WFMB (AM)

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WFMB
WFMB station logo.png
CitySpringfield, Illinois
Broadcast areaSpringfield area
BrandingSports Radio 1450
SloganSpringfield's Sports Voice
Frequency1450 kHz
Translator(s)92.3 W222CG (Springfield)
First air dateAugust 19, 1926 (date first licensed)[1]
FormatSports Talk
Power1,000 watts
ClassC
Facility ID48333
Former callsignsWCBS (1926-1946)
WCVS (1946-1992)
AffiliationsESPN Radio
OwnerNeuhoff Corp.
(Neuhoff Media Springfield, LLC)
Sister stationsWCVS, WFMB-FM, WXAJ
WebcastListen Live
Websitehttp://www.sportsradio1450.com/

WFMB (1450 AM) is a radio station broadcasting a sports talk format. Licensed to Springfield, Illinois, the station is owned by Neuhoff Corp., through licensee Neuhoff Media Springfield, LLC. WFMB features a variety of local hosts, as well as programming from ESPN Radio.

History[edit]

WCBS[edit]

WFMB was first licensed, with the sequentially issued call letters WCBS, on August 19, 1926[1] as a portable broadcasting station assigned to Harold L. Dewing and Charles H. Messter of Providence, Rhode Island.[2] Portable stations could be transported from place-to-place on movable platforms such as trucks. They were commonly hired out for a few weeks at a time to theaters located in small towns that didn't have their own radio stations, to be used for special programs broadcast to the local community. (Regulating "moving targets" proved difficult, so in May 1928 the Federal Radio Commission announced it was ending the licensing of portable facilities.)[3]

WCBS career as a portable was brief. After finding limited prospects in New England, Harold Dewing set out for the midwest.[4] He moved the station to Springfield in late 1926, where it gave a debut broadcast from the Lyric Theater on December 10th,[5] and Springfield became the station's permanent home.[6]

In 1927, WCBS's frequency was changed from 1230 kHz to 1430 kHz, and in 1927 its frequency was changed to 1210 kHz.[1] It ran 100 watts, and shared time on the frequency with WTAX.[1] The station's frequency was changed to 1420 kHz in 1935.[1] Its daytime power was increased to 250 watts in 1937 and its nighttime power was increased to 250 watts in 1939.[1] Its frequency was changed to 1450 kHz in March 1941, as a result of the North American Regional Broadcasting Agreement.[1]

WCVS[edit]

On September 8, 1946, the station call sign was changed to WCVS so that the CBS flagship station in New York City could become WCBS.[7] In 1958, the station was sold to Jerome William O'Connor's WPFA Radio Inc. for $285,000.[8][1][9] Its daytime power was increased to 1,000 watts in 1962.[1] In 1966, the station was sold to Eastern Broadcasting Corporation for $700,000.[9][1]

WCVS aired a top 40 format in the 1960s and 1970s.[10][11][12] In the 1980s, the station aired an adult contemporary format.[13][14] In 1989, the station was sold to Neuhoff Broadcasting, along with 104.5 WFMB, for $4,250,000.[15][16][17] By 1989, the station had adopted an oldies format.[18][19][20]

WFMB[edit]

On October 1, 1992, the station's call sign was changed to WFMB, and it adopted a country music format, with programming from the Real Country network.[21][20] In 1994, the station adopted a sports talk format.[22][23]

In 1996, the station was sold to Patterson Broadcasting, which, after a series of acquisitions, would become part of Clear Channel Communications.[24][25] In 2007, as Clear Channel was selling most of its stations in smaller markets, Neuhoff bought back the Springfield stations they had sold, including WFMB-FM.[25]

The station still operates from an historic radio tower in suburban Springfield, IL (Southern View), which was constructed in the late 1940's, and was the original transmitter location for WICS TV 20.[26]

Translator[edit]

WFMB is also heard on 92.3 MHz, through a translator in Springfield, Illinois.

Call sign Frequency
(MHz)
City of license Facility
ID
ERP
W
Height
m (ft)
FCC info
W222CG 92.3 Springfield, Illinois 138645 250 124 m (407 ft) FCC

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j History Cards for WFMB, fcc.gov. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  2. ^ "New Stations", Radio Service Bulletin, August 31, 1926, page 3.
  3. ^ "Portable stations no longer licensed" (General Order No. 30, May 10, 1928), Radio Service Bulletin, May 31, 1928, page 8.
  4. ^ "When Radio Stations Were Portable" by Donna L. Halper, The Old Radio Times, September 2008, pages 1-3.
  5. ^ "Radio beginnings in Springfield", October 30, 2015 (sangamoncountyhistory.org)
  6. ^ "Broadcasting Stations" (May 3, 1927), Radio Service Bulletin, April 30, 1927, page 10.
  7. ^ "WABC, WCBS Call Letter Switch O.K.'d", The Billboard. September 7, 1946. p. 6. Retrieved April 25, 2019.
  8. ^ "Changing Hands", Broadcasting. September 8, 1958. p. 86. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  9. ^ a b "Changing Hands", Broadcasting. March 14, 1966. p. 71. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  10. ^ "Brian Mackey: Rich Bradley retires after nearly 50 years on city’s airwaves", The State Journal-Register. August 6, 2009. Retrieved April 25, 2019.
  11. ^ 1973 Broadcasting Yearbook, Broadcasting, 1973. p. B-65. Retrieved April 25, 2019.
  12. ^ Broadcasting Yearbook 1979, Broadcasting, 1979. p. C-70. Retrieved April 25, 2019.
  13. ^ "Group Owners Directory", Inside Radio Ratings Report & Directory. March 1981. p. 26. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  14. ^ Broadcasting/Cablecasting Yearbook 1988, Broadcasting/Cablecasting, 1988. p. B-92. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  15. ^ "AM-FM Combos", Broadcasting. February 13, 1989. p. 56. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  16. ^ Public Notice Comment – BAL-19881109EC, fcc.gov. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  17. ^ Application Search Details – BAL-19881109EC, fcc.gov. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  18. ^ Broadcasting & Cable Yearbook 1989, Broadcasting & Cable, 1989. p. B-97. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  19. ^ "Big Tiny Promotion", Billboard. April 21, 1990. p. 17. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  20. ^ a b "Format Changes", The M Street Journal. Vol. 9, No. 39. October 1, 1992. p. 1. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  21. ^ Call Sign History, fcc.gov. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  22. ^ "Format Changes & Updates", The M Street Journal. Vol. 11, No. 29. July 20, 1994. p. 1. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  23. ^ "Format Changes & Updates", The M Street Journal. Vol. 12, No. 1. January 4, 1995. p. 1. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  24. ^ Taylor, Chuck. "Vox Jox", Billboard. May 18, 1996. p. 79. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  25. ^ a b Rhodes, Dusty. "Radio daze: Mid-West switches formats, personalities; former owner reclaims Clear Channel stations", Illinois Times. May 2, 2007. Retrieved April 26, 2019.
  26. ^ Fybush, Scott. "Site of the Week 5/9/2014: An Hour in Springfield, IL", Fybush.com. May 9, 2014. Retrieved April 26, 2019.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°45′36″N 89°39′05″W / 39.76000°N 89.65139°W / 39.76000; -89.65139