Most modern audiences have never seen any of the 88 silents (the transition to sound began with crude synchronized sound effects during the 1928 season, but complete conversion to talkies wouldn't occur until the following year).
Significant events: 1922: series begins as a 2-reeler (roughly 22 minutes) and distributed through the Pathe Exchange, a pioneering French film company with offices in New York City (it ironically, financed and distributed Roach's primary competitor Mack Sennett). 1922-1926: Although boasting many likable kids (Johnny Downs, "Farina" Hoskins, Joe Cobb, Jackie Condon, etc.). Mickey Daniels becomes the un-official star of the series. His departure in 1926 leaves a series void that wouldn't be filled until the arrival of Jackie Cooper in 1929's Boxing Gloves. 1927: Roach ends his association with the rapidly disintegrating Pathe Exchange (with The Smile Wins, short #66) and signs a distribution and financing deal with MGM. Technology note: MGM, despite being the stellar studio in the world, takes a long wait-and-see attitude regarding talkies (primarily due to the huge expense that parent Loew's Inc. faces in converting it's vast theater chain to sound. This stretches out 'Our Gang's part-talkie period, allowing uncoverted studios to run silent versions). 1928: Barnum & Ringling (#74) is released with synchronized sound effects. 1929: Small Talk (#89; released as a 3-reeler) is the first all-talking Our Gang short. 1929-31: Jackie Cooper becomes a major star and departs for features after 15 Our Gang shorts (ending with Bargain Day, #106). 1932: George "Spanky" Mcfarland debuts in Free Eats (#112). Dickie Moore appears in 8 shorts beginning with Hook and Ladder (#116) and leaves for a successful feature career. 1934: Billie "Buckwheat" Thomas debuts in For Pete's Sake (#127) and would remain with the series until the end. 1935: Carl "Alfalfa" Switzer debuts in Beginner's Luck (#135) and, over time, becomes a headache (his antics would end his series tenure at MGM). 1936: Roach bombs with General Spanky, a 71-minute feature (technically Our Gang #150). 1938: Roach sells the Our Gang unit to MGM and exits shorts production completely in favor of feature films. These MGM-produced entries are generally dismal. 1943: Series production ends with the 221st production, Tale of a Dog (Our Gang shorts are released into 1944).