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Rhode Island's Earliest Amateurs 1

Effective December 13, 1912, U.S. radio stations were generally required to have government-issued licences in order to operate, and were also assigned unique callsigns, under the provisions of the Act to Regulate Radio Communication. Here us a list of some of the earliest Amateurs:

Call Location Licensee Est Date Deleted Type
1DP 8
36 Warren Ave., Pawtucket, RI Thomas H Bell 1924
1XW Watchaug Pond, RI Ralph C. Watrous 10/1/1913 Jan-17 Experimental
1ZP Providence, RI Ralph C. Watrous Jun-15 Special Amateur
1XW Charlestown, RI Ralph C. Watrous 1/1/1917 Experimental
1YA Kingston, RI Rhode Island State College 8/1/1919 Nov-20 Technical and Training School
1XF Providence, RI Electrical Products Manufacturing Co. 1/2/1920 Dec-21 Experimental
1YA Kingston, RI Rhode Island State College 5/1/1920 Technical and Training School
1XX 8
Providence, RI Brown University (Physics Department) 10/1/1920 Experimental
1XAD Pawtucket, RI Standard Radio & Electric Co. 8/1/1921 Experimental
1YE Providence, RI The New England Radio and Telegraph School 1925 301 Strand Theater Building
1ZQ Providence, RI Alpha A Learned 1925 76 Camp Street
1ZS Providence, RI Franklin S Huddy 1925 204 Bowen Street


Pioneer Broadcast Service Stations In Rhode Island: Actions Through June, 1922 2

By late 1921 enthusiasm for broadcasting had started to develop nationwide, and the Bureau of Navigation decided to formally designate standards and wavelengths for a specific broadcast service. Moreover, in addition to entertainment broadcasts, it saw the need to provide for broadcasts of official government reports. On December 1, 1921 two wavelengths were formally set aside for broadcasting, set up as a service category within the already existing "Limited Commercial" class of stations. A clause was added to the Limited Commercial regulations, reading: "Licences of this class are required for all transmitting radio stations used for broadcasting news, concerts, lectures, and such matter. Thus, broadcasting was formally introduced using just two wavelengths -- 360 and 485 -- in the 200 to 600 meter band.

Rhode Island was no exception. Stations listed in 1921 were:

Call Location Licensee Meters Owner Discription
1OJ 8
Pawtucket, RI DeLancey, Felch & Company 200 Raymond W Farnum No regular program now. Music. Range 150 miles
1XAD Pawtucket, RI Standard Radio & Elec. Company 290 Thomas P Giblin 2 50-watt tubes, radius 400 miles. Heard at distances of 1,000 miles. Located at 463 Broadway, same city. Broadcasts three days per week, music, lectures and letters read. Now working on 290 meters. Aerial 70 foot long, 9 wires on spreader 15 feet, 11 wires on counterpoise. Ground, 11 wires 70 foot long, copper plates at end.

Click to enlarge
Principle Radio Stations Broadcasting
Stations in the United States
Ashland Weekly Tidings
April 26, 1922


A list of Broadcasting Stations, on June 30, 1922, both Commercial and Government included these 2 Rhode Island Radio Stations. Both stations were listed as "Entertainment". 3

WEAG - Nichols-Hineline-Bassett Laboratory - Edgewood, RI
WEAN - Shepard Company - Providence, RI




The following is a list of Amature Radio stations in Rhode Island from 1920 to 1923. Interest seemed to peak in 1922 with 135 stations registered. The following year it dropped to 111. 3

