Saving Sounds from the Dumpster

Saving Sounds from the Dumpster

By Tom Vernon on Mar 2, 2017 12:00:00 PM

As the Twentieth Century is rapidly receding in the rear-view mirror, historians, archivists and collectors furiously gather artifacts and documents before they all disappear. Forgotten by many, but not all, are the soundscapes of the past; both technological and natural in origin.

If you've worked in radio long enough, you already know something about changing soundscapes. The clattering of a teletype machine in the newsroom, the sound of records and reel tapes being cued and the once per second chunk-chunk-chunk of the Western Union master clock as it counts down the time remaining till the next hourly newscast, are all gone but not forgotten.

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Topics: Broadcast History, audio

A Visit to the Past and the Present

A Visit to the Past and the Present

By John Bisset on Jul 8, 2015 2:00:00 PM

Many Television engineers got their start in radio, and still keep up with happenings in the world of Radio. The staff at WIBW, Channel 13 in Topeka, Kansas, is no exception. My associate from Linear Acoustic, Hal Buttermore, and myself, had the pleasure of speaking to the engineers of SBE Chapter 3, Topeka, Kansas, meeting at the WIBW studios in May. Chief Engineer, Cary Lahnum, led a tour of the facility which included both new and old, including one of the station’s old RCA black and white cameras, with an old remote mixer sitting on top.

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Topics: Broadcast History

Museum Tells the Tale of U.S. Broadcast History

Museum Tells the Tale of U.S. Broadcast History

By Tom Vernon on May 20, 2015 3:31:00 PM

American broadcasting has a rich cultural heritage. Radio's origins go back almost 100 years, while television has been with us for around 70. Most of us who work in the business, however, spend our time thinking about, working on, and inventing the technologies of the future that will keep the industry going. Fortunately, there are also people who are passionate about preserving the past, and there are places where the old memorabilia and programs can find a permanent home. In Chicago, that person is Bruce DuMont, and the place is the Museum of Broadcast Communications. DuMont is the founder and Executive Director of the Museum.

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Topics: Broadcast History

David Gleason Preserves Broadcast History, Tells of His Own

David Gleason Preserves Broadcast History, Tells of His Own

By Tom Vernon on Feb 18, 2015 2:15:00 PM

Every day, the cultural history of America in the 20th century is slowly slipping away. Along with it goes the history of radio broadcasting. Every time a veteran broadcaster passes away, a station discards old documents or equipment, a tower is demolished, or fire ravages a facility, a few more bits disappear forever. The process is so slow and subtle that nobody seems to know or care. Well, almost nobody. Veteran broadcaster David Gleason has made it his life's mission to preserve as much history of the radio industry as possible. In the process, he has created the web site americanradiohistory.com.

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Topics: Broadcast History

A Step into the Vintage Gear Time Machine

A Step into the Vintage Gear Time Machine

By Tom Vernon on Oct 1, 2014 7:00:00 PM

Most of us make the annual trek to Las Vegas in April to see all of the new tech at NAB. But if you walked down the main lobby of the convention center this year, you could also see old broadcast tech. In case you had this experience and wondered where you were, you had likely entered the vintage equipment time machine known as the Museum of Broadcast Technology (MBT).

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Topics: Vintage Radio Technology, Broadcast History

From Broadcast Engineer to Broadcast Historian

From Broadcast Engineer to Broadcast Historian

By Dave Sarkies on Jun 2, 2014 3:41:00 PM

Talk to Ed Sharpe for a while and you quickly discover a man with a wide-ranging background in broadcast and media. This extensive experience – along with a keen interest in preserving broadcast history – makes Ed a perfect fit for his current role as Archivist at the Southwest Museum of Engineering, Communications and Computation in Glendale, Arizona.

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Topics: Broadcast History

"This... is ConElRad"

By Clark Novak on Nov 30, 2011 1:02:00 PM

If you're old enough to remember hearing those words, you probably also remember the chill that went down your spine along with them. Intoned by a deep-voiced announcer in the most serious, low monotone possible, they were enough to send even the most self-respecting 13-year-old into duck-and-cover mode.

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Topics: Broadcast History

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