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Act One: Hard Times

Studs Terkel, the Chicago reporter who recorded oral histories of ordinary Americans, died last week. We assembled a collection of his work from his Hard Times radio series, in which people talk about their experiences during the Depression—how everyone simultaneously became poor, regardless of their class.

Prologue

Host Ira Glass introduces four characters: Kay McDonald, who raised a daughter named Sue, and Mary Miller, who raised a daughter named Marti. In 1994, Mary Miller wrote letters to Sue and Marti, confessing the secret she'd kept for 43 years: The daughters had been switched at birth and raised by the wrong families.

Act One

Reporter Jake Halpern tells the story of Marti Miller and Sue McDonald, the daughters who were switched at birth, and the many complications that came with learning the truth. Jake is the author of several books and creator of the comic Welcome to the New World.

Act Two

Jake Halpern tells the mothers' sides of the story. At 69, Kay McDonald had to cope not only with the news that her daughter wasn't her own, but that another mother had known the whole time.

Act One: Part One

Margaret Dunbar Cutright starts looking into her grandfather's disappearance.

Act Two: Part Two

Margaret meets the living relatives of her grandfather's kidnapper and finally arrives at an incontrovertible truth.