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National Museum to Mark 75th Anniversary of Voice of America:

from The ARRL Letter on February 16, 2017
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National Museum to Mark 75th Anniversary of Voice of America:

The National Voice of America (VOA) Museum at the VOA-Bethany site in West Chester, Ohio, will join in celebrating the 75th anniversary of the VOA The Voice of America marked its diamond jubilee on February 1. In 1942, not 2 months after the US officially entered World War II, a live, 15-minute shortwave broadcast was transmitted into Germany from a small studio in New York City. Introduced by "The Battle Hymn of the Republic," the voice of announcer William Harlan Hale declared, "We bring you Voices from America. Today, and daily from now on, we shall speak to you about America and the war. The news may be good for us. The news may be bad. But we shall tell you the truth."

"We're planning a series of events and exhibits this year to celebrate the VOA's commitment across America and the world to embrace best practices in telling the truth in order to let the world decide," said Jack Dominic, the museum's executive director. The West Chester Amateur Radio Club is a museum partner and operates WC8VOA from the museum.

At the dedication of VOA-Bethany, FCC Commissioner Clifford Durr referred to the forest of towers on the site as "siege guns of radio...that can hurl explosive facts against the enemy's weapons of lies and confusion... They are also potential guns of peace." Helped by an array of rhombic antennas, VOA-Bethany station transmitted news to Europe during World War II and to South America during the Cold War. The federal government decommissioned the Bethany station in 1994.

"The men and women who made up the VOA broadcasting system were our journalistic beacons of light during the 20th century," said Ken Rieser, president of the VOA Museum board. "Elmer Davis, John Houseman, Edward R. Murrow, and Robert Bauer all had positions of leadership within the VOA."

Today the VOA is the world's largest international broadcaster, transmitting news and information in 47 languages to 236 million people each week, according to the VOA website. The National VOA Museum of Broadcasting, located in the art deco Bethany station building, houses three collections -- the Gray History of Wireless radios, VOA-Bethany station's Voice of America control room, and the Media Heritage Cincinnati Museum of Broadcast History.

The National VOA Museum of Broadcasting is open on the third Saturday of each month -- including February 18 -- from 1 to 4 PM Eastern Time. For more information, visit the VOA Museum website.


The ARRL Letter

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