Spence Caldwell


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The soccer collection. 

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Of The Pioneers of Selkirk communications. 

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The following interview with Spence Caldwell was recorded in January 1978 by. 

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Spence, Caldwell here. 



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I’m going to take Meisner. 

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And he asked me to explain to this tape how I got into the. 

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Broadcasting business. 

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As a young fellow, a boy in Winnipeg. 

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I went to tell Kelvin technical. 

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School for manual training. 

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And they also had an electrical course there, which there was number electronics in those days. There was no tubes, there was no solid-state, nothing. 

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During your age. 

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Away we we our main thing was motors and Transformers and stuff like that. 

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But anyway, I liked it very much and I got to be so that I was an assistant to the teacher. 

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And if he had to leave for any reason, I’d take the class over. 

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And boy, I thought. 

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I was. 

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A big shot. 

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Well, this got me very, very interested in radio. 

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And and. 

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When I was through school, I was my father was with Eatons, and I knew a lot of the management there that he played pool with and they asked me to join a department that they were just opening called the Radio Department. 

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It was just a circle alongside the musical instrument department. 

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Long before LV, Salton, or any of those people were with them, Ernie Strun was there in charge of the repairs department, and on this, and I would go in and we were selling 22 double cotton covered wire and crystals and detectors and binding posts and stuff like that. And I had made a crystal set in a walnut. 

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Shell and got. 

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First prize for my age group or something like that and I thought that was pretty big stuff, so I started to make crystal sets and supply them to my family friends and sell them to them out of my father smoked cigars and we had lots of vents and had just cigar boxes and I used to plan those down and sand them and varnish them and then make a crystal set. 

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And I take it over and put up an antenna and install it in their homes. 

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And God everyone thought I was a genius because I could get. 

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KO, a Denver and KSL Salt Lake City and WBZ and Boston, let me just interrupt it there for a second pass because there. 

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A lot of people who. 

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I hope we’ll ultimately read some of this material that we’re talking about today. 

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We probably don’t even know what the Crystal said was. 

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Because that’s going back further length of time. 

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Talk about the crystals. 

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At the moment, you know well, people today think of radio as being full of transistors and a few years ago it. 

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Was full of. 

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Yeah, but back in the days. 

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Well, this was before the two was developed. 

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By Marconi and I have some of the old tubes where they just had a filament in the plate and then it was a great day when they developed the grid and the grid was used to modulate it. 

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So this was before the tubes were on the market. 

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And the only way that you would get the conversion from radio frequency to audio frequency was through a detector which was they had a tube eventually for it, but this was a little gleaner crystal and you’d take and it had a an arm coming out with a little wire on the end and you. 

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Get your earphones on and you have your antenna and your ground connect and it’s very important to have a long antenna in those days and then you would pick up this little crystal until you got this signal or even static. 

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And then after you knew it, you had a good spot on the crystal. 

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Then you would take these knobs and the knob on your left. 

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Had each one of the binding posts was ten turns of the coil. 

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And then the one on your right was one turn or the vernier tuner as we called it, right? 

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So we turned the left knob around till you got a little signal in the background and then you turn the right one around until you got that in good and loud. 

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This coil that you speak of is our. 

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Was often an ordinary, but slightly old-fashioned. 

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Today round salt box. 

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Well, it was actually. 

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John replied your words. 

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I started to use smaller ones and I used the the inside of the toilet paper and or if I got I like to get those. 

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Tubes that they put maps in. 

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And drawings and photographs for mailing. 

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And those were the best of all. 

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They were the right side, the Quaker Oats and those other cartoons. 

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When you made, as Crystal said in those, you usually mounted the crystal on the top of the box and you had a paper clip that went down the side to other paper clips and the windings was below that and you turn the top of the box around to tune it and his crystal around the top. 

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You’d built the whole set of. 

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Out of. 

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Quaker Oats box it wasn’t a box, it was a carton like an ice cream carton. 

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You must remember that this was very, very elementary. 

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And then that was the beginning. 

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And then from then on, we started to add condensers. 

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Variable condensers. Great invention. 

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And we put variable condensers so we could tune it better. 

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And then of course, after the war and the men came back, they were all talking. 

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And this is. 

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You know Jim Taylor and Hugh Pearson came back talking about how they had tubes in the in the English Marconi sets. 

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It was the First World War. 

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Yes, this is the first world. 

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God, yes, and and so. 

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Then the the northern electric brought out a peanut tube. 

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We call it, and it looks something like a peanut. 

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And everybody was so proud of the tubes. 

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They mounted them on the front of the sets instead of inside. 

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They’d have mold here where you could see there was a boy. 

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This guy must be rich. 

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He’s got tubes in his radio. 

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And so then when tubes came along and then? 

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Marconi and General Electric formed the radial valve company and start to make the two elevens and two 10’s, and that at the radial valve company which was in Toronto and was half owned by General Electric and half by Marconi and. 

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Then out came the Atwater Kent breadboard set, which was spread on a board all over, and condensers here and knobs, tuning knobs and the tubes up there shining away. 

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And of course, long came the batteries, because no one had found how to make a tube work on AC current. 

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So you had to have. 

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Three batteries for each set. There was the a battery which supplied the current to the filament. There was the C battery, which was about 7 1/2 volts, which would energize the grid. And then there was the B batteries. 

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Which were the great big ones, which supplied usually about 90 volts. You could buy two of these 45 Volt batteries and connect them up in series, and that would give you 90 volts on the plate of the two. 

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It wasn’t till Ted Rogers developed the AC tube that we were able to plug the radio sets in with the current up to that time, they. 

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Were all battery. 

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That was 1925. It was introduced for the first time at the CNE. Yes, yeah. 

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And this is how RB’s got their CFRB got their initials RB because it was owned by Ted Rogers and this firm was Rogers Battery list. That’s right. 

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And sure, I knew Ted Rogers very well. 

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I worked with Rogers Majestic, but he died shortly afterwards. 

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But that was one of the greatest inventions of finding how they could filter out the hum that you had in the AC current. 

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And he found a way of filling it out. 

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And and and transforming. 

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Or converting the AC to. 

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To get your AB and C currents. 

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That’s Ted Rogers and quite properly, is credited with having being a. 

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An inventor of of considerable stature in the evolution of radio broadcasting. 

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And of course, we all take the. 

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Normal Canadian viewpoint and have a lot of pride in the fact that if the Canadian. 

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Had done it. 

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But one very seldom ever hears anything about another famous Canadian by the name of Pleasanton. 

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Oh yeah. 

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What do you know faster than Japan? 

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Not very much. 

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I know that that. 

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He invented all kinds of things as a matter of fact, I’ve heard when I in my Coney days I’ve heard people say, oh, don’t give me that BS about my Coney inventing radio was pressing them. 

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And then and if there was and and and Baird, of course was credited, another fellow from England that. 

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Was credited with her was working in England, credited with invention of TV. 

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When you used to have. 

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A spinning disc, yes, yes. 

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Well, getting back to the to Eatons. 

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I was with Eatons on this counter for a number of. 

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Oh, it seemed like a long time at the time, but I imagine it was only about a year and. 

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I knew all of the executives of Eatons and and my family were eating people. 

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And although my father had just, he had a heart attack, and so he had retired and Eatons were very good to him. 

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And we loved Eatons the whole family, and I knew everybody from John David 1st and 1st and John and Lady Eaton right down to all of the kids of of the John and and Sydney and the rest of them. 

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But anyway. 

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In those days in the department store, there would be a manager of a department and then there would be kind of a manager over him who had several departments. 

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Well, there was a Mr. 

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Cunningham that was very good to me and very friendly with me came up to me one day. 

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And he said that. 

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How would you like to go down to Minneapolis this weekend and spell me off in the driving? 

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So I said sure, I’d loved it. 

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So I went off with him. 

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There was a reason why he took me a line because he took a girl from the store along and but anyway I had a chance to talk with him and going down and coming back and he. 

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Said that, if you leave eaten, he said. 

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I’m going. 

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This isn’t generally known, but I’m leaving Eatons to go to the Hudson Bay Company because they’re building this new, beautiful, multimillion dollar store on Portage Ave. 

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and moving out of their old red brick building down by the Union Station on Main Street. 

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A lot of people won’t believe me that. 

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That Hudson Bay had a store there, but I know because of all of us young fellas stayed in the. 

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Store for three. 

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Weeks knocked the walls out and built chutes, and we’d let the these carts that they took merchandise slide right down the shooting into the trucks to move over, and I didn’t leave the store for about 3 weeks while we were moving. 

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Well, anyway, this fellow said that he was going to debate, and if I would go over, he would double my salary and make me manager of the department and brought you up for $10 a week and it would be very close to that. So anyway. 

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Well, I went with the the the Bay and of course the reason I was the manager. 

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I was the only one there and. 

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But in the mean time, the tube in Iraq. 

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And Victor wasn’t called RCA in those days. It was Victor and his Masters voice I brought out what they called, and I’ll never forget as long as they’ve called the RE 45. 

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This is a great big cabinet with doors on it and a big speaker in it, and it was the first time. 

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You had electronic amplification of sound. 

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Up in that time, when you play up to that time when you played records, you just had a horn. 

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And a little of. 

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Plastic or mica? 

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Disc with the mechanical thing that went up and vibrated this distance, amplified it and went through the horn and came out of great Big Horn. 

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This is how you listened to records in the early days. 

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Now this was all in the cabinet. 

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No horn. 

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And you had a tone control and this was absolutely something under this world had a tone. 

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Control and a volume control too that you can make it as loud as you want it or take it down to a whisper. 

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No radio in it, just an electronic amplification of recorded sounds. So these things sold for $375 and they sold like Hot Cakes, couldn’t get them faster. 

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And so. 

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The Radio Department in the Hudson Bay grew from me to 85 people at the time of I left. They also had turned over to me the music department. 

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And I had to and we had sheet music. 

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All musical instruments, ukuleles, banjos and violins, and all the rest of it. 

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And we had a great big record department because there was this center booth of the thing where you’d go and get your records. 

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But in those days, you never bought a record without listening to it, right? 

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So they didn’t come wrapped in cellophane. 

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They just handed it to you in an. 

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In a shirt. 

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There an envelope and you’d go up to one of these rooms and put it in and you tell you back. 

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I said no, I don’t like it and you’d give it back the girl, take another one, and you’d go through these latest releases until you found a couple of records you want and you’d pay your 55 cents or whatever they were at that time. 

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I think before I left I got up to the enormous price of 75. 

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Cents and. 

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So I was with the Hudson Bay Company and things were going pretty good. 

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Found that most of the managers in Hudson Bay from eating with them and talking to them, they’re all getting a lot more money than I would. 

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So I went to the management and. 

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Ask for a raise. 

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And they said, oh, no, no, no. You can’t ever raise your own in 21 years older, 20 years older, you’ll get big money. And so I said, well, I. 

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I’m not going to stay here unless you pay me the same as you’re paying other department managers that do the same volume of business as I do and. 

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I don’t know anything in the rule book or anything that in in business where they say that your age is a factor. 

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And unless you’re 65 or you know you’re an old man, but not when you’re a young man. 

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And and therefore if I can make more money than somebody 40. 

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I should get more money at 21 or whatever age I was at the. 

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Time and if if. 

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And if you. 

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Won’t give me more money. 

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Then I’m going to resign as manager and sign up the next day as a Commission salesman. 

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And I think by then I was getting $75 a week as manager and the first week I was out on Commission, my check was $268 and it kept growing up and I was making more money than the President of that. They were horrified at this money, but I knew how to. 

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Good morning. 

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Sell this step. 

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And I knew how it worked and I’d go out and and I’d put up an antenna for them. 

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And of course, the young ladies in the department of a customer came along and asked them about radios and wanted to buy an Rs. 

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45 they say, well, we’ve got a real expert on the staff here who will go out to your house and advise you what time of an antenna to put up and where to put the radio and how to get you. 

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Ground connections and he’s a real genius at this. 

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Why don’t you give me your name and address and phone number and I’ll have them phone you. 

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Make an appointment, go to your house and see you. 

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And of course I. 

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Would make you have quite a. 

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Few things going for you. 

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These were girls I had given shopping passes too late, passes and everything else in the department with my signature, and then they they were trying to pay me back for all the kindness. 

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Good, it’s 850. 

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I had so. 

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Worked at at the Hudsons Bay Company on Commission and made an awful lot of money and bought cars and did everything and then I. 

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This before I went on Commission just looking up my remember the salesman used to get the Northwest Commercial Travelers Association of Canada and you got these tickets that the firm bought for you and then you got a cheaper rate on the train travel. 

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You are able to take extra baggage and take trunks. 

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And things like. 

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That so the rag goods for people. 

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Could take all. 

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Their their trunks with their underwear and dresses and all the rest of it in it. 

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And I could take it a couple of radio sets along too, if I wanted to. 

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But I see that the first year that I was traveling for the Hudson Bay Company was 1928. 

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And that was so that means that I was with Eatons in 1926. 

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Or 27. 

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The reason I went on the road for the Hudsons Bay Company and by the way this the signature on this thing is Mr. WH Cook, general manager. 

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That’s somebody coming. 

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And Don Mcgibbon, who is now the president of Hudson B Company, I told him about these things, he says I’ve never heard of him you’re making. 

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It up but. 

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There’s the signature, he’s cook, general manager. 

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And what happened was I got the rights, the right selling rights in Canada for the Baldwin pianos, for example, from Chicago. 

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And so I had to go around to all the Hudson Bay stores in Canada and introduce the bottom piano to them. 

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And then I had to take. 

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Well, you might remember **** Eva Claire. 

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A singer from Winnipeg, I took her on a concert tour across the country. 

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Nine years. 

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And never. 

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That again, she used to call me from the wings and I and and say the stool wasn’t right and I’d have to stand in front of the audience and bring the stool. 

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Up three turns. 

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Or something like that. 

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And oh, and I took a great big concert. 

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Grand all across the country freighting that freight at every stop. 

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The thing wouldn’t work. 

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And then I got the Stewart Warner Agency and I had to go across to all the stores. 

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And then they also wanted me to go Stewart Warner. 

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When I was away on a trip where the the sales manager start, when I came up and saw the general manager and he said. 

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You’re only selling our stuff where you’ve got a store. 

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We want you to sell it in Regina. 

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In swift. 

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Current in a Medicine Hat. 

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In other places where you dolphin, I’m getting all kinds of requests for these things for dealership and you want to put it in your huts in the store, so you’ve got to get it in this. 

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So when I came back to the Winnipeg from a trip out West, Mr. 

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Cook called me upstairs and he said, see, you got us into trouble here, boy. 

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And you got to. 

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Get us out. 

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They want. 

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Dealerships all over the country, and here’s a flock of letters that they’ve got. 

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You’ve got to go and calling these people. 

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So I got in the car and expensive government traveling around the West and this is where I met Jerry Bullock of Rexall drug. 

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I traveled with him for a long time and Ross Jenkins and we got to be general manager of Eatons, her president of Eatons. 

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And we traveled together. 

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He was working for his father, who was had Kaiser hose agency then and I. 

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Traveled every foot. 

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Of of Canada, every town and thing for for Hudson Bay, Rogers, majestic, Deforest Crosley and Hudson Bay Company. 

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Over that period of years, I think I was in every town in Hamlet from Port Arthur. 

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To the Alberta, BC border. 

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So I see here from my travelers things that I was 19. 

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29 and 30. 

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And then in 31. 

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High left to go down to Roger’s majestic Toronto. 

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And learn about all their sets, and then they sent me back West. 

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And I. 

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Following that that you made first made contact with the. 

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Yes, yes, that’s when I I made contact with them. 

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I think they had. 

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Marconi there. 

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And I persuaded them to take. 

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On Roger’s majestic 2. Because sometimes Marconi, in some years will forget to make battery sets. 

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In the course. 

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90% of the West didn’t have power then, of course, and everybody was still using batteries. We’re down in Toronto. Everybody was using the new AC tube, but. 

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They would just forget all about making about this. 

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That’s and nothing me to do so. 

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I’m not too sure what the deal was, but. 

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Harold Carson. 

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Made a deal with Rogers Majestic that they would give him. 

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The amount of money they were paying me. 

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And he would manage me. 

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In just Alberta. 

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And they could get somebody else from Manitoba and Saskatchewan and Western Ontario. 

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So Harold made this deal and he paid my expenses and he paid me the same as getting before. 

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I don’t know what he got out of Rogers majestic. 

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He most likely got more because he was a pretty smart cookie and then. 

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I was hired by Taylor Pierce and Carson. 

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And he would rent me to his partners at Taylor Pearson. 

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Or hour carcin of Lethbridge so that I would go and go out with their salesman to teach them how to sell radio. 

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And all about him. And as I was driving along with him, I’d tell him all about A&B batteries and C batteries and the earphones and loud speakers, and how the thing works. 

00:23:55 Speaker 2 

And how to sell them and go over the various models that we had and tell them about and then we’d stop at a dealer and I’d go through my pitch with the dealer and then we’d go. 

00:24:03 Speaker 2 

On to another. 

00:24:04 Speaker 2 

One usually graduates and automotive places and to get the salesman to go to a drug store or a hardware store or a department store was like pulling teeth. 

00:24:16 Speaker 2 

They they they just do all the build down in the garage that bought all the parts for them and they always wanted to go there first. 

00:24:22 Speaker 2 

So we had all our graduates selling radio sets in the early days. 

00:24:26 Speaker 2 

They would, you know, they get the agency if they bought three sets. 

00:24:30 Speaker 2 

So they would buy three sets and take one home and sell one, and you send one over to the Uncle Joe and their daughter or something like that. 

00:24:39 Speaker 2 

And maybe that would be the last. 

00:24:41 Speaker 2 

Of it, but. 

00:24:43 Speaker 2 

But he I used to think it was funny here. 

00:24:45 Speaker 2 

This, this Taylor person Carson with some parts in partnership with HR Carson and Taylor Person. 

