In March, CJGC (Winnipeg Free Press) and CJNC (Winnipeg Tribune) were shut down (both launched in 1922).
On March 13, Manitoba Government Telephones (owned by the province), having completed a deal with the Federal Government by which Manitoba would control all radio broadcasting in the province, launched its first radio station - CKY in Winnipeg. CKY held its inaugural programme on this date. the Hon. John Bracken, Premier of Manitoba, officiated at the ceremony dedicating the CKY studios in the Sherbrooke Exchange of the Manitoba Telephone System. Power at the time was 500 watts (some say 2,000 watts). The station had a frequency of 665 kHz. Initially the station was on the air from 12.30 to 2.00 pm, and 8.30-10.00 pm.
When CKY commenced operations (and for several years after) phonograph music was broadcast by placing a microphone in front ot the phonograph.
One of CKY's first sponsors was the J.J.H. McLean Company of Portage Avenue.
On March 27, CKY began leasing periods of time weekly to the Canadian National Railways which had obtained a "phantom licence" with the call letters CNRW (Canadian National Railways - Winnipeg). These calls were first used on July 17. CNR produced network programs and some local Winnipeg live talent
programs, specifically aimed at their reception in the parlour cars of CNR trains passing through Winnipeg. but which could also be enjoyed by Manitoba radio listeners in their homes. (the CNR made similar arrangements with stations in other Canadian cities. During the periods when CNR programs were
broadcast, the call sign CNR was used instead of the local station).
CKY's frequency was changed to 780 kHz on February 26.
On March 31, CKY moved from 780 t0 740 kHz.
CKY boosted power to 5,000 watts on October 17.
CKY stopped leasing time to the CNR for CNRW on March 10.
Herb Roberts returned to Winnipeg and CKY after some years with the CNR Radio Network. He talks about what he had learned in the East and his favourite programs in Winnipeg.1,2,3,4,5
On June 5, CKY changed frequency to 910 kHz.
CKY began to carry network programs produced by the Canadian Radio Broadcasting Commission (CRBC).
On February 12, CKY moved back to 780 kHz.
Power increased December 1 to 15,000 watts on new frequency, 960 kHz.
CKY moved from 960 to 910 kHz on March 16.
On November 2, the CRBC was replaced by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. CKY's studios and facilities were used extensively to originate programs to the network (both the CRBC and then the CBC).
On September 16, CKY moved back to 960 kHz.
A return to 910 kHz came on October 17.
Wilford Davidson left CKY for the CBC Montreal announce staff. Eric Davies was added to the CKY announce staff. D. R. P. Coats was public relations chief for CKY and CKX.
Former CKY chief announcer Wilford Davidson, returned to the station on Febraury 1 after nearly a year with CBC Montreal. CKY announcer Robert Morrison left for CKOC Hamilton's announcing staff.
CKY celebrated its 17th birthday on March 13. It was the first government-owned station in Canada. It was still owned by the Manitoba government but the monopoly which the province held for many years was no longer operative with other stations in the province now being operated by private companies.
Bryan Bisney was on the technical staff and Marg McFayden was a stenographer at CKY. Brian Hodkinson (announcer) left CKY for the Canadian Air Force. His place was taken over by Wilfred Carpenter, announcer and program director of CKX. Major W. C. MacIntosh of the sales staff was second in command of a Canadian army training camp at Brandon. Calvin Peppler of CKY's public relations department was now with the Royal Canadian Army Service Corps as a corporal. He had been with CKY since 1938. Eric Davies left CKY as an announcer to become program director at CKX. Capt. Claude E. Snider, transmitter engineer, was now serving with the 71st Battery, Royal Canadian Artillery, in England. Tom Benson was an announcer. Tony Messner was commercial manager.
As of September 1, Taylor Pearson & Carson Ltd. (Harold Carson, president) took over management and operation of CJRC and CJRM. At the same time, TP&C ended its management and commercial operation of CKY and CKX, a relationship that had been in place for the past four years.
Under the Havana Treaty, CKY moved from 910 to 990 kHz (Class I-A Clear Channel) on March 29. Power remained 15,000 watts.
By this time the station was operating from studios in the Manitoba Telephone Building on Portage Avenue, and the 15 kw transmitter was at St. Francis Xavier.
