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KFJB Celebrating its 95th Anniversary

June 12, 2018
Special to The Chronicle , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

On June 2, 2018, News Talk 1230 KFJB celebrated its 95th anniversary on-air serving the people of Marshalltown and Marshall County.

The History of KFJB: In 1917, Earl N. Peak, President of the Marshal Electric Company, began installing rural electric lines throughout Marshall County. Peak and his company also began working with telegraph and telephone technology, eventually leading to his engineers experimenting with amateur radio as early as 1919.

By 1922, engineers began assembling a "radio-telephone station" at Peak's request. The transmitter was basically assembled on a table top in a back room and broadcast as an experimental amateur radio station.

In the fall of 1922, station staff ran a microphone cable out a studio window and along a West Main St. ditch to Franklin Field in Marshalltown, three blocks away to broadcast two live Marshalltown High School football games. These live remote sports broadcasts are considered to be the first of their kind in the United States.

On June 2, 1923 the U.S. Department of Commerce granted a commercial broadcast license to KFJB for 10 watts of power at 1210 on the AM dial.

In 2004, Eugene Peak, son of founder Earl Peak and an engineer at Marshall Electric told KFJB's Kyle Martin, that since they began amateur broadcasting in 1919, it would make KFJB the 17th oldest radio station in the United States.

KFJB has been operated by Marshalltown Broadcasting Inc. since 1987. In early 2018 an ownership change was announced to Tending Media, Inc., owned and locally operated.



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