X
Owner Location Power (Watts) Call 1920 1921 1922 1923
Clifford A Langworthy R D No1, Westerly, RI 10 1AAP 8
1AAP
Daniel F Colloer 580 Smithfield Rd, North Providence, RI 10 1AAR x
John F Deacon 33 Pope St, Newport, RI 500, 200 1AAS x x x x
Alpha A Lerned 76 Camp St, Providence, RI 100, 500 1AAU x x x x
J Stedman Ward 353 Spring St, Newport, RI 250, 10 1AAV x x x x
Arthur Z Smith 200 Park Ave, Woonsocket, RI 5, 10 1ABC 8
x x
Williams J Cummings 42 Glenwood St, Cranston, RI 25 1ABP 8
1ABP 12
x
Graham R Hall 209 Lippitt St, Providence, RI 10 1ABW x x
Radio Station Block Island, RI 250 W1ACD 8
Charles P Kenyon Providence, RI 1AEI 8
Raymond P Adams 160 Cypress Sr, Providence, RI 100 1AER x x
Thomas C Howard Second Beach Rd, Newport, RI 50 1AFN 8
1AFN 8
x
Frederick Buck, Jr Fort Adams, RI 250 1AFR
1AFR
x x
Alpha A Lerned Brown University, Providence, RI 10 1AGC x
W C Nielson 60 Kay St, Newport, RI 10 W1AGI 8
John C Thoresen 63 Moorland Ave, Cranston, RI 5 1AGZ x
Otis B French Plimpton Rd, Watch Hill, RI 50 1AHJ x
Henry B Joy "Treasure Hill" Watch Hill, RI 500 1AHM x
H Russell Burdick 22 Park Ave, Westerly, RI 50 1AHT x
John C Buchart 8 Central Ave, Lakewood, RI 15 1AIF x
Sidney S Blake 42 Main St, Westerly, RI 250, 20 1AIP x x x
Sacred Heart Academy 636 Broad St, Central Falls, RI 250 1AIT x x x
Chester L Warren Fort Adams, Newport, RI 500 1AIU x
Herbert W Squires YMCA, Newport, RI 35 1AIV x
Leonard M Luther 68 Daniels St, Pawtucket, RI 250 1AIW x x x
John E Marshall Jennys Lane, Barrington, RI 25 1AJO x
William R Brown 59 Abbott St, Pawtucket, RI 100 1AJZ x x
Mitchell A Kapland 70 Humboldt Ave, Providence, RI 100 1AKJ x x
Stuart V Letts 75 Farragut Ave, Providence, RI 25 1AKQ x
Howard C Money 129 Robinson St, Providence, RI 25 1AKK x
Hugh C D Pollock 15 Whitford St, Pawtucket, RI 250 1AKR x
Harry F Dence 29 Russell Ave, Newport, RI 40 1ALB x
Edwin J Gates 9 Denver Ave, Edgewood, RI 10 1ALD x
William A Swrrt 8 Willow St, Newport, RI 45 1ALM x
George E Jette 161 Summer St, Central Falls, RI 500 1ALQ x x
Herbert R Grimshaw Brown University, Providence, RI 450 1ALU x x
Edward Kingsley 4 Battery St, Newport, RI 100, 200 1ALZ x x x
Howard W Thornley 7 Belmont St, Pawtucket, RI 500 1AMD x x x
Harry L Olson 5 Union St, East Greenwich, RI 30 1AML x
Franklin B Rowell 106 Cedar St, Pawtucket, RI 100 1AMU 8
x
John E Fogerty 220 Hamilton St, Providence, RI 25 1AND x
Aaron Norman 20 Benefit St, Providence, RI 100 1AOO x x
Joseph W Cohen 416 North Main At, Providence, RI 100 1AOV x x
Hans R Grafe Fort Adams, Newport, RI 20 1APG x
Arthur B. Ashworth 151 Franklin St, Cranston, RI 20 1AQA 12
Chester W Ward 2342 Cranston St, Cranston, RI 5 1ARK x
Elliot B Hull 59 Pitman St, Providence, RI 100, 25 1ATH x x x
Leonard C Jenson 125 Lexingron St, Providence, RI 100 1ATI x x
Alvan B Conway 33 South St, Pawtucket, RI 100 1ATX x
Alvan B Conway 116 Division St, Pawtucket, RI 40 1ATX x x
Harold Dewing 205 Camp St, Providence, RI 100, 1000 1ATY x x x
St George's Radio School Newport, RI 100 1AOA x
Raymond P Adams 160 Cypress Sr, Providence, RI 1000 1AQU x x
Chester W Ward 2343 Cranston Sve, Cranston, RI 5 1ARK x
Edson S Hineline 200 Narragansett St, Edgewood, RI 15 1ATB x
Ralph J Liedel Lincoln Park, Hillsgrove, RI 500 1AUX x x
