WGY: Radio's Laboratory Celebrates Its Centennial

On view through May 8, 2022

WGY: Radio’s Laboratory Celebrates Its Centennial presents more than fifty rare and historical photographs, ranging in date from the early 1920s to 1980, documenting the history of WGY, a groundbreaking radio station founded in 1922 and still operating today in the New York Capital Region.

WGY is the tenth oldest commercial radio station in the United States, the creator of the first broadcast drama, and a pioneer in the use of sound effects. It was the first affiliate of the NBC national network and regularly featured top national entertainers. WGY was also one of the stations that helped to unite the country during World War II by providing important news to the entire nation.

Photographs on view include an October 1926 image of Harry Houdini appearing on WGY to promote a performance in Albany, one of his last before his death a few weeks later on Halloween; and a 1929 image of the famous aviator Amelia Earhart, who visited the WGY studio to give a talk and read letters to Admiral Richard Byrd’s Antarctic Expedition.