00:24:50 Speaker 2 

But if they wanted me, they had to pay him for the expenses and the and the salary. 

00:24:56 Speaker 2 

And I’m sure he made money out of it. 

00:24:58 Speaker 3 

Well, then, where did you first get involved in broadcasting rather than equipment sales? 

00:25:04 Speaker 2 

Well, while I was with the Taylor Pierce and Carson, I used to spend a lot of time up at bat. 

00:25:12 Speaker 2 

And some of the Western guys who will remember. 

00:25:18 Speaker 2 

The fellow that was eventually manager of of the Palace or Hotel, he was chief clerk of the Banff Springs Hotel. 

00:25:27 Speaker 2 

And he was courting the chief cashier in the main dining room. 

00:25:32 Speaker 2 

And he. 

00:25:34 Speaker 2 

When I went up. 

00:25:36 Speaker 2 

I would loan my car to him so they could go off in the mountains and spoon and he would give me a room in the hotel and tell him maids not to put in a chain slip. 

00:25:46 Speaker 2 

I was saying at the bam. 

00:25:47 Speaker 2 

Spring Hotel on the cover. 

00:25:48 Speaker 2 

I didn’t want a car because all of the fun was right there around the swimming pool and at nights it was the staff always. 

00:25:56 Speaker 2 

Pretty university girls are out there waiting on tables, and if he couldn’t get me in the hotel, it was absolutely. 

00:26:00 Speaker 2 

But he put me in the staff. 

00:26:02 Speaker 2 

Which is even better and Ron DL, so Ron DL eventually got to be a manager of the of the Palace Hotel in Calgary. 

00:26:14 Speaker 2 

But the reason I’m telling this story, Lyle Holmes, who was with Cofield Brown here in Toronto for a long, long time and part of that he was with the. 

00:26:23 Speaker 2 

CJCC, A and Edmonton as a writer, and he even grew up in the broadcasting business. 

00:26:27 Speaker 2 

And when he was down here, he was in the in the broadcasting and Radio Department too, at the beginning. 

00:26:32 Speaker 2 

And then I think he expanded into the whole thing. 

00:26:35 Speaker 2 

Well, anyway, he’s retired now. 

00:26:37 Speaker 2 

Lyle and I were very good friends. 

00:26:40 Speaker 2 

We had been in Winnipeg, we played lacrosse together at school and we both lived out in the West End of Winnipeg and so we decided we’d go to England. 

00:26:51 Speaker 2 

So I went back to Harold Carson and told him that I wanted to leave and that I’d save some money and that I wanted to go to England and I was. 

00:26:59 Speaker 2 

Going to be away. 

00:27:00 Speaker 2 

About a year and I thought I should resign. 

00:27:04 Speaker 2 

And so he said, Fine Spence, I don’t blame you because you one of these days, you’re going to meet nice girl and marry and settle down and you won’t be able to do that. 

00:27:12 Speaker 2 

And this is the time you know, to get it. 

00:27:13 Speaker 2 

A lot of us did it when we were overseas in the war. 

00:27:16 Speaker 2 

And it’s you, you know, go and learn. 

00:27:18 Speaker 2 

Learn about the world. 

00:27:20 Speaker 2 

So he was very good to me and gave me all kinds of letters or recommendations and told me who to see and all kinds of things. 

00:27:26 Speaker 2 

So Lyle and I started off across Canada and we visited in Winnipeg and talked to people there in Toronto and Ottawa and Montreal and finally got on the. 

00:27:38 Speaker 2 

Which was the CPRR ship? I think it was one of the Duchess ships or something like that. Lyle’s father. 

00:27:46 Speaker 2 

And and you might remember his brothers, the Holmes Twins, win the Winnipeg Kitty. 

00:27:50 Speaker 3 

They were, they all. 

00:27:52 Speaker 2 

Winnipeg kitties. 

00:27:52 Speaker 2 

Yeah, yeah. 

00:27:53 Speaker 2 

Kitties. Sure. Well. 

00:27:53 Speaker 3 

The first they were. 

00:27:56 Speaker 2 

Holmes, for Mr. 

00:27:57 Speaker 2 

Fred Holmes was in charge of freight for the CPR for Western Canada and we went down and boarded this ship and we were down in steerage or something or what. 

00:28:08 Speaker 2 

Whatever was the cheapest ticket we bought. 

00:28:11 Speaker 2 

Because we knew we weren’t going to be in the cabin, we were going to be up where the action was, or at least this is what we had in our minds. 

00:28:17 Speaker 2 

Neither one of us ever been on a ship before, but we sure had it figured out well when we got aboard the ship. 

00:28:24 Speaker 2 

The thing had barely moved when the Stuart came to us and said the captain wants to. 

00:28:29 Speaker 2 

See, they said, jeez, we. 


Haven’t done a *** **** thing. 

00:28:32 Speaker 2 

We have you. 

00:28:33 Speaker 2 

Know we finally we finally got to board the ship and we haven’t done anything and I swear to God we didn’t make it pass it to the girl. 

00:28:40 Speaker 2 

That pretty girl went by, but we will see her later. 

00:28:44 Speaker 2 

And so the captain came up. 

00:28:48 Speaker 2 

I mean, we went up to see the captain, the captain said. 

00:28:51 Speaker 3 

I got a. 

00:28:52 Speaker 2 

Letter from my friend who is head of the CPR freight in Canada and tells me that Lyle, you’re the son of Fred Holmes in Winnipeg, who I know and he’s been aboard my ship and. 

00:29:06 Speaker 2 

And he said the CPR have said they asked me to, you know, see that you guys have a good time. 

00:29:12 Speaker 2 

So anything you need. 

00:29:15 Speaker 2 

You know, ask for it and you’ll get it. 

00:29:17 Speaker 2 

So we have. 

00:29:19 Speaker 2 

Oh boy. 

00:29:20 Speaker 2 

So I said where, where? 

00:29:21 Speaker 2 

What’s where are you located? 

00:29:23 Speaker 2 

And we said, you know, two decks under the water line. 

00:29:27 Speaker 2 

And he said, oh, that’s no good. 

00:29:29 Speaker 2 

You can’t say that. 

00:29:30 Speaker 2 

He said, oh, you just go back to your cabin and you’ll hear from somebody later. 

00:29:34 Speaker 2 

So we were moved up. 

00:29:36 Speaker 2 

Right away, up to when the spare cabinet hadn’t been rented and the captain could, you know, had the authority to do that. 

00:29:44 Speaker 2 

And so he moved this up into a very fancy cabinet, and Lyle and I went to in. 

00:29:50 Speaker 2 

And when we were in England. 

00:29:53 Speaker 2 

Gladstone Murray was there who I met. 

00:29:57 Speaker 2 

And this is before he came to the CBC. 

00:30:01 Speaker 2 

He was the cousin. 

00:30:03 Speaker 2 

Of followed by name. 

00:30:07 Speaker 2 

Malcolm Mackay, who I’d lived with in Calgary. 

00:30:10 Speaker 2 

And Malcolm and. 

00:30:14 Speaker 2 

Martin Martin, Mackay and Molly and. 

00:30:20 Speaker 2 

I lived there when I was with Taylor Vision Carson. 

00:30:22 Speaker 2 

They were lovely to me and. 

00:30:26 Speaker 2 

Martin was a cousin of blastomeres and he wrote to Glassen Murrays and Harold Carson, and other people had written, I think Hugh Pearson wrote some letters. 

00:30:34 Speaker 2 

So we I. 

00:30:36 Speaker 2 

Was able to get along loud, type my letters and kind of looked after all the correspondence and everything and I went calling on these things trying to get lines to take back to Canada, open my own business as a manufacturer. 

00:30:51 Speaker 2 

And I got all kinds of radio component parts, condensers and resistors and and earphones and all kinds of parts of new parts are coming out. 

00:31:02 Speaker 2 

And and there was a NSF and Neuenburg screw factory in Germany, which was supplying England with him. 

00:31:10 Speaker 2 

I got that agent. 

00:31:12 Speaker 2 

And they put out all kinds of good things. 

00:31:13 Speaker 2 

And Gladstone Murray had us up to his house all the time for dinner, and he would invite the President of PIE Radio to his house and then let us get off in the corner. 

00:31:25 Speaker 2 

And I talked to him and I got a whole line, a line of component parts, and then I went after hardware and I went up to. 

00:31:32 Speaker 2 

Birmingham and went to the trade fair up there and I got a lot of hardware including the bank hardware. 

00:31:38 Speaker 2 

When I came back to Canada, I had. 

00:31:42 Speaker 2 

Bowling balls, tennis balls, badminton balls and and all the rackets and. 

00:31:49 Speaker 3 

I remember running into the street in Vancouver and you were selling, among other things. 

00:31:55 Speaker 2 

Yeah, and I had. 

00:31:57 Speaker 2 

And then the bank card. 

00:31:58 Speaker 2 

I had all every kind of a wrench and screwdriver and. 

00:32:01 Speaker 2 

Tools and garden tools you had and I had the W Greener line. 

00:32:06 Speaker 2 

That’s shotgun. 

00:32:08 Speaker 2 

And they used to make. 

00:32:11 Speaker 2 

Shells handmade shells. 

00:32:14 Speaker 2 

When I used to go to the gun clubs across the country and if they’d buy 10,000 shells from me, I’d put their name on the casing. 

00:32:22 Speaker 2 

So anyway, I came back and I arrived in Montreal and Lyle state because we had we were playing. 

00:32:34 Speaker 2 

Lucky for the Grovenor house Canadians. 

00:32:36 Speaker 2 

And Grovenor House is a big hotel and you know it, ****. 

00:32:40 Speaker 2 

And they they right alongside the Park Lane and and and they and. 

00:32:46 Speaker 2 

Oh, I see the Park Lane the street. 

00:32:51 Speaker 2 

Glover house. 

00:32:53 Speaker 2 

Main dining room today used to be the skating rink and it had. 

00:32:57 Speaker 2 

A balcony around it. 

00:32:58 Speaker 2 

And when we’d go there, the Englishman would be wearing fancy skates and they had shinny sticks. 

00:33:06 Speaker 2 

Field hockey stick. 

00:33:08 Speaker 2 

And this is what they’re trying to get used to Hawking so. 

00:33:11 Speaker 2 

And of course, Lyon, I could skate like Hell and Lyle was the best goaltender in Canada. 

00:33:16 Speaker 2 

I think at that time. 

00:33:17 Speaker 2 

And he’d played you remember the Big four league in Western Canada? 

00:33:21 Speaker 2 

Heaton in Hudson Bay in the CPR, and they played in his allows uncle. 

00:33:26 Speaker 2 

Owned the arena in Winnipeg. 

00:33:29 Speaker 2 

Holmes, remember? 

00:33:30 Speaker 2 

I forget his first name. 

00:33:36 Speaker 2 

Was so good. 

00:33:38 Speaker 2 

Where I was traveling all the time and. 

00:33:39 Speaker 2 

I missed a lot of things, although I went all over Europe with them playing against the Germans and the Belgians and and France. 

00:33:50 Speaker 2 

But I was away a lot, and Lyle was very good. 

00:33:53 Speaker 2 

So Golden House gave him a job in their office. 

00:33:57 Speaker 2 

And he had to learn to multiply pounds. 

00:34:01 Speaker 2 

And then he drove him crazy. 

00:34:02 Speaker 2 

And anyway, when I was ready, I came back and left Lyle there because he had a good job now. 

00:34:09 Speaker 2 

And he was a hero. 

00:34:11 Speaker 2 

And then. 

00:34:13 Speaker 2 

When I got to Montreal, I went down to the customs to clear all these samples that were given to me. 

00:34:20 Speaker 2 

Through customs, right? 

00:34:23 Speaker 2 

And I went down and I’d read the book and I. 

00:34:25 Speaker 2 

Knew the the. 

00:34:26 Speaker 2 

What the law was, and I went down and I said. 

00:34:29 Speaker 2 

I am an agent for these companies and I want to clear these things through. 

00:34:33 Speaker 2 

They’re all samples that are given to me or loan to me, and I’m going to set up an agency and go across country and they said. 

00:34:44 Speaker 2 

Caldwell, that law that you’re quoting, that’s for foreigners traveling into Canada, they can bring their samples in duty free, but they must take them back with them, or if they sell them pairs. 

00:34:56 Speaker 2 

You’re a citizen. 

00:34:58 Speaker 2 

Makes all the difference in the world. 

00:35:00 Speaker 2 

You can’t. 

00:35:01 Speaker 2 

If you bring something back, I don’t care whether it’s given to you or not. 

00:35:04 Speaker 2 

You’re going to pay. 

00:35:05 Speaker 2 

That tax on it. 

00:35:07 Speaker 2 

So I had. 

00:35:08 Speaker 2 

$500.00 left out of thousands that I’d saved working out West and with the Hudson Bay company money, I still was working on. 

00:35:19 Speaker 2 

When they worked out the bill, it was $485, so I had 15 bucks left and I’m in Montreal. So I checked into the why. 

00:35:29 Speaker 2 

And after my $15 was gone, I persuaded the why the why? To give me credit for a little while, I told him I had expecting some money from the West. And one day I ran into art Gurley from Winnipeg. 

00:35:42 Speaker 2 

And he was going to McGill and he was. 

00:35:48 Speaker 2 

Delta Epsilon du and he was manager of the Du House. 

00:35:54 Speaker 2 

For the summer. 

00:35:56 Speaker 2 

So he made arrangements for me to move in and have a room because they had lots of spare rooms in the. 

00:36:02 Speaker 2 

Summer months and pay. 

00:36:05 Speaker 2 

Whenever I could in the future. 

00:36:07 Speaker 2 

So this was a great deal. 

00:36:08 Speaker 2 

So I moved into the DU House. 

00:36:11 Speaker 2 

I ran into some engineers and. 

00:36:16 Speaker 2 

I set up business with them and they allowed me to display my things in the top floor, providing that I would work for the rent in their forge. 

00:36:24 Speaker 2 

And they were where they had a big forge down there and we were making all kinds of door handles and latches and shutter holes back for the scenery club and all these rich Americans were moving up and buying property in the scenery club, you know, along the river between Montreal. 

00:36:43 Speaker 2 

And we were making stuff for them. 

00:36:44 Speaker 2 

And then after we’ve made it, then we go and make a sketch. 

00:36:47 Speaker 2 

And we sell them on the idea of getting a. 

00:36:49 Speaker 2 

Lino or wood. 

00:36:50 Speaker 2 

Cut of their door or their ancestor, their gateway or something to put on their Christmas cards. 

00:36:55 Speaker 2 

And then we made these Lino cuts and have that little pretty press and we have the Christmas cards and this is what we lived on while I was trying to get my business going. 

00:37:04 Speaker 3 

I keep wondering when you had. 

00:37:05 Speaker 2 

Any time to sleep. 

00:37:08 Speaker 2 

Oh, well, I got well, then. 

00:37:12 Speaker 2 

I I got enough money to come to Toronto, and when I came to Toronto, I went to see my old friend John David Eaton and. 

00:37:20 Speaker 2 

Because I got to know him quite well because Eatons had asked Ross Jenkins tonight to meet John when he came to Winnipeg to start the work from Cambridge. 

00:37:27 Speaker 2 

And so I knew John quite well. 

00:37:29 Speaker 2 

And so he said, come on up the house and stay there. 

00:37:34 Speaker 2 

And so I stayed in. 

00:37:35 Speaker 2 

Our world came for a. 

00:37:37 Speaker 2 

Couple of weeks and then his parents were away. 

00:37:40 Speaker 2 

And, you know, one day. 

00:37:43 Speaker 2 

I said something about a card and John said, well, go on out the garage and and and take one and drive down. 

00:37:49 Speaker 2 

And I went out the garage and it was chauffeurs and mechanics and everything. 

00:37:53 Speaker 2 

And then there was fourteen cars in the grad. 

00:37:56 Speaker 2 

Everything from rolls royces down. 

00:37:58 Speaker 2 

So I had there. 

00:38:00 Speaker 2 

So then. 

00:38:01 Speaker 2 

John Sir John and Lady Eaton were away and when? 

00:38:05 Speaker 2 

They came back. 

00:38:07 Speaker 2 

How I I stayed on for a couple of days and and and. 

00:38:12 Speaker 2 

John said. 

00:38:13 Speaker 2 

How long are you going to be here? 

00:38:15 Speaker 2 

So I said I don’t know, John. 

00:38:17 Speaker 2 

I’ve got a number of calls, he said. 

00:38:21 Speaker 2 

Why don’t you do this? 

00:38:23 Speaker 2 

I’ve got a nice big yacht over at the Yacht Club. 

00:38:28 Speaker 2 

Why don’t you go over and live on it? 

00:38:30 Speaker 2 

You can go and come as you see fit, and there’s all kinds of booze and there’s all kinds of beer and you’re a good mechanic and a good. 

00:38:38 Speaker 2 

And if there’s anything needs done, there’s. 

00:38:40 Speaker 2 

A couple of other guys living. 

00:38:41 Speaker 2 

There for me. 

00:38:43 Speaker 2 

And you. 

00:38:44 Speaker 2 

You know will be on the on your system if there’s something that he’s done or some painting or some cleaning or some technical stuff that you can do, do it. 

00:38:52 Speaker 2 

And you can stay there as long as you want to. 

00:38:56 Speaker 3 

Not a bad offer. 

00:38:57 Speaker 2 

Pretty good then John. 

00:39:00 Speaker 2 

It took me around and introduced me to the Eatons buyers and even came back two months ago with me and introduced me to them and they were buying. 

00:39:08 Speaker 2 

That step for the next six years and in spite of the fact that I wrote back the bank hardware and said, look, you’re sending me Commission checks. 

00:39:16 Speaker 2 

I haven’t been. 

00:39:17 Speaker 2 

I gave up my agency. 

00:39:20 Speaker 2 

When America went off the gold standard and we had a a wonderful trade arrangements when we were when the pound was down. 

