CONELRAD: The Ultimate Public Service Announcement
Arthur Godfrey - Early TV Superstar and 'National Grandfather'


We are approaching our twelfth year of seeking to uncover the truth behind the legend of the "Arthur Godfrey PSA." To note the occasion we are providing the following timeline which will be updated periodically as developments warrant.
Help us locate CONELRAD's Holy Grail. Send us your leads and sightings...

EISENHOWER TEN: This Letter Will Constitute Your Authority

ATOMIC HONEYMOONERS: LIFE Magazine's 1959 Fallout Shelter Couple Tell Their Tale

IF THE BOMB FALLS: Vinyl Instructions from 1961 for "Sheltering in Place"

OPERATION ALERT BUFFALO: Buffalo Blitz of 1956

SWINGING 1970's EBS JINGLE: Snap Your Fingers to These
Familiar Lyrics

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Arthur Godfrey's Doomsday PSA

With only a dash of irony, CONELRAD strongly suspects that the Cold War era will eventually yield incredible curiosities and treasures eclipsing those of ancient Egypt. One such treasure that has only been hinted at is a short reel of tape featuring mid-century celebrity Arthur Godfrey. It was to be unspooled on national television in the event of a nuclear war.

Arthur Godfrey: Early Television Superstar and 'National Grandfather'

Although it is hard to imagine now, Mr. Godfrey was at one time a huge television star and a kind of wholesome "national grandfather." He also happened to be a friend of President Eisenhower. One day, as the legend/rumor goes, Ike asked/ordered Godfrey to tape what can only be described as the ultimate PSA. In the message, Godfrey supposedly announces that the country is under atomic attack, that all measures are being taken to defend the population and, most importantly, we WILL survive. Godfrey was reportedly chosen for this task because he was deemed to have the necessary trust to calm what would have been a rather anxious audience.

TIME magazine first reported the above information in its Cold War cover story "The Doomsday Plans" (1992). Taking up a paragraph of space in a lengthy article, the Godfrey anecdote was merely a brief aside. But to CONELRAD, it is a wonderfully absurd symbol of how the Cold War and pop culture intersected./p>

But like the corpse of Jimmy Hoffa, the Godfrey message has proven to be an elusive find. Freedom of Information requests have been filed and the original TIME reporter was contacted for potential leads. The FOIA request was met with an invitation to spend some major quality time at the Eisenhower Library with no guarantees of finding anything (most presidential Cold War contingency plans remain sealed). The TIME reporter simply sent a terse e-mail saying that he had long since forgotten whom his source was!

So we now turn our hopes and dreams to you, the Internet public (specifically the aging former government operatives among you), as we formally announce that the Godfrey Doomsday PSA is the official Holy Grail of this web site. Indeed, it is firmly plastered on the figurative missing-child-milk carton of Cold War artifacts! It is up to YOU to help us find it!
BREAKING NEWS: FEBRUARY 2004 - Dr. Frank Stanton (former president of CBS, Inc. and last surviving member of the EISENHOWER TEN) has confirmed the existence of the Arthur Godfrey PSA.
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