It was so cool picking up WJR 760 Detroit, Michigan when I first started to DX in Spokane. After hearing them numerous times during the 1969-1970 DX season, a reception report was off to them in March 1970. A reply came several weeks later after being delayed in en route. They almost always (auroral conditions excepted) put in a rock sold signal at night here in Maryland.
Monthly Archives: January 2019
Pioneer station WBZ first received its license in 1921 which makes it the oldest broadcast station in New England. With its 50,000-watt transmitter on 1030 kHz, it covers most of New England by day and much of Eastern North America by night. In the 1970’s it would easily make it all the way to the West Coast at night especially after KTWO in Casper, Wyoming signed off at midnight local time. 1030 was one of my favorite channels at night. I would tune my radio to 1030 before going to bed and listen to KTWO and then WBZ.
They replied with the QSL card below for a reception report that I sent to them.
WANN 1190 Annapolis signed on the air in 1947 and went off the air in 1998. Mr. Morris Blum, General Manager replied to my reception report with a QSL card and a QSL letter. Soon after WANN went off the air, the transmitter site in south Annapolis was demolished and WBIS started transmitting on 1190 duplexing from WNAV 1430’s transmitter site.
(For the rest of the story scroll down to bottom of the page.)
The WCRW or China Radio International Chapter
China Radio International bought block time on WBIS until early 2011. Later in 2011, Potomac Radio Group started to broadcast on 1190 kHz using the call letters WCRW transmitting from WAGE Leesburg’s transmitter site which had been using 1200 kHz. This meant that the license for 1190 in Annapolis was deleted. WCRW has been broadcasting programs from China Radio International on 1190 kHz since then.
WABI 910 in Bangor, Maine blasted into Maryland one evening in October 1998. They replied with this nice QSL letter for my reception report.
New Oreans, Louisiana
WWL 870 with its 50 kW clear channel signal is widely heard at night in North America. They played a major role in providing information to a large audience after Hurricane Katrina in 2005. However, with more stations occupying the channel, getting clear reception of WWL is more difficult in many areas. I first picked them up on 22 December 1969 and sent them a reception report. In response they sent a QSL card. Thirty years later to the day, I sent another reception report and they replied with a second QSL card.
WHAS was a fairly regular catch in Spokane in the fall and winter in 1969. Sometimes they were strong enough I would listen to them in the background without a problem. Nowadays, they are a more difficult catch on the West Coast with the co-channel stations which have signed on since. They put out a solid signal at night to my listening post here in Maryland.
I was completely surprised when I first heard KSAL. 1150 was normally cluttered by signals from several different stations. However, one evening they topped channel with with an incredibly strong signal on my receiver in Spokane. I sent them a reception report and chief engineer Don Engelhardt sent back a QSL letter with a nice personal note on the back. I am not sure what happened to the letter, but it got some rough treatment probably when I went to college. Even so, the note on the back makes this a valued verification.
Des Moines, Iowa
You don’t have to guess who this station is, because that is WHO they are. On the “clear” channel of 1040 they virtually owned the channel in 1969 when I first heard them. Today, 1040 is more cluttered, and while they still get out well, they are sometimes bothered with co-channel interference in many parts of the country.
Fort Wayne, Indiana
This was one of my favorite catches back in 1970. They would pop in under KEX in Portland, and could be heard with fairly readable audio on my radio in Spokane. They replied to my reception report with a QSL folder. After we moved to Maryland, I sent them another reception report and they sent another QSL card.
WLS Chicago with their powerhouse signal on 890 kHz is widely heard throughout North America. With their rock format in the 1970’s, I believe they showed up in rating surveys in outlying markets. They were channel dominant many nights in Spokane and in Utah before the channel became packed with co-channel stations. Below are the two QSLs I received from them.
Twin Falls, Idaho
This is my first QSL from an Idaho station. I remember the reception clearly. It was their nightly sign off complete with a full announcement and a rousing rendition of the Star Spangled Banner. KTFI was the channel dominant many evenings at my listening post in Spokane. After several call letter changes since 1970, the station has reverted back to the KTFI calls. Their current format is comedy.
This is my first QSL from an Hawaiian radio station (Scroll down to see).
KORL 650, Honolulu made it all the way to Utah fairly regularly in the 1980’s, but had to contend with Mexican or other Latin American stations on occasion, after WSM faded out. Now, the present station on 650 in Honolulu, KPRP, has to fight it out with co-channel US and Canadian stations which came on the air since then. They replied with this nice QSL letter for the reception report I sent to them.
The call letters KORL are now being used by a station on 1180 kHz, also in Honolulu.
It was so exciting to hear WSB 750 for the first time back in 1969. Imagine, picking a station up all the way across the country from Atlanta, Georgia. Yes, this powerhouse station gets out well, especially in the eastern half of North America. Unfortunately, they are a more difficult catch nowadays in the western part of the country with the co-channel interference.
