November 1953 QST
Table of Contents
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics. See articles
QST, published December 1915 - present (visit ARRL
for info). All copyrights hereby acknowledged.
Finding current information on the ARRL's
Brass Pounders League (BPL) is difficult, and in fact a search
on the ARRL.org website does not
get you to a page with a date more recent than around 2012. I don't know whether
the BPL has been "obsoleted" or just does not enjoy the promotion level it once
did. This article in
The Dipole publication reviews a bit of the history of
the Brass Pounders League, and even mentions Mary A. Dougherty (a.k.a Mae Burke,
W3CUL), who is featured in this 1953 QST article. She was born in 1911
and became a Silent Key in 1997. If I wasn't so busy, I would do some research to
find out what the percentage of licensed female Hams was in 1953 compared with today.
I wouldn't be surprised if the number was higher in 1953.
"YL New and Views" Articles in QST
April 1953 |
| November 1953 |
December 1953 |
July 1966 |
YL News and Views
By Eleanor Wilson,* W1QON
A glance at the Brass Pounders League tabulation
each month for the past nine issues of QST (January through September, 1953) has
revealed some interesting facts. Each month at least three YLs have been listed,
and in four of the months, five YLs have "made it." W2RUF and W3CUL placed high
on the list for six of the nine months, and W2BTB made it seven times and topped
everyone (OMs too) with the highest score in the last month analyzed, September.
The survey period was arbitrarily chosen - the past nine months simply because
of recent reference value. We all know that W3CUL has consistently placed high,
often first, for a number of years (she has made BPL more than sixty times); and
numerous other YLs have been listed at various times. Also, a number of YLs handle
enough traffic each month to warrant places in BPL, but for one reason or another
their calls do not appear.
This is all realized, but it is not our purpose at this time to go into these
aspects. In singling out the seven YLs who have made BPL more than three times in
the past nine months, we have tried to uncover why these girls handle so much traffic
and how they manage to do it consistently. Each has her own story.
Mae Burke, W3CUL, an outstanding "traffic YL."
W9JUJ, Peggy - "I like to handle traffic because of the thrill I get on delivering
it. I could handle traffic all day and never get tired. Each message I handle I
know will make someone happy. I don't find it hard to manage the house, OM, and
two harmonics while handling traffic. The family seems to understand the enjoyment
I get, and I try not to operate too much when they are around. And with a dishwasher,
automatic washing machine and dryer, there isn't too much of a housework problem."
W7ONM, Marion - "I like to handle so much traffic because you meet so many nice
people and you feel you are really doing your own small part in helping out. It
is something that just gets you and you can't leave it alone. I find it no harder
to take care of house, husband and children. In fact, it is easier, because I find
myself home all of the time."
W8ZGT, Lillian - "I get satisfaction out of seeing how quickly I can get a message
from here to there. Ham radio is one of the few hobbies that can be useful to others,
and I feel that by sending messages for other people I am having fun and being useful
at the same time. And my belief is firm that handling traffic well can do a great
deal for amateur radio."
W2RUF, Clara - W2RUF feels that she "is being of value to the community. Appreciation
is so profound that it more than pays for my time and trouble. I never neglect my
home. My OM (unlicensed) is very happy with my hobby because he enjoys his home
and is satisfied that I am there with him most of the time."
W4TAV, Marty - W4TAV considers the question "Why do you like to handle so much
traffic?" comparable to asking a DX man why he chases DX. Traffic handling is simply
the phase of amateur radio that she enjoys most. Marty is not married and consequently
doesn't have to take care of a house and family. Just fifteen, and a high school
sophomore, she takes books into the shack and studies "between nets, or in dull
periods within a net."
W8ZGT, Lillian (left) and W2HTH, Jeanne, are perfectly at home
behind stacks of fast-moving traffic. (Photo by W1APK)
W3CUL, Mae - We didn't hear from Mae herself regarding "why" and "how" she does
it, but her OM, W3VR, told us that handling traffic is vital to his wife. He said
that she tries never to let down those who depend on her for relay and delivery,
and that so long as she can handle service traffic she'll continue to devote most
of her time to the work. Mae's staggering record speaks for itself.
W2BTB, Jeanne - "If you could see some of the many letters in my bulging file,
if you could hear the parents of service men on the telephone calling from local
and long distances, so grateful, you would understand my handling so much traffic.
My real purpose is just to help the GI and his family - maybe it's because I have
a son of my own. Knowing the operators and bases, knowing they depend on me for
an outlet, I do not, if I am able, want to let them down."
And anyone who is acquainted with Jeanne knows how much she accomplishes in her
home and community. She does manage and very capably, too.
