First American soap opera ever revolved around an Irish American family

The first American soap opera ever told the story of an Irish American family, the Moynihans. The show “Painted Dream” was first aired on October 20, 1930.

The radio station, WGN, asked actress Irna Phillips to create a 15 minute daily show about a family to air during the day. The show’s plot centred about the relationship of widow Mother Moynihan and her unmarried daughter.

Irna wrote and acted on the show until 1932 when she realized it’s potential and tried to go nationwide. It was not until 1938 the the show was acquired by CBS.

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