WIBW Memories: Working on TVs

I am writing for input of WIBW TV. About 1951 my brother Jack L. Rice Sr. had a radio and TV repair shop. It was in the 100 block of E. Laurence of N. Topeka. He was a businessman and was with the Kiwanis Club. He also installed TV antennas on the roof-top of businesses and homes. He installed for Ed Marling, JC Pennies, Emahizer-Spielmans, Montgomery Wards and Fred Asay, which sold TV and appliances at the time. The TV poles were 20 ft. steel and conduit made.

WDAF was the first to be shown in Topeka with a test pattern. This was about an hour in the afternoon. There were two shows that were on (Kula, Fran & Ollie and Buffalo Bob Smith with Howdy Duty time).

I went to HPHS in 1951 to 1955 which was a new school. Before I could work on Saturdays putting up TV antennas I had to apply for a SS card. I helped with repairing of the small radio dial cords and filter cap for the radios. I also helped with my brother on TVs that had to be brought in the shop for repair. Mr. Dee Johnson was the shop repair man. He was Jack's partner.

P.S. Early radio was good with Little Jimmy Dickens, Glen Osburn, Miss Maude, Dude Hank and Edmund Denny. I play guitar with Mr. Glen Osbur, who played the steel guitar. He was very good.

Brother Jack L. Rice Sr's wife Mrs. Velma Rice is 90 years old. She is helping me remember a few things about the past. She lives here in Topeka and resides by herself. She is as sharp as if she is 40 years old.

Mr. Hipp came to the Our Father Table and gave a speech at a noon lunch. Jack asked you to attend for the speech you gave. I had to drive my brother to this meeting. It was very well attended.

Also talking with Velma Rice she remembers Roy Fauckner sing and play in 1930 on WIBW radio. She has shaken hands with Charles Curtis. He was the vice president of the U.S.

I retired from the Topeka Fire Department in 1992 after 33 years.

Bobb L. Rice


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