Today in Radio History

Historical Events

Events 1 - 100 of 533

  • 1891-12-29 Edison patents "transmission of signals electrically" (radio)
  • 1894-08-14 Sir Oliver Joseph Lodge demonstrates wireless telegraphy (radio) using Morse code at a meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science at Oxford University
  • 1895-05-07 In Saint Petersburg, Russian scientist Alexander Stepanovich Popov demonstrates to the Russian Physical and Chemical Society his invention - the world's first radio receiver. In the former Soviet Union the anniversary of this day is celebrated as Radio Day.

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1896-03-01 Henri Becquerel discovers radioactivity.

Physicist/Nobel Laureate Henri Becquerel
Physicist/Nobel Laureate
Henri Becquerel

Event of interestEvent of Interest

1896-06-02 Guglielmo Marconi applies to patent the radio, accepted 2 July 1897

Inventor and Nobel Laureate Guglielmo Marconi
Inventor and Nobel Laureate
Guglielmo Marconi
  • 1901-12-12 Guglielmo Marconi sends the first transatlantic radio signal, from Poldhu in Cornwall to Newfoundland, Canada
  • 1902-01-01 Nathan Stubblefield makes 1st public demonstration of radio, Penn
  • 1903-01-18 The first transatlantic radio transmission to originate in the United States is sent by a transmitter in Massachusetts
  • 1903-01-19 1st regular transatlantic radio broadcast between US & England
  • 1904-01-07 Marconi Co establishes "CQD" as 1st international radio distress signal
  • 1906-01-13 1st radio set advertised (Telimco for $7.50 in Scientific American) claimed to receive signals up to one mile
  • 1906-10-20 Dr Lee DeForest demonstrated his electrical vacuum tube (radio tube)
  • 1906-10-25 US inventor Lee de Forest patents "Audion", a 3-diode amplification valve which proved a pioneering development in radio & broadcasting
  • 1906-11-22 International Radio Telecommunications Com adopts "SOS" as new call for help
  • 1906-12-24 Reginald A Fessenden became 1st to broadcast music over radio (Mass)
  • 1907-03-05 1st radio broadcast of a musical composition aired
  • 1907-12-16 Eugene H Farrar is 1st to sing on radio (Bkln Navy Yard NY)
  • 1908-01-12 A long-distance radio message is sent from the Eiffel Tower for the first time.
  • 1908-05-12 Wireless Radio Broadcasting is patented by Nathan B Stubblefield
  • 1909-01-23 1st radio rescue at sea
  • 1910-02-23 1st radio contest held (Philadelphia)
  • 1914-04-06 American Radio Relay League (organization for hams) founded
  • 1915-09-29 1st transcontinental radio telephone message is sent
  • 1915-10-21 1st transatlantic radiotelephone message, Arlington, Va to Paris
  • 1919-10-17 Radio Corporation of America (RCA) created
  • 1919-11-06 1st Dutch radio program: SoirĂ©e Musicale with "Turf in you(r) ransel"
  • 1920-04-20 Big Show ends 2 year run on NBC radio
  • 1920-07-27 Radio compass used for 1st time for aircraft navigation
  • 1920-08-20 1st US commercial radio station, 8MK (WWJ), Detroit begins daily broadcasting
  • 1920-08-31 Detroit radio station is 1st to broadcast a news program on the air

Sport defeatBoxing Title Fight

1920-09-06 Jack Dempsey KOs Billy Miske in 3 for heavyweight boxing title 1st radio broadcast of a prizefight

Heavyweight Boxing Champion Jack Dempsey
Heavyweight Boxing Champion
Jack Dempsey
  • 1920-09-29 Joseph Horne Company in Pittsburgh sells radios for $10
  • 1920-10-27 Westinghouse radio station in East Pittsburgh, KDKA begins
  • 1921-01-02 1st religious service radio broadcast in US, KDKA-Pittsburgh
  • 1921-04-11 KDKA broadcast 1st radio sporting event, a boxing match (Ray-Dundee)
  • 1921-04-11 First sports broadcast on the radio takes place.
  • 1921-05-21 Oldest radio station west of Mississippi River licensed in Greeley Co
  • 1921-08-05 1st radio baseball broadcast Pirates-8, Phillies-0 (KDKA, Pitts)
  • 1921-09-15 WBZ-AM in Boston MA begins radio transmissions
  • 1921-10-05 1st World Series radio broadcast, Yanks beat Giants 3-0
  • 1921-11-15 KYW-AM in Philadelphia PA begins radio transmissions
  • 1921-12-07 KWG-AM in Stockton CA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-01-09 KQV-AM in Pittsburgh PA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-01-13 WHA-AM in Madison WI begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-02-04 WGY-AM in Schenectady NY begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-02-08 Radio arrives at the White House
  • 1922-02-18 WOC-AM in Davenport IA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-02-19 Ed Wynn becomes 1st talent to sign as a radio entertainer
  • 1922-02-20 WOR-AM in New York City begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-02-21 WHK-AM in Cleveland, Ohio begins radio transmissions

