The newest addition to Arcadia Publishing’s popular Images of America series is Philadelphia Radio from local author Alan Boris. The book boasts more than 200 vintage images and memories of days gone by.
Philadelphia radio broadcasting began in 1922, when the city's first officially licensed stations went on the air. Within a few years, what had begun as a small, experimental medium became a full-fledged craze as families listened to live news, sports, and entertainment for the first time.
In 1932, the first building designed for radio broadcasting opened on Chestnut Street, coinciding with the golden age of radio that featured live orchestras, soap operas, and imaginative dramas. In the 1950s, a few stations began playing rock and roll, and Philadelphia became known as a city that not only produced hit music but also consistently broke new acts. By the 1970s, FM radio began to grab the majority of listeners, and once again Philadelphia stations were responsible for breaking new artists, such as Billy Joel and Bruce Springsteen.
Highlights of Philadelphia Radio:
• Philadelphia radio broadcasting just celebrated the 89th year anniversary of the city’s first broadcast on March 1.
• Some of the city’s well-known buildings were built by and used as radio stations, including the Art Institute at 1622 Chestnut (formerly WCAU) and the 1619 Walnut building (formerly KYW).
• Philadelphia was one of the first cities to originate teen dance radio shows, starting with the 950 Club on WPEN in 1946 and later on WFIL’s American Bandstand.
Available at area bookstores, independent retailers, and online retailers, or through Arcadia Publishing at www.arcadiapublishing.com or
Arcadia Publishing is the leading publisher of local and regional history in the United States. Our mission is to make history accessible and meaningful through the publication of books on the heritage of America’s people and places. Have we done a book on your town? Visit www.arcadiapublishing.com.