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Duffy's Tavern

Duffy's Tavern

Top of the pops in radio situation comedy for more than a decade through the forties and into the fifties and all built around a character who never made even one appearance on the show. The deception built around the owner of Duffy’s Tavern was so convincing that for over ten years from its start in 1941 anybody would tell you that Duffy lived at the tavern which was located in downtown Manhattan on Third Avenue at 29th Street and that he owned this well known eating establishment which catered to the Irish working population resident in that area. Yet, no one ever saw him and no one heard his voice. Oh many people would tell you that he spoke to Archie, (who was the manager at Duffy’s Tavern) in every show. But, you only ever heard Archie’s voice at this end of the telephone, talking to a never present Duffy.

Duffy’s Tavern was the brainchild of Ed Gardner, born Eddie Poggenburg, Long Island 1905 who later in life, 1929 to be exact, married a young lady he met at a party, name of Shirley Booth. It wasn’t until much later in their married life that Gardner was to hit on the idea that was to bring him fame and fortune.

His wife Shirley became a successful theater personality whilst he himself tried his hand at various aspects of theater and radio work and it was whilst he was directing a little known radio show for CBS that his luck changed.

The show was called "This is New York" and they were auditioning actors with a certain kind of New York accent, essential to the success of the show. Unfortunately, none of them seemed to know exactly what Gardner wanted so in desperation he stepped before the microphone and read the lines out himself and it was then that he realised that this was Archie, this special character which he would soon turn into the star of a new radio show.

Duffy was about to be born, but the man who would make him the talk of the airways was Archie who would soon be played by his creator, Ed Gardner.

When the show was broadcast for the first time on March 1st 1941 it was courtesy of CBS and Schick Razors and the people at the forefront of this little bit of Irish humor, were Ed Gardner as Archie and his wife Shirley Booth who played the daughter of the never to be seen Duffy.

The show was a great success and the people involved in it far too numerous to mention. Over it’s lifespan it evolved into what can only be described as a cult radio show and even when they tried to drop the tavern from it’s name and call it just Duffy. Most people carried on calling it "Duffy’s Tavern" because the show was what it was and no matter who the network people were or who were the sponsors it still remained that homely little place with the lousy food and the even lousier service that it first started out to be. As soon as that theme tune came floating over the airwaves "When Irish eyes are Smiling" and the telephone started to ring you just knew that Duffy was about to launch into Archie, but you never heard him do it.

 

 

Broadcast: 29th July 1940
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Sep 24 2001
Broadcast: 12th January 1943
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Oct 01 2010
Broadcast: 23rd March 1943
Added: Mar 27 2012
Broadcast: 15th June 1943
Added: Sep 17 2010
Broadcast: 12th September 1943
Added: Sep 10 2010
Broadcast: 5th October 1943
Added: Oct 08 2010
Broadcast: 19th October 1943
Starring: Peter Lorre, Ed Gardner
Added: Sep 24 2010
Broadcast: 2nd November 1943
Added: Oct 29 2010
Broadcast: 7th December 1943
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Oct 02 2001
Broadcast: 2nd March 1944
Added: Jan 28 2008
Broadcast: 7th March 1944
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jul 30 2004
Broadcast: 22nd December 1944
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jan 02 2004
Broadcast: 15th October 1945
Added: Oct 22 2010
Broadcast: 21st December 1945
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Feb 13 2002
Broadcast: 11th January 1946
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jan 11 2003
Broadcast: 1st February 1946
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jul 23 2004
Broadcast: 3rd May 1946
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jan 07 2005
Broadcast: 18th December 1946
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Dec 18 2004
Broadcast: 22nd January 1947
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Aug 25 2006
Broadcast: 18th May 1947
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jul 09 2004
Broadcast: 5th November 1947
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Nov 04 2005
Broadcast: 23rd December 1948
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Feb 13 2002
Broadcast: 29th December 1948
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Feb 13 2002
Broadcast: 9th February 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jul 16 2004
Broadcast: 16th February 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Feb 25 2005
Broadcast: February 23, 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Dec 02 2005
Broadcast: 2nd March 1949
Added: Aug 18 2006
Broadcast: 16th March 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jun 15 2007
Broadcast: 6th April 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jul 08 2005
Broadcast: 13th April 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jul 27 2007
Broadcast: 20th April 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jun 29 2007
Broadcast: 27th April 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Sep 08 2006
Broadcast: 4th May 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: May 06 2005
Broadcast: 11th May 1949
Starring:
Added: May 13 2005
Broadcast: 18th May 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: May 20 2005
Broadcast: 25th May 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Aug 19 2005
Broadcast: 15th June 1949
Starring: Ed Gardner, Bob Crosby
Added: Jun 24 2005
Broadcast: 7th September 1950
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jul 15 2005
Broadcast: 21st September 1950
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jul 22 2005
Broadcast: 22nd December 1950
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Dec 24 2004
Broadcast: 5th January 1951
Added: Feb 12 2010
Broadcast: 12th January 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jan 09 2004
Broadcast: 26th January 1951
Added: Jul 29 2005
Broadcast: January 26, 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Feb 14 2003
Broadcast: 2nd February 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Feb 22 2008
Broadcast: 9th February 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Apr 09 2007
Broadcast: 16th February 1951
Added: Sep 04 2009
Broadcast: 23rd February 1951
Added: Sep 05 2009
Broadcast: 2nd March 1951
Added: Sep 06 2009
Broadcast: 9th March 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Aug 03 2007
Broadcast: 16th March 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Jun 22 2007
Broadcast: 23rd March 1951
Added: Sep 07 2009
Broadcast: 20th April 1951
Added: Nov 18 2005
Broadcast: 27th April 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Aug 26 2005
Broadcast: 4th May 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Sep 02 2005
Broadcast: 5th October 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Oct 07 2005
Broadcast: 2nd November 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Nov 25 2005
Broadcast: 9th November 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Nov 11 2005
Broadcast: 28th December 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Dec 31 2004
Broadcast: 1951
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Sep 10 2009
Broadcast: Not known
Added: Aug 17 2007
Broadcast: Not known
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: May 07 2010
Broadcast: Unknown
Starring: Ed Gardner
Added: Dec 28 2007