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Howdy Doody Facts, Trivia and Collectibles

Clarabelle, Flub-a-Dub, Major Phineas T. Bluster, Dilly Dally

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Were you a Howdy Doody fan? Over fifty years ago this show was one of the most popular TV programs. Howdy Doody ran for over 2300 episodes and had a profound effect on the kids of the fifties.

The Howdy Doody Show was on NBC from 1947 through 1960 and was the first show of the day. It was also the first television show to hit the 2000 episode mark. A Canadian version was telecast from 1954 through 1959 and had similar characters, but with a "great north woods" flavor.

A new syndicated version, The New Howdy Doody Show ran in the mid 1970s for 130 episodes.

Characters in Doodyville

Hake's Americana and Collectibles
Stars of the show included the puppets Howdy Doody, Heidi Doody, Major Phineas T. Bluster, Dilly Dally and Flub-a-Dub.

Live characters were the host Buffalo Bob (Bob Smith), silent Clarabell (Bob Keeshan, Lew Anderson) and Chief Thunderthud and Princess Summerfall Winterspring (Judy Typer).

The Peanut Gallery

The live audience of approximately 40 kids who sat in the audience of the show were referred to as the Peanut Gallery. It's been said that Charles Schulz's Peanuts comic strip was named for the peanut gallery kids on The Howdy Doody Show.

From Deconstructing Chuck - Schulz and Peanuts: A Biography: "The name 'Peanuts,' which Schulz always hated, came from the peanut gallery on The Howdy Doody Show."

Collectibles

Hake's Americana and Collectibles
Original Howdy Doody collectibles can be pricey, but are not too difficult to find. His face was on everything from apple bags to twin-pop bags. All of these disposable items now command high prices, as do the toys, dolls, and everything else that was licensed by Howdy.

Newer pieces can be found for reasonable and issue prices. New metal lunch boxes, a new cookie jar, ornaments, hinged boxes and dolls have all been available in the past few years. It's usually pretty evident what is new and what is old, but make sure you know what you are buying before paying big bucks!

Howdy Doody Cookie Jars

Vandor Bumper Car
Tony Burns/aablmb
There are enough Howdy Doody cookie jars to have their own category in your collection. Purinton, Vandor, and Treasure Craft all made jars.

Howdy Doody Goes to Court

Who would have ever thought it would come to this. Poor Howdy has been locked up in a bank vault for over year -- waiting for a judge to spring him.

He was not even given a good behavior release to attend the unveiling of his bronze star on the NBC Walk of Fame.

No, Howdy was not around, he was involved in a lawsuit of all things!

Read More: Howdy Doody Goes to Court

Online Auction Prices - August 2003

Judy
  • Howdy Doody Plaid School Book Bag
    Size 9" X 12"
    Red plaid
    Sold Price: $565.
  • Yellow (hard) Plastic Circus Truck Size 4.5" - Howdy is driving.
    Made by: Plasticraft
    Sold Price: $50.
  • Metal Lunch Box - 1955
    Some rust
    Sold Price: $190.
  • Effanbee Durable Howdy Doody
    Original box, excellent condition
    Sold Price: $460.
  • Mr. Bluster Marionette
    Sold Price: $675.
  • Heidi Doody Marionette
    Sold Price: $620.
  • Magic Piano and Xylo-Doodle
    Box Only!
    Sold Price: $26.
  • Storiviews w/Dimensional Pictures Six cards
    Sold Price: $31.
  • Poll Parrot Picture Album
    Sold Price: $18.
  • "ZANY" Fabric Hand Puppets
    Made by: J. V. Zimmerman Company Vinylite plastic heads - all in box
    Sold Prices: Howdy Doody - $428. Clarabelle - $565. Flub a Dub Puppet - $106.

My Peanut Gallery Memories

Yes, I was once a member of the Peanut Gallery, but the memory is a bit fuzzy! I remember being in awe of the show, the hot lights and small studio.

Buffalo Bob asked what I wanted to be when I grew up and I said a teacher. I never became a teacher, but I did become a lifelong volunteer in schools.

For many years, the words "Peanut Gallery" were used to tease me. My adult relatives would refer to me as "the Peanut Gallery"... Or "let's hear from the peanut gallery" when asking me a question.

That is what I remember most and that memory always makes me smile.

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