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Dr. Christian

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Dr Christian is a long-running radio series with Jean Hersholt in the title role It aired on CBS Radio from November 7, 1937, to January 6, 19541 In 1956, the series was adapted for television where it aired in syndication until 1957

After Hersholt portrayed the character Dr John Luke, based on Dr Allan Roy Dafoe, the obstetrician who delivered and cared for the Dionne Quintuplets, in the 20th Century Fox movie The Country Doctor 1936 and its two sequels He wanted to do the same role on radio but could not get the rights He decided to create his own doctor character for radio, and since he was a Hans Christian Andersen enthusiast, he borrowed that name for his character of philosophical Dr Paul Christian


  • 1 Overview
  • 2 Films
  • 3 Television
  • 4 Listen to
  • 5 References
  • 6 External links


Dr Christian practiced in the Midwest town of River's End with the assistance of Nurse Judy Price Rosemary DeCamp, Lurene Tuttle, Kathleen Fitz, Helen Claire With the opening theme music of "Rainbow on the River," Dr Christian was introduced on CBS November 7, 1937, on The Vaseline Program, aka Dr Christian's Office and later Dr Christian, sponsored by Chesebrough Manufacturing Company's Vaseline Petroleum Jelly, Hair Tonic, Lip Ice, etc

The small-town physician's good humor, innate common sense and scientific training helped drive off a series of villainous types who tried to interfere with the peaceful lifestyle of River's End, as well as dealing with personal problems among his many patients and the majority of those who lived in town The program was also unique in that, by the mid-1940s, listeners contributed the majority of the scripts some were "professionally polished" before they were used, and an annual script-writing competition introduced in 1942 was the highlight of every season- top prize: the $2,000 "Dr Christian Award" ; among the later winners were Rod Serling and Earl Hamner, Jr Produced by Dorothy McCann, the radio series became a popular success, continuing on CBS until January 6, 1954

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Hersholt was so strongly identified with the role that he received mail asking for medical advice1 There were various spin-offs as Hersholt co-wrote a Dr Christian novel and made a series of six family films as Christian for RKO from 1939 to 1941


  • Meet Dr Christian 1939
  • Remedy for Riches 1940
  • The Courageous Dr Christian 1940
  • Dr Christian Meets the Women 1940
  • Melody for Three 1941
  • They Meet Again 1941


In 1956, the Dr Christian character made the transition to television in a 39-episode syndicated Ziv Television series, scripted by Gene Roddenberry, with Macdonald Carey as his nephew Dr Mark Christian Jean Hersholt appeared for the last time as Dr Christian in the first episode, officially turning his medical practice over to his nephew Shortly after filming the episode, Hersholt died on June 2, 1956

Among the series guest stars was Mason Alan Dinehart, who played Danny Martin in the 1957 episode entitled "Typhoid" Stacy Harris appeared in the same segment as Warren2

Listen toedit

  • Free OTR: Dr Christian 38 1937-39 episodes


  1. ^ a b Dunning, John 1998 On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio Oxford University Press p 202-203 ISBN 978-0-19-507678-3 Retrieved 17 May 2017 
  2. ^ ""Typhoid", Episode 31 1957" Internet Movie Data Base Retrieved July 12, 2013 

External linksedit

  • Jean Hersholt: The Complete Andersen
  • Jerry Haendiges Vintage Radio Logs: Dr Christian
  • Dr Christian on Internet Movie Database

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