Conference meetingConference of Interest

1922-02-27 US Commerce Sec Herbert Hoover convenes 1st National Radio Conference

31st US President Herbert Hoover
31st US President
Herbert Hoover
  • 1922-02-28 KHQ-AM in Spokane WA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-02 WLW-AM in Cincinnati OH begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-03 WWJ-AM in Detroit MI begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-09 KJR-AM in Seattle Washington begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-10 KLZ-AM in Denver CO begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-13 WRR-AM in Dallas TX begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-14 KGU-AM in Honolulu HI begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-14 KSD-AM in Saint Louis MO begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-14 WGR-AM in Buffalo NY begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-15 1st southern radio station begins (WSB, Atlanta Georgia)
  • 1922-03-16 WKY-AM in Oklahoma City OK begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-18 WBT-AM in Charlotte NC begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-20 WIP-AM in Philadelphia PA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-21 KGW-AM in Portland OR begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-23 KMJ-AM in Fresno CA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-23 WEW-AM in Saint Louis MO begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-30 KGY-AM in Olympia WA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-30 WWL-AM in New Orleans LA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-03-31 KFI-AM in Los Angeles CA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-04-04 WAAB (Baton Rouge La) becomes 1st US radio station with "W" calls
  • 1922-04-05 KOB-AM in Albuquerque NM begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-04-05 WDZ-AM in Decatur IL begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-04-28 WOI (Ames, Iowa) country's 1st licensed educational radio station
  • 1922-05-04 KNX-AM in Los Angeles CA begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-05-10 WHB-AM in Kansas City MO begins radio transmissions
  • 1922-06-14 US President Warren G. Harding is 1st US president to use radio, dedicates the Francis Scott Key memorial in Baltimore
  • 1922-08-14 1st "old time" musicians broadcasted on radio (Jenkins-WSB Atlanta)
  • 1922-08-16 AT&T radio station WBAY becomes WEAF (NYC)
  • 1922-08-28 WEAF in NYC airs 1st radio commercial (Queensboro Realty-$100 for 10 mins)
  • 1922-09-17 Radio Moscow begins transmitting (12 KWs-most powerful station)
  • 1922-10-04 For 1st time, entire World Series broadcast over radio (WJZ & WGY)
  • 1922-10-07 First radio link, WNJ (Newark) & WGY (Senectady) link for World Series
  • 1922-10-28 First US coast-to-coast radio broadcast of a football game
  • 1922-11-14 BBC begins domestic radio service from 2LO at Marconi House
  • 1922-12-24 BBC broadcasts first British radio play "The Truth about Father Christmas"
  • 1923-01-18 1st radio telegraph message from Netherlands to Dutch East Indies
  • 1923-01-19 WMC-AM in Memphis TN begins radio transmissions
  • 1923-03-22 The first radio broadcast of ice hockey is made by Foster Hewitt.
  • 1923-07-01 1st permanent radio network-AT&T (WEAF NY & WMAF Mass)
  • 1923-07-19 WRC-AM in Washington, D.C. begins radio transmissions
  • 1923-09-28 Radio Times 1st published
  • 1923-11-24 Radio Belgium's 1st transmission
  • 1923-12-03 First Congressional open session broadcast via radio (Wash DC)
  • 1923-12-04 WEAF radio begins broadcasting Eveready Hour (variety show)

CommunicationHistoric Communication

1923-12-06 1st US Presidential address broadcast on radio by President Calvin Coolidge

30th US President Calvin Coolidge
30th US President
Calvin Coolidge
  • 1923-12-31 1st transatlantic radio broadcast of a voice, Pittsburgh-Manchester
  • 1924-01-22 KGO-AM in San Francisco CA begins radio transmissions
  • 1924-02-08 1st US coast-to-coast radio hookup: Gen John Joseph Carty speech in Chic
  • 1924-03-21 1st foreign language course broadcast on US radio (WJZ, NYC)

Famous Birthdays

  • 1851-06-12 Oliver Joseph Lodge, England, early radio pioneer

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1852-12-15 Henri Becquerel [Antoine ], discovered radioactivity (Nobel 1903), (d. 1908)

