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This sounds like an intriguing story since Carolyn did serve time in prison while on trial for the murder of Bill Walker. There was an episode available from this storyline (the Bill Walker story) which was rather interesting. I wish more of this was available.

I still think this all plays out like early television serials. It's a shame Young's work on 'From These Roots' wasn't as strong as his predecessor's. I wonder how he would have done on 'Edge of Night.'

I appreciate this Carl.

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This is all very interesting. Thank you, Carl.

Charita Bauer put in a good run on 'The Right to Happiness.' She eventually narried Dwight Kramer and is Carolyn's ally during the custody battle for little Skippy in the 1950 Daytime Diary summaries. I have a brief news blurb from December 1944 talking about how the show was going to tell some stories set in Hollywood around the Warner Brothers, which would involve Constance and Susan Wakefield, Carolyn Kramer, and Alex Devalans (voiced by Staats Cotsworth). I suspect this involved Constance's career based on the above article. Anyway, Bauer was on 'Right to Happiness' from at least 1944 to 1950.

Speaking of the Wakefield family, it seems that they were sort of a secondary lot fashioned off of Carolyn and Doris. Doris was a woman with her own career with a strained relationship with her daughter. Constance was married to Arnold Kirk, a lawyer, which probably kept them in the thick of things as Miles Nelson, Carolyn's paramour / husband of the period the Wakefields were present, was a lawyer turned politician. I wonder if entering nursing was Susan's turning point or if she continued to cause drama.

The Ginny Campbell story is rather shocking. I knew Carolyn was charged with Ginny's murder, but I didn't know any of the details. It appears Ginny committed suicide because she believed Richard, Ginny's husband, was in love with Carolyn, his one-time wife. I suspect Susan tried to reunite Dick and Carolyn in order to get Dwight, Carolyn's on-again / off-again husband, for herself.

Thanks, Carl. 'Right to Happiness' fascinates me. Here is an article I found about Richard and Carolyn's marriage.

June 13 1943

Script Hero is Busy Man

Versatile 'Thin Man' Plenty of Jobs

by Harriet Van Horne

Lester Damon is a young man 20 million housewives would give ration points to know better. That is the estimated number that listens daily to soap operas and Lester is an actor who knows in advance what fate has in store for Carolyn Kramer and the other gallant though heartbroken heroines of the washboard weepers.

At least Lester knows what the plot has in store for the next few weeks. Beyond that is anybody's guess and the writer's own particular headache'

As Richard Campbell in The Right to Happiness, he’s the one man on the jury who held out for acquittal when Carolyn was tried for murder recently. Lester confides that he soon will be married (in script) to the chin-up carry-on girl whose troubles double with every show.

"But on the day after the wedding," Lester confided. "who should come back into Carolyn's life but Dwight.

"Dwight?" we echoed.

"That's the husband Carolyn thought was torpedoed.”

Lester shook his head sadly doubtless wondering how Carolyn would extricate herself from that fix. There are some bridges even the actors apprised as they are of the advance scripts can't cross until the writers dream up how and when.

Besides Richard Campbell, Lester plays the title role in "The Thin Man" He's also in "Portia Faces Life," "Big Sister" and "The Romance of Helen Trent." His favorite role is Bill Baker in the Portia drama. "I'm a newspaper reporter."

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Thanks so much for reading. When I saw this I thought of you immediately. The article is great too.

I wonder if Irna based Carolyn's mother on herself.

The mother seems a bit ahead of her time for radio soaps. The suicide story does too.

I will have to hear Charita on this. I guess this was somewhat similar to Bert in this period - scheming and naughty, but still human.

This show does sound fascinating.

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Carl, I'm not sure if your last question was a generalization or related to the plot relayed in the synopsis you posted.

I'm not sure what happened after Ginny's trial was resolved. From what I've gathered, motherhood mellowed Carolyn the way it does to some spoiled, self involved young women. After being accused of murdering Bill and having Dwight's child in prison, Carolyn seemed to be torn between Dwight and Dr. Dick Campbell. This triangle seemed to play out for a good part of the 1940s with Carolyn and Dick getting married, Dwight returning from the dead, Carolyn and Dwight resuming their marriage, the introductions of Ginny Carson and Susan Wakefield (both women vying for the affection of Caroyln’s men), and the failure of Dwight and Carolyn’s marriage.

After Ginny’s death, Dwight marries Susan, but I suspect there was more Dick / Carolyn interplay. Dick seems like a decent man, while Carolyn married complicated men to keep the story going. I assume Dick / Carolyn angst played out in the months that followed this article while Carolyn became more and more connected to Miles Nelson, the man who prosecuted her during the Ginny Carson Campbell trial. I suspect Dick was phased out of the story around this time as he doesn’t seem to have a strong purpose with the introduction of Miles Nelson.

Anyway, Miles and Carolyn marry and Miles’ political career dominates the early 1950s with Miles being institutionalized. As Skip came of age, he was involved with some youth gang; I believe they were exploiting the idea of Skip coming from a ‘broken home’ because Dwight and Carolyn had divorced even though Miles and Carolyn provide a stable environment, by soap opera standards. There was an underlying criminal element that tied into the political plotline, but this seems to be true of the early Roy Windsor television serials of the 1950s. “Love of Life” had Meg involved with gangsters and the mafia infilitrated the motor lodge on “Search for Tomorrow.”

