The Radio Service Bulletin was issued monthly by the Department of Commerce, and carried official information about U.S. radio licencing and regulation. Radio Service Bulletin, April 1916, pages 5-6:
RADIO SERVICE BULLETIN
ISSUED MONTHLY BY BUREAU OF NAVIGATION, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCEWashington, April, 1916--No. 16
ATLANTA RADIO CLUB.
The following letter which has been received by the Bureau is published in full because of the spirit of cooperation manifested therein:
COLLEGE PARK, GA., January 13, 1916.
DEAR SIR: I would like to give you a few facts about the Atlanta amateurs. As president of the Atlanta Radio Club, it is my duty to see that you do not get a mistaken impression of us.
I have one of the oldest stations in this section and have watched with much interest the increase of the number during the last two years. At first I could hear only one or two amateurs. The number commenced to grow, and soon interference became a problem. By this time most of us knew each other and, being congenial, we decided to band together and discuss our problems.
There were about 10 of us to start with. We secured the use of one of the small anterooms of the Carnegie Library Building and there held our first few meetings. The club grew rapidly. The small room was soon so crowded that we had to seek larger quarters. Several of our number who were members of the local Y. M. C. A. obtained permission to use a large room on the third floor of the 10-story building. We have held our meetings there on alternate Saturday nights since last summer. A temporary aerial has been erected on top of the building and we use it for receiving tests.
After our constitution was drafted we proceeded to draw up a set of operating rules. These rules consisted of the Government Radio Service regulations and a few which dealt with the local conditions. In addition to the usual club officers we elected a club radio inspector, whose duty it is to enforce these regulations. It is also his duty to visit each station once every 60 days for the purpose of suggesting improvements.
We decided that the objects of our club should be to promote interest in radio communication and to increase knowledge and operating efficiency. To promote these objects, we have decided to rate each member according to the percentage he makes on competitive examinations to be held every three months. These examinations will be very similar to the Government examinations as given to operators. They will consist of questions on the radio laws and regulations, questions on the theory and operation of the apparatus, and an operating speed test. We believe that by creating a spirit of rivalry among the members the interest will be stimulated and operating efficiency increased.
We want you to understand that Atlanta is as alive "wirelessly" as she is in other respects. During "electrical prosperity week" last December we were invited to enter an exhibit in the electrical show. We realized that this was beyond the scope of the average wireless club, and quite an undertaking for so young an organization. However, after discussing the matter we decided that it would be beneficial both to ourselves and to the public at large. Luckily we were allotted a space right beneath a skylight. Some of our energetic and enterprising members obtained permission and erected an aerial on top of the 17-story building on the ground floor of which the show was held. Thus it was that we were able to have a station in actual operation in the exhibit. Several of the boys were always present to explain the mysteries of wireless to the eager spectators. Taken altogether, the venture was a glorious success. The Atlanta newspapers all gave us good writeups and we secured many new members.
The probable reason for the late start of wireless in this vicinity is that there are no Government or commercial stations within 250 miles of Atlanta. In order to hear anything at all the first amateurs had to have comparatively large aerials and very sensitive instruments. Until recently these instruments were beyond the reach of all but the wealthy experimenters. (It is a curious fact that I have noticed that rich amateurs are few and far between.)
As we are so far beyond the zone of interference, most of us use transmitting waves somewhat over the limit prescribed by the Government. We do this knowingly, but we feel that we are still obeying the spirit of the law, which is to prevent interference with Government and commercial stations. If we had the faintest idea that we were causing interference we would immediately cut down our waves. We will not allow any member to use power enough to reach the coast under any conditions unless he either uses a short wave or else has a special license.
As to our loyalty to the United States, we hope that we are not less loyal than the most patriotic citizen in the whole land. We are planning to put our loyalty into practical use. We expect in the near future to form a volunteer signal corps and to practice field work under as near actual war conditions as possible. In the meantime we can be depended upon to discover and report any unneutral or unfriendly station which might attempt operation in this vicinity.
Hoping this may be of service to you, I beg to remain,