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Medford radio-the fourth R.

A year ago the Register (Vol. XXIV, p. 38) made mention of the ‘devil's fiddle’ craze spread by the boys of fifty years before, which was the precursor of the telephone. We were then constrained to add a few words about the wireless telephone, quoting from the Boston Transcript (June 11) concerning the ‘wireless concerts’ given on Wednesday evenings at Medford Hillside.

Mention also was made (Vol. XVIII, p. 77) of the erection of ‘Medford's sky-scraper,’ the radio tower.

Events follow each other in rapid succession and make history quickly in modern days. The little laboratory erected in 1916 has been twice enlarged, and a larger factory of most modern construction erected on College Avenue, where once was ‘Pansy park.’

There is something doing every evening on the northern slope of old Walnut-tree hill, some years called College hill, but now widely known as ‘Amrad Station Wgi of the American Radio and Research Corporation’ at Medford Hillside.

The daily newspapers devote several columns to the subject of wireless telephoning, which has come to be styled radio, and which has a vocabulary of its own. For instance, the transmission of the words spoken into a receiver are from the top of the three-hundred-foot tower ‘broadcasted.’ Receiving outfits may be purchased at moderate price, or constructed by ingenious amateurs. All about the city we see evidences of these in the ‘antennae’ [p. 22] strung from convenient chimney-tops, and the occupants of the dwelling ‘listen in.’

The programs given for each evening in our local papers show a diversity of subjects from ‘Bed-time Stories’ for children to ‘Today's Economic Situation’ and ‘Good Government,’ while each evening has its musical selections, vocal and instrumental.

On Sunday evenings some clergyman there thus speaks to a larger audience than any church edifice could hold. As a matter of fact (March 12) the pastor of First M. E. Church, Medford, Rev. D. Harold Hickey, having preached on ‘The Jewel and Its Case’ in the church, went with a portion of the choir and repeated the same. The requisite apparatus being installed in the church auditorium, the congregation taxing its capacity there heard sermon and music a second time. It was a fitting climax in that church's history of a hundred years.

But who of those whose educational advantages were limited to the three Rs, or lived before the advent of ‘Old Prob’ (otherwise the Weather Bureau) could understand the following?—

Amrad is broadcasting official weather reports from Wgi. The broadcasting is on 485 meters, as required by the regulations and is preceded by music to enable listeners to tune in.

It is evident there is now a fourth R, brought largely about by a student of Tufts College. But it is a branch of education that Mr. Tufts, the owner of the old bleak hill, who said he would ‘put a light on it,’ little dreamed of.

We do not recall that any sermon by any Medford clergyman (or other) has been reproduced in our pages. Having listened to that of Memorial Sunday in Trinity Church, which was repeated that evening and broadcasted at Wgi, the Register is preserving it for the future, trusting that it will be read at the preacher's boyhood home in Old England, and by others in future days when those who on May 28 ‘listened in’ may have forgotten.

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