August 1945 Radio-Craft
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics.
See articles from Radio-Craft,
published 1929 - 1953. All copyrights are hereby acknowledged.
Mackay Radio & Telegraph
Company, established in 1925 in Nevada by
as a sort of spin-off of his father's
Commercial Cable Company, is not usually a name that comes to mind when
recalling early communications pioneers. Mackay was one of the earliest radio
and telegraph companies, but also is still in business today under the name
of Mackay Communications, Inc., based in Raleigh, North Carolina. That makes
Mackay one of the oldest electronics companies in the United States and in the
world. Congratulations to them for surviving the cut-throat realm of corporate
mergers, buy-outs, and hostile takeovers. As with nearly all technology concerns
during World War II, Mackay did its part to help the Allies beat back the
advances of Communism, Marxism, and Socialism by designing and manufacturing
state-of-the-art radio communications systems that would work reliably under
fire - literally. This little insert for a 1945 issue of Radio-Craft
magazine reports on Mackay Radio's press station at a European Theater battlefield,
where company vice president Leroy Spangenberg accompanied the equipment.
Evidently Mackay Radio was at the center of a landmark 1938 union labor collective
bargaining legal case known as "NLRB
v. Mackay Radio & Telegraph Co." Its result, which allowed companies
to retain workers (aka "scabs") hired to replace striking employees after the
strike has ended, became known as "the Mackay doctrine." Then there's this 2015
We Been Wrong About Mackay Radio All Along?"
Mackay Radio's Press Station
"Station 25" Sends News from the Front
Illustration courtesy International Telephone and Telegraph Corp.
The picture above is the artist's conception of Mackay Radio's press station
dispatching news from the European battle theatre. The truck-mounted unit was
a 5-kilowatt transmitter, with suitable receiving apparatus, and was operated
by a crew headed by L. F. Spangenberg, vice-president of Mackay. The makeshift
aerial masts were exactly as shown above.