WTBO

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WTBO
WTBO 2008.jpg
City of licenseCumberland, Maryland
Broadcast areaCumberland, Maryland
Frostburg, Maryland
Branding1450 WTBO
Slogan"America's Best Music"
Frequency1450 kHz
First air dateDecember 13, 1928
FormatAdult Standards
Power1,000 watts (day and night)
ClassC
Facility ID74082
Transmitter coordinates39°38′43.0″N 78°45′5.0″W / 39.645278°N 78.751389°W / 39.645278; -78.751389
AffiliationsAccuWeather
NBC News Radio
Pittsburgh Steelers Radio Network
Westwood One
OwnerDix Communications
(WTBO-WKGO Corporation, LLC)
Sister stationsWFRB, WFRB-FM, WKGO
WebcastWTBO Webstream
Websitewtboam.com
 
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WTBO
WTBO 2008.jpg
City of licenseCumberland, Maryland
Broadcast areaCumberland, Maryland
Frostburg, Maryland
Branding1450 WTBO
Slogan"America's Best Music"
Frequency1450 kHz
First air dateDecember 13, 1928
FormatAdult Standards
Power1,000 watts (day and night)
ClassC
Facility ID74082
Transmitter coordinates39°38′43.0″N 78°45′5.0″W / 39.645278°N 78.751389°W / 39.645278; -78.751389
AffiliationsAccuWeather
NBC News Radio
Pittsburgh Steelers Radio Network
Westwood One
OwnerDix Communications
(WTBO-WKGO Corporation, LLC)
Sister stationsWFRB, WFRB-FM, WKGO
WebcastWTBO Webstream
Websitewtboam.com

WTBO is an American Adult Standards formatted broadcast radio station licensed to Cumberland, Maryland, serving the Cumberland and Frostburg area. WTBO is owned and operated by Dix Communications.

WTBO's studios are located above I-68 in Cumberland, right next to the neon "W-T-B-O" call letters.

History[edit]

Early days[edit]

1928[edit]

Cumberland's first broadcast station was granted the call letters WTBO and authorized by the Federal Radio Commission in October 1928 to operate on 1420 kilocycles with a power of 50 watts. The Cumberland Electric Company placed WTBO on the air Thursday, December 13, 1928, from 138 Virginia Avenue, site of the station as well as the retail shop of the station owner, William McKinley Dailey, Sr. Two masts were erected on the roof of the structure to support the station's antenna.

1929-30[edit]

In March 1929, the Cumberland Broadcasting Company was formed by the Cumberland Electric Company and became WTBO's licensee. The Associated Broadcasting Corporation acquired the station in November 1929. In early 1930, WTBO was moved from its original site on Virginia Avenue to the Commercial Bank Building, on the southwest corner of Frederick and Liberty streets.

1930s and 1940s[edit]

1931-33[edit]

Power was increased to 100 watts in June 1930. In August 1930, WTBO's transmitter was relocated to the area now known as Constitution Park. Daytime power rose to 250 watts (nights 100 watts) in February 1931. In September 1932, WTBO was leased by the Interstate Broadcasting System, Inc. The Associated Broadcasting Corporation, Licensee, again assumed control of the independent station from the former lessee on January 31, 1933.

1934-42[edit]

In 1934, controlling interest in the Associated Broadcasting Corporation was acquired by Herbet Lee Blye, who then became Station Manager of WTBO. In late 1935, Mr. Blye sold WTBO to Roger W. Clipp and Frank V. Becker.

Frank V. Becker died in 1942. Mrs. Aurelia S. Becker became President of the Associated Broadcasting Corporation and Station Manager of its WTBO.

1943-44[edit]

On October 26, 1943, the Federal Communications Commission issued a permit to change frequency from 820 kilocycles to 1450 kilocycles (unlimited hours). On January 1, 1944, WTBO changed frequency and became a full-time 250 watt station; concurrently joining the National Broadcasting Company network.

1950s to 1970s[edit]

1946-53[edit]

In 1946, WTBO's ownership was reorganized. Becoming a co-owner and partner was Charles Z. Heskett with Aurelia S. Becker remaining managing partner. The station's licensee name was then changed to the Cumberland Broadcasting Corporation. Mrs. Becker became both President and General Manager of the NBC station in 1947. The Maryland Radio Corporation acquired WTBO from the Becker and Heskett interests in early 1951. Charles E. Smith, owner, then became President and General Manager of the station.

1954-71[edit]

In late September 1954, the station was again sold. WTBO was purchased by the Tennessee Valley Broadcasting Corporation. A. William German then became both President and General Manager of WTBO after the sale was consummated. In 1955, the licensee name of the station was changed to the Cumberland Valley Broadcasting Corporation. On April 26, 1956, the station was authorized to change studio and transmitting locations to 350 Byrd Avenue (the present site).

