"Wavescan" is a weekly program for long distance radio hobbyists produced by Dr. Adrian M. Peterson, Coordinator of International Relations for Adventist World Radio. AWR carries the program over many of its stations (including shortwave). Adrian Peterson is a highly regarded DXer and radio historian, and often includes features on radio history in his program. We are reproducing those features below, with Dr. Peterson's permission and assistance.
A radio network called the "Pineapple Network"? Where ever could that be located? If you guessed "Hawaii" as your answer, then that would be correct. But, what is known about this unique radio network that was on the air in the middle of last century.
Actually, very little is known about the Pineapple Network, and even this information lay quietly at rest until New Zealander David Ricquish made a visit to old time DXer Ray Crawford in Brisbane, Queensland. As they were reminiscing about the past, they came across a reference to the Pineapple Network in the old radio club magazine "Skyrider" in the issue dated for January and February 1948.
In this brief reference about the Pineapple Network, mention is made of two mediumwave stations in Hawaii operated by AFRS, the American Forces Radio Service. Station WVTZ is listed in Hawaii on 1300 kHz, and another station is listed on the island of Oahu on 1260 kHz.
Research into other radio magazines and publications of that
era indicate that there was indeed a network of AFRS mediumwave
stations in Hawaii for a few years beginning in mid 1945.
The key station was WVTZ, which was operated by the Marine Corps
at Ewa on the capital city island of Oahua. This station
operated on 1360 kHz, though this channel was changed later to
Other AFRS stations in the area that relayed the main programming from WVTZ were listed on six other mediumwave frequencies. All seven of these stations carried the same WVTZ programming and they were all located on the same island, Oahu.
Several of these low powered AFRS stations in Hawaii were heard in the United States, New Zealand and Australia, including the one on 1350 kHz which identified on air simply as "Station B."
During the years just before and just after the end of the
Pacific War, all of the AFRS stations in the Central Pacific were
loosely designated as the "Pacific Ocean Network." The
two other AFRS networks in the Pacific at the time were designated
as the "Mosquito Network" and the "Jungle Network."
There is no other known reference to the "Pineapple Network," though it is quite clear that this network was in Hawaii and that station WVTZ was the key station for this network. It would be suggested then that the term "Pineapple Network" was either an official or unofficial designation for the AFRS stations of the Pacific Ocean Network that were located in Hawaii.
It should be mentioned also that AFRS programming was heard on shortwave from two other stations in Hawaii during the same era. The Voice of America transmitters, KRHO and KRHK, regularly carried AFRS programming. In addition, the Army Signal Corps transmitters, WTV and WTJ, were also noted with relays of AFRS programming to the Jungle and Mosquito Networks.
An Island Called Radio Island [Canada]
There are four different usages of the two-word title, "Radio Island". Two of these "Radio Islands" are actual geographic islands, one in Canada and the other in the United States. There was a short movie film produced in 1997 with the title, "Radio Island", and there has been a CBC radio program on the air nationwide in Canada called "Radio Island", or more correctly, "Radio Island Morning". In this edition of Wavescan, we take a look at the Radio Island that is a Canadian territory.
One of the small islands that is located at the beginning of the Hudson Bay Passageway in the far north of eastern Canada is known as Resolution Island. Just off the edge of Resolution Island, to the south, is a smaller island, called Radio Island. This area is these days now a part of the new Canadian province, Nunavut.
This Canadian Radio Island is a small, hilly, and almost barren island that is connected to another island by a tidal isthmus. There is an underground source of natural gas on this island.
It was back in 1929 that the Canadian government established a radio station on Radio Island. The purpose for this station was to serve as a navigational aid for aircraft and shipping in the area, and also as a weather station. The callsign of this station was probably VBY.
During the cold war era, in the 1950s, this station on Radio Island was augmented with American forces and equipment as part of the Early Warning System. This network of radio stations and radio facilities was known by the Americans as the Dewline, and by the Canadians as the Pinetree Line.
In addition to the electronic facilities of the Early Warning System, there was also a small entertainment radio station on Radio Island with the unusual callsign, WORM. This station was little more than an amplifier kit, though on occasions it was hooked up to a 500 watt transmitter, just for the fun of it. On several occasions, flight personnel on passing passenger planes tuned in to this novel radio station, and phoned through, asking for music requests to be played on air.
On important local occasions, station WORM also took a relay from another local entertainment station, located at Frobischer Bay. This AFRS station identified on air with the callsign SKIMO, and it was just an amplifier station with a 10 watt transmitter on 1010 kHz.
And so, that's the story of the Radio Island that is located in Canada.