Talked On The Radio Twice

An ongoing series illustrating the diary of my grandmother Helen Hussey. Current entries: The San Francisco Sojourn 1939-1940.

London House 25 Trinity Place

The 1939 San Francisco Directory has London House address as 25 Trinity Place at Sutter Street, about a block from Market Street. The Google view today.

Monday March 27, 1939 “Sam and I to the bank, post office, and stores. Lovely Day. Nite: Met Tony and went to dinner with the ladies to London House.”

GearyTheatre EthelBarrymoreWhiteoaksofJalma
Ethel Barrymore
“Went to the Geary Theater to see Ethel Barrymore in Whiteoaks of Jalma. It was Grand!”

Short Wave Radio Broadcast Station

Photo source: Bay Area Radio Museum

Tuesday March 28, 1939. “Went to The Fair. Talked on the radio twice.”

Cesar Romero+Sally Eilers

Photo Source: Bay Area Radio Museum

It’s Cesar Romero and Sally Eilers’ turn to talk on the radio, Treasure Island station W6XBE. It was an International Broadcast Station established by General Electric Company for the fair as an advanced technology exhibit. In August of 1939, the station’s call sign was changed to KGEI (standing for “GE International”).


“Went to the Scottish Village + met a young chap.”


“Then on to the Gayway to see general things.”

Foiles Bergere Poster Folies Bergere

The March 11, 1939 San Francisco Chronicle proclaimed “The Folies Bergere Opens–And Boy, It’s a Show!

“Well, folks it’s happened! The Golden Gate International Exposition has really got something at last. It’s the Folies Bergere, which opened–and how it opened–last night.

“If that isn’t a drawing card of San Francisco’s 1939 World’s Fair then Sally Rand never had a bubble and Stella never had a bit of folk lore.

“It’s risque, of course. ‘The Lace Wedding” and “Wedding Night” will bring you up in your seat. That red-haired witch who shows on the program only as Grace will bring back the memories of the girl you were looking for when you read “Lancelot and Elaine.”

“The music will stir you out of the workaday world of comtomiters and typewriters and such, and it may set you to dreaming of oceans to be flown across and enemies to be shot down for the glory of a lady and the shedding of a vow.

“And if you are old enough to know the old Orpheum on O’Farrell street, where you sat and watched Farrar and Bernhardt, Savoy and Brennan, the Foy Family, the Cyclists, the trained seals, and those others you have missed for such a long time–they’re all there, back at the Folies, and you can meet them again and again until your sides ache with laughter.”

“Saw Folies Bergere, then back to San Francisco and ate. Home after 12.”


Friday March 31, 1939. “It was a lovely hot day in San Francisco. I did cleaning and washing. Then went to the De Young Museum and saw Rembrandt etchings. Sam home fairly early. Tony came over.”

I am Dan Soderberg, award winning documentary film maker and phototgrapher specializing in architecture, historic preservation and nature.

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