NYPR Archives & Preservation
February 6, 2015 - Volume 14  Issue 6
Edition # 644


1928: Victor Harrison Berlitz gives a language lesson in German.

1957: Eleanor Roosevelt is a studio disc-jockey for the March of Dimes. She plays a lot of Elvis, of course.

1978: Marvin Cohen talks about his book "The Inconvenience of Living" on The Reader's Almanac with Walter James Miller.

2014: Sara Fishko tells us Charlie Chaplin's 'The Tramp' began almost by accident with a magical costume.
Does This Look a Little Familiar?

The Kotelnicheskaya Embankment Building is one of seven Stalinist skyscrapers in Moscow.  See below. (

Moscow on the East River?

After nearly 84 years of broadcasting from New York City's Municipal Building, WNYC moved to our present location in western Soho. Yet, who would have thought that our home for all those years had  been an inspiration to Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin? The so-called man of steel was apparently so taken with the colossus of One Centre Street that the main building of Moscow University and six other massive towers known collectively as the "Seven Sisters" were based on it.

Far fetched? Well, we also checked Stalinist Architecture by the noted Russian journalists Alexi Tarkhanov and Sergei Kavtaradze (L. King, London, 1992). While they don't mention our beloved Muni Building, they do write that the 'Seven Sisters' "...are in some respects similar to the American skyscrapers of the 1930s but with some important differences. Their development and complex design recall Russian seventeenth-century churches..." Hmmm.


The New York City Municipal Building, July 18, 1924, ten days after we went on the air with our call letters on the building. (Photo by Eugene de Salignac, courtesy of the NYC Municipal Archives Collection).
WNYC first day of broadcast, July 8th, 1924 (Municipal Archives Collection)

  WQXR - 'Long Reads' from WWII

Long before the WQXR app, the station was marketing a very different type of newfangled technology. In the late 1930s, WQXR branded a line of home radios, complete with mahogany cabinets, AC/DC operation and in some cases, built-in phonographs. Listeners were invited to visit the studios, then at 730 Fifth Avenue, to come and experience the technological wonder for themselves. See: HiFi Wonder.

WNYC celebrated its 90th anniversary this year. We're now officially a nonagenarian radio station. In this space we'll be linking to various historical WNYC champions and milestones. This week: Kurt Vonnegut on Slapstick, His Sci-Fi Family Novel

It's Black History Month. New material has been added to our compilation, so get a jump on the past with some choice items from the collection at: BLACK HISTORY.

The Men Who Changed the Face of Pop Music: The Brill Building's Hitmakers in Their Own Words.

There will be a memorial for former WNYC host Steve Post on Friday, March 20th at 6PM at Symphony Space's Sharp Theater, 2537 Broadway in Manhattan.

The WNYC Facebook page has a station timeline (1922-present) with more than 600 milestones, photos, and links to audio. (Right hand column) This week:1950.
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 560 followers.

The WNYC Archives is on Twitter with 2,374 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 9,500 followers. Check it out at:
WNYC Archives in the…
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