Alfred E Teachman 757 Grove St, Woonsocket, RI 15 1AV x x
F L Simons 51 Lonsdale Ave, Pawtucket, RI 100 1AVC x
Samuel W Thomas Box 10, Lakewood, RI 40 1AVU x
Norman H Miller 25 Phillips St, Providence, RI 20 1AWE 12
1AWE 8
1AWE 8
1AWE 8
x x
Charles Dwyer 14 Cranston St, Newport, RI 100, 75 1AWG x x
Joseph Lavalley Pascog, RI 500 1AWO x x x
Daniel A O'Connor 196 Transit St, Providence, RI 35 1AWV 8
x
Roger W Hale 74 Miller St, Providence, RI 100 1AXR x
Paul W Slade 631 Angell St, Providence, RI 100 1AYS x x
Thomas Callahan 100 Lafayette St, Providence, RI 100, 50 1AYX x x x
Herant Toumajanian 16 Finley, Pl, Newport, RI 100, 375 1AZW x x x
Corliss B Gardner 10 Broadrock St, Peace Dale, RI 100, 5 1AZY x x x
L C Jensen 132 Baysrd St, Providence, RI (2) 7.5 Watters 1BAT 8
Theodore R Norton 6 Bush St, Newport, RI 100 1BBA x x
Paul W Slade 631 Angell St, Providence, RI 100 1BBS x
Thomas Callahan 100 Lafayette St, Providence, RI 100 1BBX x
John White 78 Hope St, Providence, RI 25 1BCC 8
x
Lewis S Bellem 90 Stanwood St, Providence, RI 100, 500, 60 1BES 8
1BES 12
1BES 8
x x x
James H Hanly 22 Carson St, Pawtucket, RI 100, 10 1BEW x x
James H Hanly 134 Chaplin St, pawtucket, RI 25 1BEW x
Oliver H Brewster 269 Montfomery St, Providence, RI 100 1BFX x x
Phillips R Burkke 343 Lloyd Ave, Providence, RI 100, 30 1BGD 8
x x x
Albert G Hutchins 42 Illinois St, Central Falls, RI 100 1BGU x x
William R Powers 30 Medway St, Providence, RI 100 1BHI x x
Leroy Beebe 13 Robinson St, Newport, RI 250, 100, 20 1BHK x x x
Samuel G Stiness 260 Broad St, Central Falls, RI 250 1BHP x x
Vincent Capuano 31 Penn St, Providence, RI 500 1BHY x x x
Nickolas Fiors 605 Admiral St, Providence, RI 10, 40 1BIE 8
1BIE 8
x x x
K of C Vocational School 509 Westminister St, Providence, RI 700watt 1BKS x x
Horace Wilcox 180 Main St, Wakefiels, RI 500 1BME x x x
George H Johnson 62 Miner St, Providence, RI 12 1BMU x x
Eddy M Woodruff 129 Summit St, East Providence, RI 40 1BMV x x
Robert O MacKinnon 11 Sherman St, Pawtucket, RI 250 1BNE x x
Lloyd Manuel 169 Thames St, Newport, RI 500 1BOG x
Rueben F Reynolds 19 Stimson Ave, Providence, RI 25 1BPB x
Donald B Brown 68 Greene St, Pawtucket, RI 20 1BPC x x
George M Mathewson 401 Broadway, Newport, RI 12 1BQD x
George M Mathewson 39 Rhode Island Ave, Newport, RI 75, 35 1BQD 8
1BQD 8
x x
William S Allen Corvesett, RI 500 1BQT x x
N G Herreshoff, Jr 142 Hope St, Bristol, RI 15 1BRA x x
Samuel R Robinson, Jr 46 Main St, South Kingston, RI 15 1BRU x x
Earl R Lofquist 68 Main St, East Providence, RI 24 1BSD x x
Bayden P Taylor 394 Central St, Central Falls, RI 25 1BUJ x x
Herbert St Laurent 73 Harrison St, Providence, RI 25 1BUK x x
Julian L McKenzie 52 Elm St, Westerly, RI 100 1BUL x x
Howard W Cushing 16 Hamilton St, Providence, RI 25 1BUN x x
Donald J Brown 86 Franklin St, Westerly, RI 50, 1000 1BVB x x
D B Fancher Westerly, RI 20 1BVB 8
1BVB 8
x
Willism P White 6 Clinton Ave, Newport, RI 15 1BVD x x
John Rollinson 27 Kenyon Ave, Wakefield, RI 15 1BVE x x
Granville A Reynolds 34 Whitney St, Providence, RI 25 1BWI x x
Hartley C Humphrey Nannaquaket Rd, Tiverton, RI 50 1BWK x x
John S Walker Silver Lake Ave, Wakefield, RI 50 1BWS x x
Herbert F Newman 69 Burton St, Bristol, RI 50 1BXO x x