Towards the end, Carolyn was involved in a relationship with Craig Chalmers after the death of Miles Nelson, but Debbie Nelson, Carolyn’s sister-in-law, loved Craig too. Craig and Debbie eventually married, and, at the wedding, Carolyn met Lee MacDonald, the man investigating the criminal element involved in Miles’ murder. Carolyn and Lee eventually married while Carolyn fretted about Skip’s involvement with working class Grace as Carolyn was the former boarding school princess who’s final two husbands were lawyers.

The final plotline involved a hit and run involving Alex Thorne, a scientist. Sharon Graham, the owner of a large corporation who employed Lee MacDonald, was accused of running over the man, but in turned out Dick Braden, a friend of Skip’s, was the true culprit. The Braden family was featured in the storyline and Dick’s mother complained about working in the home and yearned for a career. Carolyn gave her blessing to Grace and Skip’s wedding plans and found happiness in her marriage with Lee.

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March 1951 Radio TV Mirror Right to Happiness recap

At last Carolyn Kramer feels there is a chance that she may win her long battle with her former husband, Dwight Kramer, for custody of their child, Skippy. As the result of an unscrupulous frame-up, which discredited Carolyn, Skippy's custody was officially granted to Dwight, but Carolyn never resigned herself to this and lately has discovered some hope that she can prove the crookedness of Dwight's lawyer, Arnold Fisk. Will this break up Dwight's marriage to Constance?

April 1954 recap

If the rift in Carolyn Kramer Nelson's marriage were caused by a personal misunderstanding between herself and Miles, Carolyn would feel hopeful of mending it by determination, honesty and love. But the importance in the situation of outside influences weakens her confidence. If others can come between herself and Miles, confusing her efforts to reach real accord, is there any hope?

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How interesting. I wonder how listeners at the time reacted to being able to put a face to the voices they heard daily.

Did that story of Connie play out on air or did it happen off-air ? Was Connie written out ,then returned after all this occurred?

Maybe not,as radio could have stories happening all over the place.TV writers must have felt very limited by having to have their stories play out on a few sets.

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Is this from 1949 or is this a typo? I only ask because Connie's story predates the other article from 1946 as Connie is already in the thick of things. As I mention above, there was an article from December 1944 discussing the story involving the Wakefields and Hollywood. I would suspect this story is the one being outlined above in the Radio Timesale article. In the story, I imagine Carolyn moved to Westwood, met Connie, and Connie began to reveal to her story to Carolyn as Susan, Connie, and Alex are all mentioned in the article. I would assume the show was set in the present with Connie back in Westwood with the possibility of Alex Devalans returning to cause complications.

I had never heard Westwood used as the location, but its nice to know where the show was set.

Thanks for this. It was a very interesting read.

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Well, clearly all of this Connie story is before she married Carolyn's ex-husband Dwight Kramer and then stood by him as he sued Carolyn for custody of their son Skippy. It is obviously before Carolyn married attorney Miles Nelson (who represented her in the custody suit) and moved to Maridian prior to Miles being elected governor.

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1/52 Radio TV MIrror

In all the vicissitudes of her life, Carolyn Nelson's courage has never deserted her, but she finds need of all her acuteness and all her strength as she realizes that a pit is being dug beneath her feet - a pit intended mainly to trap her husband, Governor Miles Nelson, but which will necessarily send her, too, crashing into chaos. Who are his enemies? Are Carolyn's suspicions justified?

1/53 TVRM

Heartbroken at the threat that hangs over the career, perhaps the life of her husband, Governor Miles Nelson, Carolyn tries desperately to unravel the complex skein in which his enemies have entangled him. Will Miles ever know that Carolyn exposed herself not only to physical danger but to ruinous suspicion to protect him? What is Annette Thorpe's true stake in the deadly political game?

3/53 TVRM

Caroline Nelson enters one of the most trying periods of her life as her marriage to Miles is undermined by the subtle, persistent attack of a woman who has always hated and envied her. Even if Annette Thorpe's plans should fail, however, there will remain the crucial question of Miles' lack of faith in Caroline - the doubt that hurt her so grievously during a time when she needed him most.

5/53 TVRM

Though she knows it is unwise for her to interfere at the present time in certain public affairs, Carolyn cannot sit by calmly when it seems to her that a cruel breach of justice is about to ruin two innocent young lives. As Carolyn decides to take a hand in saving the accused husband of her young and frantic friend, she wonders how her action will affect her own future. Will her husband Miles be further estranged?

8/53 TVRM

Carolyn Kramer Nelson finds that her own future and the future of her marriage are bound up in the fate of two young people who a short time ago were strangers to her. Her passion for justice keeps her fighting for Danny Lockwood's freedom even though she now knows that if she does not give it up the gap between her and her husband, Governor Miles Nelson, may become a permanent break.

9/53 TVRM

Carolyn Kramer Nelson has always believed that, fundamentally, a marriage was made by the understanding between two people. But she is now forced to the bitter realization that sometimes the rest of the world can assume a controlling part in the destiny of a marriage, as determined intriguers make almost unbridgeable the gap between her and Miles. Was Miles perhaps too willing to turn from her?

9/54 TVRM

Political enemies ally with personal ones to bring Carolyn and Miles Nelson into a time of crucial decision, as a threat hangs over Miles which neither he nor Carolyn has the means to defeat. Will Danny and Elsa Lockwood, whose lives were completely changed by Carolyn's faith and partisanship, now be able to return the gift of happiness she made them by helping in her own trouble?

11/55 TVRM

A new phase of Carolyn's life opens as, alone after years of fighting side by side with Miles, she struggles to save his name and her own from the enemies who finally achieved his death. Can she manage to present the truth so that it triumphs over the lies and doubts being spread about her? Or will she be forced to watch the machine go to work once more in the vicious manner she knows all too well?

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