My visit to the Fred Hammond (VE3HC (silent key)) Radio Museum June
Guelph, Ontario Canada
This is the largest collection of old
radios and vintage electronics that
I have ever seen.
Really brought back memories for
me. I'm not all that old myself: born
in 1953, but I do remember some of
the old electronics (ie the large
cylindrical dry batteries) and on
our farm ..when I was about 4 years
old..I used to listen to an old
Gramaphone with the 78 rpm
records. We did not have an
indoor toilet on the farm in Bells
Corners (near Ottawa). I can
remember using the 2 hole
outhouse on the farm. I can
remember the big barrel under the
sink to catch the dish water!
These old radios date back in time.
These were the golden years of
radio. Radio was the chief and only
means of receiving electronic
Transmitting radio waves was
done using vacuum tube
transmitters. Ham Radio (Amateur
Radio) operators were the
pioneers of the day when it came
to radio. Often, hams would build
their own radios from scratch. I
can remember hearing stories of
these hams and short wave
listeners and crystal set listeners.
They would speak of following
around the hydro crews to collect
scrap pieces of wire that were
dropped or walking railway tracks
looking for gelena for crystals to
make their crystal sets.
the official site for the Hammond
Museum. You can find it with google.
Emmerson Radio, Atwater Kent, RCA, Marconi, Collins are some of the big exhibits of radios and electronics on
display at the Hammond Museum. Their web site is easy to find with a search engine and they have a map to show
the location. It is in Southern Ontario..not all that far from the border crossing at Detroit Michigan or Niagra Falls
NY. I was down in Guelph taking my dog Finnigan to the Animal Hospital/College in 2008 and I visited the Museum
twice during my stay. I wish now, that I had taken many more pictures and movie clips (and NOTES!!)
Not too many solid state devices ..how about the word "hollow state!!" a
slang nick name for vacuum tubes. Also called "fire bottles".
You might think that tubes are antiques and not manufactured any more..
WRONG!! I went to a MUSIC Show a couple of years ago and bought a brand
new Guitar Amplifier and it uses 2 of the classic vacuum tubes 6L6! There is
still a market amoung audio people for tube equipment. Some will tell you
there is no way that solid state equipment can produce the warm and full
sound that tube equipment can produce. It may actually be true!! Sound is
not just fundamental audio frequency but it is a mix of harmonics and
perhaps some unique rich controlled fading or fall offs of certain
The display room is huge. I have never seen this amount of old
radio gear all in one place in such a large space. There are many
radios. I may write the Hammond people and get more details on
specific number of pieces. When I get some figures..I will publish
this article is just being written March 22, 2011.