NYPR Archives & Preservation
June 26, 2015 - Volume 14  Issue 26
Edition # 664


1928: Speeches from the Democratic National Convention in Houston, Texas.

1952: Marine Stadium Dedication Ceremonies at Jones Beach.

2003: Philip Levine, WNYC's Poet-in-Residence, reads Theodore Roethke.
WNYC engineer Ralph Ilowite was working the remote equipment for a concert broadcast on a quiet Sunday afternoon, December 7, 1941.

"Here we are sitting in the booth above the concert hall at the Frick Museum. And it was chamber music, which I had no appreciation of then. And pretty soon we were both almost sound asleep. Although I had the earphones on. One ear is connected to the amplifier so you can hear the mix, and the other ear is connected to what we called the 'PL,' or private line, which is the only way we could talk to Master Control.  I'm sitting there in a stupor, and suddenly I hear, 'Ralph.  Ralph.  RALPH!!!! WAKE UP, YOU SON OF A BITCH!  PEARL HARBOR WAS BOMBED!' I said, ''What happened? Who's Pearl Harbor?'  He says, 'Get your ass up here as quick as possible and go right over to City Hall. The Mayor wants to speak. All the networks are going to carry it, so you're going to be a network star.'  That didn't help matters.  I sailed down 5th Avenue at about 90 miles an hour. There wasn't a soul moving.  He [La Guardia] was waiting for us, and I plopped the mic down and set the amplifier on the floor and connected to the studio, and he went on. "

Source: Oral history session with former WNYC remote engineer Ralph Ilowite. Ilowite worked at WNYC from 1939 to 1943.
Did you know that a famous writer once put together booklet of his conversations with the dead-and-buried "in the hope that it would earn a little bit of money--not for me, but for the National Public Radio Station WNYC." Find out who at The Name Dropper.
WNYC first day of broadcast, July 8th, 1924 (Municipal Archives Collection)

The WQXR Great Artists Series

He Stood Up to HUAC
"He was the underpaid drama critic for the New Masses and he broadcast for fifteen minutes every Sunday morning on station WQXR for free. He had published an unsuccessful novel and had received an offer of $50 a week plus expenses from the International  Order...When Warner Brothers offered him $150 to go to Hollywood, his agent went to the Stork Club in New York to celebrate."

Source: Victor S. Navasky writing about novelist and journalist Alvah Bessie, one of the Hollywood Ten, in Naming Names, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2003.
WNYC celebrated its 90th anniversary last 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: Education Series Major Award Winner.

This week reporter Arun Venugopal drew from the archives for his feature, The Long, Winding Path of Same-Sex Marriage.

The WNYC Facebook page has a station timeline (1922-present) with more than 600 milestones, photos, and links to audio. (Right hand column).
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The WNYC Archives is on Twitter with 2,600 followers @wnycarchives. We tweet daily reminders of, and links to, WNYC broadcasts from that day in the past.
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WNYC Archives in the…
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