Scopes Monkey Trial II

Lead: In the summer of 1925, in Dayton, Tennessee, William Jennings Bryan and Clarence Darrow met in legal conflict during the trial of John Thomas Scopes. Their clash was as much cultural as it was legal.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Scopes agreed to be the defendant in a case testing the constitutionality of the Butler Act which was Tennessee's attempt to prevent teaching of ideas in the public schools thought to be in conflict with the Bible. The prosecution invited William Jennings Bryan to lead its team. John Scopes accepted the help of Clarence Darrow in the defense.

Scopes Monkey Trial I

Lead: In the summer of 1925, in Dayton, a small mining town in Eastern Tennessee, a teacher of high school biology was brought to trial for teaching the theory of evolution.

Intro.: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: On a sunny May afternoon, John Thomas Scopes, a popular twenty-five year old biology teacher, was playing tennis with some of his students. At the end of the game he noticed a small boy obviously waiting for him at courtside. The youngster had a message. His presence was requested at Fred Robinson's drugstore. There he found several of the town's leading citizens and they had a proposition. A recent issue of the Chattanooga News contained an offer by the American Civil Liberties Union to pay the expenses of anyone willing to test the constitutionality of the Butler Act. Robinson and Sue Hicks wanted to know if Scopes would let himself become the legal guinea pig in a case testing the legality of the Act.

The Panic Broadcast Part II

Lead: As the CBS broadcast of H.G. Wells’ War of the Worlds progressed, many in the audience began to take it seriously and fell into panic.

 Tag: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

 Content: Orson Welles' career as a radio actor included the role of Lamont Cranston in the mystery series The Shadow but his greatest fame came when he brought his Mercury Theater company to Columbia Broadcasting for a series of radio dramas based on famous novels. For Halloween Eve, October 30, 1938, the company chose Wells' science fiction nightmare War of the Worlds, the dramatic description of an invasion by hostile Martians who destroy the earth.


Read more →

The Panic Broadcast Part I

Lead: On Halloween Eve, 1938, invaders from Mars landed on a truck farm east of Princeton, New Jersey.

Tag: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

 Content: The invasion was harmless, one of the CBS Sunday night broadcasts of the Mercury Theater on the Air, a dramatic re-telling of Herbert George Wells' novel, War of the Worlds. Wells completed his story in 1897 and immediately it was a huge success. Orson Welles, the young director of the Mercury Theater, had for some time been interested in adapting the story as a radio drama and settled on broadcast within a broadcast as the plot. News reports and live, on-the-scene accounts breaking into what seemed to be an ordinary evening of musical entertainment, created a vivid realism that convinced many listeners they were witnessing an actual extra-terrestrial invasion by hostile visitors from Mars.


Read more →

Muslim Conquest of Spain II

Lead: Following the expansionist inclination of the Umayyad caliphate of Damascus, evangelical Islam by 714 had conquered almost all of the Iberian peninsula. In Spain they created a brand new society.

Intro. : A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Disunity among Christians, powerful armies, and a sense of spiritual inevitability compelled the armies of God north through Spain and into central France. Everywhere Islam swept all before it. Not until the Christian Franks outflanked and defeated the Muslims at the first Battle of Poitiers in 732, did the Islamic tide recede and retreat.


Muslim Conquest of Spain I

Lead: The expansion of Islam in the centuries after the Prophet Muhammad’s death flowed east to India and west to the Visigothic kingdom on the Iberian Peninsula. Spain had powerful Moorish rule for more than seven centuries.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: From 712 to 1492 some part of Spain was under Muslim control. At high tide, Arabs ruled almost all of Iberia. In the end, only Granada, dominated by the massive Alhambra fortress, could resist the Reconquista, the re-conquest of the peninsula, led finally by Christian forces united under Ferdinand and Isabella. The city surrendered in the year Spain turned its attention outward and sent Christopher Columbus on his journey to a new world..

Walter Winchell

Lead: From the mid-1930s to the 1950s, arguably the most powerful journalist in the United States was Walter Winchell.

Intro.: "A Moment in Time" with Dan Roberts.

Content: For nearly three decades Winchell helped set styles, shaped public opinion, passed on juicy gossip, boosted the careers of those he admired and occasionally ruined others. He came from a troubled home and early on sought the escape afforded by show business. Winchell spent his teenage years and early twenties in the backwaters of America singing and dancing as a vaudeville performer. During the spring of 1920 Winchell began to put together a little gossip sheet for the members of the company with which he was touring. This led to a column in the "The Vaudeville News" and eventually employment on its staff. Ten years on the circuit had made Winchell into an entertainer and taught him how to reach and hold an audience, lessons he applied to great usefulness in the future.

1924 Democratic Convention II

Lead: The American humorist, Will Rogers, said "The Democrats are the only known race of people that give a dinner and fight over it. No job is ever too small for them to split over." He surely must have been speaking of the 1924 Party Convention in New York.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: By all rights the Democrats should have been hot prospects in the election of 1924. They had enjoyed impressive results in the congressional returns of 1922. The Republicans had been scarred by the scandals of the Harding administration and had as their candidate the competent but dull and uninspiring President Calvin Coolidge.