Wilf Davidson was a newscaster at CKY. Bryan Bisney left CKY to work for RCA in Toronto. James Upton and Gabrielle Houghton (Mr. & Mrs. Upton), left CKY for Toronto. At CKY, she was a scriptwriter and he was playing parts and doing sound effects. Jack Whitehouse left CKY for CBC Toronto's news department.
Earl Cameron joined CKY's announce staff from CHAB in Moose Jaw.
On March 13, CKY - The Voice of Manitoba - celebrated the 21st anniversary of its opening.
D.R.P. Coats, who lefts as manager of CKY public relations two and a half years earlier had now returned to the station after being discharged from the RCAF. Wilf Carpentier, who took over from Coats in his absence, would remain with the CKY executive staff. Coats was also editor of "Manitoba Calling" magazine. A short time later, Carpentier became supervisor of program production at CKY.
George Henderson was appointed to CKY's engineering department. He joined the station in 1932 as a control operator. In 1935 he became senior control operator. Henderson became equipment supervisor for CKY in 1942.
Kerr Wilson was among those on CKY's announce staff.
Programs included: Prairie Gardener, Ozzie and Harriet, Aunt Mary, The Clockwatcher, Lum and Abner, Victor Borge, Curtain Time, Art Van Damme, Voice of Victor, University of the Air, Date with The Duke, and Dance Orchestra.
D. Woods left CKY as control operator for the Canadian Army. Control operator Gordon Thompson left for the RCAF. Announcer Wilfred Davidson left for the army. William H. Blackhouse, CKY manager for the past 13 years, was appointed comptroller for the Manitoba Telephone System. No successor was immediately named.
William A. Duffield, formerly CKY's chief engineer, was appointed station manger. He succeeded W.H. Blackhouse who was now comptroller of the Manitoba Telephone System. Duffield joined CKY in 1925 and had been chief engineer since 1939. Chief operator G.S. Henderson replaced Duffield as chief engineer.
D.R.P. Coats, CKY's public relations officer, was in Europe representing the YMCA. Among the station staff in Europe and expected to return home soon: Maurice Burchell, Wilf Davidson, Dibbs Woods, Nelson Gardiner, Peter Burgess and Harry Sanders.
Former CKY announcer Brian Hodgkinson was now free-lancing in Toronto.
CBC Trans-Canada Basic stations: CJCB, CBH, CBA, CHSJ, CFNB, CBO, CKWS, CBL, CKSO, CFCH, CJKL, CKGB, CKPR, CBM, CKY, CBK, CJCA, CFAC, CJOC, CFJC, CKOV, CJAT, CBR.
W.H. Blackhouse was manager and A.J. Messner was commercial manager. Geoff Hogwood joined the CKY announce staff. POW's Brian Hodgkin and Calvin Peppler returned to CKY. Shirley Chivers was traffic manager.
Don Wall left CKY as control operator for CJAD in Montreal. George Ritchie returned to CKY's control room after service with the RCAF.
A.J. "Tony" Messner resigned from Horace N. Stovin & Co. and the commercial management of CKY to take charge of the entire sales operation at Winnipeg's new CJOB. Messner was replaced at Stovin by Wilf Carpentier who had been with CKY (and CKX Brandon). Messner had started in radio in 1928 with a series of daily talks over CJRW (Fleming), CKY and two shortwave stations.
Maurice Bedard left CKY for CJAD in Montreal (morning show).
Four Canadian stations had their applications for 50,000 watts of power turned down: CKY, CFRB Toronto, CKAC Montreal, and CFCN Calgary.
W.G. Carpentier was commercial manager of CKY. Announcer Gordon Jones left CKY for CJGX in Yorkton, SK.
The CBC announced plans for a 50,000 watt station at Winnipeg if it was not able to purchase CKY.
CKY, CFRB (Toronto) and CFCN (Calgary) had their applications for power increases to 50,000 watts denied because the CBC wanted the frequencies of these stations for their own use.
Norman S. McBain joined CKY from Regina's CKCK.
Slogan: Outstanding In Power, Popularity And Programs.
Wilf Davidson was back at CKY as supervisor of production. He had been overseas. Tom Benson left the navy to return to CKY as supervisor of announcers.
