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KFWV signed on the air for the first time on October 12, 1925 and it was owned by Wilbur Jerman, Inc. KFWV's first studio location was in the home of Wilbur Jerman at what is now 2025 SE 58th Avenue. From September 1926 to March 1927, KFWV was located at The Sovereign Hotel at what is now 1207 SW Broadway. In March of 1927, they moved to five suites at The Broadway Theatre Building at what is now 622 SW Salmon Street where the station used "The Voice of Broadway" as their air slogan.

On June 24, 1927, what had been known as KFWV became KWJJ, which was named for Wilbur Jeffrey Jerman, President of the station as well as technical adviser and operator. He operated the station with his partner John C. Egan, Station Manager & Secretary-Treasurer. The "Federal Radio Commission" was beginning to grant requested call letters.  Before this, the FRC, later known as the FCC, would sequentially assign most call letters to new stations which  had no significance.

 

John C. Egan, Station Manager & Secretary-Treasurer is seen is this photo on the right at the KWJJ Studio Building at 1011 SW 6th Avenue.  KWJJ had moved to this building in 1941.

 

KWJJ moved into the KWJJ Building in April 1941 and remained there until they moved to the Wilcox Mansion on Halloween, October 31, 1957. KPRA, KWJJ’s FM station, was housed in the building as well. After the KGW-KEX studio’s 3-alarm fire on September 23, 1943, KGW and KEX moved from the Oregonian Building to the KWJJ Building where they stayed for a number of years. When they moved out, KWJJ’s next owner, Rod Johnson, operated Rex Recording in the KWJJ Building beginning in 1952.

 

Sammy Taylor was one of Portland’s most well known radio personalities in the 40s and 50s and he was known for his many live remote broadcasts.

 

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Earl Mossman, the “Mayor of Broadway”, was a guest on the Sammy Taylor Show.

 

An unidentified announcer at KWJJ in 1944 at the KWJJ Studio Building.

Specializing in sports broadcasts, KWJJ also had numerous religious programs. As early as 1947, KWJJ's nickname was “JJ”. Later, KWJJ featured Popular Music when DJ Sammy Taylor was playing songs like "Rock Around The Clock" by Bill Haley & His Comets in 1955.  KWJJ became Portland's ABC station on April 1, 1959 when KGW Radio went independent, (KGW had first dropped NBC for ABC on December 17, 1956.  NBC then moved to KGON 1520). When KWJJ joined the ABC Network, they featured "Don McNeil's Breakfast Club" & "Paul Harvey News & Comment". KWJJ changed it's format to Country & Western on March 1, 1965.

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Last updated 10-23-10

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