NYPR Archives & Preservation
July 24, 2015 - Volume 14  Issue 29
Edition # 667


1925: Colonel James Churchward talks about "Life on Mu."

1955: New York State Secretary of State Carmine DeSapio says it is inevitable that the Democrats will win the White House in 1956..

1967: Museum Director
Harry S. Parker talks with Ruth Bowman for Views on Art.
                         Potted Palm Radio
One of several July 8, 1926 performance groups broadcast from WNYC's open air rooftop garden studio on the 26th floor of the Municipal Building. It was the station's second anniversary celebration. (Photo by Eugene de Salignac and courtesy of the NYC Municipal Archives).


Live! From Atop the 26th Floor Roof Garden, It's WNYC!
"WNYC, New York's municipal broadcaster, has a remote control station which is unique, at least in New York radio circles. It consists of an outdoor roof garden and is employed by WNYC for the broadcasting of programs enlisting the services of a large number of people, such as a band, or symphony orchestra, or choral body. On hot summer nights, it is also utilized in place of the studio, and, being located more than a score of stories from the street, is not troubled with traffic noises... A platform has been erected on the roof of the Municipal Building which on broadcast nights is surrounded by potted palms and other floral decorations.

" 'This outdoor studio has proved to be a great boon on hot nights,' said Christie Bohnsack, Director of WNYC... 'We recently staged a State of Mississippi Night, ... Our microphone is simply extended outside, and the soloist or ensemble [is] picked.up and carried to our transmitter.' "

Source: Excerpts from William J. Fagan, UPI dispatch from New York, September 2, 1926.

From the Collection

WQXR QSL Card from 1983 sent to DXer in Sweden.

QSL postcards were used to confirm reports that a station had been heard. QSL is a "Q" code from amateur and radiotelegraph jargon that means "I confirm contact with you." A "DXer" is a shortwave or radio listener from a great distance.

Happen to catch the biographer Arthur Browne on this week's Leonard Lopate Show, talking about New York City's first African-American policeman, Samuel J. Battle? 

WNYC profiled Battle as part of its Great Americans series in April, 1943. Listen at: BATTLE. The May-June WNYC Masterwork Bulletin described the program as "purposeful drama."

"This Great Americans series has a very definite purpose--showing youngsters and listeners of all ages that all Americans, of every race, color and creed, have contributed to our culture and prosperity--and must keep on doing so, particularly in these times of war..."

We've put the complete set of John Lomax's 1941 Library of Congress broadcast folk series The Ballad Hunter online. Listen at: BALLAD.
WNYC first day of broadcast, July 8th, 1924 (Municipal Archives Collection)

The WQXR Great Artists Series

The Victrola Business is Booming

“The Victrola business is booming this year and in many New York homes the radio dial is permanently tuned to WQXR, the classical music station. This station, unfortunately still local, offers the most pleasing series of programs on the air. It broadcasts continuous concerts of recorded symphonic music, uninterrupted by long-winded advertising announcers. Its great popularity in New York points toward its extension to a national field.”

Source: Katherine Scherman writing in “Music,” The North American Review, December, 1938, pg. 384.
WNYC celebrated its 91st anniversary this month. Just think, only 9 short years to the big centennial. In this space we'll be linking to various historical WNYC champions and milestones celebrating nearly a century of broadcasting in the public interest. This week:Communist Propaganda or Capitalist Commercial? A 1930s WNYC Broadcast Is Mired in Controversy.


E L. Doctorow, RIP. Lopate interviews, from the Archives.

WNYC aired the landmark U.S. Office of Education 1938-39 series Americans All, Immigrants All. The last eight episodes are now online. Listen at : AAIA

The forgotten lighthouses of NYC from the 1960s series, New York Portrait in Sound.

What celebrated American poet was scheduled to read his epic work about the Brooklyn Bridge over WNYC one evening only to get knocked off the air with all other New York radio stations "to clear the air for urgent messages" due to ships colliding at sea? Find out at The Name Dropper.

The WNYC Facebook page has a station timeline (1922-present) with more than 600 milestones, photos, and links to audio. (Right hand column).
Do your friends want to subscribe to this newsletter? Have them sign up at: NEWSLETTERS.

Check out the @mayorlaguardia Twitter feed straight from the WNYC broadcasts! His Honor now has 571 followers.

The WNYC Archives is on Twitter with 2,636 followers @wnycarchives. We tweet daily reminders of, and links to, WNYC broadcasts from that day in the past.
We’ve got a Tumblr page too! More than 10,000 followers. Check it out at:
WNYC Archives in the…
Copyright © 2015 New York Public Radio, All rights reserved.
unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences