The Gettysburg Address Recited By John Ritter's Dad

Tuesday, 19 November 2013 07:01 AM Written by 

Jimmy Dean (1928-2010) was one of America's best known country singers in 1963.  Four years earlier, his single "Big Bad John," part song and part recitiation had been one of the year's biggest country and pop singles.  Dean, who hosted a morning show on CBS, now hosted the prime-time Jimmy Dean Show on ABC, presenting mainstream showbiz and country stars with equal class, as Johnny Cash with his ABC show a few years later

Tex Ritter (1905-1974) John's father, had studied law at the University of Texas for a time before becoming a singer, actor and Western movie star. At first he worked on Broadway and on New York radio before making his first records in 1933.  After moving to Hollywood in 1936, he became one of America's best-known singing cowboys, alongside Gene Autry and Roy Rogers before turning back to music in the 40's having a number of country hits.

On December 26, 1963, the year of the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg and the Gettysburg Address, Dean hosted Ritter as a guest on his program and had him recite the Address on the show.

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