00:39:28 Speaker 2 

But when we went off the gold standard, then the pound went up and the dollar went down and I got cancellations for all the orders and my business just collapsed. 

00:39:38 Speaker 2 

So I said to bank hardware. 

00:39:40 Speaker 2 

Look, you’re sending me a Commission. 

00:39:42 Speaker 2 

Checks and apparently Eatons are buying these things at all, like Canada, so I go back and said, you know, I’m not with them. 

00:39:48 Speaker 2 

And they wrote back and said, Mr. 

00:39:50 Speaker 2 

Carl, we were so delighted to get for you to get us into the Eaton stores. 

00:39:56 Speaker 2 

We’re going to pay you a Commission as long as you live. 

00:39:59 Speaker 3 

Isn’t that fantastic? 

00:40:00 Speaker 2 

And they paid for about five years. 

00:40:03 Speaker 2 

And and. 

00:40:09 Speaker 2 

When I when I could see that the business wasn’t a big success, I went back to Winnipeg. 

00:40:15 Speaker 2 

And I was. 

00:40:18 Speaker 2 

In my parents lived there and I was home when I got a phone call. 

00:40:26 Speaker 2 

Pete Elliott, who I got to know quite. 

00:40:28 Speaker 2 

Well, with the Marconi company. 

00:40:30 Speaker 2 

And no, excuse me. 

00:40:33 Speaker 2 

It was Reg Brophy, Reg Brophy. 

00:40:36 Speaker 2 

Regrowth, reforming suspense. 

00:40:40 Speaker 2 

Well, I want you to come down to the hotel. 

00:40:42 Speaker 2 

I’m at the royal alley. 

00:40:45 Speaker 2 

And Ernie Bush was with me. 

00:40:47 Speaker 2 

We both wanted to see it. 

00:40:49 Speaker 2 

And by the way, pick up a 40. 

00:40:51 Speaker 2 

It’s a gym, so I went and got the Bible and went down without and these fellas were hungover. 

00:40:58 Speaker 2 

Oh God. 

00:41:01 Speaker 2 

It turned out that Reg Brophy was supposed to get off at Regina and make arrangements with Peacock powder for a warehouse. 

00:41:10 Speaker 2 

To they were going to store sets and tubes and and now the airlines were coming up and there was a lot of commercial tubes and transmitter tubes and all that. 

00:41:20 Speaker 2 

They wanted to have a place in the West. 

00:41:22 Speaker 2 

So Reg said to me. 

00:41:26 Speaker 2 

What are you doing? 

00:41:26 Speaker 2 

So I told him about my English business and how it had collapsed when we went off the gold standard. 

00:41:31 Speaker 2 

And so he said, well, how would you like to? 

00:41:36 Speaker 2 

Worked for Marconi. 

00:41:37 Speaker 2 

I said love it. 

00:41:39 Speaker 2 

Nothing would please me more. 

00:41:41 Speaker 2 

I can’t pay you very much money. 

00:41:42 Speaker 2 

But you. 

00:41:43 Speaker 2 

Have a pretty. 

00:41:43 Speaker 2 

Good expense to come. 

00:41:45 Speaker 2 

So he hired me and told me to go to Regina and see Peacock pounded, that he’d made arrangements and seen them on the way West, but he didn’t get off and they. 

00:41:54 Speaker 2 

Were plastered as well. 

00:41:56 Speaker 2 

And so I went out and I wanted to see Peacock Pounders. 

00:42:02 Speaker 2 

They’d never heard of Brophy. 

00:42:03 Speaker 2 

They barely had heard of Marconi. 

00:42:05 Speaker 2 

And they couldn’t remember anybody coming in to talk about the thing, but he said we got space here and we. 

00:42:11 Speaker 2 

Light it. 

00:42:12 Speaker 2 

To supply you with an office. 

00:42:14 Speaker 2 

Or in heated area and supply you with space in the in the unheated in the warehouse, and we’ll put a wire netting around it. 

00:42:24 Speaker 2 

Because tubes and and radios and things that are valuable and we’ll put we we can’t go any further than chicken wire. 

00:42:32 Speaker 2 

When someone wants to. 

00:42:33 Speaker 2 

Cut it. 

00:42:33 Speaker 2 

At least we’ll know. 

00:42:34 Speaker 2 

That somebody was stealing it. 

00:42:36 Speaker 2 

And you can have the key to it, or if you want to leave the key with the our chief shipper, then he can ship it when you’re away. 

00:42:43 Speaker 2 

So I went back to the hotel. 

00:42:47 Speaker 2 

The Saskatchewan Hotel and I phoned her Reg Brophy. 

00:42:51 Speaker 2 

To ask them, first of all, how about some expense money? 

00:42:55 Speaker 2 

How about some salary check or something that I, you know, I had about 10 bucks in my jeans. 

00:43:02 Speaker 2 

And yeah, I’m in the whole Saskatchewan Hotel and Reg Brophy is in New York. 

00:43:08 Speaker 2 

Well, I said give me Pete at it. 

00:43:10 Speaker 2 

So I phoned Pete and I told him that regard hired me and I’m sure that Reg told him all about it. 

00:43:16 Speaker 2 

This is a great event in the history of Marconi. 

00:43:19 Speaker 2 

He laughed like he said. 

00:43:21 Speaker 2 

Hide you Chrissy. 

00:43:23 Speaker 2 

Nobody in Marconi. 

00:43:25 Speaker 2 

We’re cutting back. 

00:43:26 Speaker 2 

He wouldn’t hire you at all. 

00:43:28 Speaker 2 

You’re just giving me a line, Spence? 

00:43:30 Speaker 2 

No, Sir. 

00:43:30 Speaker 2 

P and I said P. 

00:43:33 Speaker 2 

Please my friend. 

00:43:36 Speaker 2 

I’ve got 10 bucks. 

00:43:37 Speaker 2 

I paid my own fare out here because Reg hired me and the relax in Winnipeg and. 

00:43:43 Speaker 2 

I’m already started to work and I want to advance expenses and I want a salary check now so I can have some. 

00:43:51 Speaker 2 

Money and I’ll get going for you, he says. 

00:43:54 Speaker 2 

Spencer’s not a chance. I couldn’t send you an expensive kind of thing. Regs never mentioned to me, and I know very well he wouldn’t do it unless he was corn. 

00:44:03 Speaker 2 

No, no, no. 

00:44:04 Speaker 2 

Perfect and so. 

00:44:08 Speaker 2 

Regis was down in New York making arrangements to join NBC. 

00:44:13 Speaker 2 

He went down to NBC as a vice president. 

00:44:14 Speaker 3 

Yes. Yeah. 

00:44:16 Speaker 2 

So I said, well, please phone him wherever he is and find out and phone me back. 

00:44:22 Speaker 2 

So he phoned me back and he said, my God, Spence, you’re right. 

00:44:26 Speaker 2 

He did hire you and good God bless you. 

00:44:30 Speaker 2 

We need somebody out there. 

00:44:31 Speaker 2 

And I’m sorry that I was laughing at you, but I thought you were just giving me a line and he said to him go to work and I’ll put all kinds of stuff in the mail for you. 

00:44:41 Speaker 2 

And you made the deal with Peacock Ponder. 

00:44:44 Speaker 2 

And we’ll send some sets out and some samples. 

00:44:47 Speaker 2 

Let’s see what you can do. 

00:44:48 Speaker 2 

And you get all straightened. 

00:44:50 Speaker 2 

Up and then fool me. 

00:44:52 Speaker 2 

And then I want you to come down here and. 

00:44:56 Speaker 2 

You know, meet the guys and and find out what’s doing and we’re thinking we’re having a sales meeting in about a. 

00:45:01 Speaker 2 

Month of of all of. 

00:45:03 Speaker 2 

Our reps, they had all kinds of reps and he’s put none out. 

00:45:05 Speaker 2 

West, because they had distributors that way. 

00:45:08 Speaker 2 

Mackenzie auto equipment. 

00:45:09 Speaker 2 

Yes, electrical supplies. 

00:45:11 Speaker 2 

Winnipeg Winter, Jack wheat crop and then television. 

00:45:14 Speaker 2 

Carson, Alberta and Mackenzie Ottawa and. 

00:45:18 Speaker 2 

Somebody else. 

00:45:20 Speaker 2 

So I started with Marconi and I that was in 19. 

00:45:31 Speaker 2 

Where is that Rogers majestic? In 33, I started with Marconi in 34, at least by these travelers. 

00:45:38 Speaker 2 

Certificates. That’s the first time I got to travel January the 2nd, 1934 and I was with them for 3536. 

00:45:51 Speaker 2 


00:45:54 Speaker 2 

Got 2 for 303839. 

00:46:01 Speaker 2 

And that must be 41. Yeah, 1941. That was with my coding longer than I suppose. 

00:46:06 Speaker 3 

Anyway, that bring that that bridges the time that it will end up to the point where you join and CWX in Vancouver. 

00:46:14 Speaker 2 

Well, yes, but founders warehouse in Regina for Marconi and then they asked me to go to Winnipeg and open up an office and I got a second store place, just a little bit right in the corner of porch of Main only. 

00:46:27 Speaker 2 

But a little bit South. 

00:46:29 Speaker 2 

On the West side of Maine and that club was right next door. 

00:46:35 Speaker 2 

No, the Manitoba club was down by the Fort Garry. 

00:46:37 Speaker 3 

Wasn’t it? 

00:46:37 Speaker 3 

Well, it was just South of Portage. 

00:46:40 Speaker 3 

Young man, was it? 

00:46:42 Speaker 2 

I didn’t think was. 

00:46:43 Speaker 2 

I thought the Manitoba club was always down. 

00:46:45 Speaker 2 

Ah, yes, the Carlton Carlton club. 

00:46:47 Speaker 2 

That’s it, Carlton club. 

00:46:49 Speaker 2 

It was right next to Carlton Club, which I eventually joined. 

00:46:52 Speaker 2 

And so I was working out of Winnipeg, then working Western Canada and Nancy and I moved there. 

00:47:00 Speaker 2 

Ross Jenkins is now with Eatons and they just lived up the street, so we were very pleased with the whole thing. 

00:47:05 Speaker 2 

And so I worked from Port Arthur to the BC, Alberta border and. 

00:47:13 Speaker 2 

Then after a couple of years in Winnipeg. 

00:47:18 Speaker 2 

They had a fella and I forget his name now down in Montreal, that they had to do something to, so they asked me if I would go out to Vancouver. 

00:47:27 Speaker 2 

And work on not only sets and tubes and, but specializing in marine equipment and. 

00:47:37 Speaker 2 

And broadcast equipment. 

00:47:40 Speaker 2 

That that they had a big office there. 

00:47:42 Speaker 2 

I think there was about 30 technicians in the thing cause they were servicing all the tramp steamers and all the ships that came there. 

00:47:47 Speaker 3 

Yes, we have the question. 

00:47:49 Speaker 2 

But there was a less Hawkins the manager. 

00:47:51 Speaker 2 

Yes, he couldn’t sell anything to anybody, and they decided they weren’t getting their share of the business. 

00:47:57 Speaker 2 

And they said. 

00:47:59 Speaker 2 

Go out there, Spence. 

00:48:00 Speaker 2 

You won’t be there too long, but. 

00:48:03 Speaker 2 

We want you to work out of the office there and just Rev up some sales, so I did and more than doubled their business and and and just radio sets and tubes by getting some agencies and doing a little selling. 

00:48:17 Speaker 2 

And then I was able to get the little aluminum. 

00:48:23 Speaker 2 

Two way voice just come out in a little we voice set. 

00:48:28 Speaker 2 

We pinched the design. 

00:48:29 Speaker 2 

Bill Lear, which is Lear jet. 

00:48:32 Speaker 2 

Bill Lear came up to see me and wanted me to go to Kansas City and work for him because I sold more of his Lear sets than anybody else. 

00:48:39 Speaker 2 

And so we then we started to make him and put Marconi on them. 

00:48:42 Speaker 2 

I guess they paid him a royalty for it. 

00:48:44 Speaker 2 

We were importing the layer sets and then they came up my phone and we made this thing for the frontier and we we’d go. 

00:48:50 Speaker 2 

Up to the end of the telephone line. 

00:48:52 Speaker 2 

And put in one of these sets, usually in a lady’s house, is where the telephone exchange was. The town would be 100 people or something like that, or 200, and we would. 

00:49:01 Speaker 2 

Put two wave voice radio from the end of the telephone line into. 

00:49:07 Speaker 2 

Have forest patrol airplane. 

00:49:10 Speaker 2 

Into the pulp and paper plant into the mine into prospect this camp or something like that. 

00:49:16 Speaker 2 

Maybe installed five or six of these things where business things and then these guys could phone New York, their phones around phone anywhere in the world because we we fixed it. 

00:49:25 Speaker 2 

So under these sets was a patching arrangement which would so they could patch it in. 

00:49:30 Speaker 2 

To the regular switchboard. 

00:49:31 Speaker 3 

Yeah, radio telephones. 

00:49:32 Speaker 2 

Something radio. 

00:49:33 Speaker 2 

We put those all in along the front there. 

00:49:35 Speaker 2 

Then we changed the design. 

00:49:37 Speaker 2 

To work on marine frequencies, which was higher because the coils are bigger, the frequencies lower the and the marine frequencies we we had to do a little twisting and and and I quite a bit to do with that and then this is one of the things I supposed to do well. 

00:49:53 Speaker 2 

God, I got every tugboat. 

00:49:55 Speaker 2 

There’s more tugboats in BC. 

00:49:56 Speaker 2 

Then there’s and all the rest of the candy, you know. 

00:49:58 Speaker 2 

Bringing the log books. 

00:49:59 Speaker 2 

So I would go to the captains and I’d say now the safety of sea factories, if you get a headwind or something that you can phone and tell so and so and you can give your position to the head office. 

00:50:11 Speaker 2 

If you lose your toe and the logs break up, you can. 

00:50:14 Speaker 2 

They’ll know where it is and you can get people out there before they’re all stolen because they’re, you know, these guys. 

00:50:19 Speaker 2 

Up down the coast, stealing the logs. 

00:50:22 Speaker 2 

If they break out of the boom. 

00:50:25 Speaker 2 

So the captain would say to me. 

00:50:27 Speaker 2 

Can I phone the missus? 

00:50:29 Speaker 2 

I got a head wind and I told her I was gonna be home Saturday night for supper and I got a headwind and I’m not. 

00:50:33 Speaker 2 

Gonna make it till Sunday morning? Can iPhone her and tell her? And I said sure you can. 

00:50:38 Speaker 2 

My daughter lives up the Fraser Valley and she’s pregnant. 

00:50:42 Speaker 2 

Can I phone and see how the baby’s gonna run this? It’s certainly for anywhere in the world once you get. 

00:50:47 Speaker 2 

I say I got a big antenna on top of the BC telephone. 

00:50:50 Speaker 2 

It’s plugged right into their board and you can phone your head office. 

00:50:53 Speaker 2 

You can phone home, you can run it now. 

00:50:55 Speaker 2 

You might have to pay for these calls. 

00:50:57 Speaker 2 

I don’t know. 

00:50:57 Speaker 2 

Whatever deal you make with the captain. 

00:50:59 Speaker 2 

What’s the owners? 

00:51:00 Speaker 2 

And of course, the owner. 

00:51:02 Speaker 2 

Just to get the damn $0.50 or something in those days. 

00:51:06 Speaker 2 

And so they let the. 

00:51:07 Speaker 2 

Captains go anywhere they wanted to. 

00:51:09 Speaker 2 

So I was putting putting these things in and then we Pete Elliott had sent me out some more by now. 

00:51:16 Speaker 2 

Reg Brophy is down in New York with NBC. 

00:51:19 Speaker 2 

And they, Pete sent me out some. 

00:51:22 Speaker 2 

New fresh literature on new broadcasting station equipment. 

00:51:26 Speaker 2 

We also have Collins. 

00:51:27 Speaker 2 

Then too. 

00:51:28 Speaker 2 

We were getting the Collins design and we brought in a few of their trains. 

00:51:32 Speaker 2 

So I went to see Spikes Halstead. 

00:51:34 Speaker 2 

To and I gave him about a 3 hour pitch on all the wonderful limiting amplifiers and grid bias modulators and all these other things and one. 

00:51:44 Speaker 3 

Just for the records, sparks Halstead was at that time the President of CWX. 

00:51:49 Speaker 2 

Yes, right. 

00:51:50 Speaker 2 

That’s right. 

00:51:51 Speaker 2 

You do ****, ****. 

00:51:52 Speaker 2 

You get sparks. Halstead was president of CKWX and the owner. As a matter of fact, he still had the train. 

00:51:58 Speaker 2 

Smitter he used to be in the battery business with a partner in Nanaimo and. 

00:52:02 Speaker 2 

They had a fight. 

00:52:04 Speaker 2 

So he told the partner to take the batteries and stick them up his ***, and he took the transmitter and put it in the back of his car and went to Vancouver and he set it up. 

00:52:12 Speaker 2 

And the licensing was so. 

00:52:15 Speaker 2 

Lacks in those days that the Department of Marine and Fishery Man came to see him and said sparks. 

00:52:22 Speaker 2 

You’re not supposed to move from city to city, you know that’s against the. 

00:52:27 Speaker 2 

And he said, well, I don’t know anything about the rules. 

00:52:29 Speaker 2 

I don’t give a damn. 

00:52:30 Speaker 2 

It’s up and it’s working, and we’re going to leave it there. 

00:52:32 Speaker 2 

And it was an old Marconi angle iron ships transmitter. 

00:52:37 Speaker 2 

Is there’s no crystal in it. 

00:52:39 Speaker 2 

There was no modulation control and it it went ten points on each side of. 

00:52:45 Speaker 2 

It’s a lot of frequency back and forth. 

00:52:48 Speaker 2 

You can pack it in the suitcase and well, just. 

00:52:50 Speaker 2 

Well, not quite. 

