1935

On the air: Radios become the "central medium" in Depression America; 2 out of 3 homes have radio sets and the 4 national and 20 regional networks provide programs everywhere in America 24 hours a day. Advertising agencies shift money from newspapers to radio as public trust in print media declines but grows stronger on the air. The Cavalcade of America debuts in October on CBS.

In other news: Congress passes the Social Security Act; Germany's Nazi party makes Anti-Semitism the law.

1936

On the air: Presidential candidates use radios for the first time in the November election as a beneficial campaigning tactic. FDR and Alf Landon both spend a record $2 million on radio campaigns.

In other news: Germany invades the Rhineland; America re-elects Franklin Delano Roosevelt; the Spanish Civil War begins; Rockefeller University invents the first artificial heart. Margaret Mitchell writes Gone with the Wind ; Boulder (later Hoover) Dam is completed. Joe DiMaggio joins the New York Yankees, who go on to win the World Series

1937

On the air: Herb Morrison and engineer Charles Nehlsen capture the Hindenburg explosion at Lakehurst NJ May 15, 1937 live; NBC had a ban on records, but decides to lift the ban to allow this recording to be broadcast on the network many times. This is the first coast to coast broadcast

In other news: Japan invades China; Italy withdraws from the League of Nations and joins a Germany-Japan pact. Amelia Earhart and her aircraft disappear mysteriously over the Pacific. John Steinbeck writes Of Mice and Men, the first animated film, Disney releases Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

1938

On the air: With the ongoing hostility in Eurpoe, America's fear of war is growing. Two radio programs in October, "Air Raid" by Archibald MacLeish and "War of the Worlds" by Orson Wells, are so realistic that they frighten many people into thinking the United States was being invaded. Amendments to the Federal Trade Commission Act granted the FCC more power to stop false advertising.

In other news: Congress passes the Fair Labor Standards Act, providing the first minimum wage.

1939

In the news: Nazi- Soviet Non-aggression Pact is signed, which divided Poland between Germany and the USSR; On September 1, Germany invades Poland and on September 3, Great Britain and France declare war on Germany; As World War II begins in Europe the U.S., Belgium, and Spain declare neutrality; Gone with the Wind and The Wizard of Oz are released in movie theaters; Pan American's first transatlantic passenger flight lasts nearly 24 hours; Nylon stockings are first sold to the US; General Electric invents fluorescent lighting; Albert Einstein writes a letter to President Roosevelt regarding the possibility of the atomic bomb.

1940

On the air: FDR's radio skills help him once again in the presidential election in November. He defeats Wendell Willkie to win an unprecedented third term as President. Music occupied 50% of all radio programming. Radios are in 30 million American homes.

In other news: Winston Churchill becomes Prime Minister of Britain; Germany, Japan and Italy sign the Axis Pact; Germany now occupies Norway, Denmark, Luxembourg, Belgium, the Netherlands and France; Ernest Hemingway writes For Whom the Bell Tolls; Walt Disney's animated motion picture Fantasia debuts.

1941

On the air: The FCC Mayflower rule prohibits stations from editorializing only one point of view. No actual recording is made of the first news bulletin announcing the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor Dec. 7. The famous recording by John Daly is spliced together from two other later recordings because no news bulletins interrupted network programming on Dec. 7th.

In other news: The Lend-Lease Act is signed, permitting President Roosevelt to send military supplies to allies; On December 7, Japan attacks Pearl Harbor, Hawaii; The U.S. officially enters World War II; Penicillin is mass-produced; The U.S. Treasury begins issuing war bonds, called Liberty Bonds, to raise money for the World War II effort; Nazi troops invade Soviet Russia; Orson Welles' Citizen Kane, premieres in movie theaters.

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