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Cleveland Broadcast Radio Archives Project This collection is being maintained for use by researchers, broadcasters, and other parties.  Your participation is encouraged and welcomed.
WHK-AM
Call Letters WHK - H. K. Carpenter, the station's first GM and VP; now, Word of His Kingdom (After Salem Broadcasting purchase) 7/26/21 - Warren R. Cox signs on radio station 8ACS at 3138 Payne Avenue, the first radio station in Ohio, and only the fifth in the US. About 1000 Greater Clevelanders have the sets to hear the first broadcast, most of them members of the Cleveland Radio Association. Station broadcasts at 50 watts. In the early years, the station broadcasts on different frequencies on the AM dial, including 830kc,1030kc,1100kc,1390kc, and 1420kc. 11/ /21 - The Plain Dealer sponsors mayoral election returns on 8ACS. Most new model radio receivers incorporate a loudspeaker. Cox increases the station power to 100 watts. 8ACS broadcasts a series of Friday night concerts, singers, vaudeville performers and sports scores. 2/ /22 - The US Detment of Commerce makes it unlawful for amateur radio stations to operate without a license. 3/5/22 - Warren Cox receives a commercial license for his station, and soon after, broadcasts a live concert by vaudeville star Ona Munson. Three months later, officially changes the call letters to WHK. At this point, the station is located at the rear of the Radiovox store at 5005 Euclid Avenue. 1925 - Cox sells the station to the Radio Air Service Corporation. 1926 - WHK receives the first radio license from the federal government, signed by Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover. The station broadcasts at 1100kc. The station goes through a series of location moves, including 5105 Euclid Avenue, the Hotel Winton at 1025 Bolivar Road (later the Hotel Carter), the Standard Building at St. Clair and Ontario, the top floor of the Higbee Company on Public Square, and Carnegie Hall at 1220 Huron Road. 1928 - WHK moves to the Engineer's Bank Building at 1370 Ontario Avenue. 1929 - WHK produces a daily program providing instruction in arithmetic, one of the first forays into public education. 1930 - Station becomes a CBS affiliate. WHK's power is increased to 5000 watts for both day and night transmission. It can now be found at 1390kc AM, 215.7 meters. 9/8/31 - WHK moves next to the Terminal Tower. The grand opening celebration includes a live opera "Faust" from the auditorium, and Colonel Robert McCormick of the Chicago Tribune speaking about "The Founding of Our Country. The station also adopts the slogan, "Cleveland - The Convention City". 1934 - Station is purchased by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, and becomes part of Forest City Publishing. The station develops local talent, including studio orchestra leader Louis Rich. The station carries live band concerts from the Crystal Ballroom on Euclid Avenue. 1936 - WHK broadcasts a full season of Cleveland Indians baseball games, featuring announcers Jack Graney and Pinky Hunter. The station also sends a newsman to cover a flood disaster on the Ohio River. The station is now located at 1311 Terminal Tower, broadcasting at 1000 watts and 1390 kilocycles. 1937 - The station switches network affiliation to the NBC Blue Network and the new Mutual Broadcasting System. Network fare includes "Jack Armstrong, the All American Boy", "Superman", "The Lone Ranger", "The Green Hornet", "Burns and Allen", and "The Jack Benny Program". 