BW - EP123—007: January 1954—The New Beulah Show

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Amanda Randolph was born on September 2nd, 1896 in Louisville, Kentucky. Her father was a methodist minister and her mother a teacher, but she would find her calling in music, vaudeville, and eventually radio. ___________ A star by 1948, she led her own musical TV program for the DuMont network. It made her the first African-American woman with her own daytime TV show. ___________ Her sister Lilian was also a big radio performer, starring in both The Great Gildersleeve, and Amos ‘n’ Andy. ___________ In September of 1953 Randolph took over the title role of Beulah. It had been Hattie McDaniel’s until she got sick in 1951. For a time Amanda and Lilian alternated the lead. This incarnation of the show aired on CBS weeknights at 7:15PM. ___________ Beulah was supposed to be in her mid-30s and man crazy. She worked hard and played harder, and had an affinity for high heels and short skirts. The cast featured Hugh Studebaker, Mary Jane Croft, Henry Blair, Ruby Dandridge, and Bubbles Whitman. ___________ Randolph simultaneously starred in Amos ‘n’ Andy while leading this cast. On January 26th, Beulah broadcast an episode called “Bill’s Streetcar Lunchroom.” ___________ Beulah would air until May 28th, 1954.

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