Surviving episodes of television from the year 1948

This is an incomplete list of surviving episodes of television content from the year of 1948...there is also some additional surviving episodes from that year.

At the time, the only way to record live television was to directly film the TV monitor screen itself, using equipment designed for that purpose so there wouldn't be flicker...these are known as "kinescope recordings". This was how live TV was recorded before the invention of video tape in the mid-1950s.

Only complete intact episodes are listed.

As you may have noticed, none of these series survive as complete runs except perhaps for the Toscanini specials. The oldest series for which most of the episodes aired were kept come from 1949, and include "Admiral Broadway Revue" (NBC), "Let There be Stars" (ABC) and the second version of "The Morey Amsterdam Show" (DuMont).

I know I am being captain obvious, but some of these series also have surviving episodes from later years (many of the 1949 episodes of "The Morey Amsterdam Show" survive, for example)

Note: DuMont, one of the first commercial television networks, operated from 1946 to 1956. It several popular series including "Captain Video" (1949-1955), "Cavalcade of Stars" (1949-1952), "Down You Go", "Rocky King, Detective" (1950-1954), "The Plainclothesman" (1949-1954), "The Magic Cottage" (1949-1952), and "Life is Worth Living" (1952-1955, moved to ABC as DuMont shut down and continued to 1957).
View:
Log in to copy items to your own lists.
1.
Eye Witness (1947 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
A documentary series showing every conceivable angle on the workings of television--receiving sets, studios... (30 mins.)
Stars: Ben Grauer
“ 1 episode, aired 26 February 1948 on NBC. ” - Thor-Delta
 
2.
Kraft Theatre (1947 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
A well-received anthology series presenting live television dramas. (60 mins.)
“ 6 episodes, aired 3 March, 17 March, 24 March, 31 March, 21 April, 5 May 5 1948 on NBC. ” - Thor-Delta
 
3.
“ This special, aired 20 March 1948 on NBC, still survives as a kinescope recording. ” - Thor-Delta
 
4.
The Swift Show (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Live music and light comedy featuring singer Lanny Ross. For the first 5 months, a quiz segment was... (30 mins.)
Director: Fred Kelly
“ 2 episodes, aired 13 May and 27 May 1948 on NBC, are known to survive as kinescope recordings. ” - Thor-Delta
 
5.
Photographic Horizons (1947 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
(30 mins.)
“ At least 2 episodes, aired 25 August and 10 November 1948 on station WABD-TV, then an affiliate of the Du Mont network. A third, undated episode may also survive, but this is unconfirmed. ” - Thor-Delta
 
6.
The Howdy Doody Show (1947 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A variety show hosted by the famous puppet Howdy Doody and his ventriloquist. This show was aired in front of the famous peanut gallery on the early days of American Television. (30 mins.)
Director: Sandy Howard
“ At least 2 episodes, including 12 September 1948, survive of this series from the year 1948. ” - Thor-Delta
 
7.
The Chevrolet Tele-Theatre (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  
This was an anthology series which aired live. It often featured adaptations of one-act stage plays. (30 mins.)
Director: Barry Bernard
“ 5 episodes, aired 27 September, 4 October, 18 October, 1 November, and 15 November 1948 on NBC. ” - Thor-Delta
 
8.
The Great Foodini (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
(15 mins.)
“ 3 episodes, aired 19 October, 30 December, 31 December 1948 on CBS. ” - Thor-Delta
 
9.
The Bigelow Show (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
(30 mins.)
“ 4 episodes, aired 21 October, 28 October, 4 November, 9 December 1948 on NBC. ” - Thor-Delta
 
10.
Welcome Aboard (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Live variety show with a nautical theme featuring top-name singers and comedians. (30 mins.)
“ 3 episodes, aired 24 October, 31 October, 26 December 1948 on NBC, plus excerpts from two further episodes. ” - Thor-Delta
 
11.
“ This special, aired 3 April 1948 on NBC, still survives as a kinescope recording. ” - Thor-Delta
 
12.
“ This special, 13 November 1948, still survives as a kinescope recording. ” - Thor-Delta
 
13.
People's Platform (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
(30 mins.)
“ 1 episode, aired 7 December 1948 on CBS. ” - Thor-Delta
 
14.
Studio One in Hollywood (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
A pinnacle of the Golden Age of Television, "Studio One" presented a wide range of memorable dramas... (60 mins.)
“ 1 episode, aired 12 December 1948 on CBS. ” - Thor-Delta
 
16.
The Ed Sullivan Show (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
The classic prime time variety show most famous for its vaudeville acts and rock music performances. (60 mins.)
Director: Kenneth Whelan
“ 1 episode, aired 19 December 1948 on CBS, is confirmed to survive, but it is reported that additional episodes from 1948 are held by the Sullivan estate. ” - Thor-Delta
 
17.
The Morey Amsterdam Show (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
The show had two venues. In December 1948 to March 1949, Morey Amsterdam was the emcee at a small fictional nightclub in New York City's Times Square... (30 mins.)
“ 2 episodes, including the episode aired 24 December 1948 on CBS. ” - Thor-Delta
 
18.
Operation Success (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
(30 mins.)
“ 2 episodes survive of DuMont Network series. ” - Thor-Delta
 
19.
The Gay Nineties Revue (1948 TV Series)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
An American variety series that aired live with host singer/ songwriter Joseph E. Howard, who was reportedly age 71 at the time he hosted the show. (30 mins.)
“ 1 episode survives of this ABC series. ” - Thor-Delta