Jim Henson Makes Muppets (Video, 1969)
This delightful 15-minute video features a young Jim Henson explaining puppet-making (and thus Muppet-making) in 1969. This was made before Sesame Street went on the air later that year. It's part of a locally produced show for kids, and the production values are amazing. My favorite part is when Henson creates a Kermit-ish character with hat and cowboy voice, around ten minutes in. Just after that, we see an early appearance of Rufus, the shaggy white dog. Here's what Iowa Public Television has to say about the video:
Jim Henson and Muppeteers show kids how to make puppets from simple things like socks. This video aired on Public Television in 1969, prior to Sesame Street, on Iowa Public Television's "Volume See" kids' show.
Apparently there's a second episode of this program that isn't currently available online. If anyone has a lead on that (Iowa Public TV couldn't find it), help us out! Meanwhile, sit back, relax, and enjoy some classic public television.
After the jump: a 1969 Sesame Street video featuring a prototype of Grover with green fur and no apparent name, but quite an attitude.