|City of license||Fitchburg, Massachusetts|
|First air date||February 15, 1950|
|Power||2,500 watts day
1,000 watts night
|Former callsigns||WXLO, WFGM|
|Owner||Horizon Christian Fellowship|
The station went on the air February 15, 1950 as WFGM at 1580 AM. WFGM's original studios were located on the third floor of a downtown building at the corner of Main and Prichard Streets in Fitchburg. The original transmitter included one broadcast tower on Lunenburg Street near the current intersection of John Fitch Highway. The station had a power output of 1,000 watts. Several years later, new studios were constructed in a renovated townhouse at 170 Prichard Street, which was then renamed Broadcast House. A new four-tower transmitter was constructed atop Alpine Hill and the station's dial position was changed to 960 AM.
In 1960, the station was granted a license for FM station WFGM-FM (104.5), which later became WBNE, WFMP and eventually WXLO. On November 1, 1962, the stations were sold to local businessman George Chatfield who in turn acquired a local newspaper, The Montachusett Review. The AM call letters were changed to WFGL in 1967. WFMP-FM became popular for featuring country music in the 1970s featuring the legendary Gene LaVerne and Dave Brown. In 1979 both stations were sold to Montachusett Broadcasting. During this time period it featured the on-air talents of Dave Svens, Scott May, Paul Belfay, Greg Vine, Gail Dussault and Al Brodie, among others. WFGL was granted a power increase to 2,500 watts in 1984.
In 1991, the station was renamed to WXLO, and programming was converted to a simulcast of WXLO-FM. Soon afterward, the station went silent; during the silent period, the WFGL callsign was reinstated. The station was then sold, and resumed broadcasting in October 1994 with the current Christian format.
In 2001, the studios moved to their current location in a refurbished brick mill building.
Throughout its initial years WFGM and WFGL were considered full service radio stations, providing news and current affairs programming to the Fitchburg area communities. Among the programs carried was Frankly Speaking, a telephone call-in talk program that ran in various forms for over thirty years. The station also broadcast a middle of the road music format, featuring popular vocalists of the time. On-air talent in the mid-60s included Ed Broughey, Bill Sterling, Ron Morgan, and Jerry McRell. Walt Clancy and Tom Conry did the news. Jim Chalmers was General Manager and sports announcer. Don Coleman was Chief Engineer, assisted by Jim Sullivan and Mal Coburn. Ray Loter programmed and was on-air for WBNE in the evening, when it did not simulcast WFGM. The stations owned an Amphicar, which made frequent appearances in parades as well as in Lake Whalom! As did many radio stations, in the 1980s the music format shifted to what became known as Adult Contemporary. The station also featured many popular local personalities including Tal Hood, Ed Broughey, Dick Ziegler. Chester Gaylord and, in the earlier years part-timer Jeff Mitchell. In 1985 the station returned to its musical roots by switching to a traditional pop music format, once again featuring popular vocalists and instrumentals from the 1930s through 1960s, while also serving as a full service outlet carrying live local sports and news. At this time the station was an affiliate of the CBS Radio Network.
Currently, WFGL airs Christian teaching programs, and contemporary Praise and Worship music.
- Query the FCC's AM station database for WFGL
- Radio-Locator Information on WFGL
- Query Nielsen Audio's AM station database for WFGL