00:52:52 Speaker 2 

You put it in the trunk of a car. 

00:52:54 Speaker 2 

You left the lid open. 

00:52:55 Speaker 2 

So he. 

00:52:58 Speaker 2 

I gave him the best sales pitch I’ve ever made in my life on transmitter equipment, and I had all the photographs and all this new equipment. 

00:53:05 Speaker 2 

I was really sold myself on all this new stuff. 

00:53:08 Speaker 2 

And when I got through, he said Spence. 

00:53:10 Speaker 2 

That’s the most interesting story I have. 

00:53:13 Speaker 2 

No one ever calls on me. 

00:53:14 Speaker 2 

No one ever tries to sell me anything. 

00:53:16 Speaker 2 

Because they’re afraid. 

00:53:17 Speaker 2 

They won’t get paid, he says. 

00:53:18 Speaker 2 

To tell you the truth, Spence, I couldn’t buy any of that equipment. 

00:53:22 Speaker 2 

As a matter of fact, I couldn’t buy a screwdriver. 

00:53:25 Speaker 2 

So I said to him. 

00:53:27 Speaker 2 

Would you like to have a partner? 

00:53:31 Speaker 2 

And he said, yeah, so I said, well, I think I can get one for you. 

00:53:34 Speaker 2 

So I phoned Harold Carson and Harold came up the next day and. 

00:53:38 Speaker 2 

Made a deal with sparks and the idea was that sparks would made by 50% of the stock. As I recall it now. 

00:53:47 Speaker 2 

And sparks would be the chairman of the board. 

00:53:50 Speaker 2 

You’d have the biggest office. 

00:53:52 Speaker 2 

And he’d get his salary and he’d sign the checks, but he wouldn’t have a *** **** thing to do with the running of the station. 

00:54:00 Speaker 3 

And it was. 

00:54:00 Speaker 3 

Legendary as you will recall at WWX. 

00:54:04 Speaker 3 

That that era was still is referred to as the time the Gold Train rolled over the. 

00:54:20 Speaker 2 

Audience and shows and everything else. 

00:54:24 Speaker 2 

McKenzie and tiny alfing. 

00:54:25 Speaker 2 

God, we had more, more talent out there. 

00:54:30 Speaker 2 

But we have to spend a lot of money on advertising and salesman and programs and stuff to announcers to make it a success. 

00:54:40 Speaker 2 

And of course, we did. 

00:54:41 Speaker 2 

It went from the very bottom station to the very top. 

00:54:45 Speaker 3 

You were there at that time as salesmanager, yes. 

00:54:50 Speaker 2 

And I had one or two other. 

00:54:53 Speaker 2 

Things minor things I I had a lot to do with the accounting department. 

00:54:57 Speaker 2 

I had a lot to do with scheduling and because we used to get copy of all that because I’ll tell the salesman what? 

00:55:08 Speaker 2 

Periods were available and we were selling a lot of programs in those days too, which we are buying from all Canada and and. 

00:55:19 Speaker 3 

Yeah, mutual network at that time. 

00:55:20 Speaker 3 

No, that was. 

00:55:22 Speaker 2 

I was calling on mutual. 

00:55:23 Speaker 2 

Network quite a bit. 

00:55:24 Speaker 2 

Matter of fact, I when I was coming back in the states once I told him I was down on a mutual network business. 

00:55:30 Speaker 2 

But I wasn’t. 

00:55:32 Speaker 2 

And the guy said when I was showing him my thing, I brought out your picture was on your. 

00:55:39 Speaker 2 

Identification cards and on the back of his stamp with gas masks and everything else you had drawn and. 

00:55:49 Speaker 2 

Anyway, this thing fell out and the guy said, oh, you’re in the army. 

00:55:54 Speaker 2 

And I said, well, no, I’m in the reserve and I’m in the. 

00:55:59 Speaker 2 

And the artillery. 

00:56:00 Speaker 2 

He said. Where’s your pass? 

00:56:02 Speaker 2 

To be down the state, I said. 

00:56:04 Speaker 2 

I don’t need a pass, he said to your kid. 

00:56:09 Speaker 2 

Every soldier needs to pass when he goes across the border, but and they get back here. 

00:56:15 Speaker 2 

So he so. 

00:56:17 Speaker 2 

We had a system then where the stations all down the coast were tied up on a telex. 

00:56:23 Speaker 2 

Where we could change frequency. 

00:56:26 Speaker 3 

And change the call letters this against the possibility of war across the Pacific. 

00:56:31 Speaker 2 

You know, so the *** airplanes couldn’t. 

00:56:34 Speaker 2 

Couldn’t home on. 

00:56:37 Speaker 2 

They didn’t want to hit Vancouver, particularly because at that time there’s too many chaps living there. 

00:56:41 Speaker 2 

But they wanted to hit Bremen in Washington as a naval base so they could, you know, take a fix on on ice. 

00:56:50 Speaker 2 

They they could take it. 

00:56:51 Speaker 2 

Fixed on Spokane. 

00:56:52 Speaker 2 

Take a fix on Prince Rupert and they know exactly where they were and then they had the little meter that showed them when they’re on the line and they’d come in the line in our frequency and then they. 

00:57:00 Speaker 2 

Knew they made a. 

00:57:05 Speaker 2 

Starboard. Turn at at the. 

00:57:10 Speaker 2 

Where their maximum signal they could go so many miles and they would be over Brandon and they drop the bomb. 

00:57:15 Speaker 2 

So this was organized by the American Navy. 

00:57:17 Speaker 2 

And actually I had been down at San Diego. 

00:57:21 Speaker 2 

At one of these meetings, George Chandler, CJOR and I were the Canadian representatives on this committee, so I when I I had been going down to Spokane to. 

00:57:31 Speaker 2 

See the the. 

00:57:32 Speaker 2 

Mutual network and this time I wasn’t. 

00:57:35 Speaker 2 

I was on this communication thing, which is all. 

00:57:38 Speaker 2 

Hush, hush and very secret. 

00:57:40 Speaker 2 

And so. 

00:57:44 Speaker 3 

Let me take you forwards paths to. 

00:57:48 Speaker 3 

I don’t mean to. 

00:57:50 Speaker 3 

Undervalue the. 

00:57:53 Speaker 3 

Approximately 2 1/2 years. I guess you were at CKWX. 

00:57:58 Speaker 3 

You went with to the station when the skin Squires. 

00:58:03 Speaker 3 

Was the first manager under the new regime, followed by Tiny Elfick. 

00:58:09 Speaker 3 

And we’re there, I think. 

00:58:09 Speaker 2 

I think we knew at the time that tiny was coming. 

00:58:12 Speaker 2 

And that that skin was only there temporary because he had this station back in Stratford and. 

00:58:21 Speaker 2 

I I always thought no, I’m not sure of this. 

00:58:24 Speaker 2 

I always thought that Harold and skin were in the Air Force together and they were both skinny and the reason skin got the name of skin and he wasn’t a fat man that we know he was about as thick as your fingers. 

00:58:38 Speaker 2 

And here these 18 year old kids that have seen pictures of them in their. 

00:58:42 Speaker 2 

Look, so there were pencils, both of them. 

00:58:45 Speaker 2 

And so they were good friends and and skin being a lawyer and had some broadcast experience. 

00:58:51 Speaker 2 

Harold got sent him out there as the first manager to clean up the deal. 

00:58:56 Speaker 2 

Certain number of hours were owned by Uncle Billy. 

00:58:58 Speaker 2 

Hassell, certain number of hours were owned by the son the Catholic Church had opened, so the Protestants had to be in there. 

00:59:05 Speaker 2 

The province had a piece of it and and he had all kinds of this. 

00:59:09 Speaker 2 

What do they call it? 

00:59:10 Speaker 2 

Bulk programming, where you give a salesman an hour and he can go. 

00:59:14 Speaker 2 

And sell it out. 

00:59:16 Speaker 2 

And give the spikes half of it or something like that. 

00:59:20 Speaker 2 

So they have to get rid of all of these these deals. 

00:59:23 Speaker 2 

And this is what skin did more than broadcasting because he had an awful lot of guys. 

00:59:28 Speaker 2 

Except me. 

00:59:29 Speaker 2 

I didn’t know. 

00:59:31 Speaker 2 

Except I’d been in every broadcasting station because I was calling on, you know, I sold. 

00:59:38 Speaker 2 

A Murphy CQC in Saskatoon, his first commercial transmitter. 

00:59:42 Speaker 2 

Yeah, yeah. 

00:59:43 Speaker 2 

Lloyd Moffett. 

00:59:44 Speaker 2 

I put him in the broadcasting business. 

00:59:47 Speaker 2 

Eddie rollinson. 

00:59:48 Speaker 2 

All these guys are big shots today. 

00:59:50 Speaker 2 

I had something to do with their beginning. 

00:59:53 Speaker 3 

You put the Lloyd Moffett into business. 

00:59:57 Speaker 2 

Lloyd Moffett was nancye’s Fathers projectionist, assistant projectionist in Regina. 

01:00:04 Speaker 2 

At the Grand Theatre in Regina, Major Graham, Nancy’s father, had a friend who ran the Capitol Theatre in Prince Albert. 

01:00:04 Speaker 3 

That’s it. 

01:00:14 Speaker 2 

The man died his projectionist. 

01:00:17 Speaker 2 

And he phoned. 

01:00:18 Speaker 2 

To his friend. 

01:00:20 Speaker 2 

Major Graham and said help me get a guy up here right away if he has to drive all night but. 

01:00:27 Speaker 2 

I have to have a projectionist and so. 

01:00:31 Speaker 2 

Major game says well, I’ve got 2. 

01:00:33 Speaker 2 

I’ll send you my, my assistant. 

01:00:35 Speaker 2 

It’s a very good fellow. 

01:00:36 Speaker 2 

He’s well trained. 

01:00:37 Speaker 2 

So that was Lloyd Moffett. 

01:00:38 Speaker 2 

Lloyd Moffett went up to be the projectionist in the in the Capital Theatre in Prince Albert. 

01:00:45 Speaker 2 

And when I started to go there. 

01:00:46 Speaker 2 

To see him. 

01:00:47 Speaker 2 

I would walk from machine to machine as he was feeding the film and he’d hand me the real and they spent rewind that. 

01:00:54 Speaker 2 

For me, and I said OK and I’d have my book out and said, well, look at here, this new transmitter, what you do and and the station in town. 

01:01:04 Speaker 2 

He didn’t own it then he was just thinking of getting it, and it was called 10. 

01:01:10 Speaker 2 

And it was one of those things where each citizen put up a dollar and they put in an amateur station there. 

01:01:15 Speaker 2 

And now Lloyd was Lloyd and his partner, and Mr. 

01:01:19 Speaker 2 

Brown, who was the caretaker and their biggest apartment building, which was two stories high and about 12. 

01:01:26 Speaker 2 

And I had to go. 

01:01:27 Speaker 2 

And while he was sweeping the hall, I’d walk up and down with him. 

01:01:30 Speaker 2 

The book, and they look at here, this guy, the very latest grid bias and amplifiers and all the rest of. 

01:01:35 Speaker 2 

Them so. 

01:01:38 Speaker 2 

They changed it to CKB I and Lloyd got that station, then when Lloyd. 

01:01:46 Speaker 2 

Wanted to move into bigger things and move to Winnipeg. 

01:01:49 Speaker 2 

He asked that he rolling. 

Part 2


00:00:03 Speaker 1 

Who was working for a Regina auditing firm and he was the Prince Albert representative getting about $75.00 a month. 

00:00:13 Speaker 1 

Lloyd asked Eddie. 

00:00:15 Speaker 1 

To take off a statement of what? 

00:00:20 Speaker 1 

The station was worth because he was going to sell it and move to win. 

00:00:27 Speaker 1 

So Eddie did. 

00:00:29 Speaker 1 

And while he was working on it at home to figure this thing out. 

00:00:33 Speaker 1 

He said, jeez, well, I buy the thing. 

00:00:36 Speaker 1 

And he had absolutely no money. 

00:00:38 Speaker 1 

So he went to a nice old fellow. 

00:00:40 Speaker 1 

And I can’t remember his name now, but I met him who had a large contract for a number of years, making ties with the CPR. 

00:00:48 Speaker 1 

And he had a creosoting plant up there and the, you know, the the trees in northern Saskatchewan are just ripe for tides. 

00:00:55 Speaker 1 

That’s the size of three. 

00:00:57 Speaker 1 

The tide. 

00:00:58 Speaker 1 

They’re good. 

00:00:59 Speaker 1 

And so this guy had a big business and he made a lot of money. 

00:01:03 Speaker 1 

And then he did his books. 

00:01:04 Speaker 1 

So Eddie went over to see this man at home and told him the whole story and said, would you? 

00:01:08 Speaker 1 

Back me and this guy said. 

00:01:10 Speaker 1 

Certainly good. 

00:01:12 Speaker 1 

So this fellow loaned him the money and went back and saw Lloyd. 

00:01:15 Speaker 1 

This is what your stations is worth, and I’ll buy it. 

00:01:18 Speaker 1 

And that’s how Eddie got in as a. 

00:01:21 Speaker 2 

Well then, after having put WX well turned WX around. 

00:01:26 Speaker 2 

A little bit, yeah. 

00:01:28 Speaker 1 

CJWX went for the bottom station to the top. 

00:01:32 Speaker 1 

And we all had a large part to. 

00:01:35 Speaker 1 

Do with. 

00:01:35 Speaker 1 

Stewie was absolutely terrific and I got pictures I don’t want to put him in there where he’s on the stage and and and we we got you know the treasure Trest treasure Trail, Treasure Trail moved to Vancouver and Stewie was the emcee on it. 

00:01:41 Speaker 2 

I’ve got those by first, yes. 

00:01:45 Speaker 2 

You’ll find them in book. 

00:01:48 Speaker 2 


00:01:52 Speaker 1 

And we put all kinds of shows we had a we had a studio with an audience. 

00:01:56 Speaker 1 

And people would line up an hour before the show. 

00:02:00 Speaker 1 

Get into the damn thing and we used to have to go to the regulars who had always come and asked them not to come for a few weeks because we wanted to get the variety of people coming down to see those great productions. 

00:02:12 Speaker 1 

And I used to going back east all the time because Walter Holden was in Winnipeg by now. 

00:02:20 Speaker 1 

And Waldo and I didn’t think we used to have. 

00:02:23 Speaker 1 

Sales managers meetings out there and we didn’t think that all Canada Toronto was doing a good enough job for us. 

00:02:28 Speaker 1 

So we like to come down ourselves and go around calling the agencies and the and the manufacturers. 

00:02:34 Speaker 1 

And I used to go to. 

00:02:35 Speaker 1 

Cincinnati I took took five. 

00:02:39 Speaker 1 

Procter and Gamble shows away from CJ Awire. 

00:02:42 Speaker 1 

I thought that Don Larsen and. 

00:02:45 Speaker 1 

George would kill me. 

00:02:50 Speaker 1 

Well, the thing went up and up and up. 

00:02:53 Speaker 1 

And I was down in the states one day. 

00:02:57 Speaker 1 

And I was coming back and I was traveling to the east and down the States and all around the country so much that nobody ever went to see me up. 

00:03:05 Speaker 1 

And nobody ever met me. 

00:03:07 Speaker 1 

And I got off this plane. 

00:03:09 Speaker 1 

And I walk through the gate and there’s Nancy and I look up and there’s Lena and I look up and there’s tiny. 

00:03:16 Speaker 2 

This will be in all 1943. 

00:03:20 Speaker 1 

Yes, 1943. The war was on right. And and I think I was down there on on, on on this communication or until we used to take our guns down the. 

00:03:31 Speaker 1 

These two, you know, there’s Little Peninsula there where you have to come into Canada, get down to the States and you say, well, hey, Roberts, Point Point Roberts. 

00:03:36 Speaker 2 

Yes, right. Roberts, Roberts. 

00:03:41 Speaker 2 

Robert done, I guess. 

00:03:43 Speaker 1 

Well, we used to run our guns down there. 

00:03:45 Speaker 1 

We had the only mobile in the West Coast of Canada. 

00:03:51 Speaker 1 

And Alan Mcgavin was there was a battery. 

00:03:54 Speaker 1 

I was his assistant. 

00:03:56 Speaker 1 

Roll around and keep we go. 

00:03:58 Speaker 1 

When we moved from out of burning over to Courtney and Comox, where we could fire the guns, we used to go up to Campbell River to fish. 

00:04:05 Speaker 1 

Yeah, and and evenings when we went through and oh, Allen was a wonderful guy. Mcgavin’s bakery. Yeah. And then so. 

00:04:14 Speaker 1 

I got off the plane and I said, what in the world is up? 

00:04:17 Speaker 1 

The owner and I said, oh, we just thought it was a nice evening and we could come out and pick you up. 

00:04:22 Speaker 1 

And Nancy was over visiting Leanna. 

00:04:24 Speaker 1 

And we’ll go to Shaughnessy and have dinner. 

00:04:28 Speaker 1 

So I get in the car and throw my bags in. 

00:04:31 Speaker 1 

The back and and and and. 

00:04:33 Speaker 1 

I look at my. 

00:04:34 Speaker 1 

Wife and she’s grinning and I look at leaning and she’s kind of looking at the ground and. 

00:04:38 Speaker 1 

That I said. 

00:04:39 Speaker 1 

You know, there’s something going on here that I don’t know, but now this is not a surprise party because this is my birthday. 

00:04:46 Speaker 1 

I haven’t done anything. 

00:04:48 Speaker 1 

But this I just feel there’s something Chinese as there is, but just wait. 

00:04:52 Speaker 1 

Wait till we get a drink in her hand. 

00:04:55 Speaker 1 

So when we got a drink in the hand, he said to me, he said to Spence, Dr. 

00:05:00 Speaker 1 

free gun is in town from the CBC. 

00:05:04 Speaker 1 

He’s come out to see you. 

