Camden's First Radio Station

Camden's oldest radio station dates back to September 1925 when it signed on as WFBI at 1270 AM under the ownership of Robert Galvin. The city government became involved soon afterward. The official dedication of the now municipally-owned radio station, rechristened WCAM, occurred in Convention Hall, occurred on March 29, 1926. The station moved, sometime after 1931, to the 17th floor of the new City Hall Building at South 6th and Federal Street. Eventually it was permanently assigned 1310 on the AM band as its frequency. 

WCAM changed frequencies several times over the next fifteen years. On April 26, 1927, the station was located at 890 AM. Soon afterwards, on June 15, 1927, it changed again to 1340 AM. Another changed occurred on November 11, 1928, when the station moved to 1280 AM and shared time with Trenton station WIMG (see above) and Asbury Park station WJLK (see above). The final change took place on March 29, 1941, when WCAM moved to its current position of 1310 AM, where it briefly shared time with Philadelphia station WTEL.

By the early 1930s the city leased the station to private firms to operate it. Rud Priesendanz Jr. organized the Broadcast Advertising Company to run the station, beginning in 1932. The Broadcast Advertising Company operated the station through at least 1938. Priesendanz had passed away by this time, however. Elements in city government had wanted to sell the station off, and eventually this took place. 

During the late 1920s and early 1930s air personalities included Jim Howell and Dan McConnell, both of whom worked in city government, not surprising as the station was then municipally owned. Frederick W. Caperoon was musical director of WCAM in the spring and summer of 1933.

At some point in time WCAM built its transmitter building and antenna tower at the northwest corner of the Pyne Point Park in North Camden.

In the 1960's, WCAM called themselves "All Request Radio". Some popular DJ's who got their start during this time included Gene Hart, Kal Rudman, Jerry Blavat, Hy Lit, Pat Delsi, Jack Lamar, Bob Mara, Rick AnthonyCharlie Mills, Chuck Gagliardi, and Gene Arnold.

In 1970, for a period of about 9 months, Jerry Blavat became PD and featured Top 40 in the daytime, calling themselves "The Little Giant." On September 4, 1980, calls were changed to WSSJ.

The station was run by Pat Delsi and included DJ's Bob Pantano and Pat Delsi's son, Dave Michaels. In the early to mid 1990's, WSSJ was mostly an automated operation featuring a wide variety of music. Barry Reisman played Jewish music on Sunday afternoons, while Fred Handy had a gospel music show Sunday mornings. Phil Casden interned with Fred Handy in late 1996 and early 1997 before moving to WNJC-AM 1360 in Sewell NJ.

In 1998, WSSJ was acquired by Mega Communications and began a Spanish Oldies format as "Classica 1310." On August 31, 2001, calls were changed to WEMG and 1310 began to simulcast the Spanish CHR programming from WEMG-FM, 104.9 in Egg Harbor City.
When 104.9 switched to Smooth Jazz in 2003, 1310 remained as a stand-alone station as "Mega 1310." 

Camden Courier-Post * January 24, 1928

Megaphone Not 'Mike' is New WCAM Equipment

Camden's Municipal station, WCAM, has added a new piece of mechanism to the usual broadcasting apparatus. A megaphone has replaced the customary microphone.

Jim Howell, announcing from the Walt Whitman Hotel studio last night, said "I will now turn the Megaphone over to Bessie I. Bossert." Further on in the program he again turned the "megaphone" over to someone.

Dan McConnell still holds the championship at WCAM, however, for Howell's error didn't compare to the time, several weeks ago, when McConnell broadcast two rounds of a bout at Convention Hall before he gave the names of the fighters.

Camden Courier-Post - January 27, 1928

Local Theatrical Company Improving Under Direction of George A. Oberst

July 3, 1929 QSL Card
Signed by Commissioner
Clay W. Reesman

James A. Howell (wearing headphone) at Central Airport
October 29, 1931

Camden Courier-Post
June 1, 1932

Anthony Zeoli
Wiley M.E. Church
South 3rd Street

Camden Courier-Post - June 1, 1932

Central Airport - Frankie Richardson

Camden Courier-Post - June 3, 1932

Central Airport

Camden Courier-Post - February 10, 1933

Slash of $702,890 Is Revealed in Totals Passed at Session of Rulers

Commissioners Debate With Von Nieda as He Charges Gross Extravagance


 The Camden City Commission yesterday approved the 1933 city budget after hearing and rejecting economy recommendations of several civic and labor organizations.

Eight speakers representing five organizations urged budget reductions and protested the total of $3,353,124.60. Verbal clashes over opinions were frequent between Commissioner Harold W. Bennett, director of finance and revenue, and former Councilman Frederick von Nieda and Thomas B. Hall, representatives of the Congress of Civic Associations of New Jersey.

Nearly 300 persons attended the hearing, in marked contrast to the 5000 who marched on city hall last year to demand budget reductions. The hearing lasted three hours. The departmental budget appropriations of $3,353,124.60 with the local school appropriation of $1,250,000 and other appropriations, totaling $960,060.55 to be added in the tax ordinance yet to be adopted, will give the city a total expense of $5,563,185.15 for 1933.

Tax Bill About Same

The tax rate will not be known until the tax ordinance is adopted. After the hearing Commissioner Bennett declared that due to equalization of assessments, the bills of some taxpayers will be a few dollars higher than last year, and a few dollars lower in other cases. The commission, after approving the budget on a motion by Commissioner Bennett, adopted a resolution leasing WCAM to the Broadcast Advertising Company for $1000 per year and a percentage of all receipts over $24,000. All maintenance costs will be born by the company, of which Rudolph Preisendanz, Jr., is head.

After the budget was adopted Bennett declared the City Commission would take into consideration an allegation of Frank J. Hartmann, Jr., secretary of the Civic Congress, that the $125,400 appropriation for street  lighting was $26,450 higher than it should be according to figures obtained by him concerning the city's .lighting equipment. "If there has been an error the budget can be amended at any time," Commissioner Bennett said.

Commissioner Clay W. Reesman, under whose department street lighting comes, declared that figures in his office concerning street lighting were different from those quoted by Hartmann. The figures he used, Hartmann said, were obtained by him from City Comptroller Sidney P. McCord.