West Palm Beach, Florida
Once in a while, especially during auroral conditions, WDJA 850 in West Palm Beach, Florida will become the channel dominant here at my listening post in Maryland. I sent them a reception report and they replied with a nice QSL letter and a coverage map. The verie signer remarked that my report was the first ever from Maryland.
WMAL -AM is a powerhouse station in the greater Washington DC market. Last year (2018), they moved from their 91-year old transmitter site in Bethesda to a site in Germantown. WMAL is a talk radio station that brand themselves as “Washington’s Mall.” Recently they started to simulcast on their FM outlet on 105.9 MHz.
WILM 1450 makes it through the graveyard channel din at night quite often at my listening post here in Maryland. I have managed to pick them up a couple of times in the daytime with WOL in DC nulled. Allan Loudell, program manager for WILM ran a DX test in 2000 and I sent a report to him for my reception of the test. I spoke with him on the phone and he was proud of the fact that his graveyard channel station has its own QSL card.
WTIC 1080 with its 50,000 watt blowtorch transmitter out of Hartford, Connecticut is an easy catch along the East Coast of North America. It can make all the way to the West Coast under good conditions. Its current format is NewsTalk.
Grand Junction, Colorado
KREX put an amazingly strong signal into Spokane on 1100 kHz at night in the 1960’s and 1970’s. They were my first Colorado station from which I received a verification. The channel is now occupied by KNZZ in Grand Junction.
VINTAGE QSLs from South Korea
Here are a couple cool vintage QSL’s from South Korea. I believe the Radio Korea QSL card from 1957 is from Glenn Hauser, and I obtained the Voice of Free Korea (VOFK) QSL card from eBay. As far as I can determine, the VOFK QSL is from the 1960’s. There is no indication who the owner of it was.
KGA, Spokane, Washington
Beginning in 1927, the call letters KGA have been used in Spokane on AM longer in than any other set of call letters. The station is still operating in Spokane on 1510 kHz. Hope you enjoy these vintage QSLs from the 1930’s and 1940’s.
Images of QSLs, except last one, courtesy of the Committee for the Preservation of Radio Verifications (CPRV) – http://www.ontheshortwaves.com/cprv.html
KFIO Spokane, Washington
(Scroll down to see images of the QSLs)
Here are some vintage QSLs from KFIO Spokane, Washington, two from the 1930’s and one from the 1940’s. KFIO was a predecessor of the current KSBN which operates on 1230 kHz in Spokane. (For more information about KFIO click here.)
The KFIO call letters are now used by a station on 1050 kHz licensed to Dishman, Washington, serving the Greater Spokane area. This station is owned by Thomas Reed of Liberty Broadcasting, LLC
Image of the photos from the Committee for the Preservation of Radio Verifications (CPRV) – http://www.ontheshortwaves.com/cprv.html
The Voice of the Prairies
CFCN 1060 and CFVP 6030
CFCN i n Calgary, Alberta was the usual channel dominant at night on 1060 kHz in the 1970’s . They were a great QSLer to boot. CFVP on 6030 kHz got out fairly well throughout western North America. DXers in other parts of the world could also pick them up under the right conditions. Since 1994, CKMX has occupied 1060 in Calgary, and as of this writing with a comedy format, with CFVP 6030 still on shortwave now relaying CKMX. The call letters CFCN are still retained by a TV station in Calgary.
KRED 1480 Eureka, California sometimes made it into Spokane (where this reception was made) in the middle of the day in mid winter. I also regularly heard them in Utah. Late IRCAn Ric Heald kindly sent this QSL letter to my address in Maryland.
KAAY – 1090
Little Rock, Arkansas
KAAY 1090 in Little Rock, Arkansas is a widely heard station. I can hear them here in Maryland under a nulled WBAL (10 miles from WBAL’s transmitter). When our family drove across country from Spokane to Illinois in the 1970’s to visit my grandfather I would sit in the front seat with Dad and listen to them because they were so strong. The above reception was in Utah in 1982 where they were heard fairly regularly.
In the 1970’s , KRUX 1360 in Glendale, Arizona would sneak through KMO during the nighttime when the other co-channel stations were in the din. After several call letter and format changes, Salem Media Group now broadcasts a Christian radio format using the call KPXQ.
KFQD could be heard fairly regularly in Spokane back in the 1970’s right at sunrise during the winter and just before KXL in Portland, Oregon would sign on. Now the channel has become a bit crowded, so better than good conditions are required for them to make it through.
WYDE – 850
WYDE 850 in Birmingham, Alabama would boom into Maryland at sunset with their 50 kW blowtorch when I first heard them in 1983. I believe they were a country station at the time. Now a gospel station with the callsign of WXJC occupies the channel. Last time I tried, they were still strong before switching to their night time antenna pattern.
Roswell, New Mexico
KSWS was the first station I heard from New Mexico when I lived in Spokane in 1969. After a few call letter and format changes, the station now on 1020 kHz in Roswell, is a Spanish language station with the call letters of KCKN.
They put in a respectable signal into Spokane 50 years ago. Now the channel is so cluttered with other stations, the current station in Roswell on 1020 is difficult to pick out.