One in this series of television magazines, in which host Charles Kuralt presents clips from his twenty five years of travel journalism through the back roads of America. This hour-long presentation reviews "unforgettable people" from Kuralt's travels. The program opens with brief clips on the following stories: an accomplished slingshot; an eighty-year-old stunt airplane flier; a contest for opening beer cans with hatchets; the world's largest ball of twine; a musical saw player; a 104-year-old runner; a pig farmer who fuels his car with corn cobs; a traffic cop with choreographed hand gestures; and the best bicycle messenger in New York City. The first segment profiles the master of birch canoe makers, eighty-three-year-old Bill Hafeman of North Wood, Minnesota, who has used old-fashioned techniques to fashion his canoes by hand since 1921. Next, Kuralt speaks with three women from North Platt, Nebraska, about the canteen they helped run during World War II at the train depot, where millions of soldiers were dutifully fed and entertained by the locals. Next, Kuralt interviews Jethro Mann of Belmont, North Carolina, who fixes up old bicycles and lends them to poor children to teach them responsibility. Next is a profile of teacher Ira Perkins of Bynum, Montana, who has worked in a one-room schoolhouse for fifty-three years. Perkins teaches many subjects to children of various grade levels, instructing them in academics and physical education, dancing, musical instruments, and choral music. The next segment profiles Agatha Burgess of Buffalo, South Carolina, who has cooked meals for townspeople for fourteen years, providing meals for local shut-ins for a nominal fee. Next is a segment on Bill Bodisch of Dubuque, Iowa, who built a fifty-eight-foot steel yacht on his farm to fulfill a lifelong dream of cruising around the world. Kuralt witnesses the auction of his farm and his departure on the new "Cindy Marie." Then, to prove croquet is not an aristocratic sport, Kuralt profiles Archie Burchfield, a tobacco farmer from Stamping Ground, Kentucky, who is competing in the U.S. Croquet Association championship with socialites in Palm Beach, Florida. Next, Kuralt profiles John Voelker, former Michigan Supreme Court judge and author of "Anatomy of a Murder," who fishes daily during trout season. Reading from his poetic prose, Voelker calls fishing a source of rebellion and delight and notes the way trout respond to silence and endless patience. The program concludes with a family reunion in Mississippi for the fiftieth wedding anniversary of former sharecroppers Alex and Mary Chandler, whose nine children overcame impoverishment through cooperation and hard work.

("On the Road with Charles Kuralt" consists of excerpts from Charles Kuralt's segments on the CBS Evening News, beginning in 1967. In the 1970s the show was aired in four special broadcasts, and in 1983 it was developed into a regular ten-week summer series. In addition, the series was reworked for and aired on the Travel Channel in 1993.)

Cataloging of this program was made possible by the CBS Foundation, 1998.


  • DATE: 1989
  • RUNNING TIME: 0:55:23
  • COLOR/B&W: Color
  • CATALOG ID: T:54728
  • GENRE: Magazine
  • SERIES RUN: CBS - TV, 1989


    • Bernard Birnbaum … Executive Producer
    • Edward Hoppe … Executive Producer
    • Joan Doljan … Associate Producer
    • Charles Kuralt … Writer
    • Charles Kuralt … Host, Interviewer, Narrator
    • Bill Bodisch
    • Archie Burchfield
    • Agatha Burgess
    • Alex Chandler
    • Mary Chandler
    • Bill Hafeman
    • Ira Perkins