There has always been something magical about the 'GBH cachet, growing I believe from the station's spoken, unspoken, and lived, philosophy, and from those who have striven to express it.
From Don Hallock: Dan Beach just rediscovered this image from a play by Gertrude Stein, "Yes Is For a Very Young Man." It was shot at 125 Western Ave. (and maybe directed by Fred Barzyk)
From Don Hallock
In the early morning hours of October 14, 1961, a raging fire at the 84 Massachusetts Avenue studios of WGBH completely destroyed the facility. WGBH FM and TV were located in the second and third floors of a three story roller former skating rink. The fire, which began in the studio-A area, quickly consumed the upper floors of the building, rendering it a total loss. These stills were excerpted from 16mm black and white news film footage shot by Boston area commercial television stations.
Here firemen enter the rear of the building from the fire escape near studio-A control and the projection room. In the background light from the fire inside can be seen through windows which had formerly been covered over when studio-A was created.
From Don Hallock: Many extraordinarily-gifted figures and luminaries of the day — in the arts, science, politics and education — found their ways into the halls and studios of the original WGBH-TV/FM studios at 84 Massachusetts Avenue.
From Don Hallock: WGBH produced Press and People in 1959 or '60. Host Louis M. Lyons talked with important print and photo-journalists of the time, including Edward R. Murrow, about their work and philosophies.
From Don Hallock
This tape was shot in the temporary studio at the Boston Museum of Science. It was intended as an in-house training tool, primarily for new BU student interns. It puroprted to be a catalog of many of the most frequently perpetrated production errors portrayed in comic relief. Response at the April reunion suggested that it was at least moderately successful in the humor department.
Original sin: Title cards are off center.
Just around the corner from the former Zebra Lounge, (the present-day Crossroads Tavern, shown in this photo to the right of center) was a pair of apartments at 27 1/2 Massachussetts Avenue, over a greasy spoon eating place which shared a kitchen with the Zebra.
Then: The station in 1958, occupying a rather dusty second and third floor roller-skating rink in an old brick building located opposite MIT at 84 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge. (Photo by Brooks Leffler.)
From Don Hallock: It may surprise you to know how many places the station has called home. WGBH's origins were in a converted skating rink on the second floor of 84 Mass. Ave. and the office spaces on the third, were the first home of WGBH from 1955 to 1961.
For years, the original Studio A at 84 Massachusetts Avenue was a truly magical place. So many careers were launched, or at least nurtured, its environment. It's magic blossomed from the drive to produce programming that one could feel pride in, with the ongoing and exhilarating drive to overcome obstacles, with the almost mythic experience of being forced by necessity to achieve the impossible through sheer persistence and ingenuity.