“Here we are, back with you again!”

Join us to watch newly digitized episodes of Kukla, Fran and Ollie on the big screen in our Robert R. McCormick Theater. Be sure to also visit Madame Ooglepuss in Chicago: Crossroads of America on the second floor.

In 1947, puppeteer Burr Tillstrom brought an extraordinary troupe of performers already familiar to many Chicagoans to local television station WBKB. Joined by their front-of-stage friend Fran Allison, the Kuklapolitans—Oliver J. Dragon, Beulah Witch, Cecil Bill, Madame Ooglepuss, Fletcher Rabbit, Colonel Crackie, and Kukla himself—were welcomed into hundreds of thousands of American homes on network television shows of a variety of lengths and formats in the 1950s. Working without a script, the cast of Kukla, Fran and Ollie improvised conversations about everyday life laced with humor, astute commentary on current events, original music, and perennial features.

Included with general admission.

Kukla, Fran & Ollie puppets Undated photograph of character hand puppets that appeared on the television program "Kukla, Fran & Ollie," Chicago. Puppets include Beulah Witch, Cecil Bill, Ollie, Kukla, and Madame Ooglepuss. CHM, ICHi-068917
ST-10001671-0015 Visitors at the Chicago Historical Society (Chicago History Museum), 1601 N.Clark St., celebrate the 50th birthday of "Kukla, Fran and Ollie," a children's television show that premiered in 1947, Chicago, Oct. 13, 1997. A mother and child view the exhibition "Here We Are Again! Kukla, Fran and Ollie," which highlights video footage of the show along with the Kuklapolitans, donated by puppeteer Burr Tillstrom. ST-10001671-0015, Chicago Sun-Times collection, CHM
Burr Tillstrom with Kukla and Ollie in stage set with Fran in front, laughing Burr Tillstrom with Kukla and Ollie in stage set with Fran Allison in front, laughing. CHM, ICHi-051884
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