In early 1961, the FCC authorized WTBO to increase daytime power to 1,000 watts with night power of 250 watts to continue as before. Power was raised in 1962.

1977-1978[edit]

In late 1977, WTBO and its frequency modulation (FM) affiliate WKGO at 106.1, were acquired from David P. Welborne's Welborne Broadcasting Inc., by Wooster Republican Printing Company, owned by Dix Communications.

The WTBO-WKGO Corporation was formed by the new owners to be the WTBO licensee. The officers were: Raymond E. Dix, President; E.B. Evans, Vice President and General Manager; Albert E. Dix, Vice President; E.S. Dix, Treasurer; R. Victor Dix, Assistant Secretary; Timothy V. Dix, Secretary.

At that time WTBO, Maryland's fifth oldest continuously licensed broadcast station, operated on 1450 kilohertz with a day power of 1,000 watts (night power of 250 watts) and served the three-state area from 350 Byrd Avenue, Cumberland, Maryland.

The format was Adult Contemporary. The staff consisted of 18 full and part-time people. Roy H. Knotts - Assistant Manager, Beda M. Riley -Office Manager .

1980s and 1990s[edit]

1984[edit]

Roy Knotts retired as General Manager in March 1984. Mrs. Beda M. Riley, Assistant Manager became General Manager.

1985-86[edit]

WTBO installed equipment to broadcast in AM Stereo.

1987[edit]

The format on WTBO became Adult Standards. WTBO continued to broadcast Baltimore Orioles Baseball, University of Maryland Football and Basketball and high school football. Shortly after 1987, WTBO was granted permission to broadcast at full power, 1000 watts, 24 hours a day.

1992[edit]

Chazz Offutt returned to radio on WTBO with the "Chazz Offutt Morning Road Show" in December.

2000s[edit]

2000[edit]

General Manager Beda M. Riley retired. Richard Cornwell is named general manager and Tim Martin is named assistant manager.

2003[edit]

December 13, 2003: The 75th Anniversary for WTBO and the station began a year long celebration of the event marked by many promotional give aways. Commemorative promotional announcements for each year of broadcasting were aired along with celebrity anniversary greetings.

2006[edit]

December 26, 2006: Chazz Offutt passes away on the air at the age of 66.

2008[edit]

In mid-July 2008, WTBO picked up FOX Sports Radio in the evenings and continued to air local programming and Adult Standards in the mornings. WTBO would also pick up the affiliation of FOX News Radio. During this same time sister WFRB-AM would drop the simulcast of WTBO and begin a talk format.

2010s[edit]

2011[edit]

On April 25, 2011, WTBO returned to the "Adult Standards" format 24 hours a day. WTBO still offers Orioles Baseball, Steelers Football and Penguins Hockey. WTBO's primary web site location is located at www.wtboam.com, WTBO's audio is simulcast there as well. Local News and Fox News airs at the top of each hour.

2012[edit]

On April 1, 2012, Fox News Radio was dropped in favor of the newly launched NBC News Radio (formerly CNN Radio).

Chazz Offutt[edit]

Chazz Offutt collapsed and died at 8:23am on December 26, 2006, during his daily "Morning Road Show" on WTBO-AM/WFRB-AM.[1] Offutt was a popular local disc jockey for decades in Cumberland.[1] Offutt had apparently suffered a fatal heart attack.[1] He is survived by his wife and five children.[2] He was 66.[2]

"I was listening to Chazz and all of a sudden there was just nothing," said Joanne Van, mother of Jim Van, one of Offutt's co-workers, told the Cumberland Times-News.[3] "The mike was open and I heard somebody say 'Chazz,' then I heard them say 'Call 911,' then Jimmy called and gave me the bad news.[3] People will miss Chazz. He is a wonderful man."[3]

Offutt has worked at Cumberland radio stations since the 1950s and his late-night show, "The Night Owls Club," on WCUM (now WCMD) was popular with rock-and-roll fans in the 1960s.[1]

Offutt was laid to rest on Friday, December 29, 2006, outside Saints Peter and Paul Church in Cumberland.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Sawyers, Michael A. (December 27, 2006). "Radio personality dies". Cumberland Times-News/Community Newspaper Holdings. Retrieved April 14, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c "Charles S. Offutt Jr. (Cumberland)". Cumberland Times-News/Community Newspaper Holdings. December 28, 2006. Retrieved April 14, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c "Cumberland DJ dies while on air". The Capital. December 28, 2006. Retrieved April 14, 2012. 

External links[edit]