Von Nieda Case

 Von Nieda was the first citizen to address the commission. Shifting papers in his hands, he faced the commissioners and said: "We have here $40,000 for your Recorder's Court in 1932, and $25,000 for 1933."

Commissioner Bennett jumped to his feet. 

"Those 1932 figures," Bennett said, "were merely an estimate of the receipts to be taken in, but that amount did not come in. This year we anticipate only $25,000, which we consider a fair estimate."

"That's fine" said von Nieda, "but we have never had a chance to sit in with you on these figures."

"You can sit in with us at any time," responded Bennett, "We're glad to have you."

"I see here," said von Nieda, "that the transportation inspector is paid from fees, but you show no fees and the inspector should be paid by the Public Service. I also suggest that you turn Convention Hall over to the poor. Now in dealing with Station WCAM, I see you show a profit for the last three months of $1000, while in 1932, you show no records of receipts, and we are just wondering.'.

Worried by WCAM

 "Do you want that answered now?" asked Bennett. "WCAM has given myself and the other commissioners some concern during the past year. It is our duty to see that we receive as much income as possible. Different methods have been used in the radio station to make it pay during the past three months, and during this time that station has been in the black. We figure that in 1933 there will be no deficit in this station, and we look for a profit of more than $1000." 

"Now in this matter of eliminating deputy directors," von Nieda said. 

He was interrupted by Commissioner Reesman

"I'll tell you," said Reesman, "about my deputy director Carlton Harris. My deputy receives $1750 a year. He has charge of all labor in the Department of Parks and Public Property. He is on the job every morning at 7:00 AM, and often works until 10 p. m., with the labor outside."

"In speaking of the assessors," von Nieda continued, "we should have assessors who are not influenced by politicians or political dictators."

"You know I won't stand for that," answered Bennett. "The readjustment of ratables is only a small part 1 of the work we are doing. Each property is assessed on a basic principal. Any time you have a suggestion that will help us in our work we will be glad to hear from you but I firmly believe that real state must be relieved of its heavy tax burden by an income and sales tax, and this tax must come sooner or later. 

Seeking Relief

 "As far as the city commissioners are concerned, we are studying it from day to day, in efforts to get out of the wilderness.

"In speaking of the purchasing department," von Nieda continued, "we know what happened there last year. You fired your purchasing agent, and if you had not fired him it probably would have afforded the public some interesting reading about this purchasing department.

"All of my men are working overtime,' replied Bennett. "It is true the purchasing agent is out and his work is being done by an assistant (William Dilmore) at half his salary. We have got rid of as many people in these departments as we can. I had to let one girl go in the purchasing department and one girl in Controller McCord's department. One man went on pension in the tax office and two were let out in efforts to balance the budget.

"In .one of my departments where there were three girls I had, to make a $900 cut by leaving one girl out. called the three girls into my office and told them that one had to go and asked them what their home responsibilities were. One had to take care of her family, including a 77-year-old aunt; another a family with a 66-year-old aunt, and the third was supporting three or four brothers with the help of another brother, who is a barber working for practically what tips he could get.

"But I had to make a $900 cut. The girls asked me not to dismiss any of them, as they each would take a $300 cut in addition to cuts .already applied. Another man took an extra $260 cut so that he would not be out of work. But I had the budget to take care of, and I am ready to challenge any city the size of Camden to show so nearly a balanced budget. Our plan is to pay as we go."

"You cite two or three instances," protested von Nieda. "But I want to show you scores of families which have no money and they are taxpayers. You say you have cut to the bone, but you should cut through the bone. This is no grandstand play by us. Maybe we can give you some help. Then, too, the debt interest must be paid on this tragedy," he shouted, pointing to walls of the commission chamber.

"Maybe you can tell me how to get rid of the bonds," suggested Bennett. "You must remember this year we have cut $900,000 from the budget."  

Offers Recommendation

Von Nieda said the Civic Congress recommended that work now being done by two city solicitors should be done by one, that when more policemen and firemen are needed "little fellows” be restored first wherever possible; that the city incinerating plant be closed; that the personnel of the city's two' sewage disposal plants be reduced; that the city's lighting bill be cut $40,000; that inspectors of lighting be abolished and their work done by policemen and the city's engineer's department. Personally he favored an income tax, he said, to relieve the I burden on real estate. 

"1 realize,” von Nieda said, "that the city commission has done a fair job, but of the congress, with conservatively 15,000 members, think you can do even better.

Commissioner Frank B. Hanna, director of public works, interrupted von Nieda on the subject of the incinerating plant, which von Nieda declared could be abandoned because it did not burn garbage, but only rubbish. 

"Can you see me at 9:00 AM tomorrow and go through my department with me?" asked Hanna.

“Any time," replied von Nieda

Warns of Tax Strike

"However," von Nieda continued, "we are wondering what the figures in the right hand corner of the tax bill will be. Assessments may be lower and the tax rate higher, and that does not give a true picture. I fear the bills will be more for 1933 and for one am willing now to take the 1932 assessment on my home. 

"The congress vigorously opposes this personality tax. You expect to tax the homeowner for everything he has. I warn YOU gentlemen that if this tax is imposed in Camden there will be a run on banks and building and loan associations. If that happens homeowners and renters will leave this unfortunate city. There will be a tax strike here, and so help me God, I'm helping it!"

Von Nieda was followed by William Hughes of 578 Mickle street, who spoke for the Unemployed Council of New Jersey.

Hughes reiterated demands of the union for increased relief payments to unemployed, urged a municipally-owned lighting plant, operated at a profit, the same as the city's water department; a municipal lodging house; use of hand labor instead of machinery in all city contracts and the employment of labor to "tear down the slums in Camden."

Hartmann was the next speaker. He read from a prepared statement which he declared was an analysis a\of the city's 1932 lighting expenses, and which, he said, could be lowered “had we used larger lamps.“

Reesman Contradicts

After enumerating the individual costs of lamps of various candle power, and contending a change in the lamps would effect a saving this year, Hartmann charged the city has overpaid for electric energy in street lighting. 

Commissioner Reesman declared that figures used by Hartmann were in error and that therefore, his computations as to possible savings were wrong. He announced, however, he would study the situation to discover if there was any error in the budget concerning street lighting, as alleged by Hartmann.

