Robert Q. Lewis
Robert Q. Lewis was an American radio and television personality, game show host, and actor. Lewis added the middle initial “Q.” to his name accidentally on the air in 1942, when he responded to a reference to radio comedian F. Chase Taylor’s character, Colonel Lemuel Q. Stoopnagle, by saying, “and this is Robert Q. Lewis.” He subsequently decided to retain the initial, telling interviewers that it stood for “Quizzical”.
Lewis is perhaps best known for his game show participation, having been the first host of The Name’s the Same, and regularly appearing on other Goodson-Todman panel shows. He also hosted and appeared on a multitude of television shows of the 1940s through the 1970s. His most distinguishing feature was his horn-rimmed glasses, to the point that the title card for his second Robert Q. Lewis Show featured a pair of such glasses as a logo, and they were mentioned in the title of his lecture. As a frequent guest panelist on What’s My Line?, Lewis’s blindfold featured a sketched pair of glasses.
Lewis was born as Robert Goldberg in Manhattan on April 25, 1920. His parents were Jewish immigrants.
Lewis made his radio debut in 1931, at age 11, on a local radio show, “Dr. Posner’s Kiddie Hour”. He enrolled in the University of Michigan in 1938, where he was a member of the Phi Sigma Delta fraternity. He left to enlist in the U.S. Army in 1942 and became a radio operator in the Signal Corps.