Physicist/Nobel Laureate Henri Becquerel
Physicist/Nobel Laureate
Henri Becquerel
  • 1857-02-22 Heinrich Hertz, physicist, 1st to broadcast & receive radio waves
  • 1865-06-15 L H Perquin, Dutch religious radio speaker
  • 1873-08-26 Lee De Forest, Council Bluffs, inventor (Audion vacuum (radio) tube)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1874-04-25 Guglielmo Marconi, Italian radio inventor (Nobel 1909), born in Bologna, Italy (d. 1937)

Inventor and Nobel Laureate Guglielmo Marconi
Inventor and Nobel Laureate
Guglielmo Marconi
  • 1875-08-23 William Eccles, English radio pioneer (d. 1966)
  • 1876-06-26 Nico[laas P] de Jong, Dutch radio play actor (Laughter & Tears)
  • 1879-03-08 Otto Hahn, German physicist/chemist (Nobel 44, radiothorium/actinium)
  • 1882-11-13 John Lowry, Mount Vernon NY, NYC builder (Radio City Music Hall)
  • 1886-08-07 Louis Hazeltine, inventor (neutrodyne circuit, making radio possible)
  • 1888-08-12 Willem Vogt, Dutch radio pioneer/founder (AVRO)
  • 1890-10-09 Aimee Semple McPherson, evangelist (Pentecostal)/radio preacher
  • 1890-12-18 Edwin Howard Armstrong, radio pioneer inventor (FM), born in NYC, New York
  • 1891-02-27 David Sarnoff, US, radio/TV pioneer/CEO (RCA)
  • 1891-08-09 Max Tak, Dutch violinist/radio commentator
  • 1893-06-12 Kommer Kleijn, Dutch actor/radio play director (Paul Vlaanderen)
  • 1894-05-31 Fred Allen, comedian (Fred Allen Radio Show), born in Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • 1896-11-06 Jim Jordan, Peoria IL, radio comedian (Fibber McGee)
  • 1898-04-15 Marian Jordan, actress, radio comedienne (Molly-Fibber McGee & Molly)
  • 1898-07-11 Herman de Man, [Salomon H Hamburger], Dutch writer/Radio Orange
  • 1899-01-15 Goodman Ace, radio/TV actor/columnist/humorist (Better of Goodman)
  • 1899-05-05 Freeman Gosden, radio actor (Amos-Amos 'n' Andy), born in Richmond, Virginia
  • 1900-02-20 Graham Spry, St Thomas Ontario, Canadian radio pioneer
  • 1902-11-21 Foster Hewitt, Canadian radio pioneer (d. 1985)
  • 1904-05-11 Guus Weitzel, Dutch radio-announcer
  • 1904-10-02 Godfrey Baseley, radio executive
  • 1905-01-19 Anne Schumacher Hummert, Baltimore US, leading creator of daytime radio serials during the 1930s and 1940s
  • 1905-10-22 Karl Jansky, Czech, discoverer (cosmic radio emissions in 1932)
  • 1906-01-19 Lanny Ross, radio singer (Show Boat, The Swift Show), born in Seattle, Washington
  • 1909-03-24 Thomas E "Tommy" Trinder, English radio comic/actor (Phoenix)
  • 1909-05-06 Loyd Sigmon, American amateur ("ham") radio broadcastor (d. 2004)
  • 1910-05-03 Norman Corwin, American radio pioneer
  • 1911-12-22 Grote Reber, US, astronomer (1st parabolic radio telescope)
  • 1913-08-31 Sir Bernard Lovell, Bristol England, radio astronomer, founded Jodrell Bank Observatory, (d. 2012)
  • 1916-07-02 Barry Gray, [Bernard Yaroslaw], interviewer (started call-in radio)
  • 1917-04-11 Danny Gallivan, Canadian radio and television sportscaster (d. 1993)
  • 1918-04-07 Peter Aryans, [PCJ Vander], Dutch radio actor (Shoot Out)
  • 1918-09-27 Martin Ryle, Britain, radio astronomer/astronomer royal (1972-82)
  • 1918-12-22 Frankie Darro, actor (Radio Ranch, Valley of Wanted Men), born in Chicago, Illinois
  • 1919-04-13 Phil Tonken, American radio and television announcer (d. 2000)
  • 1919-11-10 George Fenneman, American radio and TV announcer (You Bet Your Life), born in Peking China (d. 1997)
  • 1921-05-31 Howard Reig, American radio and television announcer
  • 1922-06-09 Fernand Seguin, Canadian biochemist - Radio and TV animator (d. 1988)
  • 1922-07-19 Harold Camping, American evangelist, founder of Family Radio
  • 1924-05-11 Antony Hewish, radio astronomer
  • 1924-06-03 Ted Mallie, American radio and television announcer (d. 1999)
  • 1930-06-21 Patricia Lindop, radio biologist
  • 1930-08-19 D[avid] G[uy] Compton, UK, sci-fi author (Synthajoy, Radio Plays)
  • 1931-05-04 Gennadi Rozhdestvensky, Moscow Russia, conductor (USSR State Radio)
  • 1933-06-20 Danny Aiello, actor (Moonstruck, Radio Days), born in NYC, New York
  • 1934-12-28 David Warrilow, actor (Simon, Radio Days, Dakota Road, Barton Fink)
  • 1936-01-10 Robert Woodrow Wilson, American physicist and radio astronomer, Nobel laureate
  • 1937-05-13 Trevor Baylis, English inventor of the wind-up radio
  • 1938-01-30 Marcel P A van Dam, Dutch politician/CEO (VARA Radio/TV)
  • 1940-07-23 Don Imus, radio disc jockey (WNBC)
  • 1942-05-22 Pallo Jordan, South African ANC member/heads (Radio Freedom)
  • 1946-03-29 Ronald Farrow, radio producer/priest
  • 1946-10-14 James Robert "Radio" Kennedy, American football coach
  • 1946-11-23 Hans Hoekman, Dutch radio play actor
  • 1946-12-30 Patti Smith, rock vocalist (Radio Ethiopia), born in Chicago, Illinois