"The Civic Congress is now circulating petitions for a referendum on a municipal lighting plant," Hartmann said. "We now have 10,000 of the required 11,000 signatures, and we do not intend to stop until we have 25,000. You commissioners can stop these petitions by adopting a resolution declaring a referendum on the question."

He then asked that the work of the city electrical inspector be taken over by the National Board of Fire Underwriters, and that "when the next tax sale is held, all properties be advertised, including banks, garages and to whomever the property belongs."

Commissioner Bennett then arose and said: "I've used' discretion on that. There are some who are paying as low as $5 per month, and I think these people should be helped. We commissioners do not want to sell the home of anyone. That is what we are trying to stop. We are in perfect agreement on that."

Debt Moratorium Asked  

"How about the Bridge Garage?" some one in the audience shouted.

"The Bridge Garage has just paid $1500," Bennett said, "and promises to pay something every month. We are trying to make the tax bills lower by getting in all the monies we can, and where possible to take in delinquent payments no matter how small. 

Clarence Moullette, secretary of the Unemployed Union of New Jersey, then arose. He asked for a moratorium on the city debt service for five years, and urged the commission to adopt such a resolution memorializing the Legislature for that relief: He announced opposition to the personality tax.

"We are not questioning the actions of the commissioners, Moullette said. “Spending less money will not help the situation. Commissioner Hanna. told me if he had $51,000 additional in his department six closed garbage trucks could purchased. This will help give work. By cutting down salaries you decrease purchasing power. Work must be had. Eventually you will pay in scrip. Why not pay in scrip now and give out work."

Hall asked that Convention Hall be abandoned and the building used for hospitalization work for the needy, and urged the city commission to "meet in the evenings so that citizens will know and see what is going on." He asked for abolition of the positions of plumbing, building, sewer and heating inspectors.

'Close High Schools'

"The commission should face conditions as they are," he said. "I speak for myself, and not the Civic Congress. I ask that the high schools be closed. I heartily approve closing of the Vocational School, but if choice was to be made between high schools and the Vocational School, I would say close the high schools. Before selling the home of anyone to meet impossible taxes, I say cut to the bone by getting rid of everything that is not absolutely necessary. 

"You commissioners must be made to realize that increased taxation is what has destroyed purchasing power in America. Meet this condition!

Commissioner Bennett challenged the statement of Hall that government costs were responsible for conditions of today.

"There are numerous causes," Bennett said.

"I would rejoice in debating it with you or anyone you select," Hall replied, "including United States senators, and convince them in 20 minutes."

"I’ll debate that with him," shouted Morris Stempa of Audubon from the audience. Stempa later addressed the commission, speaking for the Socialist party, and urged the moratorium advocated by Moullette, also a Socialist.

Eugene Wasilewski, speaking for you the South Camden Civic Association, denounced the commission for failing to call in civic association representatives in their preparation of the Budget.

Bennett Gives Reply 

"You called in the bankers, but not those others of us who also are interested in city costs," Wasilewski said. "You tell us now there is a reduction in assessments and then come along and wallop us with a higher tax rate. That is not fair. You were elected to look after our interests and that you have failed to do. You are making us eat red herring, and we want you to eat red herring with us."  

The last citizen to address the commission was Salvadore Guadelli, president of the Citizens-Taxpayers' League. He made a general indictment of conditions, ,and asked that the city commission "do not let sectionalism creep into city affairs."  

Commissioner Bennett then arose and addressed his fellow commissioners and the audience.

"All these things suggested here today have been considered," he said. "We five men came into office with the idea of serving the people. I know the business of financing the city is a. serious problem. We have endeavored to move the budget into that realm of 'pay-as-you-go! We appreciate everything presented here. Every taxpayer we look upon as an employer.

"Looking at it from every angle, this budget cannot be delayed any longer. You'll find we were severe in preparing this budget; you'll find we were severe last year. Last year we cut a half million. This year we cut $702,890.74, and to that the board of education, we hope, will add a cut of $250,000. That is a total cut of $952,890.74. Other cities in New Jersey show nothing to compare with it.  

Budget Adopted 

"I hesitate in making more cuts. I speak from experience when I say I'm a taxpayer. In the past two weeks I've been trying to raise money to pay taxes. I want all of you to know we commissioners can sympathize. It is not easy being at the head of a government in times like these. I hope that municipalities will receive federal relief in payment of debt service. There has been a tremendous cut in our budget, including the board of education figures. I feel the commissioners are to be commended for the work they've done this year.

 "If we pass the budget we won't stop at that particular point, but will see what else we can do all along the line. I feel the essential thing is to pass the budget. I'm proud of the fact we came through 1932, and are started in 1933 the same way, although I make no promise for the future. I wish for a moratorium for interest on bonds. There are the bondholders on one side and the taxpayers on the other, and the man out of work to be considered.

We are in sympathy with the man out of work. I say let the federal or government put some money into to the interest rate. We must pass this budget this afternoon. Do not delay longer. This is not an arbitrary 10 stand on my part. I make a motion the budget now be passed."

City Clerk Frank S. Albright called the roll and all five commissioners voting 'unanimously. No demonstration followed passage of the measure.  

*Eugene Wasilewski referred to in this story was Eugene Waleskiewicz, who was later known as Eugene Wales.


Camden Courier-Post * June 1, 1932

Camden Courier-Post June 1, 1932


Camden Courier-Post June 8, 1932


Camden Courier-Post - June 3, 1933

Flinn Company Plans 50-Day Program of Renovizing Its Properties

More than $25,000 will be spent by one Camden real estate concern within the next 60 days in renovizing its properties in South Jersey.

"We are planning a program that should be a distinct help in the general real estate and business situation," declared William M. Flinn, head of the company bearing his name. "The real estate market is distinctly improving and with the money we will spend, we hope to make a real contribution to the betterment of the South Jersey field."

As an indication of the upturn in the real estate business, Flinn reported leasing 54 properties and selling six, as well as a sample renovized home at 167 Park Place, Audubon, In May.

In a recent talk over WCAM, Flinn, speaking on "What Inflation Means to Real Estate," declared:

"I unhesitatingly say buy real estate and buy it right now. Take your sound dollars and put them into the land. Never were ground values so low and never will they be so again. You have seen the effects of deflation; business devastated, financial institutions ruined, huge industries liquidated; but the land is still here. Just as its values were shrunken by deflation; just as its credit value was lost during the days of our distress, so will they rise by leaps and bounds during the era of inflation, and so will it again become our nation's greatest credit asset. Recognizing the need for the stabilization of real estate values, our president has inaugurated legislation that will inevitably bring this about.