In the spring it was reported that Ottawa might expropriate CKY Winnipeg and CKX Brandon in the near future. It was assumed that if the stations were turned over to the CBC, CKY would boost its power to 50,000 watts, using one of three high power transmitters the CBC was known to have purchased. The Winnipeg Free Press reported that Ottawa would announce a policy to make the CBC the sole governmental agency for radio broadcasts. This would not mean putting local private stations out of business, but did mean refusal of future licences to provincial government stations.
March 13th was the 24th anniversary of CKY's official opening.
Announcers included: John Albert Richard Whitehouse, Norman S. McBain (990 Variety), and Tom Benson. Former CKY announcer (990 Variety) Jeff Hogwood was now at CBM in Montreal. Peter Burgess was a control operator.
Programs on CKY included: Prairie Gardener, Ozzie and Harriet, Music for Canadians, Breakfast Club, Aunt Mary, The Happy Gang, Ma Perkins, Jack Smith, Amos n' Andy, Fibber McGee, Tribune Quiz, Boston Blackie, Kraft Music Hall, Waltz Time, Wes McKnight, NHL Hockey, Red River Barn Dance, and Violin Sonatas.
George Kent left CKY to become chief announcer at CKX in Brandon. Engineer Doug Moon left CKY as an engineer. Gordon Thompson was an engineer at CKY. Dorothy Locht was in the station's commercial department. Jeff Hogwood left CKY for Montreal's CBM.
The CBC's proposed new 50,000 watt Winnipeg station was assigned the call letters CBW.
The CBC was making progress on new 50,000 watt stations for Winnipeg and Lacombe (Alberta). It was also building a 50,000 watt operation for CJBC Toronto and a 10,000 watt facility for CBJ in Chicoutimi, Quebec. The Corporation would be taking over Winnipeg's CKY in 1948.
W.A. Duffield was manager of CKY. W. Carpentier was commercial manager. Doug Moon and Gordon Thompson were on the technical staff. Announcer Frank Stanley joined CKY from CJOB. Peter Burgess was an operator.
The CBC purchased land for a 50 kW transmitter site at Carman. Construction was to begin in the near future. It was still uncertain if the CBC would be able to acquire CKY Winnipeg or if it would go ahead with a brand new 50,000 watt outlet.
Premier Stuart Garson announced late in the year that the Manitoba government would go out of the broadcasting business by disposing of CKY and CKX. The CBC proposed to either purchase CKY or construct a new 50,000 watt Winnipeg station in 1948, so the province was ready to dispose of its stations (operated through the Manitoba Telephone System). The province already had a purchase agreement (for CKY) in place with the CBC but was also interested in seeing if it could get a better price from other interested parties.
J.R. Finlay, CBC Prairie regional representative announced 50,000 watt stations CBX 1010 Edmonton and CBW 990 Winnipeg would go on the air July 1. A direct line would carry programming from the Edmonton studios to the Lacombe transmitter site. Dan E. Cameron was appointed to head Alberta operations for the CBC. The CBW transmitter would be at Carman, 52 miles from the Winnipeg studios. There was still no announcement on whether the CBC would purchase CKY Winnipeg and CKX Brandon from the Manitoba government.
The Hon. W. Morton, Manitoba Minister of Telephones announced the sale of CKY for $200,000 and CKX for $65,000. As expected, CKY would be purchased by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. CKX would go to Western Manitoba Broadcasters Ltd., a syndicate headed by J.B. Craig, in association with Dr. H.O. McDiarmid, Alexander Boyd, Edmund, Fotheringham, Harold Smith, James Rust and M.W. Kerr. Under the deal, the existing staff members would remain withe their respective stations under the new owners.
On March 13, CKY marked 25 years on the air.
