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What This TV Has Seen Or Shown [PHOTOS] [VIDEOS]

old tv

I’m thinking that this Admiral television set has seen, and shown, alot!

My best guess, based on Admiral ads with similiar style and features, is that this set is from the 1967 or 1968 model year. The 23″ color set cost $349.95 in 1968 dollars! 

So, this set witnessed some of the first color television shows: Gilligan’s Island (the color episodes), and Star Trek with William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy. Mission Impossible. The Monkees…

…Batman (in COLOR), airing TWICE a week! To name a few of today’s (1960s) “classics”…

ALL in first run!

 

Reception was made possible by an antenna on the rooftop.

 

rabbit ears
Set-top rabbit ears, from the 1960s! (Craig Allen photo)

Or, “rabbit ears” sitting on top of the set…

I’ll bet that this Admiral saw man land on the moon on July 20, 1969 (R.I.P Neil Armstrong).

It saw the dawn of the 1970s. More Vietnam War, nightly. Also, The Partridge Family and the Brady Bunch, weekly…

…Archie Bunker, and the resignation of his guy, “Richard E. Nixon” (as Bunker called him) in August 1974.

I would be pretty sure that the little speaker on the front of this piece of funiture delivered the sound of the Liberty Bell, as President Ford rang our national symbol of liberty, in Philadelphia, on July 4th, 1976. And, the screen delivered the sight of the “tall ships” in the New York/New Jersey harbor!

Johnny Carson, The Rockford Files and Quincy were “hit” shows.  Other than that, does this TV remember any of these “new season” NBC shows from 1978? Most TVs were tuned elsewhere…

This now-roadside TV set probably has a better chance of having received the Betty Crocker commercial that aired just moments into “The BIG decade,” proclaiming that all moms are: a “1980 lady.”

It witnessed all the national pain for the American hostages held in Iran for 444 days…and our joy upon their release on Inauguration Day in January 1981. 

Then, there was the TV channel explosion! The wires went up on the poles, and cable TV came to town in 1981…just in time for the debut of MTV. That is, IF the TV’s owner signed on.

If not, the teens (and pre-teens) abandoned this TV…and flocked to the homes of friends lucky enough to have MTV!

Don’t forget the fairytale marriage of Prince Charles and Lady Di. Not to mention all those soap operas over the years! Can anyone say Susan Lucci? Plus, J.R. Ewing on “Dallas.” And the ratings record-smashing 1982 farewell to M*A*S*H!

The 1984 Los Angeles Summer Olympics. The Challenger tragedy. The Cosby Show, and ALF. Moonlighting, the dancing raisins…

…and “Spuds Mackenzie.”

The fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, and the first Simpson’s episode just days before the dawn of the 1990s. “Don’t have a cow, man!” Not even this TV could have guessed that  Homer and Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie would still be going strong today!

There was NYPD Blue in the early ’90s…the “realistic language,” and bare butts (“Eat My Shorts” might have worked as a catch-phrase on this show, too).

Time marches onward…

…and you can be pretty sure that the old picture tube is growing dim, and badly off-color by the ’90s (if not sooner).

What’s a “tube?” TVs have  been “solid state” forever!

Come to think of it, how many housecalls did the “TV repair man” make over the years? When there still was a repair man! Do you remember the days of taking the back off of the family set, pulling all the small tubes, and using to the tube tester at the store to figure out which ones you needed to replace? Like Pepperidge Farm, I remember! As a kid, thank you…

Did this set get moved to a back room…or the cellar by the early to mid 90s? Read: its too good to throw away, but not good enough to use regularly anymore?? Or, did it continue to see, and show the last decade of the 20th century?

How about Christie Whitman counting “hanging chads” in the 2000 election? The horror of 9-11. “Survivor,” “Dancing With The Stars,” “American Idol.”

The June 12, 2009 digital TV conversion that could never even have been imagined in 1966 or 1967!

Did it chronicle the emergence of Governor Chris Christie, and President Obama. Maybe. But, not likely.

Regardless of whether this Admiral TV saw (and showed) all of this and more….or less…its truly the end of the road, as this TV sits by the side of the road (in the rain and cold) waiting for trash pickup. Its so true: Nothing is “forever.”

What a sad end for a household fixture that entertained and informed. The glowing tube that the family gathered around…in good times and bad (sad).

So much history!

Its now history.

So, as Bob Hope used to sing (undoubtedly on this set): “Thanks for the memories!”

R.I.P “Admiral!”

 

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