00:05:06 Speaker 1 

He has stopped in to Calgary and talked to Harold Carson and as Harold’s permission to talk. 

00:05:11 Speaker 1 

To him. 

00:05:12 Speaker 1 

And so I said, well, do you want to talk to me about? 

00:05:15 Speaker 1 

Says they want you to go with the CBC. 

00:05:18 Speaker 1 

Well, you know, we thought the CBC was about the ******* over the world. 

00:05:22 Speaker 1 

And and I said I’m not a producer, I’m not an announcer, I’m not a. 

00:05:30 Speaker 1 

I did two things. 

00:05:31 Speaker 1 

I’m a technician and a salesman, and I’m not technically good enough for the CDC because I know a lot of those engineers down there and they’re clever. 

00:05:41 Speaker 1 

Right, Howard? 

00:05:42 Speaker 1 

Here and all these other guys, they were terrific. 

00:05:46 Speaker 1 

These guys at Montreal, well, how we met head of the engineering department. 

00:05:52 Speaker 1 

I went down. 

00:05:54 Speaker 1 

To see him and he told me the story that. 

00:05:58 Speaker 1 

That there was too many commercials on the Trans Canada network and television was the. 

00:06:03 Speaker 1 

Number of years. 

00:06:03 Speaker 1 

Off and they wanted to set up another network. 

00:06:07 Speaker 1 

It would be light music. 

00:06:09 Speaker 1 

And and take the commercials. 

00:06:12 Speaker 1 

You’re going to drop your ashes. 

00:06:14 Speaker 1 

And and take a lot of the commercials off the CBC’s present network because they wanted to clear all the commercials out of things like wins. 

00:06:25 Speaker 1 

Remember, they made Wednesday night into the highbrow thing where they put the Symphony and Andrew Allen’s. 

00:06:30 Speaker 2 

Plays the CBC wants tonight. 

00:06:33 Speaker 1 

And so. 

00:06:35 Speaker 1 

They said you come down and build up and we have a frequency there and build it into a decent station and get studio facilities and. 

00:06:46 Speaker 1 

And then travel across the country and call on the stations because every station wanted on the network. 

00:06:53 Speaker 1 

So then I went and sometimes I Walter Paul or EA Weir would go. 

00:06:59 Speaker 1 

Or Bud Walker and we would go out to the stations and ask the ones we wanted to join. 

00:07:07 Speaker 1 

And there was a lot of politics got in the thing too. 

00:07:09 Speaker 1 

And we’ve got, you know. 

00:07:10 Speaker 1 

Who did I give it to in Vancouver, BC, KWX or CJR, which was the first in line for the thing? 

00:07:18 Speaker 1 

And oh, it was just a terrible job. But anyway, we got that and we we got our own staff and we got young people and we put on, you know, Gordon Keeble announced the 10:10 Swing club and. 

00:07:31 Speaker 1 

We put Lise Robbie from Montreal on a special program and we had. 

00:07:44 Speaker 1 

Sammy Hirschhorn, we give him about four different names. 

00:07:48 Speaker 1 

He used to make more money than the President of the CBC, and so did the other guy that’s over in London now. 

00:07:58 Speaker 1 

Married a creed. 

00:08:00 Speaker 1 

And he’s not playing anymore. 

00:08:02 Speaker 1 

And now he doesn’t need to do anything. 

00:08:07 Speaker 1 

We had him and we did the the. 

00:08:10 Speaker 1 

Latin American serenade. 

00:08:14 Speaker 1 

Billy, show around Bert Niosi. 

00:08:20 Speaker 2 

You were the first manager then of the Dominion. 

00:08:24 Speaker 1 

Well, they didn’t have a manager. 

00:08:26 Speaker 1 

If that wasn’t my title, although I was. 

00:08:29 Speaker 1 

But Mr. 

00:08:31 Speaker 1 

Weir thought he was running the Dominion network. 

00:08:34 Speaker 1 

Bud Walker thought he was running the Dominion network. 

00:08:37 Speaker 1 

Ernie Bushnell thought he was running the network. 

00:08:39 Speaker 1 

Charles Jennings thought he was running the network. 

00:08:41 Speaker 1 

Ottawa thought they were running it and Montreal was getting in every now and then because that’s where Fregon lived. And so it was a real dog’s breakfast. But anyway, I was running the only CBC station. 

00:08:55 Speaker 1 

We had a CBC station in Toronto and 35 affiliates. The affiliates all loved the programs and all got high high rating. 

00:09:04 Speaker 1 

And CJCC wasn’t in the rating book at this stage. 

00:09:09 Speaker 1 

So we had to start from scratch and I ran. 

00:09:12 Speaker 1 

My billboard signs newspaper ads and called on. 

00:09:17 Speaker 1 

And did I did more selling than I did programming because I Gordon Keeble was there and he was just an announcer and I made him the chief announcer and I made **** guns. 

00:09:27 Speaker 1 

The program director and Hartley Mcvicker. 

00:09:30 Speaker 1 

And those guys, and they ran the programming. 

00:09:32 Speaker 1 

Out of it, while I spent my time selling and calling on customs. 

00:09:36 Speaker 1 

And then customers and the agencies would laugh at me because they say, yeah, in the audience in Toronto and we don’t want to buy a network that hasn’t got Canada’s biggest market. 

00:09:46 Speaker 1 

Figures in this. 

00:09:47 Speaker 1 

So it was a hell of a job. 

00:09:49 Speaker 1 

However, Bill Biles, I must say, started to give me some shows. 

00:09:53 Speaker 1 

He was young and Rubicam at the time. 

00:09:55 Speaker 1 

And he brought and gave me Bob Hope and got avid. 

00:09:58 Speaker 1 

And he did a terrific selling job for the network. 

00:10:01 Speaker 1 

No, he would force me to run ads in the paper and run the picture of his show in the first top position in the streetcar card. 

00:10:10 Speaker 1 

And then I had printed my own stationery. 

00:10:12 Speaker 1 

I was a real rebel in there because I was mad when I came down there because the staff had got together. 

00:10:17 Speaker 1 

And when I walked into the station, was pointing out my office, there was a notice of her. 

00:10:21 Speaker 1 

We opposed the appointment of Spence Carbo. 

00:10:24 Speaker 1 

And the staff opposed it. 

00:10:26 Speaker 1 

And so I had to solve that problem at the beginning. 

00:10:30 Speaker 1 

And I got them you. 

00:10:31 Speaker 1 

Know best way to solve a problem has to face up to it and say. 

00:10:36 Speaker 1 

Just a minute. 

00:10:37 Speaker 1 

I didn’t ask for this job. 

00:10:40 Speaker 1 

I was doing quite well out in Vancouver. I took a $2000 cut in salary to leave my thing to come here to try and help this. 

00:10:51 Speaker 1 

Ira Dilworth and and Doctor Fregon and my friends from the CBC and Don Manson asked me to. 

00:10:59 Speaker 1 

Now, I’m sorry that one of you didn’t get the management, but it’s not me. 

00:11:04 Speaker 1 

I didn’t do it. 

00:11:05 Speaker 1 

Go and kick free gun in the *****. 

00:11:07 Speaker 1 

If you if you. 

00:11:08 Speaker 1 

If you don’t like what they’re doing or declaring bull, or he pushed them, or all he ain’t weird, these are the men I talked to. 

00:11:18 Speaker 1 

And I didn’t particularly want to come here, and I don’t like working in the *** **** battery factory. 

00:11:25 Speaker 1 

I came from the best studio in Canada to the. 

00:11:29 Speaker 1 

And I’m sweating my *** up and you people are complaining about this thing you’re all going to get. 

00:11:33 Speaker 1 

You know, if we make a success of this, this is going to be a great thing. 

00:11:37 Speaker 1 

So instead of beef you think? 

00:11:38 Speaker 1 

Don’t tear that *** **** notice down. 

00:11:40 Speaker 1 

On the border or I will and get to work. 

00:11:43 Speaker 1 

I took it down and went to work. 

00:11:44 Speaker 1 

We were good friends so. 

00:11:49 Speaker 1 

I traveled an awful lot and I was going to New York. 

00:11:53 Speaker 1 

And I talked to all the agencies and I went to Cincinnati Park and gallon called on the big American agencies down there. 

00:12:00 Speaker 1 

And it’s especially I got to know ABC, NBC and CBS, all the top brass and all those guys, which was one of the things I wanted. 

00:12:08 Speaker 1 

I wanted to come to Toronto not so much to make a hero of myself with this CBC as to meet the advertisers. 

00:12:15 Speaker 1 

The agencies, and because the big businesses in Canada is Toronto and New York, right? 

00:12:22 Speaker 1 

And that’s what I. 

00:12:24 Speaker 1 

And so I was there and we moved out of the Canadian National carbon battery plant and got the the Havergal College on Jarvis St. in trade for the CBC office at 55 York and. 

00:12:43 Speaker 1 

We just moved in and got things going. 

00:12:47 Speaker 1 

I was happy in there and everybody was good to me. 

00:12:50 Speaker 1 

I didn’t leave because of anything. 

00:12:53 Speaker 1 

Oh, I. 

00:12:54 Speaker 1 

There’s a fellow in charge of supplies. 

00:12:56 Speaker 1 

I printed my own stationery and he got a copy of it. 

00:12:59 Speaker 1 

He wrote to me and says you can’t do that. 

00:13:01 Speaker 1 

It’s a horrible looking letterhead. 

00:13:03 Speaker 1 

I said, look, Mr. 

00:13:05 Speaker 1 

I don’t know you, but I’m going to be in Montreal in two days from now and so. 

00:13:08 Speaker 1 

I’ll go and see you and I’ll talk to you about this. 

00:13:10 Speaker 1 

Face to face. 

00:13:15 Speaker 1 

Instead of doing that, I went in to see Doctor Fregon. 

00:13:19 Speaker 1 

I said doctor freegan. 

00:13:20 Speaker 1 

You asked me to make this station different. 

00:13:23 Speaker 1 

Make it into a private state. 

00:13:25 Speaker 1 

Let all the advertisers be done because we want to advertise and we need the money. 

00:13:29 Speaker 1 

This is. 

00:13:29 Speaker 1 

What you said to me, wasn’t it? 

00:13:30 Speaker 1 

I said yeah. 

00:13:32 Speaker 1 

So I said, well, a private station doesn’t have a black on white, dull looking government letterhead. 

00:13:39 Speaker 1 

And I designed my own. 

00:13:46 Speaker 1 

Yeah. Is it? How? 

00:13:47 Speaker 1 

Much a good night. 

00:13:50 Speaker 1 

Jesus, let me have some of that. 

00:13:52 Speaker 1 

So I said the phone down to your man. 

00:13:54 Speaker 1 

Give me help and have him come up here. 

00:13:57 Speaker 1 

He came up here and doctor free. 

00:13:59 Speaker 1 

Gonna set him, he. 

00:13:59 Speaker 1 

Says this is beautiful looking stationary. 

00:14:01 Speaker 1 

Why don’t you order stuff like that so that horrible stuff that you give me this and what the station got is worse than mine. 

00:14:08 Speaker 1 

And I think this is wonderful and we’re trying to. 

00:14:11 Speaker 1 

Make this you know, live in. 

00:14:13 Speaker 1 

The thing happened. 

00:14:14 Speaker 1 

This is what Mr. 

00:14:15 Speaker 1 

Carl was for. 

00:14:15 Speaker 1 

And he’s doing it. 

00:14:17 Speaker 2 

And leave me alone. 

00:14:26 Speaker 1 

While I was at the CBC, I gave the CBC story and I I liked it very much and everybody was very good to me. 

00:14:36 Speaker 1 

But I thought after a year or two years plus two years and 1/2 or something that I had. 

00:14:44 Speaker 1 

Have met the American networks and the advertising people, and I’d learned a lot from the CBC and I felt that it was time for me to move on because I had in my mind. 

00:15:02 Speaker 1 

And I didn’t want to be a producer at the CBC, and I didn’t want to be manager of a radio station of the of the CBC because they paid far less than the private broadcasting and I wanted to get on and in into most likely my own business sometime. 

00:15:22 Speaker 1 

Just then with Mcquillan. 

00:15:25 Speaker 1 

Who lived in this apartment block as a matter of fact. 

00:15:30 Speaker 1 

Where’s macron? 

00:15:31 Speaker 1 

Phone me up and asked me to if I’d have lunch with him and I was doing a lot of business with Kofi Brown, so I thought it was something to do with Canada Packers or something. 

00:15:42 Speaker 1 

He said to me. Spence. 

00:15:45 Speaker 1 

I like what you’re doing here, and I’ve made inquiries at Vancouver and you did a good job out there. 

00:15:52 Speaker 1 

And he said. 

00:15:55 Speaker 1 

Do you know who recommended you to the CBC? 

00:15:58 Speaker 1 

And I said no, I I, I I’ve never been able to figure it out. 

00:16:01 Speaker 1 

I thought it was all EA Weir or Walter Powell, a commercial man or something. 

00:16:05 Speaker 1 

He says no. 

00:16:06 Speaker 1 

The main thing was Ira Diller. 

00:16:09 Speaker 1 

Who was in charge of the CBC in Vancouver and he watched you take that station from nothing. 

00:16:15 Speaker 1 

Me and Stuart and Norm Bottrell and, you know, tiny Elfick and the God save us. 

00:16:22 Speaker 1 

There was Norris Mackenzie. 

00:16:23 Speaker 1 

And there’s more talent than that, said he. 

00:16:27 Speaker 1 

He watched that station. 

00:16:29 Speaker 1 

Go from the bottom to the top and he told them. 

00:16:33 Speaker 1 

At a management meeting when they were discussing in Ottawa, they had an executive meeting. 

00:16:40 Speaker 1 

They all came down and talked about the bill and they were talking about setting up a second network and he said this Jesus guy in Vancouver, you you don’t need a program man down here, you don’t need a. 

00:16:53 Speaker 1 

A technician, although he is technically my mind, is you want a good salesman and a good publicity man. 

00:16:58 Speaker 1 

And this. 

00:16:59 Speaker 1 

There’s a fellow out in the city that would not man. 

00:17:01 Speaker 1 

But sales manager or something like that of the thing. 

00:17:05 Speaker 1 

But as far as I’m concerned, he is the one that’s known around things. 

00:17:09 Speaker 1 

See, I was on the street all the time. 

00:17:11 Speaker 1 

The other guys were working in the studio. 

00:17:13 Speaker 1 

And I was the one in the Board of Trade and belong to the clubs and. 

00:17:16 Speaker 1 

And I got. 

00:17:17 Speaker 1 

The most thinking. 

00:17:18 Speaker 1 

For everything, so and so it was through our. 

00:17:21 Speaker 1 

Well worth mentioning this is a management meeting when they’re talking about the network that. 

00:17:28 Speaker 1 

Then they, Ernie says, I know Spence Carl very well, and I think the world of him and he told him about Reggie Brophy and yeah, like only thing and and and. 

00:17:37 Speaker 1 

Then and then. 

00:17:44 Speaker 1 

Arnie’s assistant. 

00:17:46 Speaker 1 

The big fella announcer, announcer Charlie Jennings, Charlie Jennings, Charlie Jennings, says. 

00:17:51 Speaker 1 

Oh, I’ve known spends for a long time, and I like him very much. 

00:17:53 Speaker 1 

And then of course, Howard, Hilliard and Holly is various people, and now we met who I had met. 

00:17:57 Speaker 1 

They all spoke up. 

00:17:59 Speaker 1 

Now we met was in charge of engineering in Montreal the time and. 

00:18:02 Speaker 2 


00:18:08 Speaker 1 

The I felt that I’d had enough of the CBC and Winks, not winks the Wiz, but Krillin. 

00:18:19 Speaker 1 

Said that. 

00:18:21 Speaker 1 

Company Kofi Brown needed a radio manager. 

00:18:26 Speaker 1 

In Montreal. 

00:18:28 Speaker 1 

Someone that knew. 

00:18:34 Speaker 1 

Technical could understand the technical because television was coming, we’re going to be far more technical. 


All right. 

00:18:40 Speaker 1 

And he said, I understand you’ve made quite a study of television. 

00:18:44 Speaker 1 

I said, well, I read everything. 

00:18:46 Speaker 1 

I can get a hold of it and go to anything that’s going on, you know, in England and in the states. 

00:18:51 Speaker 1 

So he said. 

00:18:54 Speaker 1 

I would like you to go down and talk to the manager. 

00:18:56 Speaker 1 

Of Kofi Brown in Montreal. 

00:19:00 Speaker 1 

And I can’t think of his name but you. 

00:19:01 Speaker 2 

John mcrobie. 

00:19:03 Speaker 1 

John microbi. 

00:19:05 Speaker 1 

So he says, we’ll pay your expenses and you go on the weekend. 

00:19:09 Speaker 1 

So you see in the weekend. 

00:19:11 Speaker 1 

So I went down and saw Don Macruby and. 

00:19:13 Speaker 1 

Talked to them and it was a pretty good deal and he’s about twice as much money as as. 

00:19:17 Speaker 1 

Getting at the CBC and you have a rights to buy shares in the company. 

00:19:21 Speaker 1 

You can have it on a payroll deduction and all kinds of things like that. 

00:19:25 Speaker 1 

And as we’ve said, you know. 

00:19:29 Speaker 1 

You might get to be in charge of radio and television for. 

00:19:34 Speaker 1 

All of Canada. 

00:19:35 Speaker 1 

If you gone and. 

00:19:37 Speaker 1 

The fellow that was in charge of radio here Savage was it. 

00:19:41 Speaker 2 

Dark, savage. Not dark. Savage. 

00:19:42 Speaker 1 

No, Alan said. 

00:19:43 Speaker 1 

No, Alan, was it? 

00:19:45 Speaker 1 

Alan, I think he was. 

00:19:49 Speaker 1 

Under Wiz Macmillan, in charge of radio anyway, it looked like a pretty good deal and I went down to see them. 

00:19:56 Speaker 1 

Two days later I get a phone call from. 