"Your opportunity for the restoration of fallen fortune and the amassing of future wealth lies on the avenues you daily tread; the highway to success is plotted out and well marked through the land. You who have hidden yourselves in the cyclone cellars of rented apartments and houses, hear the clarion call of the dawn of a new day: a home."

Camden Courier-Post - June 4, 1933

Choral Group of 500 to Give 'Songfests' for Wiley Mission
Donald Redding to Direct Society; 5 Broadcasts Planned

Formation of the Camden Choral Broadcasting Society, to be com­posed of 500 or more voices, trained and directed by an internationally known choral leader, was announced Saturday by Rev. John S. Hackett, pastor of Wiley M. E. Church, 635 South Third Street, and founder and superintendent of Wiley Mission, in the old post office building at Third and Arch Streets.

The choral society will include singers from Camden, South Jersey and Philadelphia churches, and will make its debut on June 12 at the opening of a series of unusual "camp meetings" sponsored by Wiley Church.

Donald Redding, musical director of Bethany Presbyterian Church, of Philadelphia, the "Wanamaker Church," who presented an inter­church choir of nearly 600 at the Wiley Mission in Convention Hall on May 11, will have charge of the new choral society here.

Harold C. Lowden, noted church organist, composer and music publisher, has been invited to direct the instrumental music. The choral society will be augmented at times by the 75-piece inter-church band and by various church orchestras during broadcasts over WCAM.

The first rehearsal of the society will be held at 8 p. m., Thursday in Wiley Mission. The society will present five broadcasts for the benefit of Wiley Mission, over WCAM through the courtesy of WCAM officials. The broadcasts will be on June 16, June 19, June 23, June 26 and June 30.

The society will also sing each night at the "camp meetings" to be conducted in Wiley Mission. Instead of the meetings being held under can­vas, they will be conducted in the old mail sorting room of' the former post office building each night for the two weeks starting June 12.

Another departure in the usual proceedings of "camp meetings" has been announced by Reverend Hackett. Prominent laymen of Camden and South Jersey will speak each night instead of preachers.

The old mail sorting room, through which passed thousands of letters daily before the opening of the new federal building at Fourth and Market Streets, will be transformed into a sylvan bower with potted plants, shrubs and even trees scattered around, while overhead large electrical fans will supply plenty of breeze.

On June 24 the Choral Society, inter-church band, Rev. Hackett and the Wiley Broadcasters will hold an all-day rally in Alcyon Park. The Broadcasters will "reproduce" a radio program similar to those presented three times a week from Wiley Church. 

Camden Courier-Post - June 8, 1933

Elaborate Ceremonies Monday Night Will Be Open to Public

An elaborate Flag Day celebration to be open to the public and broadcast over the radio is planned by Camden Elks for Monday night.

Ceremonies will open at 7.30 p. m., in the lodge room, Seventh and Cooper Streets, with a musical program by the Elks Band, under direction of William H. Townsend. Presentation of the colors will be made by August F. Walters Chapter, Disabled American Veterans; Corp. Raymond C. Thoirs Post, American Legion, and Matthews-Purnell Post, Veterans of Foreign Wars.

The invocation will be made by the lodge chaplain, D. Truman Stackhouse. An altar service will be held by officers headed by James MacMillan, exalted ruler. An organ solo of "America" by Charles L. Bowen, solos by Charles T. Murray, Mrs. C. Richard Allen and Albert B. Poland, will feature the musical program.

The history of the flag will be given by George S. Dunkelberger, a senior member of the lodge and chairman of the Flag Day committee. The program will be broadcast over WCAM by courtesy of Rud Preisendanz Jr., past exalted ruler and lessee of the station.

Camden Courier-Post - June 12, 1933

ELKS TO OBSERVE FLAG DAY TONIGHTUniformed Veterans to Join Lodge Members in Colorful Ceremonies

Arrangements are completed for the Flag Day celebration to be held tonight by the Camden Elks Lodge Lodge at Seventh and Cooper Streets.

The program will open at 7.30 p.m. Doors of the lodge room will be opened to the public at 7:15 p. m. The program will be broadcast over WCAM.

The Elks Band, led by William H. Townsend, will open the ceremonies. Presentation of the colors will be made by uniformed units of the August F. Walters Chapter, Disabled American Veterans; Corporal Raymond C. Thoirs Post, American Legion; Matthews-Purnell Post, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and the lodge patrol.

D. T. Stackhouse, chaplain of the lodge, will make the invocation and an altar service will be held by James A. MacMillan, exalted ruler, and the other officers.

There will be musical selections by Charles L. Bowen, organist; Charles T. Murray, Albert B. Poland and Mrs. C. Richard Allen, vocalists.

George S. Dunkelberger, a senior member of the lodge, and chairman of the Flag Day committee, will give the history of the flag. A patriotic address will be given by Police Judge Garfield Pancoast, a past exalted ruler.

The radio program will be presented through courtesty of Rud Preisendanz Jr., past exalted ruler and lessee of the station. 

Camden Courier-Post - June 14, 1933

Wiley Mission to Broadcast "Indoor Camp Meeting" Event
Radio Equipment to Be Installed Today in Old Mail Sorting Room
of Former Federal Building for Special Service

Modern methods of communication will invade the former federal building at Third and Arch Streets today. From the structure where thousands of letters radiated daily, messages of Wiley Mission will be broadcast, starting at 4 p. m. tomorrow.

Equipment for broadcasting the "indoor camp meetings" of Wiley Mission will be placed in the old mail sorting room of the former federal building today, and when the all-day meeting is held at the mission to morrow, instead of at Wiley M. E. Church, the service at 4 p. m., will be broadcast over WCAM.

"Amy of Chinatown," internationally known character in church circles, who turned from a life of ease in glamorous New York's bit of the Orient, will inaugurate the new broadcasting locale of Wiley Mission and Wiley M. E. Church. The noted evangelist, lecturer and writer, who has been heard in Camden on numerous occasions, will begin a series of afternoon meetings at the mission today, in conjunction with the "indoor camp meetings" held nightly in the old post office building. 

