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Life of Riley, The - Old Time Radio

Life of Riley, The

"What a revoltin' development this is!"

Even though there was one other Chester A. Riley in a brief 1941summer replacement series, William Bendix is the actor remembered and revered as the face -- the voice of Riley, husband of Peg, father of Junior and Babs. The long-running show launched on: January 16, 1944, and ended on June 29, 1951. It aired first on ABC Radio Network (1944-1945), and then found its home on NBC Radio Network from 1945-1951.

During World War II, and then into the 1950's, the American public held a special fondness for blue-collar workers because they were, after all, great contributors to the war effort, and the heart and soul of the growing middle class. While not explicitly stated as such, we can imagine radio listeners understood that the star character, Chester A. Riley, a riveter at an airplane factory, was recognized among this noble group. One of the show's sponsors, the American Meat Institute, used its commercials to sing its own praises about its role in the war effort.

There are 186 shows in our collection! Date Aired
Audition Show July 25, 1943
Riley Wants to Build a House July 25, 1943
Riley Plans to Build a House January 16, 1944
Riley is Best Dressed Man April 9, 1944
Baxter Goes to New York April 30, 1944
Haunted House October 29, 1944
Piano Lessons for Junior November 5, 1944
Big Football Bet November 12, 1944
Turkey Hunt November 19, 1944
Most Popular Boy December 3, 1944
Riley Goes to Night School December 10, 1944
Christmas Present December 17, 1944
Roswell is a Difficult Christmas Guest December 24, 1944
Silver Gloves Boxing Tournament January 7, 1945
The Watch January 14, 1945
Riley Takes Phone Booth Nickels January 21, 1945
Riley Helps Luigi Pass His English Test February 25, 1945
Babs is Born March 4, 1945
Junior Runs Away March 11, 1945
Riley is a Pal to Junior March 18, 1945
Five Dollars is Missing March 25, 1945
Peg's Mother Visits May 13, 1945
Riley Thinks He's Going to Be Fired September 8, 1945
New Neighbor Fued over Junior's Goat September 15, 1945
Sidney Monahan is a House Guest October 20, 1945

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