Friday, May 29, 2015

W2XAD Schenectady New York - 1936

During the mid 1920s, two shortwave transmitters were constructed at South Schenectady, N.Y. for the purpose of experimental radio broadcasting. 

In June 1925 W2XAF began a regular program relay from WGY and operated with a power of 40 kw. 

In July 1926 a similar service began from W2XAD with an output of 25 kw. 

At the beginning of 1935, both stations were given a new identification signal (a huge crash of 10 million volts of electricity) with the on air slogan "The Voice of Electricity", as indicated below the transmitter room photograph included on the QSL.

The QSL, received by a U.K. dxer,  verified W2XAD's broadcast of "Vic and Sade" (a popular radio situation comedy series) on October 21st, 1936 on a frequency of 15330 kHz.

The Voice Of Electricity

Click here for additional information from Adrian Peterson's informative Wavescan article available at the website.


  1. Recently these canned sign-on announcements for W2XAD and W2XAF were discovered. Recorded in about 1936, they feature part of "Stars and Stripes Forever" followed with three strikes of artificial lightning from the GE labs - surely enough to startle any somnolent SWL to attention.

    These were dubbed to 16" RCA transcriptions from a GE "Film Phonograph" apparatus that could record audio on movie film. Each disc repeated the sign-on in case one band or the other was damaged.

  2. PS: The finder of these discs initially thought they might have to do with television. GE used 2XAD and 2XAF for mechanical TV experiments in the late 20s-early 30s.

    Altho British enthusiasts recorded a few minutes of TV video to disc in the mechanical era, no such recordings of American stations have ever been found.