MM1 – The Centenary Year of Transatlantic Wireless Communication

On the 12th of December 1901 the letter S in Morse Code, transmitted from Poldhu in Cornwall was heard by Marconi in Newfoundland. Marconi, who considered the event as the crowning moment in his life wrote:

“Unmistakably, the three sharp little clicks corresponding to three dots, sounded several times in my ear, but I would not be satisfied without corroboration.” ‘Can you hear anything, Mr Kemp?’ I said, handing the telephone to my assistant.” “Kemp heard the same thing as I and I knew then that I had been absolutely right in my calculations. The electric waves which were being sent out from Poldhu had traversed the Atlantic, serenely ignoring the curvature of the Earth that so many doubters considered would be a fatal obstacle and they were now effecting my receiver in Newfoundland.”

The full story of Marconi’s remarkable achievement is told in a new book by Gordon Bussey called “Marconi’s Atlantic Leap” Published by Marconi Communications (ISBN 0 95389 670 6) and available from the RSGB.

A recording of Marconi’s voice can be heard at and if your browser supports it should also be heard whilst viewing this page. Thanks to John, M0BQO for obtaining the following translation from his neighbour, Harry, G3LAG. Some time ago Harry met Princess Elettra when he was president of the radio society in that part of Italy where he worked with Euratom.

Click here to hear Marconi’s voice

“Since 1895, that is from the start of my initial experiments I had a strong intuition and indeed I could almost say a clear and secure vision that radio telegraphic transmissions would be possible over great distances.”



Stations KPH and K6KPH will be on the air on 12 December 2001 to help celebrate the 100th anniversary of the first wireless signal to cross the Atlantic, received by Marconi on 12 December 1901 at St. John’s Newfoundland.

Both stations will use the original transmitters, receivers and antennas of famous ex-RCA coast station KPH. The transmitters are located at the transmitting station founded by the American Marconi Co. in 1913 at Bolinas, CA. The receivers and operators will be at the KPH receiving station about 20 miles north at Pt. Reyes, CA.

KPH will be active on commercial frequencies 500 and 425kc with most activity taking place on 500kc (600m). Power output will be 4.3kW. The antenna is a Marconi T. These frequencies have been made available through the generous cooperation of Globe Wireless, current holders of the KPH license.

K6KPH will be active on amateur frequencies 3545, 7050 and 14050kc. Power output will be 1.5kW. Antennas will be double extended Zepps on 3.5 and 7Mc, H over 2 on 14Mc.

K6KPH will begin operations at 1700Z (0900PST).

KPH will begin operations at 0000Z (1700PST) 13 December 2001Z

Commercial practices and procedures will be used on all frequencies to give amateurs the experience of working a real coast station. Traffic lists will be sent and messages for stations that have worked us in the past and sent reception reports will be awaiting in the message rack. All operators will be ex-commercial ops from KPH, KFS and other coast stations.

Amateurs and shortwave listeners are invited to contact or monitor KPH and K6KPH. Maritime stations may call KPH on 500kc.

KPH reception reports may be sent to:

Tom Horsfall
1862 Tulare Ave.
Richmond, CA 94805, USA

K6KPH reception reports may be sent to:

Dick Dillman
435 Utah St., No. 4
San Francisco, CA 94110, USA

KPH and K6KPH are operated by the Maritime Radio Historical Society in cooperation with the Point Reyes National Seashore, part of the US National Park Service.

Further information may be found on the Maritime Radio Historical Society Web site at or by contacting Dick Dillman +1 415-255-9221 x 317 or Tom Horsfall +1 510-237-9535.

Dick Dillman, W6AWO – Member of the Maritime Radio Historical Society

Collector of Heavy Metal: Harleys, Willys and Radios over 100lbs!

News from the Marconi Radio Club – W1AA

Press release 12/11/01 in MS-Word format

Marconi 100th Anniversary – December 12 2001 –

We have secured an ink register from Jack, W1TEC. This makes the 1902 Spark/Coherer station complete. The complete operating 1902 spark/coherer station will be demonstrated at the Marconi Special Event Station on Cape Cod on Dec 11th through the 16th.

Details of Special Event held in January 2001

Ink Register as used my Marconi  Ink Register as used by Marconi.

This is what Marconi used with his coherer RX to copy the CW on a continuous paper tape. It is in fine shape but it needs a few minor repairs and cleaning. We will test it with the coherer this week. Temporarily we will have to make up some paper tapes by taping them together. We found a source for the paper tape rolls in NH.

The W1AA web page will be updated in the next week or two. The Dec 12th event will be featured with many photos.

73 GBA Whitey K1VV
Marconi Radio Club W1AA

W1AA – The Marconi Radio Club

News from The Marconi Memorial Station IY4FGM

HF and microwave radio amateurs are invited to participate in the Marconi celebrations of December 12th 2001.

The Marconi memorial station IY4FGM on HF and, exceptionally, IY4FGM/4 on 23 cm EME will honour the day long scheduled ham session.

MOON BOUNCING on 23 cm, during the whole local window, will be performed through the 32 m VLBI dish of the Bologna radio astronomy observatory. The 50 odd dB of antenna gain, 150W output power and 250K effective (beam on the Moon) system noise temperature should give to most callers a good chance to QSO the unique Marconi Foundation call sign.

23 cm activity: tech details via I4BER to

HF activity: tech details via IY4FGM