25 years in broadcasting came to an end for the Manitoba Telephone System on July 1 when the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation took over ownership of CKY. At the same time, Winnipeg became the Prairie Region headquarters for the CBC, covering Manitoba and Saskatchewan. The official opening for CBW and Edmonton's CBX was postponed from July 5 and 7 to September 3 and 8 (respectively). William Duffield was CKY's fourth and last manager. He would stay on With Manitoba Telephone. D.R.P. Coats, who was the station's first manager, starting in 1923, and for four years, would also remain with MTS. Herb Roberts, 15 years with CKY, latterly as program director, would remain with CBC as supervisor of program clearance. Chief engineer George Henderson would stay with MTS. Most CKY operation staff moved over to CBC, including, Gordon Thompson, Douglas Moon, Harry Saunders, Pete Burgess, Don Robertson, George Ritchie, John Gibson, Nelson Gardiner, chief of control room staff, and Ed Dusang. Production supervisor Wilf Davidson was appointed chief announcer by CBC. Announcer Kerr Wilson would remain with MTS. Tom Benson resigned his announcing post at CKY in February to join CBC Winnipeg at that time. Announcer Jack Whitehouse would move to
The official opening for CBW (replacing CKY) took place September 3. A special ceremony was held in the civic auditorium and included brief addresses by: Lt. Governor Hon. R.F. McWilliams, Premier Stuart Garson, CBC Board Chairman A. Davidson Dunton, and CBC General Manager Dr. Augistin Frigon. A portion of the proceedings were broadcast. Manitoba artists were featured in a special musical program. CBW used a Federal Electric transmitter. A few days later, the CBC also opened CBX in Alberta. CBC Chairman A.D. Dunton and CBC General Manager Dr. A. Frigon were present at both openings. Federal Electric Manufacturing Co. of Montreal built the equipment for CBW and CBX - the first CBC outlets in Manitoba and Alberta. Special one hour programs on the Trans-Canada network inaugurated the stations. (It should be noted that the CKY call letters returned to Winnipeg in 1949 when Lloyd Moffat opened his new station.)
42 hours after it officially closed down, CKY returned to the air on September 6, between 4:00 and 9:30 p.m. Network transmission to the new CBW had been blacked out by fire. The Winnipeg blaze held up CNR trains and cut CNR telephone and telegraph communication lines including the Carman transmitter line to CBW, just before 2:45 p.m. Engineers at Carman played records while a CBC operator went to CKY's Headingly transmitter which had closed September 4. The operator had the CKY transmitter up and running within 30 minutes, ready to take over network transmission. At 9:30 p.m., CBW returned to the air and CKY was closed for good.
J.N. Moggridge was manager and W.G. Carpentier was commercial manager. Sidney Dixon, producer at the CBC Prairie Region headquarters in Winnipeg, died October 30.
Charles Gunning was news editor. Maurice Burchell was chief announcer. Jack Wells hosted a nightly sports program on CKRC, morning sports on CBW, a Sunday sports show on CKRC, and did play-by-play commentary for local junior hockey on CJOB!
When the CBC put CBW on the air from Carman, it purchased a number of homes in the area for staff members. The CBC then informed the town that it (Carman) may no longer collect municipal taxes on those houses, even though some of them had previously been on the tax rolls. The CBC said the houses were now Crown property and therefore tax exempt. Carman went ahead with assessments on the homes but was not hopeful in collecting from the CBC.
J.N. Moggridge was manager and W.G. Carpentier was commercial manager.
Construction of a new CBC station and studio project was now underway in Winnipeg at a cost of over $1,100,000.
40,000 square feet of land immediately surrounding the CBC building at Portage and Young was acquired by the CBC, according to J.R. Finlay, CBC director for the prairie region. The land would be used for future television developments. The existing building housed the CBWT studios and transmitter, CBW studios, network facilities and the Prairie Regional headquarters. The CBC also had a number of other buildings in the city.
Stu Davis, famous as "Canada's Cowboy Troubador" was heard on the CBC network via CBW. The singer recorded for the London label. Stu was also doing a new program for the CBC-TV network from Winnipeg - "Swing Your Partner".
Ad slogan: In the Prairies on CBC Radio one buy covers all three provinces! Get all the details on CBC Radio's "Prairie Blanket" - stations CBW for Manitoba, CBK for Saskatchewan, CBX and CBXA plus 4 repeater stations for Alberta.
Ad: Buying radio in the Prairie Provinces? CBX Alberta, CBXA Alberta, CBK Saskatchewan, CBW Winnipeg...Get blanket coverage with CBC Radio!
The Trans-Canada and Dominion networks were consolidated into a single CBC Radio network. CBW had been the Trans-Canada station while privately-owned CKRC was the Dominion affiliate. With the consolidation, CBW became the single CBC service in Winnipeg.
CBC Radio added an all-night service in June.