Hats off to a remarkable group of girls!
Keeping Up with the Girls
Three YL Century Certificates have been issued to date.
Recipients are OMs W1BFT and W2QHH, and W3JSH, Dottie (now K2DYO), in that order.
This info from certificate custodian W7GLK, Dot. .. NCS, W7SFR, Lorraine, of the
newly-formed NYLON (Northwest YL Operators Net) announces a change in net time from
0830 to 0900 PST (Wed. A.M. 3820 kc.), VE7 YLs are invited to call in .... When
W6PJF, Rosemary, calls roll for the 75-meter 'phone net Wed. mornings, W6EKX, Beth
(at work as a librarian) is checked in by her OM, W6VNI, who plays a tape with her
message to the net. Russ then makes a tape of the net and plays it back to Beth
when she returns home ... W5LGY, Helen, has built a 6-tube receiver (535 kc. to
35 Mc.), which she claims is really" hot "... W0IRD now has her Conditional License
and has been enjoying 75 'phone. Lil's doctor has said that her hobby is "better
than all the medicine he could ever give." ... YLs of the Los Angeles area have
formed a two-meter net which meets Wed. at 7:00 P.M. on 146.1 Mc. W6LBO, Marie,
is NCS... Because of
other commitments, W8HWX and W8HUX, Lillian and Marvel, will soon have to forego
their Ham Shack Gossip monthly news bulletins which they have edited for the past
four years ... W7QYX, Doris, maintains daily skeds with her OM, W7QYZ, who operates
a commercial salmon trawler in Alaska. ... W6YRL and W6UHA appeared as guests on
one of W6NAZ's (Lenore) recent TV shows. Sandy and Maxine talked about traffic handling
and DXing respectively. W6NZP, Evelyn, and W6LMQ, Eleanor, were guests another day
and discussed their part in the 1953 All Women's Transcontinental Air Race. Audience
response was enthusiastic, and Lenore urges YLs throughout the country to appear
on radio and TV programs in behalf of amateur radio ... The YLs who attended the
South Hills Brass Pounders and Modulators Hamfest at South Park, Penna., were W3s
QPJ QPQ TTR TYC UTR UUG and W9MLE ... And W1s OAK UET UNF VZD WJA YYU and W2MLT
had fun at the Vermont c.w./'phone picnic on Sept. 23rd ... W1FTJ, Dot, is proudly
displaying her new OT certificate ... W4UDQ, "DB" and W1VYH, Betty, are happy about
receiving their General Class licenses ... YLRL Third District Chairman, W3SVY,
is sorry to report that W3QPJ has been quite ill again. Loreli says that notes and
cards for Kay would be appreciated ... Twenty-five YLs were present at the season's
first meeting of the Los Angeles YLRC. Special guests were W3VNN, Shirley, and W5RFK,
Delores. The membership was pleased with the new club pin (blue lettering on silver
ovals, suspended on blue ribbons). W6WRT, Ruby, and W6FKH, Ben, were the first YL
and OM to win the club's Lad 'N Lassie Certificate ... We believe newly-licensed
Sharon Pakinas of Bothell, Washington, still takes honors for being the youngest
YL licensed. Sharon, you know, was just seven years old.
The YLRL Chairman of the Fourth District is probably better known
by her old call, W8TAY, than by her new one, W4JCR. Anita was YLRL President and
Harmonics Editor in 1942 and '43, was 4th D. C. in '47 and '48, and Publicity Chairman
for six terms. She organized the first local YLRL chapter in Cleveland and initiated
QRV as the Club's motto. Currently, in addition to D.C. duties, she is chairman
of the committee appointed to revise the YLRL constitution. Nita and her OM W4JCS
now reside in Asheville, N. C., where she is employed as a writer for radio and
The following contribution to the discussion of YL-XYL terminology was received
entitled Hamsey Report:
YL - Young lady (under 18)
LH - Lady ham (over 18)
HLH - Hitched lady ham
MH - Mother ham
HLH - Followed by / and number indicates number of times married
MH - Followed by / and number indicates number o children
If Eleanor Wilson had letters after her name, we would know whether to use Miss
or Mrs. when writing to her.
[This treatise was volunteered by OM K6DV (R. W. McCormack, San Jose) and appears
unedited - W1QON. MH/1.)
Set aside Dec. 5th ('phone section) and Dec. 12th (c.w. section) for participation
in the YLRL 14th Anniversary Party! The contest is open to all YLs, whether or not
they are members of YLRL. Full details next issue.
* YL Editor, QST.
Posted MArch 3, 2022
(updated from original post on 11/18/2016)