Lamb Chop is a sock puppet anthropomorphic sheep created by late comedian and ventriloquist Shari Lewis. In 1957 the character, a female lamb, first appeared with Lewis on Hi Mom, a local morning show that aired on WNBC in New York.
Lamb Chop has been described as a "6-year-old girl, very intuitive and very feisty, a combination of obstinacy and vulnerability...you know how they say fools rush in where wise men fear to go? Well, Lamb Chop would rush in, then scream for help." Lamb Chop, in all her shows, had referred to her close friend, a girl named Lolly Pincus.
From 1960 to 1963, Shari Lewis had her own musical-comedy network television show called The Shari Lewis Show. After children's programming turned to animation, she continued to perform in a wide range of venues. In 1992, Lamb Chop and Shari began their own PBS children's show, Lamb Chop's Play-Along, an Emmy Award winner for five consecutive years. The show lasted approximately 25 minutes per episode. On PBS, it premiered September 10, 1992 and was last shown on January 1, 1997. It had been shown on Qubo since then. Episodes can now be found on YouTube. Lamb Chop and Shari then starred in their own spin off children's show, The Charlie Horse Music Pizza. Some episodes are on YouTube. In June 1998 Shari was filming Season 2 of The Charlie Horse Music Pizza when she was diagnosed with inoperable uterine cancer. Shari underwent a hysterectomy and was given six weeks to live. Shari insisted on taping the last episode of The Charlie Horse Music Pizza and the show was put on hold while she began chemotherapy.
Shari Lewis died on August 2, 1998 from viral pneumonia while being treated for uterine cancer at Cedars-Sinai Hospital. After her death The Charlie Horse Music Pizza was canceled. The finale episode of The Charlie Horse Music Pizza aired on January 17, 1999. Two years later, her daughter, producer and writer Mallory Lewis (formerly Tarcher) decided to perform with Lamb Chop. Mallory had worked closely with her mother when producing the PBS program. Ms. Lewis has this to say about her mother and Lamb Chop, My mom was one of the world's greatest entertainers. I don't want to challenge that. I don't think it's wise to go there. But I do want to do everything that I can do for Lamb Chop. I'll help keep her going.
Shari Lewis' other puppet, Hush Puppy, made its comeback at the Iowa State Fair in 2010. Mallory doesn't perform with Charlie Horse because doing his voice is hard on her vocal chords.
Lamb Chop currently performs with Shari Lewis's daughter, Mallory, mainly for the US Military. Lamb Chop is a three-star general. She was given a field promotion by Lt. Gen. Tom Conant, deputy commander of the Pacific for the Marines.
In the first year's collection of 9 Chickweed Lane dailies, Out Whom Shall We Gross? the August 31st, 1993 strip quotes Lamb Chop as saying, "A virtuous man's honesty exists only in proportion to the pyre upon which he atones for it."
Mallory described Lamb Chop's values as a "Liberal Jewish Democrat."