Charles Francis Jenkins

Talk of the Town: Just Talk: Historic Richmond/Wayne County: Charles Francis Jenkins
By Al McGilvray on Wednesday, April 05, 2000 - 09:27 pm: Edit Post

On April 7, 1927, Charles Francis Jenkins of Richmond, Indiana produced the first three-city television broadcast between Washington, DC; New York City; and a lab in New Jersey. Secretary of Commerce Herbert Hoover was on the inaugural broadcast. His station W3XK, also produced the first children's show on 11/6/1931, hosted by Bernard H. Paul and his puppets. His system was based on the Nipkow Spinning Disc Mechanical TV system. When he went bankrupt, his assets were purchased by David Sarnoff of RCA for the soon-to-be started NBC television network.


By Richard Jay (Rgjay) on Wednesday, August 23, 2000 - 07:20 pm: Edit Post

I had the privilege of meeting C. Francis Jenkins when I was in grade school. He flew in to Richmond in his single engine plane and my class mate, Joe Jenkins, and his parents took me out to the airport to meet him. He offered to take Joe and me for a plane ride but Joe's mother was too concerned for our safety to let us go. C. Francis gave Joe one of his first TVs but of course it didn't work as the closest TV station was at Purdue Univ which was too far away to be received in Richmond. We would turn it on anyway just to see the scanner spin but all the neighbors complained as it fouled up radio reception for blocks around.
Fond memories.
Dick Jay, now of Simi Valley, Calif.


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