00:19:58 Speaker 1 

New York from Harold Carson. 

00:20:00 Speaker 1 

He says you *** ** * *****, he said. 

00:20:04 Speaker 1 

We loaned you to the CBC. 

00:20:07 Speaker 1 

We loaned it to the CBC because we wanted the Dominion network to go in because it would feed a lot of our stations, give us a lot of the network programs and network news and everything else, and it was, you know, it. 

00:20:18 Speaker 1 

It was great now. 

00:20:21 Speaker 1 

You’re thinking of leaving and and taking another job. 

00:20:25 Speaker 1 

So I said. 


The hell do you know? 

00:20:26 Speaker 1 

All this, nobody, even my wife, doesn’t know. 

00:20:30 Speaker 1 

That I’m thinking, he says. 

00:20:32 Speaker 1 

I got a telephone call from some ******* in Montreal, would want to know if I’d recommend you. 

00:20:38 Speaker 1 

And they found this, oh, Canada office in in, in Toronto. 

00:20:41 Speaker 1 

And they said that I was at the Ambassador E my throne. 

00:20:44 Speaker 1 

I just got off the phone room. 

00:20:46 Speaker 1 

Some *******. 

00:20:49 Speaker 1 

Says you’re not going to go with. 

00:20:51 Speaker 1 

Sophia Brown, you’re coming back home. 

00:20:56 Speaker 1 

I said. 

00:20:56 Speaker 1 

Now, look, Harold Carson. 

00:20:57 Speaker 1 

I’m not going to go as his station manager in trail. 

00:21:02 Speaker 1 

Or something like that. 

00:21:03 Speaker 1 

No, Sir. 

00:21:05 Speaker 1 

I’m not going to move out of Toronto. 

00:21:08 Speaker 1 

I don’t care whether if you don’t want to go with Kofi Brown, I’ll go with somebody else or I’ll set up business for myself, but I’m not going to go out into some bushwhacking station that you’ve got. 

00:21:20 Speaker 1 

And so. 

00:21:22 Speaker 1 

He said you want to stay in Toronto, he said. And I said yeah, he says, well, that’s just fine because we just got our E Mcguire’s resignation and you can move into the victory building and being in charge of programming for all Canada coast to coast. Big deal. 

00:21:36 Speaker 1 

More money than the CBC because you had to take a cut. 

00:21:39 Speaker 1 

If I remember when you went with it. 

00:21:40 Speaker 1 

So I can be pretty. 

00:21:42 Speaker 1 

So I said, well, that’s pretty good. 

00:21:45 Speaker 1 

I didn’t know that you loved me that much. 

00:21:47 Speaker 1 

And I would sure be interested. 

00:21:49 Speaker 1 

So Harold hired me on the telephone and he said I’ll be up there. 

00:21:52 Speaker 1 

Don’t talk to anybody. 

00:21:54 Speaker 1 

I’ll be up there in about. 

00:21:55 Speaker 1 

Before they so he came up and we had a lot of conversation. 

00:21:58 Speaker 1 

Of course I left then and went with. 

00:22:00 Speaker 1 

With all Canada and we were on the third floor of the victory building in Adelaide Street and out. 

00:22:07 Speaker 2 

Now you’re talking approximately 194849 no. 

00:22:12 Speaker 1 

I came down well, maybe I came down. 

00:22:16 Speaker 1 

At the end. 

00:22:16 Speaker 1 

And of I started in 44 in the network. Yeah. And I was there, I guess 4445 and into 46. 

00:22:28 Speaker 1 

So it would have been 46. I can. That’s close enough. Yeah, I’ve. I’ve got 46 done and I can look in this book. 

00:22:36 Speaker 1 

And see this exactly when it was and we can get those exact dates out of here later on. 

00:22:42 Speaker 1 

It says here see. 

00:22:44 Speaker 1 

And Harold Carson. But all this, all of this stuff back in 474849 we can get get all those dates for the details but. 

00:22:55 Speaker 1 

So I started and Fred Cannon was there, and then I hired Norris Mackenzie, who was with Hamilton, and I hired a number of other people and we didn’t have enough room. 

00:23:06 Speaker 1 

So we moved out and I built up the and all Canadas program department and of course. 

00:23:15 Speaker 1 

Fred Zib was big in the transcriptions then and I was going down to Seattle and then. 

00:23:23 Speaker 1 

Cincinnati to see Fred. 

00:23:28 Speaker 1 

All the other suppliers and then we started to mate shows down at RCA Studios. 

00:23:34 Speaker 1 

Reflections, reflections. 

00:23:35 Speaker 2 

Yes, household finance was. 

00:23:38 Speaker 1 

And we had to NBC. 

00:23:40 Speaker 1 

And we had some pretty good things. 

00:23:41 Speaker 1 

So anyway, I was going along. 

00:23:44 Speaker 1 

And everything was fine. 

00:23:46 Speaker 1 

I paid no attention to John Trestrail. 

00:23:50 Speaker 1 

GAIL, today to GAIL and. 

00:23:55 Speaker 1 

The time salesman and I concentrated on the program and Fred Cannon was a great real great help. 

00:24:02 Speaker 1 

And Norris was doing a great job in selling and I had Bill Steckel and. 

00:24:10 Speaker 1 

Oh, quite a few names that I think of. 

00:24:12 Speaker 1 

They’ll be in my book. 

00:24:14 Speaker 1 

I just can’t recall now. 

00:24:15 Speaker 1 

But anyway, we built up a good crew and we were selling programs like Mad. 

00:24:20 Speaker 1 

Never did I get along with Guy Herbert. 

00:24:23 Speaker 1 

And he hated my guts because I was getting too much attention from the people and they. 

00:24:30 Speaker 1 

Time sales were. 

00:24:32 Speaker 1 

Growing, but they were growing because we were selling. 

00:24:34 Speaker 1 

The programs. 

00:24:36 Speaker 1 

And he did everything in his power to make my life. 

00:24:43 Speaker 1 

And he was telling Harold the wildest stories because Harold, when he gets in his cups, you know, he says, what’s this I hear about you going down to New York and spending $100 a day? 

00:24:53 Speaker 1 

Or something like that. 

00:24:53 Speaker 1 

And I said, what about it? 

00:24:56 Speaker 1 

You spend a. 

00:24:56 Speaker 1 

$1000 A. 

00:24:57 Speaker 1 

Day to make it down there and I do. 

00:24:58 Speaker 1 

I do work. 

00:24:59 Speaker 1 

You just sit. 

00:24:59 Speaker 1 

Around the gun and clubs drinking. 

00:25:01 Speaker 1 

And so I said, I don’t think they do $100 today as much in New York, of course. 

00:25:06 Speaker 1 

That’s about $300.00 no more. So I said, if you want me to stay at the. 

00:25:12 Speaker 1 

YMCA. Fine, I don’t. 

00:25:13 Speaker 1 

Do that. 

00:25:14 Speaker 1 

I don’t care. 

00:25:14 Speaker 1 

I stay there. 

00:25:16 Speaker 1 

So this says, as a matter of fact, how? 

00:25:18 Speaker 1 

If you don’t want me to go to New York at all since so, and I won’t go anymore. 

00:25:22 Speaker 1 

But you know, I’ve this is where I’ve been getting. 

00:25:24 Speaker 1 

Programs and. 

00:25:24 Speaker 1 

Things and customers and the top agency fellow. 

00:25:29 Speaker 1 

A lot of these guys aren’t dealing with your time salesman couldn’t even talk to them. 

00:25:35 Speaker 1 

And if you don’t believe me, ask for all the hold them or any of the other sales managers in their stations what they think of the Toronto office about. 

00:25:44 Speaker 1 

Hall in Montreal is 10 times as good as the Toronto. 

00:25:51 Speaker 1 

I told this to Harold Carson. 

00:25:53 Speaker 1 

I said I I go to Montreal on programs Bert Hall or Jerry Person gained it out and they welcomed me with open arms and say Spence go to itself. 

00:26:03 Speaker 1 

I see Mr. 

00:26:04 Speaker 1 

so and so, with Burks going so and so on the Hudson Bay. 

00:26:06 Speaker 1 

And they said they they wanna program and you go there and they get the time sales. 

00:26:10 Speaker 1 

So I said I get great cooperation. 

00:26:13 Speaker 1 

Everywhere except. 

00:26:17 Speaker 1 

Toronto, where Guy Herbert’s got his foot out, tripped. 

00:26:21 Speaker 1 

Well, of course, the fact that Harold was telling me. 

00:26:26 Speaker 1 

What God had said about me, I knew also that Harold was telling guy what I said about him. 

00:26:33 Speaker 1 

And I didn’t give a **** at this. 

00:26:35 Speaker 1 

Stage of the. 

00:26:36 Speaker 1 

Game so. 

00:26:42 Speaker 1 

2 1/2 years or whatever it was at all count. 

00:26:46 Speaker 1 

I gave my resignation and said I’m going into business with myself. 

00:26:52 Speaker 1 

Guy was delighted. 

00:26:55 Speaker 1 

The guys that were working for me weren’t. 

00:26:58 Speaker 1 

And Harold Carson came down to see me. 

00:27:02 Speaker 1 

Joe Sedgwick. 

00:27:04 Speaker 1 

Heard about it through Harry because Harry was a good friend and Joe phoned me and said I’ve got the penthouse in the victory building and I’ve got a private office and an outer office that I’m not using it. 

00:27:15 Speaker 1 

You can move in and you can pay me anytime in the future. 

00:27:20 Speaker 1 

And so I said, boy, that’s great, John. 

00:27:23 Speaker 1 

So I moved up into the penthouse of the Victor building. 

00:27:26 Speaker 1 

And they all Canada through how Carson Gates still wasn’t down there. 

00:27:34 Speaker 1 

Gave me desk chair, filing cabinet, typewriter. 

00:27:40 Speaker 1 

And always to set up as a competitor. 

00:27:44 Speaker 1 

And then I set up my office and what I didn’t. 

00:27:49 Speaker 1 

I sold my house and sold my car to get some money to finance this thing. 

00:27:54 Speaker 2 

Because it really wasn’t. 

00:27:55 Speaker 2 

As a competitor, you stopped to think of it. 

00:27:58 Speaker 2 

It was a man selling programs to help them continue selling time. 

00:28:02 Speaker 1 

Sure, it was. 

00:28:03 Speaker 1 

And so then? 

00:28:05 Speaker 2 

So how do what he was doing? 

00:28:07 Speaker 1 

So Hal came down a few months afterwards and he invited me down to the hotel and bought me dinner. 

00:28:11 Speaker 1 

And we chatted for a while, he said. 

00:28:12 Speaker 1 

How you doing, Spence? 

00:28:13 Speaker 1 

And I said, Jesus, the hell with them. 

00:28:16 Speaker 1 

I can sell. 

00:28:18 Speaker 1 

I know the business. 

00:28:19 Speaker 1 

I know the people. 

00:28:20 Speaker 1 

I know the stations. 

00:28:21 Speaker 1 

I know the advertisers. 

00:28:22 Speaker 1 

I know the agencies. 

00:28:24 Speaker 1 

But I’ve got no product. 

00:28:26 Speaker 1 

I can’t get any Fred Ziv, you know, I went down and call on him. 

00:28:31 Speaker 1 

I didn’t ask him for his agency. 

00:28:32 Speaker 1 

I and then he got a chance to because he said Spence and I know you’ve gone into business for yourself. 

00:28:38 Speaker 1 

But don’t look to us for programming because our Canada have been so wonderful and have done such a. 

00:28:44 Speaker 1 

Good job and. 

00:28:45 Speaker 1 

You were partially responsible for it. 

00:28:48 Speaker 1 

I’m not going to leave them, but I tell you what I’ve got. 

00:28:51 Speaker 1 

I’ve bought the World Library in Northern Electric. 

00:28:54 Speaker 1 

You’ve got a whole bunch of crummy shows down there. 

00:28:57 Speaker 1 

You could have those. 

00:28:59 Speaker 1 

So I got it six shows from Northern Electric and they’re glad to get rid of the discs. 

00:29:05 Speaker 1 

And remember there were ones that took the special head. 

00:29:07 Speaker 1 

Yes, lateral or. 

00:29:09 Speaker 1 

Something, yes, yes. 

00:29:12 Speaker 1 

So I got those and then. 

00:29:16 Speaker 1 

The first thing. 

00:29:20 Speaker 1 

When I’m, you know, got my letterhead and all the rest of it the 1st. 

00:29:25 Speaker 1 

Thing that that. 

00:29:26 Speaker 1 

I was starving to death, Nancy. 

00:29:29 Speaker 1 

We had to give up our we sold the House and Nancy went to Simpsons and took a a order office training course for a number of months, and they sent it to wellan. 

00:29:42 Speaker 1 

And so she went and worked in Welland. 

00:29:44 Speaker 1 

For about a year and she was very good or something like that. 

00:29:48 Speaker 1 

And then they made her manager. 

00:29:49 Speaker 1 

Of Niagara Falls. 

00:29:51 Speaker 1 

We used to meet halfway between or. 

00:29:53 Speaker 1 

I’d sold my car, so I had to take the train down or she’d have to try and get a ride up here, and we only saw each other about every second weekend. 

00:30:02 Speaker 1 

And and she was very good at it too. 

00:30:05 Speaker 1 

They loved. 

00:30:06 Speaker 1 

They loved her well, they. 

00:30:10 Speaker 1 

The first thing. 

00:30:12 Speaker 1 

That really. 

00:30:14 Speaker 1 

Got me going was that? 

00:30:18 Speaker 1 

I called on West. 

00:30:21 Speaker 1 

I’d set up in the. 

00:30:25 Speaker 1 

Victor Welling and Joe Sedgwick. 

00:30:29 Speaker 1 

And in the next few years, I was advertising. 

00:30:34 Speaker 1 

And talking. 

00:30:37 Speaker 1 

Television and on my letterhead, it said. 

00:30:40 Speaker 1 

Radio and television advertising, and everybody laughed at me. 

00:30:45 Speaker 1 

Because there was number television in Canada and Guy Herbert was absolutely convinced. 

00:30:52 Speaker 1 

And this is one of the big arguments that we had because I was trying to convince Harold Carson to start in television now because it was going to be the greatest thing since sliced bread and we could see from England and from the United States, there was going to be a booming business. 

00:31:11 Speaker 1 

And that as soon as the Canadian government allowed them in here, and antennas were going up around Toronto like mad tuned to Buffalo. 

00:31:22 Speaker 1 

I went down and saw all the Buffalo stations and all the rest of it, so they. 

00:31:27 Speaker 1 

The first thing that I did was to. 

00:31:32 Speaker 1 

Go to. Talk to Westinghouse. 

00:31:36 Speaker 1 

Doing a show. 

00:31:38 Speaker 1 

And I made I wanted to have a connection with him because Herb Roggy, the president, used to be a Westinghouse, Westinghouse broadcaster. 

00:31:47 Speaker 1 

So I built a show. 

00:31:51 Speaker 1 

Around the downright course. 

00:31:54 Speaker 1 

And John Fisher, Mr. Canada. 

00:31:58 Speaker 1 

And I saw it as a Sunday night early Sunday night show. 

00:32:03 Speaker 1 

And I. 

00:32:06 Speaker 1 

Went down and. 

00:32:08 Speaker 1 

Talked it all over with various different people, all around people, and finally I found out that the right person through Ken Sobel, the right person, was Ken Farley. 

00:32:18 Speaker 1 

So I got talking to Ken Farthing, and of course, he was a wonderful, wonderful man. 

00:32:23 Speaker 1 

And Ken Farthing listened and helped me on this thing. 

00:32:23 Speaker 2 

I remember. 

00:32:27 Speaker 1 

And he told me all about John Charles Thomas being sponsored by Westinghouse in the States and filled me in on a lot of things. 

00:32:34 Speaker 1 

And what to do and what not to do. 

00:32:38 Speaker 1 

And introduce me to ragy and introduce me to. 

00:32:45 Speaker 1 

Oh, what’s his name? 

00:32:46 Speaker 1 

I forget his. 

00:32:47 Speaker 1 

Name, who is his sister? 

00:32:48 Speaker 1 

To rocky. 

00:32:50 Speaker 1 

I’ll think of it in a minute. 

00:32:52 Speaker 1 

Very nice little fellow. 

00:32:57 Speaker 1 

So I made all kinds of presentations and didn’t hear back to them and I had. 

00:33:04 Speaker 1 

Jean, who was my secretary down at all Canada Alcan. 

00:33:08 Speaker 1 

Let me take her too. 

00:33:11 Speaker 1 

And she came in to me and she said. 

00:33:13 Speaker 1 

This is Mr. 

00:33:15 Speaker 1 

so and so I can’t think of his name now. 

00:33:18 Speaker 1 

Outside wants to see it, so I said. 

00:33:21 Speaker 1 

I’ll see anybody, even an insurance sales. 

00:33:24 Speaker 1 

But this guy is the assistant to the President of Westinghouse and. 

00:33:28 Speaker 1 

He’s very lot of authority. 

00:33:31 Speaker 1 

Please ask him to come in. 

00:33:33 Speaker 1 

So he came in. 

00:33:36 Speaker 1 

And he said, Mr. 

00:33:36 Speaker 1 

Carlin, we’ve decided. 

00:33:39 Speaker 1 

To buy. 

00:33:40 Speaker 1 

Your presentation. 

00:33:44 Speaker 1 

Bonanza and he said, I know, I know from Ken, that things haven’t been good with you since you went into business for yourself. 

00:33:58 Speaker 1 

And he would like to help you. 

00:34:00 Speaker 1 

And Westinghouse would like to help you. 

00:34:02 Speaker 2 

Let’s cancel. 

00:34:03 Speaker 2 

Will you, man? 

00:34:04 Speaker 1 

Or Ken, Ken firing Ken filing and he didn’t mention Ken. 

00:34:07 Speaker 1 

And he says Ken Sobel says you’re a real good guy and you’ll work your *** off for us because you. 