The broadcasting equipment, Rev. John S. Hackett, superintendent of the mission and pastor of the church, said last night, is being installed only temporarily, and the radio activities of the mission and church will again be centered in the church building at 635 South Third Street as soon as the "indoor camp meetings" are over. 

Rev. Charles F. Ball, formerly of Dallas, Texas, and now pastor of Bethany Presbyterian Church, the "John Wanamaker Church" of Philadelphia, last night declared that persons who insisted the Bible is old fashioned are wrong. 

"You can read in one book of the Bible the same kind of stories that appear in the daily newspapers throughout the world today," he said. "If the Bible is so old-fashioned as some people try to tell us, why are modern newspapers patterned after it? 

"There are only two classes of people in the world, as far as the Bible is concerned. They are the righteous and the wicked," he said. "There is no halfway ground. Every person is in one of the two classes." 

Rev. Ball classified ministers today as "prophets of the New Testament," whose sole business "should be to pass on to the people of the land the teachings of Christianity, just as did the prophets of the Old Testament." 
Bernard Poland, who sang with Henri Scott, internationally known grand opera star; Donald Redding and Howard MacNeill at the Wiley Mission Jubilee in Convention Hall on May 11, led the singing and directed the inter-church choir at last night's meeting. Poland also sang several tenor solos. C. Harold Lowden, noted organist, composer and music publisher, was instrumentalist. 
Arthur N. Morris, prominent Philadelphia businessman and teacher of one of the largest Bible classes in Philadelphia, will speak tonight.

Camden Courier-Post - June 15, 1933

"Indoor Camp Meetings" Being Conducted at Mission in Old Post Office
Dinner in Marble Halls Will Cost Only 9 Cents t

A full meal of wholesome food, served at a neatly appointed table, in a setting of Venetian splendor with marbled walls-all for nine cents.

Visitors to Wiley Mission today when an all-day meeting will be held in the old post office building at Third and Arch Streets, will get "Two-dollar service in a million-dollar setting for nine cents at meal time," according to Rev. John S. Hackett, superintendent of the mission. 

Tables have been placed in the corridors of the old federal building and lunch and supper will be served.

"'We will give them plenty to eat, and good food, too," Rev. Hackett said, "and make about one cent profit on each meal." 

Giving a man a job is a blessing, not only to the man but to the community, and keeping him at work as long as possible is an act of Christianity, Arthur N. Morris, paper box manufacturer of Philadelphia, said last night in addressing the "indoor camp meeting" of Wiley Mission in the old post office building; 
Third and Arch Streets. 

Morris said business needs religion and religion needs business. He is 'teacher' of Bethany Bible class at Bethany Presbyterian Church, the "John Wanamaker church" of Philadelphia. Before the meeting started in the old mail sorting room, Morris was taken on a tour of inspection of the Mission by Rev. John S. Hackett, superintendent. He was so impressed with the work being accomplished that he volunteered to return and speak tonight when he learned Harry Van Hook, the "praying mayor" of Millville, would be unable to speak on account of illness. 

Morris will be accompanied tonight by members of his Bible class, the largest men's Bible class in Philadelphia. Sessions of the class are broadcast each Sunday from the church.

The first radio program ever broadcast from the old post office will go on the air at 4 p.m. today over WCAM. Equipment was installed yesterday. "Amy of Chinatown," noted evangelist will speak on the initial broadcast, and also at the Mission each afternoon during the series of "indoor camp meetings." An all-day meeting will be held at the Mission today with services at 10.30 a.m., 2.30 p.m., and 8 p.m., and the broadcast from 4 to 5 p.m. 

C. Harold Lowden, noted organist, will direct the "All-Nations Revue" tomorrow night when singers will appear in native costumes, and addresses will be made in several foreign languages.

Camden Courier-Post - June 16, 1933

Wiley Mission to Hold Colorful International Service Tonight
'All-Nation Revue' To Be Presented as Part of 'Indoor Camp Meetings'
in Old Federal Building; Program Will Be Broadcast

An evangelistic "League of Nations" will be held in Camden to night. The international gathering will take place in the old mail sorting room of the former federal building at Third and Arch streets, and will be sponsored by Wiley Mission. 

Speakers and singers of ten nationalities will participate in the program arranged by C. Harold Lowden, organist, composed and music publisher, for the "All-Nations Revue" to be presented as part of the "indoor camp meetings" now in progress at the mission. 

The nationalities will include German, Italian, Scotch, Greek, Chinese, African, Ukrainian, Polish, Slav and English. Some of the singers will appear in native costumes, and hymns will be sung in several languages. Brief addresses will be made by representatives of the various countries.

Program To Be Broadcast 

The program will he broadcast by WCAM over the new radio equipment installed in the mission yesterday. 

Rev. John S. Hackett, superintendent of the mission, and pastor of Wiley M. E. Church, last night said arrangements had been completed for broadcasting portions of the "indoor camp meetings" on Monday and Friday nights. 

Mrs. Amy Ungrae, known as "Amy of Chinatown," started the broadcasting service yesterday at the all-day meeting held in the mission. She spoke on "Faith." Mrs. Ungrae will speak each afternoon at the mission during the "indoor camp meetings." 

Arthur N. Morris, paper box manufacturer of Philadelphia, who spoke Tuesday night, spoke at the meeting last night. Morris teacher of the Wanamaker Bible class of Bethany Presbyterian Church, one of the largest men's Bible classes in Philadelphia. He was accompanied by a delegation from the Bible class.

Hackett Preaches Sunday 

Tomorrow night's program will be in charge of a delegation from the Philadelphia Highway Mission and Jail Workers. Rev. Hackett will preach Sunday night on "Open Sunday. vs. the Workingman."

The program for next week includes a "Welcome Back" night for postal workers of Camden, when they will be honored in the room where they handled thousands of letters daily before the federal offices were moved. Postmaster Charles Ellis has been invited to speak, and several quartets composed of clerks and carriers will sing. The oldest clerk and the oldest carrier will be honored.

Donald Redding, musical director of Bethany Presbyterian Church, and Bernard Poland, member of the National Male Quartet, are leading in the singing at the "camp meetings." Lowden is chief instrumentalist.

