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Children look through window at Wieboldt's

Children view the Christmas window displays at Wieboldt’s Department Store, 1 North State St., in Chicago. Wieboldt’s was founded in the 1880s and the last store closed a century later.

Chicago History Museum/ST-20003502-0012, Chicago Sun-Times collection, Chicago History Museum

Children look through window at Wieboldt's

Children view the Christmas window displays at Wieboldt’s Department Store, 1 North State St., in Chicago. Wieboldt’s was founded in the 1880s and the last store closed a century later.

Chicago History Museum/ST-20003502-0012, Chicago Sun-Times collection, Chicago History Museum

Hear a classic retelling of 'The Velveteen Rabbit' in this charming holiday read-aloud

Children view the Christmas window displays at Wieboldt’s Department Store, 1 North State St., in Chicago. Wieboldt’s was founded in the 1880s and the last store closed a century later.

Chicago History Museum/ST-20003502-0012, Chicago Sun-Times collection, Chicago History Museum

   

As a radio station, WBEZ’s sound has changed considerably over time and for many reasons. This year, we’re sharing the full audio of some of our past holiday favorites, starting with the beloved children’s story The Velveteen Rabbit.

First broadcast on December 21, 1979, this audio story is a reading of the British children’s tale The Velveteen Rabbit, by Margery Williams, that was part of a slate of educational programming.

Prior to 1990, WBEZ was the station of record for the Chicago Board of Education. It focused on educational programs for children that included lessons in history, math, geography, as well as original on-air radio dramas and readings of literature.

This audio was submitted as a part of the station’s submission for Peabody Awards with the entry form describing the piece as “a classic children’s story concerning a toy rabbit whose wish to become real is made possible by the love of a young boy. It was written as a Christmas special in the hope that it would encourage listening by the entire family.”

The timeless message of the story emphasizes that there are differences between us all but, as the award entry stated, “we should accept ourselves for what we are in a positive way.”

Click on the audio player above to hear the full story.

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