William C Sweet 18 Meeting St, Newport, RI 500 1BXQ x x
Fred S Stedman 35 Winter St, Wakefield, RI 15 1BXZ x x
Leslie A Jones 31 Thurston Ave, Newport, RI 25 1BZY x
Leslie A Jones 31 Thurston Ave, Newport, RI 25 1BYZ x
Horace Young 73 Clarence St, Providence, RI 50 1CAB 8
1CAB 8
x x
Lewis J Boss North Scituate, RI 25 1CAN x x
Raymond W Farnum 12 Meeting St, Pawtucket, RI 100 1CAQ x
John A Bargamian William Ave, Norwood, RI 25 1CAS x x
Henry T Kollen 996 Eddy St, Providence, RI 350 1CAU x x
Eugene R McCullough 326 Smith St, Providence, RI 25 1CAY x x
Lester A Riley 67 Pidge Ave, Pawtucket, RI 25 1CBB x x
Clayton F Dixon 9 School St, Westerly, RI 50 1CBP x x x
John E Burke 12 Geldard St, Valley Falls, RI 15 1CBR x x x
Herant Toumajanian 58 Gibbs St, Newport, RI 100 1CBW x
Corliss B Gardner 10 Broadrock St, Peace Dale, RI 100 1CBY x
Newport Radio Club Mary St, Newport, RI 50 1CCD x x x
Earl W Barber East Ave, Westerly, RI 50 1CCG x x x
Walter Kemble 63 Alger Ave, Providence, RI 25 1CCI x x
Gordon W Battey Samoset St, Watch Hill, RI 1000 1CDM 8
x x
Earl S Siswick Hope Valley, RI 50 1CEO x x
George L Babcock El Reposo, Watch Hill, RI 30 1CER x x
John C B Washburn East Greenwich, RI 15 1CEZ x x
Lewis C Leighton 161 Fountain St, Providence, RI 15 1CFQ x x
Vahe Johnson 259 Farmington Ave, Cranston, RI 10 1CGO x x
Wilbur Newton 69 Arnold St, Edgewood, RI 200 1CGT x x
Arthur William Ganz 39 Viola St, Providence, RI 50 1CGX x x
Pawtucket Boys Club 53 East Ave, Pawtucket, RI 500 1CIN x x
Edward A Dolan 6 Hobart St, Westerly, RI 25 1CIU x x
Harold R Bassett, Jr 94 Armington St, Cranston, RI 25 1CIV 13
x x
Horton B Weaver 603 Angell St, Providence, RI 10 1CJE x x
Mitchell Adams, Jr 205 Hunts St 1000 1CLR x x
Benjamin F Cutter 1059 Westminster St, Providence, RI 500 1CMI x
Max Ortelt 27 Samson St, Providence, RI 20 1CMJ x x
Edwin Sargent 68 Alger Ave, Providence, RI 20 1CMQ x
Raymond P Griswold 164 Webster Ave, Providence, RI 25 1CN x x
Andrew R Connet 67 Whitmarsh St, Providence, RI 20 1CNJ x x
Frederick B White 141 Columbus Ave, Cranston, RI 250 1CON x x
James Whitehill Thompson 28 Channing St, Newport, RI 20 1CQZ x x
Paul St Jacques, Jr 272 Adams St, Woonsocket, RI 20 1CPH x
Roger Williams 44 Pitman St, Providence, RI 10 1CPX x x
John Henry Kelly, Jr 38 Carroll Ave, Newport, RI 5 1CQB x x
James R Wikle Royal Mills, Riverpoint, RI 1000 1CQG x x
Russel E Thomas 82 Mill St, Newport, RI 20 1CQW x x
Fredrick L Curran 96 N Bend St, Pawtucket, RI 500 1CRG x x
Stanley N Read 191 Alabams Ave, Providence, RI 5 1CRI 8
1CRI 8
1CRI 8
x x
George Parker Lawton Tiverton Four Corners, iverson, RI 25 1CRM x x
Reginald V Person 4 Coggshall Ave, Newport, RI 30 1CRN x x
Chester F Scott 29 Alice Ave, Woonsocket, RI 10 1CSW x x
Daniel E White 12 Park St, Newport, RI 5 1CTQ x x
Harold R Fredericks 1044 Main St, Pawtucket, RI 5 1CUN x
Herbert S Barnett 993 Manton Ave, Providence, RI 5 1CUT x
Herbert S Barnett 86 Walllace St, Providence, RI 5 1CUT x
Alexander R Johnson 19 Almy St, Providence, RI 250 1EA x
Henry N Armbrust Box42, Jamestown, RI 25 1ED x x
Peter A MacIntyre 6 Fairoaks Ave, Providence, RI 25 1EJ x x
George A Brown 13 Prince St, Pawtucket, RI 50 1ET x
Raymond P Adams 160 Cypress Sr, Providence, RI 100 1EAR x
