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History Lives Here Text

Two More Tillstrom Stories

At last year's exhibitvisitors were asked to record additional tales of their own about Saugatuckarea events that might be brought to mind by stories included in the exhibit.Deborah Schroeder of Holland tells these two short stories about BurrTillstrom, television pioneer and puppeteer, who maintained a house on the hillin Saugatuck, from the 1950s until his death in 1985.


Burrand our friend, Max Milo dined at our house in the early 70's. I was havingtrouble with the gravy I was making when Burr took over the process and gave methe best lesson in the proper preparation of gravy I ever had. Bun left a jarof homemade salsa, "Madame 0's Salsa," named for one of his puppets,Madame Oglepuss. I never used the salsa, but kept it as a remembrance of agreat man and a fun time.


Istill get goose-bumps thinking of the time I heard Kukla (Burr) perform thesong "Little Lamb" (from the Broadway musical Gypsy) acappella to a hushed (and goose-bump covered, I'm sure) audience in the HopeCollege Theatre. I also have a vague memory of watching "Kukla, Fran andOllie" on a black and white TV, when I was less than four. Kukla'sperformance at Hope was something I will never forget.


A lithograph of Kukla aridOllie
created by Burr Tillstrom at Ox-Bow one summer