Captain Kangaroo

Filed Under (Childhood favorites, Reading Aloud) by on March 31, 2008 and tagged , ,

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When I was young, so was television.  The were only two or three channels and there weren’t many shows for children.  I remember Romper Room and Corky the Clown (St. Louis TV!), but mostly I remember Captain Kangaroo and his Treasure House.  Mr. Moose and ping pong balls, Bunny Rabbit and bunches of carrots out of the Captain’s pocket, Dancing Bear, Grandfather Clock, the Magic Drawing Board, and Mr. Green Jeans were there for me every weekday morning.  I remember many things about the show, but mostly I remember the Captain reading to me.  There was no animation,  just the Captain’s voice bringing the book to life as the camera focused on the pages of the book.  Many of my childhood favorite books I connect to the Captain.  Apparently I’m not alone in connecting books to the Captain;  there is an Amazon Listmania for books Captain Kangaroo read in the 50s.

A tornado barely missed our house one night when I was four.  It knocked down huge old trees in the yard and with them, the TV antenna.  I remember sobbing, for in my four year old wisdom, the greatest tragedy that morning was no Captain Kangaroo!  Not many weeks later I recall watching the adults around me sob but not for the Captain; Captain Kangaroo was off the air for the three days of funeral coverage for President Kennedy.

I had outgrown the Captain by the time they began filming in color in 1969.  And the Captain was off the air by the time my children were born.   But I swear I am a lover of books thanks to my mother (of course) and the Captain. 

One Response to “Captain Kangaroo”

  1.   MelissaW Says:

    Captain Kangaroo! And Mr. Green Jeans! I don’t remember much about the show, but I must have watched it as a kid because I know the names and can picture Captain K. I know there are some reading programs on television now similar to what you describe – a narrator/host reading books while the camera focuses on the pages. Are those popular with kids?

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