Camden Courier-Post - June 17, 1933

Part of Program Broadcast; Italians Extend Greetings


Europe was transferred to Third and Arch Streets last night, musically, vocally and spiritually, if not physically, when the "All-Nations Revue" was presented by C. Harold Lowden, noted Camden organist and composer, as one of the series of "indoor camp meetings" being conducted by Wiley Mission. 

The event was held in the old mail sorting room of the former federal building, and a portion of the program was broadcast over WCAM, utilizing the new broadcasting apparatus recently installed in the room converted into an auditorium. During the program, Rev. John S. Hackett, pastor of Wiley M. E. Church and founder and superintendent of the mission, 
announced receipt of a letter from the assistant secretary of the treasury department, in charge of public buildings, extending to Wiley Mission permission to use the old post office building for an other year. Use of the building was obtained through Congressman Charles A. Wolverton, he 

Prior to the broadcast, Rev. Ella Nace, Conshohocken, Pennsylvania,  spoke for the "camp meeting" portion of the program. Before the mission "went off the air," Rev. Nace sang a hymn in Pennsylvania. Dutch. 

Bernard Poland, a member of the National Male Quartet, and associate of Henri Scott in concert and operatic work, directed the singing and also sang a tenor solo. Greetings from the Italian residents of Camden were extended by Rev. A. M. Galloppi, pastor of Italian Baptist Christian Center. William Viehweg sang a German song. Mrs. Blanche Goodwin, colored, sang "Nothing Between," a typical Negro spiritual.

Brevity of the broadcast prevented the mission presenting all selections Lowden arranged. Plans for another "All-Nations Revue" will be made by Lowden. 

The large auditorium of the mission was filled with representatives of many nationalities, the largest crowd since the "Indoor camp meetings" started last Monday night. 

Tonight's program will be in charge of a delegation from the Philadelphia Highway Mission and Jail Workers. The delegation will be headed by a band. 
Tomorrow night Rev. Hackett will preach on "Open Sunday vs. the Working Man," as the climax to an all-day meeting which will be held in the church in the morning and afternoon, and at the old post office building in the evening. 

Monday night has been set aside for the postal workers when "Welcome Back" night will be held. The clerks and carriers will present their own program, and the oldest men in point of service in each branch will be honored. 

Camden Courier-Post - June 21, 1933

Race Street Pupils to Take Part in Today's Services at Old P.O.

Hymns of the Orient and America will be sung in Chinese and English tomorrow at the "Indoor camp meeting" of Wiley Mission, in connection with the all-day meeting scheduled to start at 10.30 a. m., in the old post office building at Third and Arch Streets. 

A group of Chinese children, led by Dr. Ko, pastor of the Chinese M. E. Church on Race Street, Philadelphia, will present the hymns in their native and adopted languages. They will sing during the afternoon service, when a portion of the program will be broadcast over WCAM from 4 to 5 p. m and again at night. 

Dr. Ko will preach at the morning and afternoon services. The Mission will serve its nine-cent meal in "a million dollar setting" tomorrow noon and again at night. 

Rev. Adam. L. Martin, colorful evangelist and pastor of Zion Simon M. E. Church, Eighteenth and Wharton Streets, Philadelphia, last night compared life to a baseball game. He likened the "at bats," "hits, "runs", "assists" and "errors" to milestones in the life of man. 

Rev. Martin has delivered his famous "baseball sermon" in many churches throughout the East. He announced a pageant that attracted thousands to Atlantic City when it was first presented in the Atlantic City Convention Hall and that will be presented at Wiley Mission in the near future. The pageant, "The White Throne" will be broadcast if arrangements can be made. Rev. John S. Hackett, pastor of Wiley M. E. Church, and superintendent of the mission, announced. 

Bernard Poland, operatic tenor, who was formerly associated with Henri Scott, internationally known star of the Metropolitan and Chicago Opera companies in several concert tours, led the singing last night and sang several solos. C. Harold Lowden, Camden composer and organist, was chief instrumentalist. 

Plans are being completed for the all-day rally and Sunday school picnic at Alcyon Park next Saturday, Rev. Hackett said. The inter-church band and a large choir composed of singers from many South Jersey churches will join with the Wiley Broadcasters in presented "mock broadcasts" in the afternoon and evening. 

Camden Courier-Post - June 21, 1933


"Why We Should Boost Camden County" is to be the title of a radio address by E. E. Shumaker, former president of the RCA Victor Company, at 2.10 p. m. today, from station WCAM.

The speech will be delivered by George B. Robeson, vice chairman of the Camden County Advisory Committee on Economy and Efficiency, in the absence of Shumaker, who is chairman of the committee. Robeson formerly was president, of the Camden County Real Estate Board which is sponsoring the series of weekly broadcasts in the interests of real estate advancement in 
Camden county. 

Camden Courier-Post - June 22, 1933

Woman Evangelist Describes 'Fishers of Men' at Wiley
Mission Continues Indoor Camp Meetings at Old Post Office, 
With Chinese Choir Singing Today and Picnic Saturday

Fishermen are made, not born, and there are too many small fish- and fishermen- in the world, declared Mrs. Amy Unruhe, evangelist known as Amy of Chinatown," in an address last night at the "Indoor Camp Meeting" of Wiley Mission

"There are thousands of men fishers," she said in her talk in the old mailing room of the former federal building, at Third and Arch Streets, where the meetings are being held nightly. "Some think if they get a certain kind of hat, gum boots that reach to the hips, and something on their hip, they can catch fish. 

"If fishermen were born, and not made, Jesus would not have said to two experienced fishermen, 'I will make thee fishers of men.' 

"No two fish are landed the same way. There is but one kind of hook. That is why we find Rev. John S. Hackett such a good fisher of men. He uses 
the only kind of hook that will draw fish- the Cross of Calvary." 

At the all-day meeting today, starting at 10.30 a.m., Dr. Ko, pastor of the Chinese M. E. Church, Race Street, Philadelphia, will speak. He will be accompanied to Camden by a group of Chinese children who will sing Oriental and English hymns in their native and adopted languages. A 
portion of the program at 4 p. m., will be broadcast over WCAM. The children will sing at the afternoon and evening services. 

Two large choirs will participate in tomorrow night's meeting. Richard Quick will direct the Tabernacle Baptist Choir, and a colored choir from Kaighn Avenue Baptist Church also will sing. The services will start at 8 p. m., and be broadcast from 9.30 to 10 p. m., by WCAM direct from the old 
post office building.

