Edgar Bergen Was No Dummy

About this episode


While many today might know Edgar Bergen only as father to actress Candice Bergen, who starred in Murphy Brown, at one time this famous ventriloquist was a force to be reckoned with in the entertainment field. 

With Charlie McCarthy, his beloved ventriloquist dummy, at his side, Edgar starred in radio programs, television shows, Vegas acts, and a comic strip, among other things. He also dated Ava Gardner and socialized with the likes of Elizabeth Taylor and Roger Moore

But did Edgar’s partnership with Charlie take an odd turn? 

In this episode Candy and Ashley not only discuss the life of this ground-breaking comedian, but also the circumstances that led daughter Candice Bergen to comment upon the difficulty of being the younger sister to a dummy, and the pain of learning that it was Charlie McCarthy–not she– who was remembered in her father’s will. 

#Cornucopia #EdgarBergen #CharlieMcCarthy #CandiceBergen

Show Notes for Episode 60!


“Charlie McCarthy: The Dummy Only Dummies Didn’t Listen to,” ripleys.com, by Colton Kruse, January 22,  2020

“Candice Bergen: One of a Kind,” Sunday Morning (CBS News), November 28, 2021

“Almanac: Edgar Bergen,” Sunday Morning (CBS News), February 16, 2014

“Candice Bergen Reveals Twisted Details About Relationship WIth Her Father,” Woman’s Day, by Alyssa Fiorentino, April 7, 2015

“Original Charlie McCarthy Ventriloquist Dummy Used by Edgar Bergen,” Smithsonian: National Museum of American History

“Frances Bergen, 84; Actress’ No. 1 Role Was as Wife and Mother to Stars,” Los Angeles Times, by Dennis McLellan, October 4, 2006

‘Bergen and McCarthy’ episodes, Internet Archives

“Edgar Bergen,” ventriloquistsociety.com, Ventriloquist Hall of Fame

Encore: Candice Bergen Talks About Her Dummy Brother,” NBC News, June 10, 2012

“Candice Bergen Holds Nothing Back in Memoir That Discusses Weight, Beauty,” Washington Post, by Karen Heller, April 8, 2015

“Edgar Bergen, the Ventriloquist, Dies,” Washington Post, by Martin Weil, October 1, 1978

1937 Clip from “Chase and Sanborn Hour,” youtube

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