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From 1950 to the present, television has been the common denominator between Americans far and wide. Everyone watches TV. And everyone gets attached to the shows they grow up with and experience first hand.

Like it or not, television shapes us. From the children's shows that teach us numbers and letters to the sitcoms that make us die laughing to the documentary series that provoke our passions, television is a constant influence. 

But what about the shows before your time? Like, when you were born? What were the shows that shaped your parents' lives and maybe inspired your name or middle name, at least? We all have a cousin named Lucy don't we? Here's a list of the most popular American shows by year, beginning in 1950 with Texaco Star Theater.