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Welcome to the WCSC Radio tribute site!

Have any WCSC Radio photos, airchecks, jingles, promotional items, info or stories to share?
E-mail the curator. Thanks!

   

What's New

February 16, 2014 Added the news report of WCSC's debut to "Brief History" section of the Home Page, and photos to Photo Page 1, courtesy Margaret Hamby.

December 29, 2013 Added several new photos to Photo Page 1, thanks to Helen Stone Moore and Ken Nash.

September 2, 2013 WCSC Radio's final jingle package, TM's "Count On Us" has been added here.

January 25, 2011 We've added airchecks ("The Saga of Rock Charles") and other WCSC audio from 1976-1977, courtesy Robert "St. John" Wermuth.

August 15, 2010 Thanks to Rob Braddock for the two 1980 newspaper graphics that have been placed on Photo Page 3.

May 31, 2010 Two new pics have been added to Photo Page 3.

February 17, 2010 We've added a Google Custom Search box to the Home Page to let you easily search this site as well as our other radio tribute sites at once.

January 11, 2010 Our appreciation to Jackson Douglas for sending us several classic WCSC graphics, now gracing this page like the one below:

November 28, 2009 Thanks to Madeleine Thomas for the additional images added to Photo Page 3.

August 3, 2009 More pictures were added to Photo Page 3. We also updated "A Brief History of WCSC Radio" (below).

January 3, 2009 We've added 1976 aircheck and promo audio from Scott Ashley, courtesy Scott's real-life counterpart, Gerry Cunningham.

December 15, 2008 Even more mid-70s CSC shots from Robert Braddock have been posted here.

December 8, 2008 More photos have arrived -- this time from Robert Braddock. Check out another brand spankin' new page of 1970s WCSC and WXTC pics.

December 2, 2008 Thanks to Jim Bradley, we've added a 1979 WCSC audio composite, plus a solo Jim Bradley aircheck from the Summer of 1980.

November 28, 2008 Check out our new photo page with pictures from Jim Bradley, plus our beefed-up DJs page.

A Brief History of WCSC Radio

WCSC-AM was Charleston, South Carolina's first radio station, signing on the air in 1930 at 1310 kHz, later switching to 1360. In 1941 the station's frequency was changed to 1390. (For many years the station used the slogan "1390 since 1930" but that wasn't quite accurate.) For decades, WCSC was an affiliate of the CBS Radio Network. WCSC's original owner was Jordan & Burk Broadcasting.

1930 Newspaper Article Announcing the Debut of WCSC Radio
See the original article

WCSC Goes on Air at 7 P.M.
With Formal Opening Program

Charleston's radio fans will be standing by Thursday night awaiting the dedication program of the local station WCSC which formally beings its regular service on the air after weeks of construction and preparations. The initial program, which is under the auspices of the city, will feature music by the Charleston High School orchestra directed by G. Theo Wichmann and a short address by Mayor Thomas P. Stoney during the first hour, beginning at 7 o'clock and promptly at 8 o'clock the Society for the Preservation of Spirituals will render a program which will make the first time that this famous organization of singers of plantation religious folk songs has ever rendered a radio broadcast. From then on WCSC will be on regular service nightly.

The frequency of the Charleston station is on the 1310 kilocycle band and its receptions has been excellent as has been testified by the numerous congratulatory messages received during its test programs of the past two weeks.

The studios of the station are location on the mezzanine floor of the Francis Mario hotel and the transmitter at St. Andrew's parish. There are numerous outlet connections which will be operated by remote control for the rendering of programs from various halls and other places about the cities where such intended for broadcasting will originate.

Fred Jordan and Capt. Lewis Burk are associated in the ownership of the station under the name of Jordan & Burk Broadcasting. R. E. Mitchell, formerly connected with WJAX at Jacksonville has been named as program manager; Edward F. Ogilvie, engineer; and E. W. Hinton, continuity expert.

In 1937, John M. Rivers joined WCSC-AM radio as president of the South Carolina Broadcasting Company, the licenser of WCSC. In 1938, he became president and manager of WCSC Radio. Rivers purchased the station in 1944.

In 1948, WCSC-FM (later WXTC-FM) went on the air; in June of 1953, WCSC-TV, the first VHF television station in South Carolina, became operational. Rivers became chairman of the board of WCSC, Inc., in 1973.

In the 1950s and '60s, WCSC Radio's format could best be described as MOR ("Middle Of the Road"). There was a switch to Top 40 in the early 1970s as WCSC tried to compete head-to-head with long-time Top 40 leader WTMA. In the early '80s WCSC's format morphed into an Adult Contemporary presentation with a full-service approach. In 1983, it became Charleston's only AM stereo station.

By the time the Rivers family sold the station in 1987, the station had switched to all-oldies supplemented by sports and talk shows (like Tom Snyder's ABC offering). WCSC-TV was sold to Crump Communications at that time, and kept the WCSC call letters. WCSC-AM and WXTC-FM were sold to New York's Ralph Guild (of national ad representative "McGavren Guild" fame). WCSC Radio became WXTC-AM.

Later call letters for 1390 in Charleston included WZKG (June 12, 1989) and WCSE (January 13, 1990). 1390's calls eventually returned to WXTC (August 19, 1991) and for many years the station had a black gospel format. Owners included Wicks Broadcasting, Citadel Broadcasting and Apex Broadcasting.
 

From the June 11, 2007 edition of RBR
Citadel swaps out an AM
Here's one that's a bit on the unusual side. Citadel Broadcasting is doing a two market cash/swap deal with the Pearce family's Apex Broadcasting, but it only involves one radio station. Apex will get WXTC-AM Charleston SC, adding it to its three area FMs, WAVF-FM, WXST-FM & WIHB-FM. What does Citadel get in return? A tower in Tuscaloosa AL, where it also owns a two-AM, four-FM cluster. Apex will also pay 70K cash. Citadel will remain with a strong presence in Charleston, with WMGL-FM, WNKT-FM, WSSX-FM, WSUY-FM, WTMA-AM, WWWZ-FM.

In early 2009 WXTC jettisoned gospel music for a classic soul format.

On June 16, 2009 the call letters were changed to WSPO and the format became all-sports. In 2012 the station adopted an "all tourist information" format.

The station operates with a power of 5000 watts non-directional day, 5000 watts directional night. Studios are East of the Cooper on Clements Ferry Road. The transmitter is on Orange Branch Road in the West Ashley area.

The above time-lapse video shows the 2009 removal of the 1390 tower built in 1947.

 

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