73 Magazine Information by KB9MWR

73 Magazine Information
    A rather insane project… by KB9MWR    


73 Magazine (also known as 73 Amateur Radio Today) was an amateur radio magazine that was published from October 1960 to September 2003.  (That’s 514 issues, with about 8619 articles, and over 64,000 pages). It was known for its strong emphasis on technical articles and for the lengthy editorials in each issue by its founder and publisher, Wayne Green (W2NSD).
Prior to beginning his own publications, Wayne Green started an amateur radio teletype newsletter.  Within a couple of years, he had 2,000 subscribers.  He also was an editor of CQ Amateur Radiomagazine for five years before starting his own magazine.
He launched 73, a competing magazine, which promoted emerging technologies as do-it-yourself projects.  A pioneer promoter of SSB, FM, solid-state, easy construction projects, and the marriage of personal computing and amateur radio.  (Wayne’s interest in microcomputing led him to found several of the early personal computing magazines.)
Starting in the early 1960s with an army of can-do, build-it-yourself amateur radio fans behind him, Wayne Green encouraged readers of 73 Magazine (his first and longest-lived publication), to push the limits on the electronic bits and pieces that would evolve into today’s e-mail systems, cellular networks and PCs.
He predicted the rise of the “pico” computer, better known as the laptop.  And he encouraged his readers to build a grass-roots wireless telephony network — a nationwide array of amateur radio repeater towers that was the precursor to today’s cellular networks.
For him, only what’s ahead matters.  “I’m always impatient with [the pace of] new technologies.  I live mostly in the future,” he says.
Some people have described Wayne Green as a visionary and entrepreneur.  He actually taught people to think.
For more info see: Tech Visionary and Byte Magazine Founder Wayne Green on Changing the World
There is also an episode of the QSO Ham Radio Talkshow podcast by Ted Randall which has an interview with Wayne Green: Wayne Green Interview – Aug. 27, 2009.  (48M MP3)


Many hams have been searching for reprints or back issues floating around.  I contacted Wayne to see if there was any type of CD-ROM or other archive of his magazine.  He said he didn’t know of any source other than scanning in over 50,000 pages.  Which he thought was daunting to sell maybe dozens of CDs.
However, Buckmaster was one of the first to have microfilmed, and later, scanned issues of the magazine.  From what I have found, the microfilmed versions advertised for sale over the years were purchased by most major technical colleges.  So, never fear, it is out there as several university libraries still have it available.

Sadly it
doesn’t didn’t look like there will ever be an official digital archive of this magazine available for purchase.  With current law copyrights expire after author’s lifespan plus 70 years.  And the courts rulings on CD-ROMs Of Magazine Archives have been mixed.
73 usually only bought first publication rights and sometimes first reprint rights. One would have to get the permission of every author who had written for 73 Magazine in order to make a CD-ROM collection available.  Wayne sold 73 a couple times which further complicates the matter.  The transfer of copyright agreements is unclear slipper slope due to the various royalty and copyright issues that existed between contributing authors and 73 Magazine. (ref)
However, many authors have said they are okay with having their articles reprinted as long as its at no charge.  As I have said before, it is out there, but you’ll have to use your conscience to as a guide to whether or not obtaining such an archive is legal, moral, and/or ethical.

Update Dec 2011

An Christmas gift was bestowed up on us.  The Internet Archive received a voluntary contribution to the public domain by 73 magazine publisher, Wayne Green W2NSD. Magazine articles were scanned, quality corrected, and index by an army of individuals, and collected together for Internet Archive by Jason Scott of textfiles.org
Archive.org was started by internet pioneer Brewster Kahle in 1996, with the goal of archiving internet history. While the resulting “Wayback Machine” is one of their best known projects, the Archive also engages in curated projects, such as the recent archive of all TV coverage on 9/11/01 at september11.archive.org.
The 73 Magazine Collection on the Internet Archive can be found here:

Other Indexes

Concerning a searchable master index of articles.  Didah Publishing shows up as having developed a 73 Magazine index (through 1990) computer program and book under the title “From Beverages thru OSCAR – A Bibliography.”

