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Inner Sanctum Mysteries
Stories of mystery, terror and suspense

The anthology series featured stories of mystery, terror and suspense, and its tongue-in-cheek introductions were in sharp contrast to shows like Suspense and The Whistler. The early 1940s programs opened with Raymond Edward Johnson introducing himself as, "Your host, Raymond," in a mocking sardonic voice. A spooky melodramatic organ score (played by Lew White) punctuated Raymond's many morbid jokes and playful puns. Raymond's closing was an elongated "Pleasant dreeeeaams, hmmmmm?" His tongue-in-cheek style and ghoulish relish of his own tales became the standard for many such horror narrators to follow, from fellow radio hosts like Ernest Chappell (on Wyllis Cooper's later series, Quiet, Please) and Maurice Tarplin (on The Mysterious Traveler).

When Johnson left the series in May 1945 to serve in the Army, he was replaced by Paul McGrath, who did not keep the "Raymond" name and was known only as "Your Host" or "Mr. Host" (Berry Kroeger had substituted earlier for a total of four episodes). McGrath was a Broadway actor who turned to radio for a regular income. Beginning in 1945, Lipton Tea sponsored the series, pairing first Raymond and then McGrath with cheery commercial spokeswoman Mary Bennett (aka the "Tea Lady"), whose blithesome pitches for Lipton Tea contrasted sharply with the macabre themes of the stories. She primly chided the host for his trademark dark humor and creepy manner.

The Creaking Door: The program's familiar and famed audio trademark was the eerie creaking door which opened and closed the broadcasts. Himan Brown got the idea from a door in the basement that "squeaked like Hell." The door sound was actually made by a rusty desk chair. The program did originally intend to use a door, but on its first use, the door did not creak. Undaunted, Brown grabbed a nearby chair, sat in it and turned, causing a hair-raising squeak. The chair was used from then on as the sound prop. On at least one memorable occasion, a staffer innocently repaired and oiled the chair, thus forcing the sound man to mimic the squeak orally.

Guest Stars: Its campy comedy notwithstanding, the stories were usually effective little chillers, mixing horror and humor in equal doses. Memorable episodes included "Terror by Night" (September 18, 1945) and an adaptation of "The Tell-Tale Heart" (August 3, 1941). The latter starred Boris Karloff, who was heard regularly in the first season, starring in more than 15 episodes and returning sporadically thereafter. Other established stars in the early years included Mary Astor, Helen Hayes, Peter Lorre, Paul Lukas, Claude Rains, Frank Sinatra, and Orson Welles. Most of the lead and supporting players were stalwarts of New York radio. These included Santos Ortega, Mercedes McCambridge, Berry Kroeger, Lawson Zerbe, Arnold Moss, Leon Janney, and Mason Adams. Players like Richard Widmark, Everett Sloane, Burgess Meredith, Agnes Moorehead, Ken Lynch, and Anne Seymour, also found fame via the Inner Sanctum Mysteries.

Out of more than 500 programs broadcast, only about 200 remain in circulation, sometimes minus dates or titles.




Information taken from www.wikipedia.org


From the Old Time Radio Researchers Group. See "Note" Section below for more information on the OTRR.

!No MP3s found. The MP3 files used by this podcast appear to be missing. They may have been removed permanently from their source location.

