Television Station History

Examine the history of each of the mid-Illinois TV stations along with stations in Peoria and St. Louis

Follow their paths from the very beginning in "Pictures on the Prairie: The First Ten Years of Mid-Illinois Television" then catch up with the histories of each station from the early 1960s to the present on Central Illinois On-Line Broadcast Museum.

Pull down your selection from the drop-down menu at the top of the page.

Area Radio Station History

I spotlight stations that became very special in my radio career. WTIM/WTIM-FM in my hometown and WDAN/WDNL at which I spent most of 25 years.

The select area radio stations all have something in common, in that they were all automated and I worked at two of the stations highlighted.

Legendary radio stations include in my opinion the greatest radio stations heard in mid-Illinois during the era.

Pull down your selection from the drop-down menu at the top of the page.

Automated Radio History

Automated Radio formats include those program syndicators as well as the equipment used by stations to establish many FM stations during the AM radio era.  

There's the audio from the companies represented of demos of many of the formats. You'll also see which local stations subscribed to each format.

See photos of many automation systems used by many radio stations from around the country as well as local stations.

Pull down your selection from the drop-down menu at the top of the page.

  • Industrial audio/video training

  • Industrial video narration

  • Infomercials

  • TV commercials

  • Public Service announcements

  • Radio commercials

  • Powerpoint presentations

  • Telephone on-hold messages

  • In-store announcements for music services

  • TV Station news/promo image voice

  • Website Audio narration/training

  • Click HERE to go the web page

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Videos of the Week


"Praised for its quality and famous for its drama, Desilu’s The Untouchables television show (1959-1963) roared like the era it portrayed in grand, theatrical style. A controversial and Emmy award-winning series, its legacy in film and television has been felt from Hollywood to the halls of Congress and has impacted everything from The Simpsons to The Sopranos.

In recognition of the program’s 60th Anniversary, The Untouchables Retrospective is a detailed and nostalgic account of American television’s finest film noir featuring a comprehensive episode guide and an exclusive, behind-the-scenes exploration of this landmark program."



This groundbreaking series came from the studio that brought us the sitcoms "I Love Lucy," "Our Miss Brooks," "December Bride," "The Ann Southern Show," and other series like "The Adventures of Jim Bowie," "The Walter Winchell File," "The Texan," "Star Trek," "Mission Impossible," and "Mannix."

"The Untouchables" came about from an episode of the "Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse" airing April 20 and 27, 1959. The "Desilu Playhouse" was a dramatic anthology series that aired on CBS from 1958 to 1960.

"The Untouchables" episode as it was called when it was initially presented, was renamed "The Scarface Mob" later when it aired on ABC in the fall of 1959. CBS turned down the series, although ABC agreed to air the series where it would continue through 1963. 

Being very controversial for its violence, and drawing complaints from the Italian-American community, it would face a lawsuit from the Capone family, which ended favorably for Desilu. It's interesting to note that Desi Arnez was a high school classmate of Albert Capone, Al's son. 

The show also faced boycotts of advertisers including a tobacco company. Desilu and ABC did change future shows to eliminate the use of Italian names for gangsters in later episodes, added more emphasis on the Italian character within the Untouchables crime force, and presented other Italian characters who were lawful and made contributions to society.

The Untouchables Retrospective (Podcast)

From theuntouchables.co

"On October 15th, 1959, ABC Television and Desilu Productions unveiled "a new kind of series" called The Untouchables and rocked American audiences out of their suburban living rooms and into Chicago's Prohibition streets with the battle of Eliot Ness (Robert Stack) and his incorruptible agents against the criminal forces of Al Capone. 

Join us on The Untouchables Retrospective as we head to Desilu Studios in the 1960s to explore an overlooked chapter in film and television history and the cultural and artistic impact on what was the most violent, expensive, and acclaimed television show of its time."

"The Big Train" Parts 1&2 (ABC) 1961

In this episode, the Untouchables discover a plot to bring about an escape of Al Capone from a train taking him to Alcatraz. This is one of the rare two-part episodes from the series. Al Capone was played to the max by actor Neville Brand. 

On another interesting note, the theme of "The Untouchables" was written by the Nelson Riddle Orchestra, which did the theme for "Route 66", but according to the credits, performed by the Wilbur Hatch Orchestra, that played the "I Love Lucy Theme."

This aired January 5 and 12, 1960 on ABC Television and was seen across mid-Illinois on WTVP(17), WDAN-TV(24), WTVH(19), and KTVI(2). 

From The OTR Collection

I've never endorsed another historical television website until now. But if you're into the notable ABC series, I urge you to subscribe and join in on The Untouchables Retrospective as it includes the story from Desilu Studios in the 1960s. There you see an exploration of an overlooked chapter in film and television history and the cultural and artistic impact on what was the most violent, expensive, and acclaimed television show of its time! Learn more at https://theuntouchables.co

(Source: YouTube and various posters and contributors.

They may be removed without notice)

Classic Radio

WWII News April 22, 1945 (ABC Radio) Walter Winchell

From YouTube Contributor, PublicDomainMoviesYT  


This is the April 22nd, 1945 installment of Walter Winchell's program of news and commentary, presented in Winchell's characteristically sensationalist style. There is a gap near the end of the program where the original recorder skipped a commercial. The only information on the disk label is "Walter Winchell Sun Apr 22 1945"." 

(Source: YouTube and various posters and contributors.

They may be removed without notice)

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Click on each Graphic/Title Below to go directly to an in depth story of each with pictures/videos of Television's Past

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Central Illinois On-Line Broadcast Museum and dougquick.com supports the work of the St. Louis Media History. 

Visit their website at:




Fall Preview (1963) ABC 

This nearly hour long program was the preview of the 1963-64 ABC television season.

Link to YouTube Video Above

Fall Preview (1970) ABC

The most popular shows that season from ABC included: Number one overall "Marcus Welby M.D.," "ABC Movie of the Week." "The FBI," "The Mod Squad," "The Smith Family," and the "ABC Sunday Night Movie." Honorable mentions: "The Odd Couple," "The Brady Bunch," "The Partridge Family," and "That Girl."

Link to YouTube VIdeo Above


St. Louis KTVI Romper Room (1962) Mentions WTVH Peoria
This was originally broadcast on KTVI, Channel 2 on August 2, 1962. Miss Lois, the second host of the local St. Louis version was the "teacher" at KTVI from 1962 to 1972.

Link to YouTube Video Above

Danny Kaye Show (1964) Hillbilly Sketch

It was February 26, 1964, and "The Danny Kaye Show" was one of CBS' most popular variety show. The name of Danny Kaye has seemingly faded into the past here in 2021, but he was a comedian who starred in seventeen movies during the 1940s and 50s, and became a popular CBS television star.

Link to YouTube Video Above


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