CBC Radio's all-night service, started in 1963, came to an end on March 1. When the service started it was primarily intended as a national information and warning system to be used in emergencies. Even though the service had now ended, the CBC said it would maintain a stand-by procedure through the night and broadcasts would begin immediately in the event of an emergency.
CBW was authorized to add a transmitter at Wabowdenl, operating on 690 kHz with power of 40 watts.
A rebroadcast transmitter was approved for Ear Falls, Ontario, broadcasting on 690 kHz with 40 watts of power. It would receive programming from CBW.
When CBW had its licence renewed, the following rebraodcast transmitters were also renewed (this list may not represent all of CBW's transmitters as some licences may have been renewed on other dates): Manitoba - CBDS Pukatawagan, CBDU Lynn Lake, and CBWB Wabowden; Ontario - CBEA Red Lake, CBEL Vermilion Bay, CBOI Ear Falls, CBLA Atikokan, CBLD Dryden, and CBLS Sioux Lookout.
CBW received approval to add FM transmitters at Easterville (93.5 MHz, 40.5 watts), Grand Rapids (101.5 MHz, 68.5 watts), Moose Lake (99.9 MHz, 80 watts), Snow Lake (95.5 MHz, 60 watts), and The Pas (94.5 MHz, 76 watts). Later in the year, the following FM transmitters were authorized: Neslon HOuse (93.7 MHz, 8.5 watts), Leaf Rapids (94.5 MHz, 74.1 watts), South Indian Lake (95.5 MHz, 65.6 watts), Ilford (94.7 MHz, 86 watts), Split Lake (95.5 MHz, 86 watts).
On January 28, The CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CBLA Atikokan, Ontario, to August 31, 1989.
On July 29, CBW was authorized to decrease its night-time power from 50,000 watts to 46,000 watts and relocate the transmitter from its present site at Carman, to 48 kilometers to the northeast, near Starbuck. The change would improve the coverage to the city of Winnipeg while maintaining the existing level of service to surrounding rural areas.
On the same date, CBW was given approval to move its Wabowden transmitter from the AM dial to the FM band. CBWB would operate on a frequency of 90.5 MHz with an effective radiated power of 66 watts.
Lionel Moore, CBC Radio Manitoba's farm broadcaster, died at age 77. He joined CBC Winnipeg in 1950 from CJGX in Yorkton, SK, and retired in 1980.
On October 15, CBW switched on a new transmitter established at Springstein (30 miles closer to Winnipeg than Carmen) using 50,000 watts daytime and 46,000 at night.
CBC Radio added overnight programming to its schedule on May 1, with "CBC Radio Overnight". The programming started out on certain CBC stations and was expanded to all of its stations by September. The program aired between 1:00 and 6:00 a.m. (local time) and offered reports from public broadcasters in 25 countries, with Canadian news on the hour. The program service was provided by the World Radio Network in London, England.
On September 1, the CBC Radio network (CBC Radio) was renamed as "CBC Radio One".
On November 30, a decrease in effective radiated power for transmitter CBWS-FM Brandon was authorized...100,000 watts to 90,000 watts. The existing system would be replaced with a multi-channel antenna, allowing CBWS-FM, CBWV-FM and CKSB-8-FM to be combined into a single antenna.
As of 2001, CBW operated the following transmitters: CBWV-FM Brandon, CBWW-FM Dauphin, CBWZ-FM Fairford, CBWX-FM Fisher Branch, CBWY-FM Jackhead, and CBWA-FM Manigotagan. CBW broadcast approximately 44 hours 30 minutes of local programming each week from Winnipeg. CBWK-FM Thompson operated the following transmitters: CBDE-FM Brochet, CHFC Churchill, CBWU-FM Cranberry Portage, CBWE-FM Easterville, CBWF-FM Flin Flon, CBWG-FM Gillam, CBWN-FM Gods Lake Narrows, CBWH-FM Grand Rapids, CBWI-FM Ilford, CBWP-FM Leaf Rapids, CBWR-FM Little Grand Rapids, CBDU-FM Lynn Lake, CBWC-FM Moose Lake, CBWO-FM Nelson House, CBWM-FM Oxford House, CBDI-FM Poplar River, CBDS Pukatawagan, CBDG-FM Shamattawa, CBWL-FM Snow Lake, CBWQ-FM South Indian Lake, CBWJ-FM The Pas, CBWD-FM Waasagomach, and CBWB-FM Wabowden. CBWK-FM broadcast approximately 10 hours of local programming each week. It is jointly produced in Thompson and Winnipeg.
