I’m constantly asked “how do I research an old callsign” or “my uncle who lived in Joplin MO in the 1950’s was a ham, but I can’t remember his callsign. How can I find it?” Well, there is an interesting site that is informally known as “The Wayback Machine”, and they have scanned a large number of documents. Among those are many (many) call books.
The site is archive.org, and by clicking on https://archive.org/search.php?query=subject%3A %22callbook%22. You can search their documents based on the keyword “callbook”. The search gives 103 results. That’s 103 call books that have been individually scanned. The call books are fully searchable, and provide you with all of the “matches” it finds. One word of caution – because thse books were “scanned,” optical character recognition technology is used to match your search. It’s not 100% accurate. So if you are looking for all the hams in “Pepperell” in a particular call book, try a subsequent search for “01463”. Between the two searches you should be able to find what you are looking for.
Once you pick on a call book, there are submenus to help you narrow how much information you are looking through. For instance, you would only want to search through the “1” area for a W1 call or for an address in New England. The sub-menus allow you to select which call area to look at.
Want to know where K9AQP was licensed in the 1950s? Want to know who the hams were who lived in East Providence, RI in the 1960s? This is a great place to research that stuff. If you run into any problems or need some help, just let me know. Have any interesting internet sites you would like to share? Let me know and I’ll include them in future articles. Thanks and 73. de Bruce, K1BG