The Web-site of the Yiddish Radio Project.

Yiddish radio stalwart Victor Packer.

Victor Packer in the studio.

Photo © 2002 Sound Portraits Productions

The One-Man Radio Department

“In 1992, Yiddish historian and sound archivist Henry Sapoznik got a phone call from a woman who said she was the widow of a former Jewish radio personality. She was moving out of her house in Queens and wondered if Sapoznik might want to haul off some of the materials her husband had left behind. Soon, Sapoznik was

making his way down the basement stairs that led to her late husband’s office. When he entered the room, he was astonished.

Sapoznik had descended into a veritable King Tut’s tomb of Yiddish radio, where nothing appeared to have changed in decades. All around were stacks of photos, radio scripts, and dozen and dozens of 16″ acetate discs.

This was the legacy of Victor Packer, an eccentric broadcaster whom the fates had granted a multi-year license to transmit whatever boiled to the surface of his overheated imagination.”

Gems from the Yiddish Radio Archive

This week’s feature:
“Loving Your Stepchildren”, a man-on-the-street contest by
The “Gems from the Archive” series concludes with a farewell visit to the streets of Brooklyn with radio impresario Victor Packer. Listen in as this Yiddish radio hero chews the fat with housewives and shopkeepers on the corner of Clarkson Avenue.
The topic of conversation: “Can a mother love her stepchildren as much as her own children?” Host Victor Packer skillfully elicits opinions, stories and even songs from contestants eager for a shot at winning two containers of Foremost pasteurized milk.

Learn more about this week’s Yiddish Radio Gem.

Experience the Yiddish Radio Project documentary on Victor Packer, the “one-man radio deparment”.

Stories from the original 10-part series heard on All Things Considered:

March 19 — Series introduction

March 26 — Yiddish Melodies in Swing

April 2 — The radio dramas of Nahum Stutchkoff

April 9 — Charles A. Levine, the first transatlantic passenger

April 16 — Yiddish radio’s unique commercials

April 23 — C. Israel Lutsky, “The Jewish Philosopher”

April 30 — Seymour Rexite, the “Yiddish Frank Sinatra”

May 7 — Ground- breaking radio programmer Victor Packer

May 14 — Rabbi Rubin’s on-air people’s court

May 21 — Holocaust survivors and Reunion





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