All arrangements have been completed for the picnic and all day rally at Alcyon Park on Saturday. The children of the Sunday School, led by John 
Dalameter, superintendent, will leave the mission at 9 a. m. in the afternoon Rev. Hackett, the Wiley Broadcasters, the inter-church band of 75 pieces, 
directed by William Quemore, and a large choir, directed by Donald Redding, will participate in the rally services.

Rev. Hackett and "Amy of Chinatown" will be the speakers. Mrs. Wallace Lee, registered nurse, will look after the health of the children. Mrs. Emma. 
E. Messick will be in charge of social activities. Miss Edna Griffith, director of religious education, will be in charge of the Italian section. 

Camden Courier-Post - June 23, 1933

A resolution was passed protesting an increase in power authorized by the federal government to Station WORC and WEPS, of Worcester, Mass. An increase to 1280 kilocycles and to 500 watts causes interference in broadcasting, from WCAM, the resolution pointed out. 

Another resolution was adopted by the commission clarifying to the federal government its position relative to responsibility as· to operation of WCAM. It was pointed out in the resolution that the mayor and city clerk had entered a supplemental agreement with the Broadcast Advertising Company, which leases the station from Camden. The government desired to establish that nothing be construed in the agreement which would relieve Camden from responsibility in operation of the station. 

Camden Courier-Post - June 29, 1933

Bridge Rail Foes Scored As 'Criminally Responsible'

The "finger of criminal responsibility" will be directed at those persons responsible for the delaying of high speed bridge rails on Camden Bridge if the delay continues! 

That was the threat made yesterday afternoon by Loyal D. Odhner, executive secretary of the Camden County Chamber of Commerce. He spoke in a radio program sponsored by the Camden County Real Estate Board over WCAM.

"Unaccountable and mysterious delays have held up the laying of bridge rails on Camden Bridge," Odhner said, "but those who are sponsoring the development are not unaware of the fact that if these delays continue, the finger of criminal responsibility will be placed against those causing the obstruction.

"Those responsible for the delays have cruelly and conscien­tiously deprived thousands of men of several years work at a time when it was needed more than at any other period in the nation's history.

"When the high speed line is under construction and the people of our own territory have awakened to the marvelous highway system radiating from the Airport Circle. which serves the new City of Camden County, we shall see an era of development- sound development- taking place in Camden county that will keep us abreast with the most progressive cities In America," added Odhner.

Camden Courier-Post - June 29, 1933

World Is 'Money Mad,' He Tells Indoor Camp Meeting

The, world is money-mad and the inhabitants are responsible for much of the unrest by being selfish, Mayor Joseph H. Van Meter, of Collings wood, said last night in an address at the "indoor camp meeting" of Wiley M. E. Mission, Third and Arch Streets.

"Success in life can be coupled only with the ability to help others," the mayor said, in his address delivered in the old mail sorting room of the former Federal building. "We are money-mad. We are selfish. We think only of ourself and not of the other fellow. Residents of Camden county are no different than other persons in the world," he said.

He cited the examples of the nation's great men- Lincoln, Washington and others- and said their success and greatness was due to their willingness to help others. He urged parents to see that children get the right start in life, for childhood habits are hard to change, he said.

After the program, Van Meter inspected the mission and commended Rev. John S. Hackett, pastor of Wiley M. E. Church, and founder and superintendent of the mission, for the humanitarian work the mission is accomplishing.

Mrs. Amy Unruhe, better known as "Amy of Chinatown," will preach her farewell sermon in the series of "indoor camp meetings" at 10:30 a. m., today when the all-day meeting opens in the old post office building. Rev. Harry Magonigal, blind gospel singer and evangelist, will talk tonight.

Frank Dippell, head of the Brotherhood Mission of Philadelphia, will speak at the afternoon service and 60 Italian children who are attending the Wiley daily vacation Bible school will be on the radio program broadcast by WCAM at 4 p. m.

Mayor Harry F. Van Hook, the “praying executive" of Millville, will be the speaker tomorrow night. His topic will be "Service“. The Boy Scout band of Millville will present a concert in the Mission Monday night.

Broadcast Schedule
Camden Courier-Post - August 11, 1934

10.30 a.m.-Lucky Dollar Morning Shopper.

2:00 p.m.-Lucky Dollar Club.

3.00 p.m.-Correct Time.

4:00 p.m.- Weather Report: Lucky Dollar Encore.

4.30 p.m. Victoria Amusement Period.

9:00 p.m. Donald’s Sally, Irene & Mary

9:30 p.m. Harry Rose and His Dance Band.            

10.00 p.m. Life Tone Concert-Orchestra.

10.15 p.m. Tex program ..

10:30 p.m. Globe Dance Band.

11:00 p.m.-Lester's Sport Revue.

11:15 p.m.-Theatre news.       

11:30 p.m.-Lucky Dollar Night Club.

Camden Courier-Post * February 20, 1936

National Puzzlers to Hold Semi-Annual Session Here
Amateur Creators of Brain Twisters Open Three-Day Conclave Tomorrow;
Mrs. Kobus To Greet Delegates on Arrival

 Puzzledom, that world of crypto-grams, psychology and pseudonyms, will have its capital in Camden beginning and continuing through Sunday. It will be the 105th semi-annual convention of the National Puzzlers' League, Inc.

Back in 1926, sesquicentennial year of American Independence, the puzzlers held their 86th semi-annual convention here. The fact Joseph Kobus, retired Broadway merchant, is a charter member of the organization, founded in 1883, and that his wife, City Commissioner Mary W. Kobus, is now first vice president, may have had something to do with the selection of Camden for both gatherings. Mrs. Kobus was president in 1929.

Close to 100 members, from all sections of the country east of the Mississippi, are expected. Convention headquarters are to be in the Walt Whitman Hotel. The member-ship includes, besides amateur puzzle creators, affiliated with regional puzzlers' clubs, many of the best known contributors of puzzle ideas to magazines and newspapers.

Have Pseudo Names in puzzledom each is known by a pseudonmy, self-chosen. Mrs. Kobus, for instance, is H. S. Law, which is a reverse spelling of her name before marriage, Walsh. Commissioner Kobus- beg pardon, H. S. Law- is chairman of the reception committee which will welcome members as they arrive tomorrow afternoon and night. Many attractive entertainment features will be crowded into the two-day session.