John W Marren 39 Touro St, Newport, RI 100, 500 1FT x x x
H H Tilley Woolworth Building, Providence, RI 10 1GV
1GV11
1GV
x x
Sidney S Blake 42 Main St, Westerly, RI 250 1IAP x
Emile Coursoden 636 Broad St, Central Falls, RI 250 1IAT x
Leonard M Luther 68 Daniels St, Pawtucket, RI 250 1IAW x
Harold Thomas 117 Harrison Ave, Cranston, RI 1ID
Franklin S Huddy 204 Bowen St, Providence, RI 500 1II12 x x x
Franklin S Huddy 204 Bowen St, Providence, RI 500 1IJ x
William R Brown 59 Abbott St, Pawtucket, RI 100 1JAZ x
A W Manchester 54 Gibbs Ave, Newport, RI 100, 10 1JF x x x x
Mitchell A Kapland 70 Humboldt Ave, Providence, RI 100 1KAJ x
Joseph D Guillemette 70 Magill St, Pawtucket, RI 70 1LO x x
George E Jette 161 Summer St, Central Falls, RI 500 1LAQ x
Herbert R Grimshaw Brown University, Providence, RI 450 1LAU x
Edward Kingsley 4 Battery St, Newport, RI 100 1LAZ x
Howard W Thornley 7 Belmont St, Pawtucket, RI 500 1MAD x
Harry C Merry 147 Sumter St, Pawtucket, RI 1MO 12
Lloyd Manuel 6 Nicol Ter, Newport, RI 500 1MV x x
Geoffrey E Warburton 24 Walker Ave, Lincoln, RI 10 1NA x x
Emile H Aubin 164 Robinson Ave, Pawtucket, RI 500 1NC x
Raymond P Caldwell 18 Morton St, Providence, RI 250, 10 1NG x x x x
William V Polleys, Jr 97 Taber Ave, Providence, RI 400 1NJ x x
Aaron Norman 20 Benefit St, Providence, RI 100 1OAO x
Joseph W Cohen 416 North Main At, Providence, RI 100 1OAV x
Seabury B Waring Tiverton, RI 500, 50 1OD x x x
Raymond W Farnum 12 Meeting St, Pawtucket, RI 1000 1OJ 8
x x x
Carlleton S Spear Pierce St, East Greenwich, RI 15 1OK x x
Nelson B Stackpole 139 Pratt St, Providence, RI 250. 500 1OW 8
1OW 8
x x x x
Charles A Sohegian 107 Wilson St, Providence, RI 5 1PA x
Nathaniel B Judkins 1474 Pawtucket Ave, East Providence, RI 100 1PM x x
Nathaniel B Judkins 1474 Pawtucket Ave, East Providence, RI 100 U1PM 8
Lester E Gavitt 43 Beach St, Westerly, RI 500 1PY x x
Edwars C Cole 62 Brown St, Pawtucket, RI 100 1QJ x x
Albert J King 261 Northrup Street, Edgewood, RI 10 1QR 8
1QR
R Chapman 4 Hillside Ave, Westerly, RI 500 1QV 8
James L Jenks, Jr 209 Cottage St, Pawtucket, RI 500 1QY x x x x
Gifford L Weston 56 Brook St, Pawtucket, RI 100 1RQ x x
Elliot B Hull 59 Pitman St, Providence, RI 100 1TAH x
Leonard C Jenson 125 Lexingron St, Providence, RI 100 1TAI x
Alvan B Conway 33 South St, Pawtucket, RI 100 1TAX x
Harold Dewing 205 Camp St, Providence, RI 100 1TAY x
Ludlow P Mahan Harrison Ave, Newport, RI 100 1TJ x x
Ludlow P Mahan 4 Wesley St, Newport, RI 20 1TJ x x
Charles J Mahony 18 Pond Ave, Newport, RI 150, 40 1TN x x x x
Ralph J Liedel Lincoln Park, Hillsgrove, RI 500 1UAX x
Omar E Cote 184 Harrison St, Pawtucket, RI 500 1UB x x x x
Reginald M Pease 5 W Park St, Providence, RI 100 1US x x
F L Simons 51 Lonsdale Ave, Pawtucket, RI 100 1VAC x
Gilbert W Johnson 75 Onterio St, Providence, RI 550 1VF x x x x
Francis Xavier La France 93 Warren Ave, Pawtucket, RI 100 1VH x x
Charles Dwyer 14 Cranston St, Newport, RI 100 1WAG x
Joseph Lavalley Pascog, RI 500 1WAO x
Edmund I Waldman 73 Whitmarsh St, Providence, RI 12 1WB x
Ralph C Watrous 20 Diman Pl, Providence, RI 500 1WM x x
Ralph C Watrous Watchaug Pond, Geroge Town, RI 500 1WN x x
John W Whitmore 64 Meadow St, Pawtucket, RI 100, 1000 1WO 8
1WO 12
x x x x