1943 - The NBC Blue Network is sold and becomes ABC, which affiliates with WJW. 1946 - Among the public service shows aired by WHK are: "Fire Safety", a 15 minute weekly show from the Cleveland Fire Detment; "Cleveland at Work", another 15 minute show from the Ohio State Employment Service; "Book Caravan", which ran for 15 minutes weekly and was sponsored by the Cuyahoga County Public Library; "Strory Teller", the 15 minute weekly show from the Associated Church Federation; an hour long program from the Cleveland Orchestra; a half hour show called "Memo for You", which was open to any number of drives and organizations; the US Army's 15 minute show "Proudly We Hail"; the Cleveland Police Detment's 10 minute show "Police Safety; a 15 minute weekly program titled "US Treasury"; and a 15 minute program titled "The Mayor Reports" with Cleveland's top elected official discussing issues and concerns of the day. 4/5/46 - The Mutual Broadcasting Company brings its popular "Queen for a Day" show to Cleveland Music Hall for a two day run. It airs nationally, with local contestants chosen by affiliate WHK. Promotions director Saul Gantz tells those applying to be contestants should mail in their preferred restaurant and night club, in the event they should win the grand prize. (CN) 1951 - WHK moves to 5000 Euclid Avenue. 6/54 - The WHK lineup includes Bill Gordon from 7:15 to 9:55 a.m., Dick O'Heren from 1:15 to 2:00 p.m., Bill Gordon again from 3:05 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Tom Brown from 10:15 p.m., to 1:00 a.m., and Eleanor Hanson from 10:30 to 11:00 a.m. The general manager is K.K. Hackathorn, and the program director is C.M. Hunter. Mid-50's - With the arrival of rock & roll and Top 40, DJs such as Pete "Mad Daddy" Meyers, Bill Gordon, and Ernie (Ghoulardi) Anderson make WHK a hot spot for younger listeners. 1958 - Forest City Publishing sells WHK to Metropolitan Broadcasting Corporation, soon to be known as Metromedia, for $750,000. Early-60's - WHK becomes a Top 40 powerhouse as "Color Radio", with DJs Johnny Holliday, Johnny Walters, Allan Michaels, Scott Burton, Carl Reese, Pat Fitzgerald, Keith Morris and Ron Riley. (T) WHK Day at Geagua Lake attracts a crowd of 100,000. Singing sensation Fabian has to sneak onto the grounds disguised as an ice cream vendor. 1964 - WHK outmaneuvers rival KYW AM1100 and sponsors the Beatles appearance at Cleveland Public Auditorium. 1964 - WHK airs a live student press conference with Louise Harrison Caldwell, the sister of Beatle George Harrison Mid-60's - The next generation of WHK "Good Guys" includes Joe Mayer, Al JamesKen Scott and Bob Friend. 6/ /67 - The Beatles "Sgt. Pepper" album cover features a tribute to the WHK "GoodGuys". WHK switches to "beautiful music" with announcers "Tall Ted" Hallaman, Bill Collins, and Ronnie Barrett. 1968 - WHK airs Action Central News updates 1972 - Metromedia sells WHK, and sister station WMMS, to Malrite Broadcasting of Ohio. Malrite moves its headquarters to Cleveland. 1973 - WHK briefly returns to Top 40. 1974 - Station adopts a country music format featuring controversial morning show talk host Gary Dee. 2/14/77 - WHK and WMMS move from 5000 Euclid Avenue to the Statler Office Tower. 2/10/84 - Station wins rights to broadcast 1984 Cleveland Browns games 4/24/84 - The station returns to the sounds of 60's Top 40 music as "14K" WHK 7/25/86 - WHK celebrates its 65th birthday with a huge party in downtown Cleveland 11/15/88 - Final day of the "14K Solid Gold" format. (T) 11/ 14 /88 - WHK becomes "AllNewsPlus" talk radio. (T) 1992 - WHK and WMMS move to the Skylight Office Tower. 8/10/92 - Talk show hosts Merle Pollis and Joel Rose jump ship from WERE to WHK. The daily line-up includes Cliff Baechle and Betsie Saltzberg's "Morning Report" from 6-9 a.m., Bob Lewis and Wanda Harris with the "Mid-day Report" at noon, "Smart Money with the Dolans" from 1-3 p.m. Pollis' show airs from 9.am. to noon, with Rose airing from 3 to 6 p.m. (A) (CPD) 1993 - Malrite sells WHK and WMMS to Shamrock Broadcasting. 3/26/93 - Buck Harris launches the city's first Gay/Lesbian talk and call-in show. The "Gay Nineties" airs from 9 to 11 p.m. Fridays. 2/ /94 - Shamrock Broadcasting sells WHK and WMMS to OmniAmerica. The transition occurs on April 15th. 2/5/96 - OmniAmerica decides to simulcast WMJI's "Lanigan, Webster & Malone" on WHK. The station also changes the show times for program director Pat McCabe, Les Levine, and the team of Tony Rizzo and Ron Brienes. (CPD) 1996 - OmniAmerica sells WHK and WMMS to Nationwide Broadcasting. 4/26/96 - Nationwide Broadcasting sells WHK to Salem Broadcasting, and switches format to religious programming. Soon, the station relocates to Independence. (CPD)