00:34:12 Speaker 1 

Got nothing else to do. 

00:34:15 Speaker 1 

So he said there’s just. 

00:34:19 Speaker 1 

One catch. 

00:34:22 Speaker 1 

And I want to be very careful how I say this to you. 

00:34:26 Speaker 1 

Westinghouse Pittsburgh’s head office doesn’t control Canada. 

00:34:32 Speaker 1 

I felt like you say ha. 

00:34:34 Speaker 1 

And nor does there ever department, which is in Pennsylvania. 

00:34:40 Speaker 1 

Control our advertise. 

00:34:44 Speaker 1 

Because this suggestion of the downright chorus is so close to what we did in New York. 

00:34:52 Speaker 1 

I’d like you to go down with Ken Farley and we’ll pay your expenses and present it to our advertising office. 

00:34:59 Speaker 1 

At both in Pittsburgh and at this other place, I forget. 

00:35:03 Speaker 1 

The town now. 

00:35:06 Speaker 1 

In Pennsylvania. 

00:35:08 Speaker 1 

So I said delighted. 

00:35:12 Speaker 1 

Delighted and most likely to give me some good pointers. 

00:35:17 Speaker 1 

And he said if they they won’t tell you what they think, but they’ll tell us. 

00:35:23 Speaker 1 

And if they think? 

00:35:25 Speaker 1 

It’s a good idea. 

00:35:26 Speaker 1 

Maybe they quit the John Charles Summit. 

00:35:27 Speaker 1 

They quit the John Carlin. 

00:35:29 Speaker 1 

Maybe they quit it because it was number good from from an advertising point. 

00:35:32 Speaker 1 

Of view. 

00:35:33 Speaker 1 

But if we get a favorable thing and we’re only doing this because they’ve had experience in radio broadcasting, which we haven’t. 

00:35:42 Speaker 1 

They had a similar show. 

00:35:44 Speaker 1 

If they think it’s a good idea and they liked what they. 

00:35:47 Speaker 1 

Were doing before. 

00:35:48 Speaker 1 

And it’s a deal. 

00:35:50 Speaker 1 

And we’ll have you set up the. 

00:35:53 Speaker 1 

Just you know, select the stations. 

00:35:55 Speaker 1 

From coast to coast. 

00:35:59 Speaker 1 

So away we went and on the way back. 

00:36:02 Speaker 1 

Ken fryling. 

00:36:04 Speaker 1 

Said to me those guys didn’t say anything to you, but they said. 

00:36:08 Speaker 1 

It to me and they like it. 

00:36:10 Speaker 1 

So you’re in. 

00:36:14 Speaker 1 

And he said. 

00:36:19 Speaker 1 

Why don’t you? 

00:36:22 Speaker 1 

Set up your own advertising age. 

00:36:25 Speaker 1 

If you had any gumption, you do that. 

00:36:29 Speaker 1 

Jesus Christ, my own advertising engine. 

00:36:31 Speaker 1 

I’ve always, you know, been calling on the advertising. 

00:36:34 Speaker 1 

This is who I call on now to sell my products to. 

00:36:37 Speaker 1 

This is who they haven’t sold it. 

00:36:40 Speaker 1 

So I said no, but I did get the Westinghouse. 

00:36:44 Speaker 1 

I mean, the General Electric deal and that’s where you guys paid a lot of attention to me, see. 

00:36:50 Speaker 1 

Harry Dawson used to be the cab. 

00:36:53 Speaker 1 

Was with General Electric here and they hired me, which was the first deal I got to put on at the CNE. 

00:37:00 Speaker 1 

A complete television show and they brought up all the equipment. 

00:37:04 Speaker 1 

And tell Acini and the whole thing, and we built a great big broadcasting station and had to chop a hole through the floor and put in our own Transformers down there. 

00:37:13 Speaker 1 

And I was hired to do the programming. 

00:37:19 Speaker 1 

At at a meeting with the President of General Electric and all of their bosses and all the rest of it, they said that they had selected me to do the programming. 

00:37:29 Speaker 1 

But it’s just for two weeks. Just during this NE, but it’ll take you six weeks to set it up and it’ll take you three weeks to knock it down. But we want this to be big and we’ll put monitors. 

00:37:40 Speaker 1 

All around our exhibit and anywhere else they want them in the place where we can string. 

00:37:45 Speaker 1 

And cable to. 

00:37:47 Speaker 1 

I think it was the Brown 300 ohm, no classical cable. So so finally this, this, this fellow was the chairman of the meeting. 

00:38:00 Speaker 1 

The president was sitting here and vice presidents around, but there was another guy, I guess, that he’s advertising manager and Harry Dawson was here. 

00:38:07 Speaker 1 

Said Mr. 

00:38:09 Speaker 1 

What will you charge? 

00:38:11 Speaker 1 

I told him I could get from the Ed Sullivan show toast of the town. 

00:38:15 Speaker 1 

I’d get some NBC shows. 

00:38:17 Speaker 1 

I’d get them. 

00:38:19 Speaker 1 

The skater that just won the thing that’s just married and lived down. 

00:38:24 Speaker 1 

What’s her name? She was. 

00:38:25 Speaker 1 

A big hit then I could get a movie of hers and I’d get all of the best things and I’d program this all day long. 

00:38:34 Speaker 1 

From when it opened in the morning. 

00:38:36 Speaker 1 

Until when it closed at night. 

00:38:38 Speaker 1 

For the full duration of the C&E. 

00:38:41 Speaker 1 

So they said. 

00:38:42 Speaker 1 

How much did you charge? 

00:38:43 Speaker 1 

For this, and I say I want $100 a day plus expenses. 

00:38:48 Speaker 1 

Jeez, I thought I was shooting for the moon. You know, I work for the star now. $50.00 A meeting. I don’t do anything. So I said $100 a day. 

00:39:01 Speaker 1 

So the president says, well, that’s all right, Mr. 

00:39:04 Speaker 1 

This was, or I’ll give you another proposition or I’ll do it for nothing. 

00:39:14 Speaker 1 

And so he stopped for a minute. 

00:39:17 Speaker 1 

I said, well, just go a little bit further. 

00:39:20 Speaker 1 

What’s the nothing doing? 

00:39:21 Speaker 1 

Nothing deal. 

00:39:22 Speaker 1 

And I said it’s exactly the same. 

00:39:25 Speaker 1 

But between the programs I put up a slide. 

00:39:29 Speaker 1 

And said, produced by Spence Colwell of S. 

00:39:32 Speaker 1 

W called the limit. 

00:39:35 Speaker 1 

Commercials come up and the thing people have to get used to it, they’re used to it looking at Buffalo. 

00:39:40 Speaker 1 

And a lot of people weren’t seeing. 

00:39:43 Speaker 1 

Buffalo because they. 

00:39:44 Speaker 1 

Didn’t have high enough antennas or didn’t have sets. 

00:39:50 Speaker 1 

They present says very clever, very clever. 

00:39:55 Speaker 1 

OK, I’ve got to go up to my office and as he got to the door, he says. 

00:40:00 Speaker 1 

Oh, by the way, Mr. 

00:40:01 Speaker 1 

Cowell, on your way out after you’re through with the boys here would. 

00:40:04 Speaker 1 

You drop in. 

00:40:06 Speaker 1 

So I said yes, Sir. 

00:40:08 Speaker 1 

So we finished with the meeting and I went up to see the General Electric presence. 

00:40:14 Speaker 1 

And this can’t be published. 

00:40:16 Speaker 1 

But he said to me, he said. 

00:40:21 Speaker 1 

You know, it’s refreshing to see a guy. 

00:40:24 Speaker 1 

I hear that you’re just desperate for business and and money. 

00:40:29 Speaker 1 

And Harry Dawson has told me all about you. 

00:40:33 Speaker 1 

To come along when you’re starving for money and say you’ll do it for nothing to build your. 

00:40:39 Speaker 1 

Business, he says. 

00:40:40 Speaker 1 

Boy, that’s what I like. 

00:40:42 Speaker 1 

So he said, look you. 

00:40:45 Speaker 1 

We’ll pay your expenses. 

00:40:47 Speaker 1 

Of course. 

00:40:48 Speaker 1 

And he said you bring your expense accounts to me and I’ll initially and he said. 

00:40:55 Speaker 1 

You know, we’re pretty generous. 

00:40:56 Speaker 1 

We’re used. 

00:40:56 Speaker 1 

To I got this plugged all the way along and I got paid too. 

00:41:05 Speaker 1 

Because, you know, I put in, I would going to New York and going down to Montreal, the National Film Board and up the other one going around grabbing all these things that I need to help a lot of material because. 

00:41:15 Speaker 1 

We didn’t want to run to run the same shows every day, right? 



00:41:17 Speaker 2 


00:41:18 Speaker 1 

Mixed it all up. 

00:41:19 Speaker 1 

And when I did run this thing like the toaster tone and I got this from CBS I wanted. 

00:41:26 Speaker 1 

14 episodes. 

00:41:28 Speaker 1 

And they gave them to me. 

00:41:31 Speaker 2 

That’s amazing. 

00:41:32 Speaker 2 

Gave them to me. 

00:41:33 Speaker 2 

Amazing, isn’t it? 

00:41:38 Speaker 1 

Almost everybody in it. 

00:41:39 Speaker 1 

And of course I have to work with Harry with Mclarens, but. 

00:41:46 Speaker 1 

Hugh Porter was there, you know, and we got along great and he did a lot of things to help me. 

00:41:50 Speaker 1 

We put on fire and the Westinghouse guys were coming around looking all the time and they General Electric fellas would. 

00:41:57 Speaker 1 

See that guy over there? 

00:41:58 Speaker 1 

He’s the advertising man watching us. 

00:41:59 Speaker 1 

I didn’t know. 

00:42:00 Speaker 1 

Can’t see that guy. 

00:42:02 Speaker 1 

He’s a sales manager with this fellow was. 

00:42:05 Speaker 1 

With W and this one’s with mcclarity’s and this is with. 

00:42:11 Speaker 1 

Moffatts and all of the people around looking at this great thing and seeing what was going on. 

00:42:18 Speaker 1 

So anyway. 

00:42:21 Speaker 1 

After that, after that was over, I had a little bit of, you know, the trade papers, right wrote all kinds of stories on. 

00:42:28 Speaker 1 

So I got a lot of publicity out. 

00:42:29 Speaker 1 

Of the thing and then. 

00:42:32 Speaker 1 

On this Westinghouse thing. 

00:42:34 Speaker 1 

Coming back from on the on the train with Ken Friday, he says. 

00:42:40 Speaker 1 

Why don’t you get your own advertising? 

00:42:43 Speaker 1 

He says. 

00:42:43 Speaker 1 

I’ll tell you something. 

00:42:44 Speaker 1 

Our agency is Russell T Kelly. 

00:42:47 Speaker 1 

And we told them we wanted to go on the radio. 

00:42:50 Speaker 1 

And they came back and advised us not to. 

00:42:54 Speaker 1 

To expand our advertising in the newspapers and magazines, and especially in the trade papers. 

00:43:03 Speaker 1 

And he said, we just think in Westinghouse. 

00:43:06 Speaker 1 

That’s the lousiest recommendation in the world. 

00:43:09 Speaker 1 

And we don’t think it will be a good idea if we buy a program from you as a programmer. 

00:43:16 Speaker 1 

And as the creator of this program. 

00:43:19 Speaker 1 

And have them handle it. 

00:43:21 Speaker 1 

Because they’ve already advised against radio and they might do everything part and make it lousy because they want their print, right? 

00:43:28 Speaker 2 


00:43:29 Speaker 1 

So go and get yourself an advertising. 

00:43:31 Speaker 1 

And we’ll start tomorrow with Ken Sobel. 

00:43:34 Speaker 1 

So I went and saw Ken, I said. 

00:43:36 Speaker 1 

Ken, I’ve I’ve sold the thing. 

00:43:37 Speaker 1 

It’s going. 

00:43:37 Speaker 1 

To run in your station, and Ken here suggests that I should have my own advertising agency and I’d like to, would would you vote for me? 

00:43:45 Speaker 1 

He said Jesus, I’d be delighted. 

00:43:47 Speaker 1 

So I ran up to Toronto and I run into see Harry. 

00:43:52 Speaker 1 

Harry, would you support me on this thing? 

00:43:57 Speaker 1 

And said, although apparently you’re going to put this working house show on the CBC, and what a hell of a place that is, and Christ, you can bring it over. 

00:44:05 Speaker 1 

Here and and. 

00:44:07 Speaker 1 

You get twice the audio. 

00:44:09 Speaker 1 

So he said no. 

00:44:09 Speaker 1 

I’ll support you. 

00:44:11 Speaker 1 

Joe did. 

00:44:12 Speaker 1 

And Joe was his lawyer for the cab at the time, and Jim Allard came down to see me and any of the other guys that were in it. 

00:44:19 Speaker 1 

And I phoned a lot of the people were directors of the CABG. 

00:44:23 Speaker 1 

I had a *** **** advertising agency in three weeks. 

00:44:28 Speaker 1 

I had to. 

00:44:30 Speaker 1 

Proved that I had more than one account. 

00:44:32 Speaker 1 

So I put down the Cancer Society, which I was a director. 

00:44:38 Speaker 1 

And what else? 

00:44:39 Speaker 1 

There was something else that they put down in the list and these guys just laugh like hell and then and put it through. 

00:44:44 Speaker 1 

I’d give him the three names. 

00:44:46 Speaker 1 

They didn’t. 

00:44:47 Speaker 1 

They didn’t. 

00:44:48 Speaker 1 

I was. 

00:44:50 Speaker 1 

As somebody said to me and at that time they said anybody, they could sell Westinghouse. 

00:44:57 Speaker 1 

And going on radio. 

00:45:01 Speaker 1 

When everybody’s taking a crack crack at them at one time or another and never been successful, and you’re the only guy that’s been. 

00:45:08 Speaker 1 

Able to. 

00:45:08 Speaker 1 

Sell Westinghouse, Canada. 

00:45:11 Speaker 1 

And spending any money. 

00:45:13 Speaker 1 

Oh, they ran the odd spot campaign at Christmas. 

00:45:15 Speaker 1 

Yeah, for Christmas tree lights or things like that. 

00:45:18 Speaker 1 

But this went on 38 stations coast to coast, produced in the private station at CFPL, London. The only show that’s ever been produced in a private station fed to the full CBC. 

00:45:31 Speaker 1 

Network live. 

00:45:35 Speaker 2 

Really. That surprises me though. 

00:45:38 Speaker 1 

The only time A at that time they might be others. 

00:45:44 Speaker 1 

Now at that time, this was the first program to be created in a private station, and Walter Blackburn wanted it so bad he could taste it. 

00:45:53 Speaker 1 

He almost gave me the recordings for nothing. 

00:45:56 Speaker 1 

They used their studios because Don lived there, and I made Lillian the assistant producer, so I didn’t have to go down every. 

00:46:03 Speaker 1 

Week his wife. 

00:46:05 Speaker 1 

Who Lilian, you know is a man. 

00:46:11 Speaker 1 

Prime Minister means flatter Max Me and brother, which is a very rich man now, Lillian. 

00:46:12 Speaker 2 

Yes, yes. 

00:46:21 Speaker 1 

Then I got into trouble on that thing because Don asked me if I would. 

00:46:26 Speaker 1 

He says you recorded 15 times while we were rehearsing on the thing. 

00:46:30 Speaker 1 

Why don’t you take the best tape? 

00:46:32 Speaker 1 

And play it to the network, they’ll never know the difference, and then we will all be able to go to church because all these kids are in the course church courses and if they come on from 6:00 to 6:30, they can’t. 

00:46:45 Speaker 1 

You know, make the church with them and they can’t eat before, so it’s well, they’re just giving up the church and it makes them better singers within the church. 

00:46:54 Speaker 1 

So I said, OK, I don’t do. 

00:46:56 Speaker 1 

It damn play a tape. 

00:46:58 Speaker 1 

Good quality, good wonderful recording, however. 

00:47:02 Speaker 1 

Five years later, the government came after me and. 

00:47:05 Speaker 1 

Said you. 

00:47:07 Speaker 1 

You’re just paying sales tax, Mr. 

00:47:09 Speaker 1 

Cowell on the recording. 

00:47:12 Speaker 1 

The bill that you get from CFPL you’re paying. 

00:47:16 Speaker 1 

Sales tax on it, but it’s supposed to include all of the talent. 

00:47:22 Speaker 1 

I said if I had to, I’d move the origination over to Buffalo and bring it in on a network like the government does. 

00:47:30 Speaker 1 

It doesn’t pay you. 

00:47:32 Speaker 1 

Sales tax and Christ songs I should know because I was with the girl and brought in thousands of programs like. 

00:47:38 Speaker 1 

So all I got to do is move across the border and bring it in there. 

00:47:41 Speaker 1 

So are you so against Canadian talent? 

00:47:43 Speaker 1 

Would you like it to come out in the paper that I had to? 

00:47:45 Speaker 1 

Cancel the. 

00:47:46 Speaker 1 

Show because you people wanted to charge me sales tax and you don’t charge. 

00:47:50 Speaker 1 

CBS, NBC or? 

00:47:51 Speaker 1 

Mutual or any other other. 

00:47:52 Speaker 1 

People, Chris, you might be out there and that. 

00:47:55 Speaker 1 

I ended up being an advisor to the government on the importation of films and tape, paid my expenses to go up there and they billed me for $27,000 and Phil Mills, who I got to know up there and love. Terrific. He just had it wiped out. 

00:48:11 Speaker 1 

I scared because the radio program had gone off now for a year. 

00:48:16 Speaker 1 

By the time they came to me and we were into the. 

00:48:20 Speaker 1 

Television. Right, right. So when? 

00:48:23 Speaker 1 

When and I must put this in because the see I got very close to CBS and I thought like the Dickens to get CBS and CBC to get together on television. 

