The first episode of "Sesame Street" — sponsored by the letters W, S and E and the numbers 2 and 3 — aired 50 years ago in the fall of 1969. It was a turbulent time in America, rocked by the Vietnam War and raw from the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King the year before. The media, like today, was going through disruption.

Take a look back at 50 years of the iconic show, including its famed cast of characters, its biggest celebrity guests and several first ladies:

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