HISTORY OF THE
PROVIDENCE RADIO ASSOCIATION,
INCORPORATED, W1OP 28

WRITTEN BY: DOMENIC M. MALLOZZI, N1DM

PROVIDENCE RADIO ASSOCIATION, INC.
1 LUDLOW STREET
JOHNSTON, R.I.

NOVEMBER 2005

The Providence Radio Association (PRA) started in 1919 in the Elmwood section of Providence, RI. As far as can be determined at this time the members were young men with a common interest in the wonders of wireless. Amateurs had been off the air since the beginning of World War I and in that period all amateur licenses had expired and that it was not until November 1919 that hams got back on the air 14 . The club was formed by amateurs who were itching to get back on the air and those who had to wait for the war to end to allow them their chance at transmitting. When many amateurs had left for war spark was still king, during the war many were exposed to CW (spark was legal on US ham bands until 1927). Even though the PRA was not the first ham radio club in RI, it was an early club (the earliest RI club that we find a reference to is the “Rhode Island Wireless Association” in 1910 15 ) and is the earliest surviving RI ham club. By September 1920 the group became more organized and were referred to as the Elmwood Radio Association. The eight original members were Lewis S. Bellem, Stanley S. Read, Howard O. Cushing, Harold O. Brewster, Earl Baldwin, L. Clifford Leighton, Joseph W. Cohen and Allen Cordin. 16 As the Elmwood Radio Association they met at Lew Bellem’s home at 99 Stanwood Street weekly to discuss radio and help each other. By 1921 they needed larger quarters and moved to the Providence YMCA on Broad Street and decided to change the name to the Providence Radio Association to reflect that they wanted to be more than a neighborhood organization.

After a year the club filed a “Resolution of Affiliation” with the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) in October 1921 17 , with Lew Bellem, 1BES as president and Lew Leighton, 1ETD as secretary signing for the club. At that time the club was meeting in rm. 201 of the YMCA on Broad Street in Providence (a location the club would use on and off through the mid 1940’s). This resolution was approved by the ARRL on November 19, 1921 and an ARRL club charter of affiliation was issued. The members were a small group that continued to grow as the wireless boom of the 20’s occurred. By 1922 the clubs expansion caused a move to a rented facility at 159 Niagara Street. 16 From 70 members in 1922 18 the club had grown by 1923 to 101 members 19 (of whom 31 were licensed). The fact that three years later in 1926 there were only 43 ham stations 20 (not counting 1LI) licensed in Providence shows that the club was the major organization for hams in the city of Providence. In fact the period for licenses was 2 years in this era and in 1926 there were only 14,902 amateur licenses 21 in the US and its possessions.

The club realized from the beginning that the regulatory issues of our hobby were important. As one of the few hobbies that had codified federal regulations along with various local regulations and codes affecting it, this was a critical area that could not be ignored. They also recognized from the beginning that this meant representing the interests of all amateurs not only its members. This is shown in an early article in the Providence Journal 15 about the clubs reaction to new radio regulations. The club has continued this representation of its members and the hobby in general in rule making issues to this day.