00:48:36 Speaker 1 

And they couldn’t get together. 

00:48:38 Speaker 1 

And I don’t want to pat myself in the back, but I had a great deal. 

00:48:42 Speaker 1 

To do with bringing the CBC. 

00:48:45 Speaker 1 

And the CBS together so we could bring in. 

00:48:49 Speaker 1 

Studio 1. 

00:48:51 Speaker 1 

On Monday night. 

00:48:53 Speaker 1 

It was the biggest big dramatic show in life. 

00:48:57 Speaker 1 

And a Worthington miner as producer and Fletcher Markel and a lot of the. 

00:49:02 Speaker 1 

So when we couldn’t get the CBC and CBS together fast enough in the meantime, television was starting. 

00:49:12 Speaker 1 

So I talked Westinghouse and to take the big review. 

00:49:15 Speaker 1 

Which was an hour long musical dance show this, and so Westinghouse took that for about 20 weeks till they could get the studio one in. 

00:49:26 Speaker 1 

So we brought Studio one in for justice a couple of weeks with Betty Furness doing the commercials. 

00:49:33 Speaker 1 

I got a phone call one day and said, Christ, what are you doing to expense? 

00:49:38 Speaker 1 

Betty Furness is advertising the frost free refrigerator. 

00:49:42 Speaker 1 

We’re not even into production in the frost free refrigerator. 

00:49:45 Speaker 1 

We’re six months away from production. 

00:49:47 Speaker 1 

We’ve got 37,000 other refrigerators in stock now. Christ, get those. *** **** American commercials. We love the show and love everything. So I put on auditions. 

00:49:59 Speaker 1 

And hired Lady Dennis and Joel Aldridge and we produce. 

00:50:05 Speaker 1 

So I got a writing fee. 

00:50:07 Speaker 1 

I got a production fee, I got a. 

00:50:13 Speaker 1 

Every kind of a fee you could think of in the thing. And then I get 15% on 37 stations in Canada. 

00:50:21 Speaker 1 

It sure was a long way from being broke away. 

00:50:24 Speaker 1 

But kind of. 

00:50:25 Speaker 1 

Coaching business. 

00:50:26 Speaker 1 

So now if you have a big name like Westinghouse. 

00:50:30 Speaker 1 

Then everybody else started a company. 

00:50:32 Speaker 1 

The BBC came and brought their programs. 

00:50:34 Speaker 1 

They had their own offices across town and they said we got selling damn thing. 

00:50:37 Speaker 1 

Apparently you were a real cracker cracker, saying can you do anything with the BBC program? 

00:50:41 Speaker 1 

And I sure can. 

00:50:42 Speaker 1 

So I got the BBC then. 

00:50:47 Speaker 1 

Both film and radio. 

00:50:49 Speaker 1 

And then. 

00:50:51 Speaker 1 

I went down to and this is an interesting story. 

00:50:54 Speaker 1 

The funny things that happened in life. 

00:50:56 Speaker 1 

I had been trying to get CBS film Department to give me the distribution in Canada and I couldn’t get the first base with them and the manager of it then is now. 

00:51:08 Speaker 1 

President of Encyclopedia Britannica. 

00:51:12 Speaker 1 

And he just couldn’t see it. 

00:51:13 Speaker 1 

And so. 

00:51:15 Speaker 1 

I went to the NAB convention in Los Angeles. 

00:51:21 Speaker 1 

And I went in to see PSI Langlois of Langworth library which I was handed. 

00:51:30 Speaker 1 

And Sai was half cut, and he had two dolls with them. 

00:51:35 Speaker 1 

That turned out to be radio station managers that had his library. 

00:51:41 Speaker 1 

And they were. 

00:51:41 Speaker 1 

They had been drinking. 

00:51:42 Speaker 1 

He closed the door. 

00:51:45 Speaker 1 

And you know, and there’s a display and demonstration room. 

00:51:47 Speaker 1 

He closed the door while he was. 

00:51:49 Speaker 1 

So when I came knocked on the door and came in, he said, oh, just the guy I’m looking for, we need a fourth. 

00:51:56 Speaker 1 

And I wasn’t drinking it all in, so I was the bartender. 

00:52:01 Speaker 1 

So we get out of the room and start down in. 

00:52:03 Speaker 1 

The elevator. 

00:52:04 Speaker 1 

And there’s a guy standing in the corner of the elevator. 

00:52:08 Speaker 1 

High as a kite. 

00:52:11 Speaker 1 

And so. 

00:52:14 Speaker 1 

He said, oh, there are you broadcasters. 

00:52:16 Speaker 1 

And I said, oh, there are you broadcaster and they go on like that, he said where you going? 

00:52:22 Speaker 1 

So I said we’re going to dinner. 

00:52:23 Speaker 1 

Come on, join us said sigh. 

00:52:25 Speaker 1 

He said no. 

00:52:26 Speaker 1 

You come with me. 

00:52:28 Speaker 1 

And so I said that with you, I was first you. 

00:52:30 Speaker 1 

Come with me. 

00:52:32 Speaker 1 

And in the meantime, I’m backing up in the elevator and this fella still had. 

00:52:37 Speaker 1 

They gave you an envelope, you know, with all your passes in the program and everything else is interesting and Jesus. 

00:52:41 Speaker 2 

Yeah, sure. 

00:52:44 Speaker 1 

On here it says. 

00:52:50 Speaker 1 

Van valkenburg. 

00:52:54 Speaker 1 

CBS He was the president of CBS then. 

00:52:59 Speaker 1 

So I thought, oh boy, God, he’s on the program. 

00:53:05 Speaker 1 

I think he’s tomorrow. 

00:53:07 Speaker 1 

He’s corn. 

00:53:09 Speaker 1 

So I said we better look after this. 

00:53:10 Speaker 1 

Guy and don’t let him go. 

00:53:12 Speaker 1 

To work so we get the. 

00:53:13 Speaker 1 

Elevator goes down to the ground floor. 

00:53:15 Speaker 1 

And the doors swing open. 

00:53:17 Speaker 1 

And who’s standing there but Merle John. 

00:53:20 Speaker 1 

Who was in charge of CBS film and things like that? 

00:53:23 Speaker 1 

And the vice President of network. 

00:53:25 Speaker 1 

So I said, how old I met the Meryl I said, oh, Meryl, he ain’t paying attention to me. 

00:53:30 Speaker 1 

And so I said well mean you? 

00:53:31 Speaker 1 

Mean, Frank, where the Jesus Christ? 


If you’ve been. 

00:53:35 Speaker 1 

We’ve been looking all over this countryside for you. 

00:53:38 Speaker 1 

We’ve been up in Beverly, as in all the rest, he says. 

00:53:41 Speaker 1 

You’ve organized a big dinner party down the strip and we got this table all set up and. 

00:53:45 Speaker 1 

I got a car in the front. 

00:53:47 Speaker 1 

Come on and. 

00:53:48 Speaker 1 

Hurry up and get there. 

00:53:49 Speaker 1 

You’re late. 

00:53:49 Speaker 1 

Without all the important people in the Hollywood down there, yeah. 

00:53:56 Speaker 1 

I got some friends. 

00:53:59 Speaker 1 

Come on, guys. 

00:53:59 Speaker 1 

Pile in the car. 

00:54:01 Speaker 1 

So these two bags, one was from Cicero, you know. 

00:54:07 Speaker 1 

And she looked like a meat acting makeup. 

00:54:10 Speaker 1 

Oh, God. 

00:54:11 Speaker 1 

You couldn’t see her face for makeup. 

00:54:12 Speaker 1 

And I’m sure she was 60, and she was a. 

00:54:16 Speaker 1 

So we pile in the car. 

00:54:19 Speaker 1 

And we go to this thing on the strip, and it’s a great big nightclub, great big table there. 

00:54:24 Speaker 1 

And they put a few more table tables in. 

00:54:28 Speaker 1 

And I. 

00:54:29 Speaker 1 

Someone says you sit there, so I sit down there. 

00:54:34 Speaker 1 

And as a lady beside me, terrific lady. 

00:54:37 Speaker 1 

Good looking. 

00:54:39 Speaker 1 

Well, dress. 

00:54:41 Speaker 1 

Southern accent. 

00:54:43 Speaker 1 

She said where you often. 

00:54:45 Speaker 1 

And I said, Canada, Canada, see, what are you doing? 

00:54:50 Speaker 1 

Wait down here. 

00:54:52 Speaker 1 

Well, if you want to tell, want me to tell you the truth? 

00:54:54 Speaker 1 

I have been trying for about a year to get the CBS distribution in Canada because I am the best salesman on film in Canada and I know more about Canada than all the people in CBS put together, and I want the distribution in. 

00:55:08 Speaker 1 

And I’ve been talking to your manager, and I’ve been talking to everybody and they won’t pay. 

00:55:12 Speaker 1 

Any attention to? 

00:55:14 Speaker 1 

Me, she says. 

00:55:15 Speaker 1 

We’ll fix that. 

00:55:19 Speaker 1 

What’s your name? 

00:55:21 Speaker 1 

And I thought she was talented. 

00:55:23 Speaker 1 

See, I didn’t know it was a boss’s wife. 

00:55:27 Speaker 1 

Nobody introduced me. 

00:55:27 Speaker 1 

They just said. 

00:55:28 Speaker 1 

You said so I said look at it. 

00:55:30 Speaker 1 

She had a I was looking for her name tag and she didn’t have any names. 

00:55:34 Speaker 1 

She says. I’m. I’m Mrs. Merle Jones and I said, oh, I think Merle’s wonderful. He’s the only guy that’s been nice to me in CBS, and he had been. 

00:55:43 Speaker 1 

But he says I have to go and see the department. 

00:55:45 Speaker 1 

They’ve got some kind of a plan to. 

00:55:49 Speaker 1 

Merles up dancing around. 

00:55:56 Speaker 1 

So I said, would you like to dance? 

00:55:59 Speaker 1 

She’s fine. 

00:55:59 Speaker 1 

So we get up and we’re dancing around. 

00:56:02 Speaker 1 

And we’re going by the table, she says. 

00:56:05 Speaker 1 

I see you don’t drink. 

00:56:07 Speaker 1 

She says the men that I know that don’t drink are always hungry. 

00:56:12 Speaker 1 

Are you and I said, yeah, I’m just dying. 

00:56:16 Speaker 1 

And she said, well, they just put our dinner on the table, and I like my food hot. 

00:56:20 Speaker 1 

Let’s sit down and and you know, I thought I was. 

00:56:22 Speaker 1 

A pretty good dancer. 

00:56:24 Speaker 1 

But anyway, we were both hungry, so we sat down and we were eating away. 

00:56:29 Speaker 1 

And she said, and Burl stopped his dancing. 

00:56:32 Speaker 1 

And he said Burl. 

00:56:34 Speaker 1 

Come over here. 

00:56:36 Speaker 1 

This is Spence Carlo. 

00:56:38 Speaker 1 

You know, this is. 

00:56:39 Speaker 1 

Yeah, I know Spencer. 

00:56:40 Speaker 1 

He said Spence has been trying for a year to get the distribution of CBS and Canada. 

00:56:46 Speaker 1 

You got a lovely bunch of lovely shows. 

00:56:48 Speaker 1 

He can sell them and you can’t and you’ve done nothing about it. 

00:56:52 Speaker 1 

Why don’t you talk to this man? 

00:56:56 Speaker 1 

And he said. 

00:56:57 Speaker 1 

10:00 o’clock tomorrow morning in the CBS suite. 

00:57:01 Speaker 1 

I I, Sir 10:00, o’clock in the morning. 

00:57:04 Speaker 1 

I go up there. 

00:57:06 Speaker 1 

And he says, tell me the whole story about you and what you’re doing and all that good. 

00:57:10 Speaker 1 

And I did. 

00:57:12 Speaker 1 

He didn’t have the manager in there. 

00:57:14 Speaker 1 

He let me have the mall by him myself and I told him the whole thing. 

00:57:18 Speaker 1 

I said I can sell those programs. 

00:57:20 Speaker 1 

To your like. 

00:57:22 Speaker 1 

CBC Coast to coast. 

00:57:24 Speaker 1 

Manufacturers, I know everybody out there. 

00:57:28 Speaker 1 

And furthermore, they like to have a Canadian. 

00:57:32 Speaker 1 

Company selling them rather than a guy flipping. 

00:57:35 Speaker 1 

Up from New York, everyone. 

00:57:36 Speaker 1 

Going right, you either got to have me. 

00:57:39 Speaker 1 

Set the thing up and then take over the management sometime in the future. 

00:57:43 Speaker 1 

This is how all the big come. 

00:57:45 Speaker 1 

Dunlop Tire AC spark plug and I told him to tailor piercing Carson store Kaiser Hose on Higher Canada Canadian builds up the business and let him have it for his life. 

00:57:55 Speaker 1 

He retires and then they don’t appoint somebody else, they take it over. 

00:57:59 Speaker 1 

And so. 

00:58:00 Speaker 1 

And I said, what’s? 

00:58:00 Speaker 1 

Can do. 

00:58:01 Speaker 1 

But while I’m alive and in business, you got to leave it with me. 

00:58:05 Speaker 1 

But I can really do this, so, he said. 

00:58:08 Speaker 1 

I’m going to get so. 

00:58:09 Speaker 1 

And so up here, Bill Edwards. 

00:58:11 Speaker 1 

Bill Edward. 

00:58:13 Speaker 1 

So Bill Edwards. 

00:58:16 Speaker 1 

Came up. 

00:58:17 Speaker 1 

Nice fella, but he just didn’t see. 

00:58:19 Speaker 1 

I died with me. 

00:58:20 Speaker 1 

He came up and see me. 

00:58:21 Speaker 1 

You know, I said he said Bill. 

00:58:24 Speaker 1 

I’ve had a long talk with Spence. 

00:58:28 Speaker 1 

He didn’t go over your head. 

00:58:30 Speaker 1 

He he was telling who he was to my wife and my wife said I must talk to him. 

00:58:36 Speaker 1 

So I, you know, being, you know, I talked. 

00:58:40 Speaker 1 

But Spence didn’t come to me, and I don’t want you to think that he’s. 

00:58:43 Speaker 1 

Gone over here, which is very sweet. 

00:58:46 Speaker 1 

And he said he wants desperately to get the distribution he’s got BBC now and he’s got some other things and Guild films, you know. 

00:58:57 Speaker 1 

And Liberace? And that and he said he can do a job for us. And he said, I know we hate to put our product in with those lousy things that Gill’s putting out and we’re still BBC shows. But at least this guy’s got all the connections. And I think that you should get very serious consideration. 

00:59:16 Speaker 1 

To a point. 

00:59:19 Speaker 1 

And he says I don’t have have to have serious consideration to it. 

00:59:24 Speaker 1 

I think he’s right. 

00:59:27 Speaker 1 

I’m delighted to hear you say that, and we’ll make a deal right away. 

00:59:32 Speaker 1 

What do you want? 

00:59:32 Speaker 1 

Spent three years would that. 

00:59:34 Speaker 1 

Be enough to start. 

00:59:35 Speaker 1 

I said yeah, but there’s a lot of other things in there that I want. 

00:59:39 Speaker 1 

I want to build it under my name and I want to build the advertisers under my name, and I want to collect the money and pay you. 

00:59:48 Speaker 1 

Oh, all of our producers and split shows and all the thing. 

00:59:54 Speaker 1 

I said that’s the way to do it. 

00:59:56 Speaker 1 

You’ll get far better. 

00:59:59 Speaker 1 

If you let me do it because I’m a Canadian. 

01:00:01 Speaker 1 

So it’s generation, Canadian know everybody in the CBC and the agencies and they want to. 

01:00:05 Speaker 1 

Deal with SW. 

01:00:06 Speaker 1 

Called or limited, not with CBS and New York. 

01:00:11 Speaker 1 

So I got the CBS deal. 

01:00:14 Speaker 1 

Which was just terrific and when. 

01:00:20 Speaker 1 

I got the license for CCTV. 

01:00:24 Speaker 1 

Government maybe divest myself of all my businesses. 

01:00:27 Speaker 1 

So I went around and sold them to the employees I sold, called the Lab equipment to Bruce Edmonson. 

01:00:32 Speaker 1 

And that the staff for $87,000 and three months later, they sold it to the Continental Electric Chicago for two and. 

01:00:38 Speaker 1 

1/2 million. 

01:00:39 Speaker 1 

That’s what you get for selling things to Canadians, which the government which? 

01:00:44 Speaker 1 

Doctor Stewart asked me to do I sold the CBS business Caldwell film sales. 

01:00:52 Speaker 1 

To Ken P. 

01:00:54 Speaker 1 

And as I was going to let him. 

01:00:57 Speaker 1 

Collect a number of bills that were outstanding. 

01:01:01 Speaker 1 

That I asked him $90,000. 

01:01:05 Speaker 1 

And he almost died. And he says, I’ve never seen $90,000 or $9000. 

01:01:12 Speaker 1 

I said, well, I’ll make arrangements with the bank. 

01:01:14 Speaker 1 

To loan it to you. 

01:01:15 Speaker 1 

And I’ll take you to New York and. 

01:01:17 Speaker 1 

Get CBS to approve of it. 

01:01:20 Speaker 1 

And I’ll ask them to give you extended terms. 

01:01:22 Speaker 1 

I’ve got three months terms, so I went took him. 

01:01:25 Speaker 1 

Down to to. 

01:01:27 Speaker 1 

CBS and asked them to get to that. 

01:01:30 Speaker 1 

Him set up in business because he was doing the selling and he’s going to call it. 

01:01:34 Speaker 1 

Page 1. 

01:01:36 Speaker 1 

And so they went along with it. 

01:01:40 Speaker 1 

And I said, I want you to. 

01:01:42 Speaker 1 

Give them for the first year. 

01:01:45 Speaker 1 

Six months term. 

01:01:48 Speaker 1 

Because he can feel it. 

01:01:50 Speaker 1 

It’s supposed to be paid.