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1948-12-31 Donna Summer, singer (Love to Love You Baby, On the Radio), born in Boston, Massachusetts (d. 2012)

Singer Donna Summer
Donna Summer
  • 1951-03-14 Rick Dees, radio disc jock (KIIS LA)
  • 1951-10-07 David J. Halberstam, American radio executive
  • 1953-04-24 Eric Bogosian, Woburn MA, actor (Talk Radio)
  • 1953-06-12 Allan Weiner, American radio station owner
  • 1956-03-26 Charly McClain, Jackson Tn, country singer (Radio Heart)
  • 1960-02-10 Lionel Cartwright, Ohio, country vocalist (I Watched it on the Radio)
  • 1960-03-17 Vicki Lewis, actress (Beth-Newsradio), born in Cincinnati, Ohio
  • 1961-03-29 Ane-Marie Sanches, newscaster (Suriname TV/Radio)
  • 1963-01-04 Dave Foley, actor/comedian (Kids In The Hall, Dave Nelson-NewsRadio)
  • 1963-11-28 Armando Iannucci, comedian and radio producer, born in Glasgow, Scotland
  • 1965-02-03 Maura Tierney, actress (Lisa-Newsradio), born in Boston, Massachusetts
  • 1965-04-18 Rob Stenders, Dutch radio discjockey
  • 1965-12-21 Andy Dick, actor (Matthew-Newsradio), born in Charleston, South Carolina
  • 1968-10-07 Thom Yorke, British musician and lead singer of Radiohead ('Creep', 'Paranoid Android''), born in Wellingborough
  • 1971-11-05 Jonny Greenwood, guitarist (Radiohead)
  • 1974-01-18 Michael Tunn, Australian television and radio
  • 1974-03-28 Scott Mills, British radio disc jockey
  • 1980-07-10 Thomas Ian Nicholas, actor (Radio Flyer, Rookie of the Year)

Famous Weddings

HeartWedding of Interest

1970-10-18 Actor Lee Marvin (46) weds radio producer Pamela Marvin (40)

Actor Lee Marvin
Lee Marvin
  • 2006-11-04 Radio and television journalist Alison Stewart (40) weds MSNBC vice-president of prime-time programming Bill Wolff (40) at the stylish New York restaurant Cipriani 23rd Street

Famous Deaths

  • 1932-07-22 Reginald Fessenden, Canadian inventor and radio pioneer (b. 1866)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

1937-07-20 Guglielmo Marconi, Italian engineer/marquis (radio, Nobel 1909), dies of a heart attack at 63

