The Strange Case of RAYMOND MEURER
by Tim Lasiuta
The trail of the Lone Ranger is still alive!
If you look around, every now and then, a hoof-print from Silver shows up. A
silver bullet is mysteriously left behind. In the distance, on occasion, you can
hear "Away Silver", and if you are really lucky, you find something
real, something that makes you go "Wow."
Recently, this happened.
The Mendelssohn Mansion was the site of WXYZ history. Used as the headquarters
for WXYZ from 1944, the mansion was located at the corner of Iroquois and
Jefferson. The house was built in 1894, and was a large 3 story stately home.
Filled with upper crust touches like a two story ceiling in the foyer, numerous
staircases, carved mantle pieces above the many fireplaces, the house was
modified to accommodate the broadcast studio and its’ many requirements. The
third story ballroom was renamed studio A (attic), the library Studio B (books),
the Hammond organ was placed in a bedroom above the carport (with rotating car
pads-sound familiar?), and the Lone Ranger was done in the living room (studio
D). Now, the building was being renovated, and in the back alley by a dumpster
lay the refuse. This mansion was a turn of the century building (1894), and
would have had slat walls beneath the plaster, the insulation would have been
sawdust, and all around the building, the construction methods would be
vintage. As any modern renovator operates, it’s all garbage, so out all the
material went. Closets, shelves, books, gone. The workers probably never knew
what history was made in those rooms, they never took the time to stop and
listen to the radio waves, nor imagine a time when....
WXYZ Staff-circa mid 1940's
George W Trendle, Fran Striker, Charles B Livingstone watched as Brace Beemer,
and John Todd stood around the microphones. Charles Livingstone nodded, and the
actors began to speak.
"Hello boys and girls, I am the Lone Ranger..."
"And I am Tonto."
However, the time is 59 years later (March 2002), and a pile of ‘garbage’ is
growing in the back alley. Wood, metal, suitcases?
Whoa a minute there pilgrim.
Enter Robert. He had stepped out from the building behind the mansion, and had
watched with interest the growing pile of stuff coming out of the house. Like
most people of the area, he did not know the history of the building. So, at the
insistence of a co-worker, he sauntered over to the garbage. There were three
suitcases, all with leather cases, so he looked closer. The leather was rotted,
but probably useable.
He picked them up. They were heavy. He opened them up, and inside were folders.
"Do I really want to lug these over to my van?" He decided. Taking the
time to load his van up with the cases, he went back to work, and planning his
Two weeks later, he opened the cases up and looked more closely. What he
discovered shocked him.
|A Raymond J. Meurer suit
The cases were marked Raymond J Meurer, 1800 Mutual Bldg,
MI 26. Other markings included a Cunard line Queen Mary cruise sticker, and the
room he stayed in. Inside the real treasure lay, Robert found a script marked
"The Lone Ranger and the Lost Mine" (marked Decca-maybe the record
Further searching revealed a Sergeant Preston script, reel
to reel tapes labeled "10 Minute Interview With the Lone Ranger", and
"American Bakeries. The third case was filled with music cues for the Lone
Ranger (40 folders), Yukon (40) , and a large Green Hornet folder!
Raymond Meurer was a close associate of George Trendle's, and a third part owner
of WXYZ, and the Lone Ranger as well. Among his business materials would have
been contracts, promotional materials, schedules, and much more we will never
HE had discovered the original music cues for the Lone Ranger, Green Hornet and Sergeant
Preston of the Yukon! The writing on the cues is probably Fred Flowerday's.
Scripts, interviews, and much more! This was history, and belonged in a museum
|Original Lone Ranger
music cue sheets.
To the Ranger fan, he had in his possession, a possibly
unused Brace Beemer interview, and who knows what else on the reel to reel
tapes. The scripts are priceless, the cues part of history, and all of it was
destined for the dump.
The question I ask as a Ranger fan-what else got thrown away?
Today, Robert still has the material. He can be contacted via email at
(C)copyright Tim Lasiuta
2003 - And is printed here with the author's permission.
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