About this Collection
Water M. Phillips interviewed over 150 civic and political leaders on subjects related to Philadelphia city government and history between the late 1930s and the 1970s. Related collection: Walter M. Phillips, Sr. Papers (Acc. 527)
About this Interview
The interview with Robert Heckert, a Philadelphia area radio commentator since the 1940s and common figure in the Philadelphia area cultural scene, discusses the history of the old Philadelphia Forum in the 1920s. The Forum was the largest Forum in the United States at the time and was designed to provide the public with diverse educational and cultural programming at a very low cost. Heckert describes it as a kind of "People's University" offering offering an unrivaled variety of programs in almost all fields of study. He recalls a number of esteemed guests of the Forum, including William Jennings Bryan, former Secretary of State, and Calvin Coolidge, Vice President of the United States.
Biographical / Historical Note
Walter M. Phillips, Sr. (1912-1985) was active in Philadelphia civic and political life for over thirty years. He worked and volunteered in a variety of city and regional organizations. After retiring, Phillips initiated an oral history project, interviewing in the 1970s many individuals with whom he had worked.
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This is a transcript of a tape-recorded interview. The interviewee/narrator read the transcript and made minor corrections, but the reader should bear in mind that it represents a transcription of the spoken word.
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