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'Morning Edition' Celebrates 35 Years With A Trip Down Memory Lane

Max Hirshfeld NPR
Bob Edwards was the host of Morning Edition from its inception, in 1979, until 2004.

Memo from Larry Lichty, former NPR director of audience research and evaluation, seeking name suggestions for a new morning news program.

On this day in 1979, Morning Edition broadcast its first show, bringing a new style of storytelling to the early drive-time airwaves.


That first show, hosted by Bob Edwards and Barbara Hunter, included an interview with a young actor named Martin Sheen about Apocalypse Now; a report on a failed prison escape by James Earl Ray, the man who assassinated Martin Luther King, Jr.; and a story about Rhodesia, a country that no longer exists. (You can view the first show's rundown of segments here.)

Over the next 35 years, Morning Edition would elevate itself to become public radio's top news program.

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