NEW YORK--March 16, 2004--The year 2004 includes notable anniversaries of three
milestones in the history of WQXR, the classical music service of The New York
75 Years of Classical Music Radio
On March 26, 1929, engineering visionary John Vincent Lawless Hogan began experimental
video and facsimile transmissions on a frequency designated W2XR. (The “W”
signified that the station was East of the Mississippi; the “2” designated
that the station was educational; and “XR” stood for “experimental
As an accompaniment to these experimental transmissions, Hogan added classical
music recordings. Over the years the music took precedence over the experiments.
In 1936 Hogan entered into partnership with Elliott Sanger to create a classical
music radio station, ultimately licensed by the FCC in December of that year.
Because the FCC mandated that stations be identified by letters, the “2”
in the original name was changed to “Q” – which approximated
both the sound of the number and, in script, its look.
WQXR will dedicate its March 26 programming to the memory of John Hogan, who
died in 1960. It will also feature a section about him and his achievements
on the station's Web page (www.wqxr.com).
60 years of New York Times Ownership
On July 18, 1944, Hogan and Sanger sold WQXR (by then both AM and FM) to The
New York Times Company, led by Arthur Hays Sulzberger, the grandfather of the
current chairman. Both companies recognized the value of the association; in
addition, the radio stations provided an outlet for Times-branded news and information
In fact, the corporate relationship had begun several years earlier, with WQXR's
transmission of a facsimile version of The New York Times newspaper using technology
with which Hogan had been experimenting in 1929.
65 Years of WQXR FM
Among the engineering pioneers with whom John Hogan collaborated was Edwin Armstrong,
whose many achievements include the invention of FM radio. Indeed, Armstrong's
first FM experiments utilized the WQXR AM programming; and on November 8, 1939,
New York's first FM station began broadcasting a regular series of programs.
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