On March 16, the CRTC approved the application by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to amend the licence for CBW in order to operate an FM transmitter in Winnipeg. The transmitter would operate on a frequency of 89.3 MHz (channel 207A) with an effective radiated power of 2,800 watts. It would rebroadcast the programming of the CBC's national, English-language network service Radio One. The CBC submitted that urban growth, the construction of high-rise concrete and steel buildings, increased electrical noise from overhead wires, large and small appliances and portable radio transmitters had impeded the ability of the station to deliver reliable high quality AM signals to listeners. It stated that a significant number of residents who described themselves as CBC listeners had advised the CBC that they had difficulty receiving its radio service in their homes, offices and cars. The CBC proposed to establish an FM transmitter with modest power that would cover the urban area in order to improve the signal quality of its AM station. The CBC indicated that its existing AM transmitter, which had a very large coverage area outside the urban core served by the station, would continue to operate with coverage supplemented by this "nested" FM transmitter. It also indicated that it had considered other options for improving its signal quality through either modifying the existing coverage patterns of its AM transmitter to increase the strength of its signal in the urban core, or moving the stations from the AM band to the FM band. According to the CBC, its analysis of these options revealed that modifying its AM coverage pattern would require substantial capital costs and would only produce marginal improvements in the city while creating coverage gaps in the outlying areas that could potentially require the addition of more transmitters. The CBC maintained that it would be impossible for stand-alone FM undertakings to replicate the coverage provided by its AM transmitter because the overall spectrum availability on the FM band for high power radio stations has decreased. It further argued that converting the AM station to the FM band would require the use of a large number of FM transmitters operating at different frequencies to serve the same area. The CBC contended that the existing coverage of its AM signal in the outlying areas would be best optimized by its proposed nesting solution which, in improving service to the urban core, would also permit the CBC to maintain its existing wide coverage pattern outside the city. The CBC argued that such a solution would limit its capital costs and the future need for additional FM transmitters and frequencies. The CBC added that, over the past decade, radio listening across Canada has shifted from the AM band to the FM band. It argued that AM tuning in this market was declining or, at the very least, stagnant, thereby precluding the CBC from increasing its market share. By means of comparison, the CBC maintained that its position on the FM band in Ottawa, Toronto, Halifax and Saint John, had permitted it to gain market share in those markets.
The Winnipeg nested FM transmitter (CBW-1 89.3) signed on the air.
On May 12 the CRTC renewed the licence for CBW. The renewal included the following rebroadcast transmitters: CBW-1-FM Winnipeg, CBWA-FM Manigotagan, CBWV-FM Brandon, CBWW-FM Dauphin, CBWX-FM Fisher Branch, CBWY-FM Jackhead and CBWZ-FM Fairford.
In the spring, a power failure knocked CBC Radio One 990 off the air precisely at the time of a planned generator upgrade. The backup generator's fuel tank lines were disconnected. The station was down an hour and seven minutes. CBC Winnipeg took the weather into consideration but predicting a hydro failure had yet to become an exact science.
Larry Updike, the 33-year radio veteran who left CJOB's morning show last year, was now CBC Manitoba's new afternoon Host.
On August 25, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CBW and its transmitters to March 1, 2013.
Carl Karp, the CBC Area Executive Producer, New Programming Initiatives for the Prairie Region, retired. Karp, located in Winnipeg, had been with the CBC for 27 years.
On February 22, the CRTC administratively renewed the licences for CBW Winnipeg and its transmitters to August 31, 2013.
Updated May, 2013
Audio - Herb Roberts:
||1 Not only were the microphones a challenge, so was creating the "theatre of the mind"
||2 Herb recalls the amazing arrival of a "mixer" that allowed a program to be picked up on *two* microphones
||3 Herb recalls a hazard of the earliest carbon granule microphones that occasionally needed to be give a good shaking
||4 The end of the CNR as Canada's first radio network created an opportunity for Herb to head home a great success
||5 Herb remembers when radio was a "formal" occasion for not just the live audience