OCLC shows that there are three libraries which have that 73 Magazine index, they are:


Here is quote about Didah Publishing’s bibliography program:

Q:  I’m going to be building a big stack of magazines!  Can I get an index for our collection?
A:  There is no single comprehensive index to all amateur radio and electronics literature.  The best thing you can do is check the year-end issues.  You can also purchase a bibliography computer program called “From Beverages Thru OSCAR,” published by Didah Publishing.  By entering a key word in the article description, you can search for articles on nearly every subject and locate the issue you need.  The database is very comprehensive, covering many amateur radio general-interest and specialty magazines.  Didah also publishes smaller, less-expensive software packages for each of most popular ham magazines.  Some of their bibliographies are available in printed form, too.  Contact Didah Publishing at P.O. Box 7368, Nashua, NH 03060, (telephone 603-878-3628).  You used to be able to buy the complete “From Beverages Thru OSCAR” software package (a DOS program written by Rich Rosen, K2RR) from ARRL Headquarters for $79.

Rich Rosen’s QRZ profile states:

“I created ‘From Beverages Thru OSCAR – A Bibliography’ after literally reading every page from QST (Jan. ’45-’90), CQ (Jan. ’45-’92), Ham Radio (Mar. ’68-Jun ’90), 73 (Oct. 1960 – Dec. ’90), and RadCom (Jan. ’79-Dec ’90).  When I retire (soon), will bring entire database up to date, from QST issue 1 (Dec. 1915) and continue.”

The following preface describes his work and wonderful resource.  The printed 73 Magazine index from 1960-1990 is about 100 pages.  I suggest contacting him if this or his software would be useful to you.

