Monday, February 19, 2018

Deutsche Welle Retrospective

In 1968, one of the first short-wave stations to be QSLed was Deutsche Welle, or the Voice of Germany, as they referred themselves back in the days when Germany was still divided. At the time, Deutsche Welle transmitted from J├╝lich, West Germany. Their English broadcast was heard on 9.540 kHz, in the late evening hours, when I lived in the western United States.

I especially enjoyed listening to Larry Wayne's weekly segment called "Random Selection: Living in Germany".  Larry would regale his listeners with a "random selection" of current events, newspaper stories and his own observations of happenings around him in Germany, albeit from a tongue-in-cheek perspective. He had a delightful way of telling a story, certainly enough to at least pique my interest and to listen to him regularly. I recall one particular story about a dachshund. The cute little canine imbibed sizable quantities of liquor along with his owner on a daily basis. The poor pooch eventually succumbed to alcoholism and died. Sad tale, but humorous and touching in the manner in which Larry reported the story. 

By the early 1970s, I was able to receive Deutsche Welle via their relay site in Kigali (Rwanda). Their German language could be heard in the afternoons, and what a powerful signal it was! By the time I resumed listening to the short-wave bands in 2007, DW was relaying their broadcasts from multiple locations: Yerevan-Gavar (Armenia), Bonaure (Netherland Antilles), Sines (Portugal), Issoudun (France), Wertachtal and Nauen (Germany), Rampisham and Woofferton (UK), Ascension Island, Trincomalee (Sri Lanka), Krasnodar (southern Russia), Dhabbaya (UAE), Kranji (Singapore), Pinheiro (Sao Tome), Meyerton (South Africa), and Tolata Volondry (Madagascar). 

For my part, DW passed along not only QSL cards, but tote bags, pens, a DVD set on the Berlin Wall and calendars. I recall particularly a commemorative calendar for the 1972 Munich Olympics and brochures profiling each of the states in West Germany. Good times!!!

This video contains some of these QSLs and souvenirs I received from Deutsche Welle QSLs during these two DXing periods. The interval tune is from Es sucht der Bruder seine Brueder from Fidelio by Ludwig van Beethoven.

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