I aired, for the first time in America, a stereo broadcast of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Listeners were astounded – and generally seemed quite captivated.
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 Fred Barzyk: Bill insisted I try to get into the scholarship program. You studied for your graduate degree at Boston University and worked three days a week at the Educational Television station. Free tuition and you got $600 to live a year in Boston!
From Art Singer: Fifty one years ago this past September, on several late afternoons a week, I would take the twenty minute walk from BU across the Charles to the station’s studios on the MIT campus for a night’s work.
Tanglewood concerts were always an important part of music programming at WGBH. In the summer of 1970, as Erich Leinsdorf was about to retire as Music Director of the Boston Symphony, he would conduct his final concert at Tanglewood.
From “The first 24 years: A somewhat random compendium of milestones along the way”
John Lowell Jr., leaves a bequest creating free “public lectures for the benefit of the citizens of Boston.”
From Vic Washkevich
The WGBH viewing audience never saw these two newscasters. Vic Washkevich (who contributed this picture) explains: "Oh, here’s shot of Hartford Gunn (Paul Noble) and Dave Davis (Bill Heitz) reporting the news due to budget constraints and Louis Lyons’ nap.
From Paul Noble
[We made] a fund-raising spot, done with a Cambridge taxi, in December 1960, in the days before auctions and pledge weeks. It was taped in front of 84 Massachusetts Avenue, facing MIT.
I know the…spot [was] part of a campaign we did after the first group with celebs a year earlier.
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.
My first visit to WGBH was in the fall of 1955, just after TV had gone on the air at 84 Mass Ave. in Cambridge. I was at work developing a TV master plan for the University of Connecticut at the time, and wanted a tour of one of the few (12) “educational” stations on the air.