Inventor and Nobel Laureate Guglielmo Marconi
Inventor and Nobel Laureate
Guglielmo Marconi
  • 1938-08-04 L H Perquin, Dutch radio announcer, dies at 73
  • 1943-01-23 Alexander Woollcott, critic, dies of a heart attack on radio, at 56
  • 1944-03-11 Hendrik W van Loon, Neth/US radio commentator/writer, dies at 62
  • 1944-11-28 Joop Brouwer de Koning, youngest Dutch radio operator, executed at 25
  • 1946-11-14 Herman de Man, [Salomon H Hamburger], author/Radio Orange, dies
  • 1950-02-14 Karl G Jansky, Czech discoverer of cosmic radio sources, dies at 44
  • 1952-11-23 Albert van Raalte, conductor (Radio Philharmonic Orch), dies at 62
  • 1954-01-31 Edwin H Armstrong, US radio inventor (FM), commits suicide at 63
  • 1956-03-17 Fred Allen, comedian (Fred Allen Radio Show), dies at 61
  • 1961-04-07 Marian Jordan, radio comedienne (Fibber McGee & Molly), dies at 62
  • 1967-08-07 Max Branch, music/radio commentator, dies at 75
  • 1967-08-07 Max Tak, Dutch violinist/radio commentator, dies at 75
  • 1972-03-30 Gabriel Heatter, American radio commentator (b. 1890)
  • 1973-06-18 Willem Vogt, Dutch radio pioneer/founder AVRO, dies at 84
  • 1976-12-25 Frankie Darro, actor (Radio Ranch, Valley of Wanted Men), dies at 58
  • 1980-08-23 Norman Shelley, English radio actor (Churchill's Speech), dies at 77
  • 1982-12-10 Freeman "Amos" Gosden, US radio actor (Amos 'n' Andy), dies at 83
  • 1984-10-14 Martin Ryle, English radio astronomer, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physics (b. 1918)
  • 1985-04-21 Foster Hewitt, Canadian radio pioneer (b. 1902)
  • 1987-03-19 Arch Oboler, radio writer (Lights Out), dies at 77
  • 1989-01-10 Herbert Morrison, American radio reporter (b. 1905)
  • 1990-09-16 Loretta Tupper, radio/TV entertainer, dies of cancer at 84
  • 1991-05-14 Herman Niels, Flemish radio director, dies
  • 1991-07-16 Dwight Weist, Radio actor/film narrator (Radio Days), dies at 81
  • 1991-09-15 Andre Baruch, Radio/TV announcer dies at 83
  • 1992-05-03 Elizabeth Lennox, radio singer, dies of heart seizure at 98
  • 1992-07-31 Sjoerd de Free, reporter (Radio Herrijzend Netherland), dies
  • 1993-02-24 Danny Gallivan, Canadian radio and television sportscaster (b. 1917)
  • 1993-05-26 Carleton Morse, radio dramatist (One Man's Family), dies at 91
  • 1993-11-21 Jim McLaughlin, Buffalo radio newsman (WKBW), dies at 59
  • 1994-02-01 Olan Soule, radio voice (Super Friends), dies of lung cancer at 83
  • 1994-07-27 H Minderop, founder/chairman (TROS-radio/TV), dies
  • 1994-08-03 John van Raay, [John Oradi], radio-imitator (Paul Flanders)
  • 1994-12-12 Herman H Felderhof, radio-announcer/head (NRU/NOS Radio), dies at 83
  • 1995-02-08 B G Hooghoudt, radiotelescope build (Dwingeloo/Westerbork), dies at 70
  • 1995-07-01 Ronald Farrow, radio producer/priest, dies at 49
  • 1995-08-17 David Warrilow, actor (Simon, Radio Days, Barton Fink), dies at 60
  • 1995-08-19 Pierre Schaeffer, composer/radio innovator, dies at 85
  • 1996-07-05 Anne Schumacher Hummert, radio pioneer, dies at 91
  • 1996-07-17 Alan McGilvray, Australian cricketer (NSW 1933-37) and radio commentator (1935-85), dies at 85
  • 1997-01-21 Dennis Main Wilson, TV/radio producer, dies at 72
  • 1997-02-02 Godfrey Baseley, British radio executive, dies at 92
  • 1997-05-29 George Fenneman, American radio and TV announcer (You Bet Your Life), dies at 77
  • 1999-01-25 Ted Mallie, American radio and television announcer (b. 1924)
  • 2000-02-04 Phil Tonken, American radio and television announcer (b. 1919)
  • 2001-08-29 Graeme "Shirley" Strachan, Australian singer (Skyhooks), TV and radio star (b. 1952)

Person of interestPerson of Interest

2004-06-05 Ronald Reagan, 40th US President, Governor of California and radio and film actor, dies at 93

US President & Actor Ronald Reagan
US President & Actor
Ronald Reagan
  • 2005-03-06 Tommy Vance, British radio disc jockey (b. 1943)
  • 2005-07-10 Freda Wright-Sorce, American radio performer (b. 1955)
  • 2010-12-22 Fred Foy, American radio and television announcer (b. 1921)
  • 2011-11-04 Andy Rooney, American radio and television writer (b. 1919)
  • 2012-08-06 Sir Bernard Lovell, English radio astronomer, dies at 98