Playlist From the Archive

From the Archive

WTTW's John Callaway interviews the 'New Yorker' writer Jane Kramer in 1978

From the Archive: 'New Yorker' Writer Jane Kramer

Daniel Hautzinger

New Yorker writer Jane Kramer discusses the myth of the American West, the rise of big agribusiness and its effect on both traditional ranching and cows, and what bringing her daughter along on her reporting could do, in this 1978 interview from the WTTW archives. 
Sesame Street puppeteer Caroll Spinney on WTTW's Chicago Tonight in 2003

From the Archive: Caroll Spinney, Big Bird's Performer

Daniel Hautzinger

Caroll Spinney, who performed Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch on Sesame Street for almost 50 years, died at the age of 85 on Sunday. Revisit a 2003 interview with him on Chicago Tonight where he tells memorable stories, like the time he got in an argument with Mister Rogers. 
Sammy Davis, Jr. on Our People with Jim Tilmon in 1968

From the Archive: Sammy Davis, Jr. on the Civil Rights Movement

Daniel Hautzinger

Watch Sammy Davis, Jr. on the pioneering show "Our People," the first televised weekly forum for black issues, discuss the ongoing empowerment of African Americans in 1968. "Don't let 'em pigeonhole me, man, cuz I will not allow myself as a black individual to be pigeonholed," he says.
Ferrara Pan Candy Company Factory

From the Archive: Tour a Chicago-Based Candy Factory

Daniel Hautzinger

The Chicagoland-based Ferrara Candy Company has announced that it's moving into the Old Post Office downtown. Take a tour of their factory, where even the air tastes sweet, in a segment from a 2004 episode of Chicago Tonight.
The author Alex Haley in 1976

From the Archive: Alex Haley, Author of 'Roots'

Daniel Hautzinger

The author of Roots and The Autobiography of Malcolm X explains the origins of Roots and his difficulty in capturing the experience of being on a slave-ship in a 1976 interview. "The absence of pride changes to a presence of pride" when you know your history, he says.
Leon Lederman. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Nobel Prize-Winning Fermilab Physicist Leon Lederman Has Died

Daniel Hautzinger

Lederman, who won a Nobel Prize in 1988 for demonstrating that there are at least two kinds of particles called neutrinos, coined the Higgs boson's nickname "the God particle," and worked at Fermilab outside Chicago as well as the University of Chicago, has died at age 96.
The Eastland Disaster on the Chicago River

Chicago's Deadliest Disaster

Daniel Hautzinger

One hundred and three years ago, on July 24, 1915, more than 800 people lost their lives in Chicago's deadliest tragedy, when a top-heavy boat rolled onto its side in the Chicago River only twenty feet from the shore. Watch an archival Chicago Stories episode about the Eastland Disaster.
John Updike

From the Archive: John Updike

Daniel Hautzinger

"Nobody needs a book much, do they?" It's a surprising sentiment to hear coming from a writer, but in this 1981 interview with WTTW's John Callaway, John Updike discusses his impressively humble views on literature, his existential anxieties, and his goals as a writer.
The film poster for Grease, with Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta

From the Archive: 'Grease' Becomes a Movie

Daniel Hautzinger

The smash-hit film version of Grease premiered 40 years ago on June 16, but it was already a huge success on Broadway, and had originated as a small play in Chicago. One of its co-writers discusses its popularizing transformations into something different from the original.
Robert F. Kennedy and John F. Kennedy during the McClellan Senate hearings circa May 1957. Photo: Howard Jones for Look Magazine / John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston

50 Years After the Assassination of Robert F. Kennedy

Daniel Hautzinger

50 years ago today, Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated in the midst of the 1968 presidential campaign. Explore his unrealized potential in a 1969 Studs Terkel interview. "There was this great strength to him, a decency and simplicity and a willingness to listen and a willingness to learn."
Dune by Frank Herbert

From the Archive: 'Dune' Author Frank Herbert

Daniel Hautzinger

The author of the world's best-selling science fiction novel discusses the broad base of knowledge he draws on in imagining other worlds, as well as his environmentalism. "I refuse to be put in the position of having to tell my grandchildren, 'I'm sorry, there's no more world for you, we used it all up.' " 
Studs Terkel. Photo: Chicago History Museum, iCHi-065438; Stephen Deutch, photographer

Five Extraordinary Conversations from the Studs Terkel Radio Archive

Daniel Hautzinger

Studs Terkel talked to everyone, from people down on their luck to people at the top of their career. Now many of his insightful conversations are available through the Studs Terkel Radio Archive – discover five exceptional conversations with remarkable people here.
Tom Wolfe

Era-Defining Journalist and Novelist Tom Wolfe Has Died

Daniel Hautzinger

Tom Wolfe, who wrote The Right Stuff and Bonfire of the Vanities and gave us the terms "'Me' decade" and "radical chic," died yesterday at the age of 88. Watch him discuss his trademark white suit and the similarities between counterculture and evangelicalism in this archival interview.
Pulitzer Prize-winning author and poet Alice Walker

From the Archive: Alice Walker

Daniel Hautzinger

The Great American Read's list of America's 100 most-loved books has been revealed, and it includes Alice Walker's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1982 The Color Purple. Revisit a 2013 interview with Walker on Chicago Tonight. "I go where my heart says I need to be," she says. 
Carl Kasell on Chicago Tonight

NPR Icon Carl Kasell Dies

Daniel Hautzinger

Carl Kasell, the beloved NPR newscaster and judge and scorekeeper of the news quiz show Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! died yesterday at age 84. Remember the radio icon with WTTW archival videos: an extended interview, and a behind the scenes look at Wait Wait.
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