How the television transformed our homes

The postwar boom made TV ubiquitous: In 1950, 3,880,000 households in America had a TV—about 9 percent of the total population. By 1960, 90 percent of all households had at least one. This was the golden age of appliance marketing for all kinds of durable goods, from cars to dishwashers, and television marketers initially took a curious tack with their wares. While the auto industry and manufacturers of coffee makers and cooktops positioned their products as accessible components of a high-tech future, the makers of television sets often sold their devices as elegant pieces of contemporary or even classic furniture… More here.

A worthy read.



Categories: Articles

2 replies

  1. We got our first TV in the mid 50s. Black and white of course. They were made like furniture because they were so bulky. Lots of space needed around and behind the screen. I remember watching Howdy Doody and Space Command which was a Canadian Sci Fi show. That’s how I know it was mid 50s, because Space Command was on from 1953 to 1955.

  2. I just watch the ’71 movie “Harold + Maude” last night, and what stood out is that the INSANELY RICH people had really junkie looking TVs in their otherwise finely appointed dining room – not one of those “this is an elegant piece of furniture”, more like “we rolled this here on its little cart and stuck it in front of the fireplace”. It was striking, but the movie is so quirky it might have a meaning I’m not getting.

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