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The Helen Faith Keane collection

 Collection 0003-MMC-LAB
Helen Faith Keane was the host of WABD-TV's "The Helen Faith Keane Show. . .For Your Information," which was the 1951 winner of the McCall's Golden Mike Award for women's programming. The collection documents Helen Faith Keane's 1951 television program "The Helen Faith Keane Show . . .For Your Information" and contains correspondence, artificacts, promotional items, and photographs.

Dates

  • 1951-1952

Use and Access to Collection

There are no restricted files in this collection.

Duplication and Copyright Information

Photocopies of original materials may be provided for a fee and at the discretion of the curator. Please see our Duplication of Materials page for more information.

Extent

1.50 Linear Feet

Scope and Content of Collection

The Helen Faith Keane Collection is quite small and encompasses only the year 1951, the time in which Keane helmed her own WABD-TV program "The Helen Faith Keane Show. . .For Your Information." The types of materials include correspondence, promotional items, photographs, awards and artifacts.

Biography

Helen Faith Keane Reichert (1901-2011 ) is an American broadcaster who helmed her own TV series over the Dumont TV network in the early 1950s.

The daughter of Polish immigrants, Keane (often referred to by her nickname "Happy") attended Cornell University, where she was a member of the women's rowing team and from which she would graduate Phi Beta Kappa with a degree in English in 1925. She would later earn an MA in psychology from Columbia University.

Before her segue into broadcasting, Helen Faith Keane excelled in various fields. Her first job -- at $18 a week -- was as a copywriter for Bloomingdale's. She would stay with the store for six years, eventually being promoted to the position of Fashion Coordinator. After Bloomingdale's, Miss Keane took a job with Montgomery Ward to work as fashion coordinator for their catalog and retail stores. She was employed by Montgomery Ward for five years.

Just after WWII, while still working day shifts at Montgomery Ward, Ms. Keane began to work as a teacher, teaching night courses in fashion advertising at New York University. She would eventually join the faculty of NYU in their school of retailing, teaching first part time (1946-1952) and then full time (1952-1977).

It was during her tenure with Montgomery Ward and NYU that Ms. Keane entered broadcasting by accident. After watching a daytime televised fashion show, Ms. Keane was displeased with the (male) commentator and called the station the next day to complain about it. Eventually she found she had a brand new job, one hosting her own daily TV talk show.

"The Helen Faith Keane Show...For Your Information" aired for exactly one year over WABD, a Dumont-owned station. Aimed at women, the program covered for its audience everything "from how to play the piano to what to ask your doctor about breast cancer." Said Ms. Keane about her program, "The ladies would write me with their questions and, when I received sufficient interest in a particular topic, I would seek an expert who could address it."

"The Helen Faith Keane Show...For Your Information" won a McCall's Mike award in 1951. One of that year's judges, Margaret Chase Smith, said about the program, "the material was inspiring evidence of what women can do, and are doing, for our country and our people."

In order to devote more time to her teaching at NYU and to have more time to travel, Ms. Keane ended her broadcasting career exactly one year after it began.

Ms. Keane has been married only once, to the late Dr. Philip Reichert. Reichert was also a graduate of Cornell (class of 1923). The couple had no children.

Ms. Keane died on September 25, 2011 at the age of 109 in New YOrk City.

Arrangement

This collection has six series.
Series 1
Correspondence
Series 2
Brochures and Promotional Items
Series 3
Photographs
Series 4
Awards
Series 5
Other
Series 6
Artifacts

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

The Helen Faith Keane Collection was donated to the Library of American Broadcasting, University of Maryland Libraries, by Helen Faith Keane Reichert in May of 1997.
Title
Guide to The Helen Faith Keane collection
Status
Completed
Author
Processed by Cary O'Dell, April 2004.
Date
2005-05-01
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English
Sponsor
Funded in part by the National Endowment of the Humanities.

Library Details

Part of the Special Collections and University Archives

Contact:
University of Maryland Libraries
Hornbake Library
4130 Campus Drive
College Park Maryland 20742
301-405-9212