The club members were active in the experimentation that marked the continuing development of radio at that time. In fact Alpha Learned, 1AAU one of the PRA’s early presidents (and a ham and commercial operator prior to World War I) published three technical items in QST in the 20’s 22 23 24. As most hams of the day did, the clubs membership was active in building their own equipment as is shown by a 1923 article in the Providence Journal that reported that the PRA had sponsored a receiving set contest 25 for its 100 members. This contest was judged by John E. Marshall, Lou Bellem (1BES), and Harry H. Tilley (1GV). The winners were for two or more tubes Alpha Learned (1AAU), in the two-tube class Horrace Young (1CAB), in the one tube class Chester Ward (1ARK) and second in the one tube class was Clarence Miller. The article shows a picture of the proud winners with their professional looking gear and comments on Alpha Learned’s professional looking work which was consistent with his holding a commercial ticket and experience as a shipboard operator knowing the importance of good construction. This tradition of home brewing continues to this day as shown in the amplifiers in use at the W1OP shack in 2004 as well as the continued home brewing activity of various members.

The PRA became one of the few club licensees in the early part of the century when in 1925 the club obtained 1LI1 26. This made it one of only three club stations in Rhode Island that year (the other two being at Pawtucket High School and at St. George’s School in Newport). In fact in 1925 only 8 non-school radio clubs existed in New England and in 2004 the PRA and the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) station are the only two of that group still active. Little is known of this station other than the details contained in the various U.S. government call books at the time and the annual reports made by the club to the ARRL. In 1925 the club showed a power of 50 watts, which sounds pretty run of the mill today. But it was a good sized station when we consider that in 1925 the highest power commercial broadcast station in Rhode Island was 500 watts and one station was a part timer running 20 watts 27. In 1928 when the international radio convention required the use of prefixes indicating the country of the station, the PRA was among the original group of ham stations that sported the new W prefix to their calls.













1 US Special Land Stations: 1913-1921
2 United States Pioneer Broadcast Service Stations: Actions Through June, 1922
3 JUNE 30, 1922 BROADCAST STATION LIST
4 Amateur Radio Station of the United States, 1920-1923
5 Amateur Radio Station of the United States, 1920-1923
6 Rhode Island Amusement Parks, Robert Lewis and Ryan Young
7 CRESCENT PARK
8 I own this card
9 QSL courtesy of Art Donahue, W1AWX
10 New England Wireless and Steam Museum Collection
11 QSL and Reception Reports Collection
12 Rhode Island QSL Cards
13 QST March 1922
14 DeSoto, Clinton B.: Two Hundred Meters and Down: West Hartford, CT: ARRL: 1935: page 59
15 DeSoto, Clinton B.: Two Hundred Meters and Down: West Hartford, CT: ARRL: 1935: page 30
16 “Wireless Fans Cooperate”: Providence Journal: December 3, 1922,section 5, page 2
17 On file with the American Radio Relay League, Inc. (ARRL): 225 Main Street: Newington, CT 06111
18 “City Radio Association Protests New Regulations”: Providence Journal: January 27, 1922: page 9
19 Annual Report to the ARRL dated 5/10/1923 on file with the ARRL in Newington, CT
20 “Amateur Radio Stations of the United States”: Edition June 30, 1926: Department of Commerce, Bureau of Navigation, Radio Service: page 29
21 DeSoto, Clinton B.: Two Hundred Meters and Down: West Hartford, CT: ARRL: 1935: page 114 & 132 (quote from Department of Commerce annual report for 1926)
22 “Learned, Alpha A. (1AAU): “A Calibrated External Hetrodyne and Wave Meter”: QST: October 1922: page 37 [ NOTE: QST magazine referred to in these footnotes is published by the American Radio Relay League, Inc.: Newington, CT ]
23 Learned, Alpha (1AAU): “A Compact Receiver”: QST: February 1927: page 34
24 Learned, Alpha: “Frequency vs. Wavelength” (“Experimenter’s Section”: QST: July 1929: page 45
25 Providence Journal: June 3, 1923: pg. S5-11
26 “Amateur Radio Stations of the United States”: Edition June 30, 1925: Department of Commerce, Bureau of Navigation, Radio Service: page 20
27 Providence Journal Almanac 1926: Providence Journal Co.: Providence, RI: page 56
28 HISTORY OF THE PROVIDENCE RADIO ASSOCIATION, INCORPORATED, W1OP BY: DOMENIC M. MALLOZZI, N1DM