John: (to the final contestant, a foot doctor named Catherine Hand) Palmyra, Pennsylvania. Well, it's nice to have you... There's a big bridge there, isn't there?
Catherine: No, that's New Jersey.
John: That's Palmyra... well, there, I stuck my foot in it again.
Fred Allen: (introducing Laraine Day) Ladies and gentlemen, at this time of the year, we in this country observe Mother's Day, Decoration Day and Father's Day. But here, on "What's My Line?," we have our own Day. Here, at my left, the New York Giants' number one rooter, our favorite Day, Miss Laraine Ditto.
(1) "WML?" SPONSOR AND PANEL WATCH: For this edition, Stopette was the main sponsor. Also, this was Laraine Day's third and final turn as a guest panelist among the regular New York "WML?" episodes; her next, and last, appearance on the program was as a guest panelist on the special West Coast EPISODE #397 of January 12, 1958 which emanated from CBS Television City in Hollywood, California.
(2) OCCUPATION OVERLAY LAYOUT WATCH: For the first contestant, hot dog salesman Danny Cohen, his overlay screen is set in all capital letters, reading as "SELLS HOT DOGS AT EBBETS FIELD (HOME OF BROOKLYN DODGERS)." On the other side of the coin, for the final contestant, Dr. Catherine Hand's overlay alternated between all capital letters and mixed case (both upper and lower case) letters, reading "FOOT DOCTOR (Chiropodist)."
(3) MYSTERY GUEST HILDEGARDE: For her only "WML?" appearance, the legendary cabaret singer's nameplate on the panel moderator's desk is set in Gothic No. 13, in a size of type slightly smaller than that on Mr. Daly's own nameplate.
(4) "WML?" CREDITS CRUNCH WATCH: Apparently, time ran so short on this edition that the end credit sequence cut off after the travel arrangements plug for American Airlines. Even so, GSN plugged on with its disheartening and disgusting "crunching" of the screen just the same when they aired this episode on July 24, 2008.
(5) Following the July 24, 2008 airing of tonight's show, GSN aired a vintage edition of "The Name's the Same," which originally aired on October 22, 1952. Host Robert Q. Lewis held court with the panel of Abe Burrows, Joan Alexander and Meredith Willson, and the celebrity guest on this episode was French singing star Jean Sablon. - W-B (2008)
When Dr. Hand, the foot doctor from Palmyra, Pennsylvania, stated where she was from, John Daly mistakenly mentioned a bridge. He was apparently thinking of the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge, which crosses the Delaware River from New Jersey near Philadelphia. The Palmyra, PA from which the doctor hails is actually in Lebanon County, PA, about halfway between Harrisburg and Lebanon. Most people would be more likely to recognize it, though, if they were told it was the town right next to Hershey, where, of course, both the Hershey chocolate factory and Hersheypark amusement park are located. In fact, a large segment of the population of Palmyra works for Hershey Foods. During the panel walk-through, it seemed as if Bennett tried to sneak in a question that he always poses to people from Pennsylvania, specifically, "Is that Pennsylvania Dutch country?" Whatever the question, the doctor said "no," but if that was the question, she probably was pulling the wool over Bennett's eyes, because most people probably consider that area as Pennsylvania Dutch country. - Bill Savage (2005)
Originally published in The Patriot-News newspaper of Harrisburg, PA in June 2004:
Catherine Hand came to Palmyra in 1949 by bus in search of a place to open her podiatry practice. She had a few hours to kill before she caught the bus back, so she asked directions to the local library. There was no library. So, when Hand moved to Palmyra, she made a library a priority. Tomorrow, Hand and other founding members of the Palmyra Public Library will talk about its history, dedicate books and enjoy refreshments in a program celebrating the library's 50th anniversary. The public is invited. "We started with $350," said Hand, who was president of the Palmyra Junior Women's Club when that group decided to take on the project. "We were too naive to realize what we were undertaking." They petitioned for space in what was then the borough hall, scrubbed the floors, painted the walls, built the shelves, sponsored spots on radio shows for publicity, spoke to civic clubs, and asked for help from the community. An interior decorator built a reading table from a discarded door. Two high school girls painted nursery rhyme murals in the children's section. Soon, donations of books were pouring in, and volunteers got help from the Girl Scouts to catalogue them all. The library opened August 1, 1954. Hand entered the project into a contest for the best project of a Junior Women's Club in the nation. She never heard back. "If they would have looked forward 50 years, we would have won for sure," she said. "We have a fine library." - Contributed by Bill Savage (2005)
REVIEW: This was almost a perfect night for the panel. The first contestant, a hot dog vendor who worked at Ebbets Field, home of the Brooklyn Dodgers, could almost have been looked at as a "rib" on guest panelist Laraine Day. At this time, she was married to Leo "The Lip" Durocher, who was the manager of the Dodger's hated rivals, The New York Giants. Laraine was the first to question the contestant, but she was unable to figure out his occupation. However, two questions later, Dorothy correctly identified what it was he did. In the second game, Fred opened up on a roll. He seemed to be on the right track, especially when he brought up Las Vegas. But, for some inexplicable reason, he passed to Laraine and that seemed to steal whatever momentum the panel had. As a result, the panel failed to correctly identify the guest as a dice maker. The panel had better luck in the mystery guest round as Dorothy correctly identified the chanteuse, Hildegarde. In the final game, Laraine correctly figured out that the final contestant was a chiropodist. What even made it funnier was the fact that her last name was Hand. To help use up excess time, which is usually rare in the final game, John feigned disappointment for not being able to use all the "foot" puns he said he had lined up in advance. And so ended a successful night for the panel. - Sargebri (2005)
HILDEGARDE: The mystery guest, Hildegarde, is what they used to call a chanteuse; that is a woman who sings in nightclubs. During her prime, her contemporaries were Mabel Mercer and Blossom Dearie. She was the first singer to introduce the standard song, "Darling, Je Vous Aime Beaucoup" which Nat King Cole also recorded to great effect. - louvin2 (2005)
HILDEGARDE: Tonight's mystery guest, a singer born Hildegarde Loretta Sell in Adell, Wisconsin in 1906, uses only her first name as her stage name. Her personal signatures included long gloves, upswept coiffure and long-stemmed roses. - Suzanne (2005)
THE NAME'S NOT THE SAME: During the introductions, Bennett again incorrectly includes "Francis" in John's name, by calling him John Charles Francis Daly. John's full name is actually John Charles Patrick Croghan Daly, which Bennett correctly told us in 1953. It will be interesting to see how long it takes John to correct Bennett on the accidental addition of Francis. The exact sequence of John's name becomes a long-standing joke between Bennett and John until about 1961. - Suzanne (2005)
Tidbits: We learn that Dorothy will soon be off on a European vacation to Paris, France.
Panel: Dorothy Kilgallen, Fred Allen, Laraine Day, Bennett Cerf. Arlene Francis has the night off. She is vacationing in Paris, France.