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“I Was A Communist For The FBI” starring Dana Andrews

  • May 3, 2014
"I Was A Communist For The FBI" Promotional Sign

“I Was A Communist For The FBI” Promotional Sign

Radio was a much different medium in 1948 when WISL first signed on the air. Back then, radio was programmed much like television is programmed today with a schedule of different programming types throughout the day. Most radio stations had network affiliations and would run prime time and news programing offered by them. WISL was a Mutual Network affiliate and aired a number of their programs. We will dig into this topic at a later date. For this post we will revisit a short lived program that centered on one of the biggest political topics of the day, Communism.

The year was 1952, the “Red Scare” was in full force and was a very popular source of material in the entertainment industry. This program is centered around the character Matt Cvetic, a real life FBI volunteer undercover agent. His testimony in 1949 helped to put away several members of a conspiracy to overthrow the US Government. After the trial, Cvetic sold his story and it became a serial in the Saturday Evening Post, a best selling book and a Warner Brother’s Movie.

The Frederic W. Ziv Company would later turn his story into a syndicated radio program. The series was produced without help from the FBI, as they refused to assist in the project. The program aired from April 23rd 1952 through October 14th 1953, with a total of 78 programs produced. This is where we come in.

Shamokin’s WISL was one of the over 600 radio stations in the US that carried this 30 minute, weekly radio program. The image above is an original billboard poster for the program, promoting it Sunday evening airtime on WISL radio. This poster was found, of all places, lining a drawer in an old store in Shamokin. The owner found the relic when cleaning and gave it to Tom Kutza who has shared it with us.

We have compiled a sample of these programs, simply click below to relive radio’s golden age, the days of the “Theater of the Mind.” We now present, brought to you by the Bakers of Blue Ribbon Cake, “I Was A Communist For The FBI,” starring Dana Andrews as heard on WISL radio from 1952-1953.

Audio Exhibits

“I Walk Alone” Air Date: April 23rd 1952

“Card Game In The Clouds” Air Date: June 4th 1952

“The Wrong Green” Air Date: April 1st 1953

“The Crossed Heart” Air Date: June 3rd 1953


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