World's First Broadcasting Station - 100 Years - San Jose, CA
Posted by: Metro2
N 37° 19.998 W 121° 53.364
10S E 598385 N 4132425
Quick Description: This plaque is outside the lobby at 50 Fairmont Plaza.
Location: California, United States
Date Posted: 5/1/2012 3:40:07 PM
Waymark Code: WMEBB9
This plaque is designed to resemble an official California historical marker. It reads:
CENTENNIAL COMMEMORATION OF
WORLD'S FIRST BROADCASTING STATION
ON THIS SITE IN 1909, CHARLES "DOC" HERROLD AIRED THE FIRST
REGULARLY SCHEDULED RADIO PROGRAMS, GIVING BIRTH TO
BROADCASTING. INITIALLY IDENTIFIED AS "THIS IS SAN JOSE CALLING,"
THE STATION WAS LATER LICENSED AS KQW BEFORE IT BECAME
KCBS. HERROLD SPARKED AN INNOVATIVE AND INVENTIVE SPIRIT
THAT HAS DEFINED SAN JOSE AND THE BAY AREA FOR 100 YEARS.
DEDICATED JUNE 11, 2009
HISTORY SAN JOSE AND KCBS 740 AM/106.9 FM AND KCBS.COM"
Wikipedia (visit link
"As KQW (1909-1949)KCBS has its roots in the experiments of San Jose engineer Charles Herrold as far back as 1909, making the broadcaster a leading contender for the title of oldest continuously broadcasting station in the United States and possibly the world. Herrold used a variety of different radio call signs in the early days, including FN, SJN, 6XF, and 6XE. In the very beginning, he just used a simple greeting like "San Jose calling." That greeting and the initial FN sign (which was an inverted abbreviation of "National Fone") reflected the fact that Herrold had been partially working on the idea of a radiotelephone.
On December 9, 1921 Herrold received a commercial license under the callsign KQW. It was the 21st licensed radio station in the United States and the 11th in California. However, the "arc-phone" Herrold had been using for over a decade had to be scrapped. It would only work at wavelengths above 600 meters, and all radio stations were restricted to 360 meters (roughly the equivalent of 833 kHz). He quickly created a replacement, using a tube-like transmitter drawing power from San Jose's streetcar lines. However, he never recovered financially from the loss of his arc-phone, and was forced to put the station on the market in 1925. After initially giving an option to a civic foundation, he sold it to the First Baptist Church of San Jose. Herrold stayed on as a technician for the station he'd created for a few years, but died in obscurity in 1947."