  1. Amazing Death Of Mrs Putnam (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  2. The Tell-Tale Heart (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  3. The Death Ship (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  4. Hunter from Beyond (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  5. Island of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  6. The Man from Yesterday (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  7. Death Has Claws (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  8. Dead Reckoning (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  9. Study for Murder (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  10. Black Sea Gull (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  11. The Horla (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  12. The Skull That Walked (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  13. The Melody of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  14. The Silent Hands (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  15. Death Is a Joker (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  16. Dead Man's Vengeance (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  17. The Voice on the Wire (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  18. The Color Blind Formula (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  19. Desert Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  20. Death Is an Artist (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  21. Death in the Depths (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  22. No Coffin for the Dead (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  23. The Bog-Oak Necklace (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  24. The Judas Clock (1) (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  25. The Judas Clock (2) (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  26. Song of the Slasher (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  27. The Girl and the Gallows (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  28. The Black Art (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  29. Dead to Rights (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  30. Musical Score (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  31. Death Across the Board (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  32. Portrait of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  33. Dead Man's Holiday (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  34. Dead Man's Debt (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  35. Dead Man's Deal (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  36. The Murder Prophet (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  37. The Last Story (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  38. Terror by Night (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  39. The Lonely Sleep (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  40. The Shadow of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  41. Death by Scripture (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  42. Till Death Do Us Part (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  43. The Corridor of Doom (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  44. The Wailing Wall (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  45. Boomerang (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  46. The Dark Chamber (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  47. The Dark Chamber (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  48. The Undead (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  49. The Creeping Wall (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  50. The Edge of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  51. The Confession (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  52. The Confession (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  53. Blood of Cain (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  54. Skeleton Bay (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  55. Inner_Sanctum__46-02-12_The_Man_Who_Couldn't_Die (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  56. I Walk in the Night (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  57. I Walk in the Night (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  58. Strands of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  59. Death Is a Double-Crosser (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  60. Death Is a Double-Crosser (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  61. Lady with a Plan (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  62. Make Ready My Grave (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  63. Make Ready My Grave (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  64. You Could Die Laughing (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  65. Detour to Terror (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  66. Eight Steps to Murder (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  67. I Want to Report a Murder (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  68. Spectre of the Rose (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  69. Murder Comes at Midnight (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  70. The Dead Laugh (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  71. Inner_Sanctum__46-11-04_Death's_Old_Sweet_Song (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  72. Death Bound (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  73. The Ghost in the Garden (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  74. Inner_Sanctum__47-05-05_Don't_Dance_on_My_Grave (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  75. Over My Dead Body (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  76. Till Death Do Us Part (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  77. Death out of Mind (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  78. Tempo in Blood (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  79. The Doomed (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  80. The Magic Tile (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  81. Death Demon (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  82. Murder Takes a Honeymoon (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  83. The Murder Ship (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  84. House of Doom (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  85. Death Rides a Riptide (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  86. Hangman's Island (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  87. Murder by Prophecy (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  88. Death of a Doll (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  89. Deathwatch in Boston (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  90. Cause of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  91. Murder Faces East (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  92. Between Two Worlds (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  93. Fearful Voyage (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  94. Murder Comes to Life (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  95. Mark My Grave (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  96. The Deadly Dummy (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  97. The Devil's Fortune (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  98. Death Demon (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  99. Birdsong for a Murderer (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  100. Flame of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  101. Only the Dead Die Twice (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  102. Appointment with Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  103. Death Wears a Lonely Smile (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  104. The Death Deal (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  105. The Unburied Dead (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  106. Death on the Highway (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  107. Corpse Without a Conscience (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  108. Pattern for Fear (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  109. Deadly Fare (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  110. Dead Heat (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  111. Mind over Murder (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  112. Death's Little Brother (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  113. Murder Rides the Carousel (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  114. The Vengeful Corpse (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  115. Honeymoon with Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  116. Catch a Killer (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  117. The Devil's Workshop (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  118. Image of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  119. Night Is My Shroud (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  120. Corpse for Halloween (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  121. Wish to Kill (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  122. Beyond the Grave (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  123. Killer at Large (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  124. The Scream (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  125. The Hitch-Hiking Corpse (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  126. Skeleton Bay (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  127. Murder Mansion (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  128. Beneficiary -- Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  129. Twice Dead (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  130. The Smile of Death (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  131. Man from the Grave (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  132. The Unforgiving Corpse (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  133. Birdsong for a Murderer (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  134. Terror by Night (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  135. Death Pays the Freight (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  136. Death for Sale (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  137. The Listener (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  138. The Murder Prophet (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  139. Murder off the Record (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  140. The Magic Tile (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  141. The Corpse Laughs Last (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  142. No Rest For The Dead (1) (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  143. No Rest For The Dead (2) (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  144. Strange Passenger aka The Corpse In The Taxi (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  145. The Meek Die Slowly (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  146. Till Death Do Us Part (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  147. The Corpse Nobody Loved (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  148. The Dead Walk at Night (unknown file size - possibly missing)
  149. Death Pays the Freight (unknown file size - possibly missing)

MP3 files hosted by archive.org.