Monday, November 2, 2009


On this date in 1920, Pittsburgh Pennsylvania's KDKA began broadcasting as the first commercial radio station in the United States. The first announcement heard were the returns from the 1920 presidential race between Warren G. Harding and James M. Cox. (Cox would later build a large newspaper and radio enterprise and died here in Dayton in 1957.)

KDKA is one of four radio stations east of the Mississippi River that use call letters beginning with K. The others are KYW in Philadelphia, KQV in Pittsburgh and KFIZ from Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.

What is that thing in front of the city skyline on the bottom sticker? An oil gusher? (click it to enlarge)


  1. Back in the late 60's I used to listen to KDKA on a regular basis during the winter months all the way up here on the west coast of Canada. Those were the days when a clear channel station actually meant a clear channel station. They ran a pretty decent Top 40 format in those days.

  2. The "oil gusher" is the fountain at Pittsburgh's Point State Park. I'm glad to know we're part of your collection!

    Marshall Adams
    KDKA Program Director

  3. Thanks for the info, Marshall. I thought it might have been a gusher knowing that western Pennsylvania had some history with oil. I think they drilled the first well somewhere near Pittsburgh. The fountain makes more sense though, even if the water is black :-)