(click and click again to enlarge photos)
We are delighted that PacificNW magazine of The Seattle Times granted Clay the opportunity to prepare a cover story on Ruth Prins for the print edition of Jan. 9, 2022.
Below are links to:
- The cover story
- The personal backstory
- A wide array of “web extras.”
These items include kinescopes of “Wunda Wunda” shows unseen since they first aired in the 1950s and 1960s, along with photos, children’s drawings, fan letters, news clippings, songs, promotional items and original writings by Ruth Prins — all of which document the saga of the local TV pioneer who many of us as youngsters learned from and knew fondly as Wunda Wunda.
A pioneer for preschoolers: With ‘Wunda Wunda,’ Ruth Prins reached kids as an educator, an entertainer and an enduring emotional touchstone.
Enjoy this illustrated profile of a local legend!
Ruth Prins inspired an early devotee — and an entire audience
Enjoy this ever-expanding collection of recently transferred films of Ruth Prins’ “Wunda Wunda” shows, most of them not seen since their original broadcast — until now.
Longtime fans of “Wunda Wunda” sing the show’s welcome song and “I’m a Little Teapot” on Dec. 5, 2021, in Ruth Prins’ home neighborhood of Magnolia.
They also are interviewed about Ruth’s enduring and endearing legacy.
THE EXTRA PHOTOS
Enjoy this assemblage of additional images of Ruth Prins from her early days acting at the University of Washington up through her KING-TV and preschool days and beyond.
This sampling reveals artwork sent to Ruth Prins by her youngest of fans.
The parents of preschool “Wunda Wunda” fans overflow with praise and appreciation for Ruth Prins.
THE NEWS CLIPS
More than 200 articles, photos and ads from local — and occasionally national — publications illustrate Ruth Prins‘ impact.
No effort was spared by KING-TV and others to promote the jewel they had in Ruth Prins.
From tasty treats to delightful dolls, Ruth Prins was an eager saleswoman, as reflected in these materials.
“Wunda Wunda” generally aired at noon weekdays, but not always. Click here to see the schedule changes over its nearly 20-year run.
What did Wunda Wunda’s costume, hat, puppets and dolls look like in color? Find out here.
Unknown to many were Ruth Prins‘ writing skills. Out of her typewriter came down-to-earth, conversational and amusing prose. Here we present key samples.
THE MUSIC MAN’S SONGS
In her nearly 20 years as TV’s Wunda Wunda, Ruth Prins collaborated with several off-screen Music Men. The two longest-serving were Elliott Brown and Edward Hansen.
Here are two of Brown’s songs with a public-service theme.
See two more of Brown’s songs on The Endorsements page.
This package of materials wouldn’t have been possible without the generosity and trust of Ruth Prins’ daughter, Debra Prins.
Click here to see acknowledgments as well as the clever birth announcements Ruth created for Debra and her brother Bob.
2 thoughts on “A Wunda-ful adventure: In local TV’s earliest years, Ruth Prins touched the youngest of hearts”
Thank you so much – these are wonderful.
Are there photos of the kids who joined her on the individual Wunda Wunda shows? I was one of them, pre-1958; I attended Warren Avenue Elementary at the time.
No such photos have surfaced yet, Cathy. Please let me know if you discover any. –Clay