On the convention program for Saturday morning is a meeting of the organization's board of trustees. Then, following a scenic automobile trip, the opening session of the convention will be held from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM. A theatre party and a banquet will conclude the day's activities.

Features of Sunday's program, after breakfast and church services, will be a puzzle broadcast from Station WCAM at 11:00 AM, the closing session of the convention in the afternoon, to be followed by award of a cup to the winner of a puzzle contest.

WPA Band to Play

Sunday evening there will be a meeting of the MMM, Minute Men of Mystery, an organization within the league, followed by a dinner and "surprises". The  WPA leisure time band, directed by Joseph Fuhrman, will give a musical program at the hotel for the benefit of the visitors Saturday night.

"It has been generally agreed by discerning critics that Puzzledom, as we know it, received a big upward life toward a higher and better organized plane by reason of a historic meeting here in 1926," Mrs. Kobus said, "and we hope the coming session win prove just as brilliant." Other officers of the league are: Charles Jacobsen (Oedipus), of Whitestone NY, president; Paul E. Thompson (Blackstone), Cleveland Heights OH, second vice president; Lewis Trent (C. Saw), New York NY, secretary; John Q. Boyer (Primrose), Baltimore MD, treasurer; Rufus T. Strohm (Arty Ess), Scranton PA, official editor, and J. H. Wickham (Wick  O'Cincy), Cincinnati OH, Ohio trustee.


Firmin Michel

Rud Priesendanz Jr.

John J. Crean

Clarence Moulette

George E. Brunner

Frank J. Hartmann Jr.

Frederick von Nieda

Harold W. Bennett

Federal Street

Camden Courier-Post
February 5, 1938

Camden Courier-Post - February 5, 1938


The Pitman Quartet will sing tomorrow afternoon at services in Wiley Tabernacle, 30 North Third Street, according to Rev. John S. Hackett, superintendent.

The quartet will sing at radio services beginning at 3.30 p. m. over WCAM. Services will be in charge of Rev. Hackett. The Wiley Broadcasters will be in charge of services at night at Wesley M. E. Church, Bridgeton, of which Rev. Edgar A. Robinson is pastor.

Miss Virginia J. Hackett, daughter of Rev. Hackett, will conduct radio services for shut-ins at 2 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Mrs. Maryetta Hackett Gilmore, another daughter, will have charge of young people's services at 8 p. m. Monday. Rev. Hackett will direct one-hour services over radio at 2 p. m. Tues day and Thursday. The final radio service of the week will be held at 9.30 p. m. Friday .

Camden Courier-Post - February 14, 1938

Race Relations Committee of Camden Y. W. C. A.
Plans Extensive Program for Week; Mrs. Harold Bennett to Broadcast


THE committee on race relations of the Camden Young Women's Christian Association, whose endeavor it is to promote greater understanding between the races, is participating in the nation-wide celebration of Negro History Week now in progress.

The committee is sponsoring an extensive program covering both the youth and adult membership and including three broadcasts. Today, Mrs. Harold W. Bennett, of this city, will speak over Station WCAM at 2.15 on "Race Relations and Good Neighbors." On Wednesday, Mrs. Wilda Townsend will broadcast over the same station at 2.30 on "Contributions of the Negro to the Culture of America." A recital will be given over WCAM at 2.30 on Friday by James Marshall Wheeler, pianist, and Lawrence Lawson, tenor.

Following a short business meeting of the board of directors of the Camden Association tonight in the headquarters, Miss Marjorie Penney, executive secretary of the Young People's Interracial Fellowship of Philadelphia, will speak.

Girl Reserves have been invited en masse to a meeting on Thursday night in the headquarters, to hear Allan Freelon, one of the nation's leading artists, and supervisor of art in the Negro schools, of Philadelphia. Mr. Freelon, who will speak at eight o'clock, will also exhibit some of his work.

The Frances Harper branch committee of management will be piloted by the following new officers for 1938: Mrs. C. T. Branch, chairman; Mrs. Sadie Wright, vice chairman; Mrs. Howard Primas, secretary; Mrs. Louis Smith, assistant secretary. Dr. M. O. Lee will speak on "The Makers of Negro History". next week before the Phyllis Wheatly Club of the branch..

Camden Courier-Post - February 19, 1938

First Methodist Episcopal Church - Wiley Methodist Episcopal Church - Rev. John S. Hackett

Camden Courier-Post - February 19, 1938

George Brunner

Camden Courier-Post
February 24, 1938

Hotel Walt Whitman
Camden Lions Club
Dr. Charles H. Sullivan
Harry A. Moran
Harold P. Nutter

Camden Courier-Post * February 24, 1938

WCAM - George E. Brunner - Bartholomew A. Sheehan - Aaron Heine - Sidney Shur - Cam, Inc.

Camden Courier-Post - August 15, 1945


A chorus of nearly 40 voices recruited among children from Camden's playgrounds will make their first public appearance on a 15-minute radio program on station WCAM tomorrow at 2.15 p. m.

Commissioner Gotshalk, director of parks and public property, announced the broadcast. It will be sponsored by a local merchant. The chorus has been trained by Miss Nettie Randazzo and Miss Lillian Fowler. Arthur E. Moor, playground director, said music is a new feature of the playground program this year.

The chorus includes:

Barbara Anderson, Florence Koch, Frances Spychola, William Smith, Jean Hamilton, Geneva Terlingo, Mary D'Ambrosio, Doris Eimer, Alice Murphy, Charles Dyer, Jean Pease, Kathleen Turner, Beverley Morris, Claire Fisher, Cecilia Egger, Lorraine Walker, Shirley Rutherford, Joyce Johnson, Rush Seymore.

Also Irma Weber, Mary Farrel, Shirley Cusick, Janet Roselli, Clara Simkins, Vincent Prassinski, Dolores Allenback, Betty Hughes, Elizabeth Casey, Barbara Farrell, Clementine Flamini, Rita LaMorra, Esther Lane, Mildred Hill, Joan Byron, Franklyn Clark, Patricia Doran, Mary Stanton, Carmella Iaconelli and Loretta Vitarelli.



Camden Courier-Post - May 19, 1964

This abandoned building in Pyne Poynt Park was for many years the site of the transmitter for radio station WCAM.

Photo taken during the summer of 2003