“From Beverages Thru OSCAR – A Bibliography” is a 52,880 reference volume to articles written on all aspects of radio communications.  The term radio communications is defined by this book in a much broader sense.  It encompasses the early days of radio, at the turn of the century, in which wireless transmissions were the only form of communications.  But it doesn’t stop there.  It continues through the 20th century to include the more advanced forms of data communications.
The title “From Beverages Thru OSCAR…” tells a story.  Beverage is a long wire antenna that was developed in the early 20s.  It, and similar type antennas made it possible to clearly receive radio signals from across the Atlantic.  This antenna has stood the “test of time” and is used today by radio amateurs, commercial services and the military.  OSCAR stands for Orbiting Satellite Carrying Amateur Radio.  It’s a series of satellites that enable radio amateurs to communicate through a small handheld unit to others half way around tho world.
Amateur radio, is what this book is about.  At least that was the initial impetus that urged me to put this massive compendium together.  Radio amateurs, of which I’m proud to include myself among their rank, number almost a half million strong in the United States and are found in literally every other county in the world.  They are a disparate group, speaking collectively hundreds of different languages and working in an even greater number of divers professions.  Many who have chosen to delve into the technical mysteries of radio have contributed immensely.  Think of any major technological breakthrough in the field of communications and the probability is great that there were at least several radio amateurs present, advancing the state of the art.  In many famous cases amateur radio discoveries were made prior to even commercial interest involvement
However, only a small percentage of radio “amateurs” publish their findings in the professional and radio journals.  Instead they employ consumer magazines (QSTCQHam Radio73, andRadio Communication) as a conduit to express their ideas.  This very fact has driven me to uncover this wealth of knowledge so that others might benefit.  The production of “From Beverages Thru OSCAR” involved the meticulous examination of 231,173 pages from 1,776 issues of these magazines.  Names that have meaning to many in the professional world jump out from those pages: Armstrong, the inventor of FM; Brown, Kraus, King, Lewis, and Schelkunoff legends in the field of antenna theory; Friis, Lamb, Rohde, Tuska, and Villard in receiver design, to name a few.  These giants in the field of communications have either published in the magazines or greatly influenced the writings and efforts of others.
Related contributions in the professional annuals such as the Bell System Technical JournalProceedings of the IEEE, and Transaction on Antennas and Propagation are referenced as well.
Access to Columbia University’s Engineering Library with its immense open-shelf collection of technical journals provided me the opportunity to spend countless pleasurable hours researching communications topics.  Fifteen years of a page-by-page scrutiny embodies this bibliography.
It is a unique tome, definitely at least in the sense that it is the only one of its kind.  My original intention was solely to locate a reference volume that included the amateur radio sources.  After a considerable search none was found.  Casual lists of articles of interest just would not suffice for several reasons.  First structure was needed to put some order to this information.  Lack of the same had been my major complaint of previous lists that I had casually generated.  But perhaps more importantly, I found myself expanding my areas of interest at an accelerating pace.  Many interesting articles that I had accidentally come across were too precious to let slide back into the closed pages of some dusty volume.
A workable format was developed in several months.  Though New York City certainly has its share of fine technical libraries, I knew that I needed to have more immediate access to at least the amateur radio journals.  The acquisition of entire collections of those magazines became a project in its own right.  As the expression goes, the rest is history – culminating in this 1,260 page communications reference volume.
For those of us who have ever become frustrated in looking through indices of article titles without being able to decipher the subject matter – this bibliography is for you.  Don’t expect to find catchword phrases within.  Each article reference contains a short abstract that clearly indicates the theme.  Anyone who works nine years as a technical editor and reviews over a quarter of a million pages should have the ability to quickly review articles and capture their essence in a few succinct words.
Expect it to be comprehensive.  Each page of QST from January 1945 to present, and every page of CQHam Radio and 73 Magazine from their premiere issues were personally reviewed.  In addition, selected references from 289 other sources have boon included.  Those sources are world-recognized journals, society reviews, trade magazines and technical publications from laboratories, agencies and industry.  Most of them are available in the larger technical libraries or can be obtained on a loan basis.  And what if you can’t locate some of the sources?  With an average of 575 article references per subject area anyone with even half of the sources should be able to acquire an in-depth knowledge of the subject.
References are entered in reverse chronological order, the most recent information appears first.  Some subjects include references that go back 80 years.  For example, in the area of propagation – chapter 5’s first reference is March 1909!  Naturally, more recent technical topics such as computers only include early references to articles published in the 1960s.
Earlier editions of this bibliography were published.  The first: “From Beverages Thru OSCAR – A Bibliography” contained references through December 1978.  The second edition: “From Beverages Thru OSCAR – A Bibliography, Addendum 1979-1981” was a three year update to the first volume.  This latest rendition not only encompasses completely rewritten and reformatted earlier editions but contains new source and reference material as well.  In addition it includes a 100 page 5,000 word keyword index and 23 page author index to assist the user in rapidly locating articles of interest.
Knowledge, generated by many, is similar to a country’s untapped resources.  It remains hidden beneath the surface of subtle or innocuous titles until the proper tool is found and utilized.  This bibliography can be that tool.

Index Information

What you see here is phase two of a long project.  This index project was inspired by and dedicated to Wayne Green, W2NSD himself.  For the vast technical information in all his years of dedication to the publication and hobby.  It is also inspired by the work of Rich Rosen, K2RR. And by Bill Griffith, VE3WGX for his Ham Radio Magazine index work.  These three dedicated themselves, which prompted me to say, so can I.
A special thanks to the daughter of N9AVO/W9LML, Edward Harrigan (SK) who sparked my interest in the whole thing by donating a few decades of the magazine to our club years ago.  Also thanks to Buckmaster for microfilming the magazine, the Nicolet Federated Library System and the interlibrary loan staff who helped me track these indexes down, and various other hams.
What follows is about a years worth of on and off work.  This data was generated by scanning and OCR software, errors likely exist.
To the best of my knowledge it is now complete (December 4, 2009). This index is freely sharable, but please contact me if you plan to redistribute it commercially.  It is meant as a free public resource for those who have stacks of these wonderful magazines in their basements (as I have).
Enjoy – Steve, KB9MWR

73 Magazine Index

Yearly quick links:
1960 1961 1962 1963 1964 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969
1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979
1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989
1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999
2000 2001 2002 2003