Monday, April 5, 2010

Radio Nature League (1926 April to June)

Note: On April 28 the meeting time moved to 8:00 Daylight Savings Time. On May 12, it moved to 8:30. There were no meetings in July or August. The Boston Daily Globe throughout this period lists the program as "Radio Nature League, direction of Thornton W. Burgess."

April to June 1926

  • April 14: S.N.F. Sanford of the Boston Museum of Natural History on "Crabs, Lobsters, and Cannibals of the Seashore" (Sanford did not appear; TWB read the paper)
  • April 28: Glover M. Allen of the Boston Society of Natural History on "Bats and their habits."
  • May 12: Thomas Barbour, President of the Boston Society of Natural History on "The largest reptiles."
On April 14, Burgess announced that the Boston Society of Natural History was preparing a special radio bulletin containing four of the talks (Weston, Daly, Babcock, and Sanford.) It would be available on May 1 and cost fifteen cents.

Other Radio Nature League activities of note:

April 21 was "American Forest Week." TWB called on league members to plant trees. He offered a $5 prize (provided by the Chapin Farm Agency) for the boy or girl planting the most trees. TWB later (5/5) asked members to plant "Mother's Trees" on Mother's Day.

Burgess had begun banding birds. (The US Biological Survey had been managing a national program since 1920.) Throughout this period, TWB would talk about his experiences on Radio Nature League programs, assuring listeners that banding was OK and didn't harm or scare the birds.

May 26 featured a special program: "Birdsong Day." This marked the first appearance of famous birdsong performer Edward Avis. (Avis, who lived in Springfield, would be a regular performer on the Brewer sponsored RNL in 1935.) On this program, Burgess narrated a "bird tour" and Avis provided the sound effects (robin, oriole, blue jay, house wren, eastern bluebird, etc.)

The program took a summer break after the June 23, 1926 program. It would return on September 1.

Next: Radio Nature League (1926 September to December)

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