Speaking of microwave... [telecom]

Would anyone know accurately when the first revenue service (not lab experiment) Bell System microwave link began?

Is microwave still used for long distance calls or television? There's a historical site that mentions that a number of towers have been abandoned.

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The Los Angeles television stations uplink to their transmitters on Mt. Wilson comes to mind.

***** Moderator's Note *****

I think the OP was alluding to the "long-distance" television transmission networks that AT&T used to run. However, you bring up a good point: freeing up microwave frequencies and routes from long-haul service makes them available for short-haul uses, not only for studio-to-transmitter and remote-broadcast-pickup links, but also for the Multipoint Distribution Systems that compete with cable and DSL in the Internet/VoIP space.

Bill Horne Moderator

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Sam Spade

Lisa, according to the docs I have here (at least the ones I can find easily), that would [be] the New York to Boston route in 1947.

The route started at the AT&T Long Lines headquarters on the Avenue of the Americas in New York, then to Jackie Jones Mountain, then to Birch Hill, then on to Spindle Hill, next to John Tom Hill, then to Bald Hill, next stop Asnebumskit Mountain (say that one fast, the locals just call it "Bumskit"), then to Bear Hill, and finally (whew!) the Bowdoin Square Building in Boston, headquarters of the New England Telephone and Telegraph Company. Massachusetts readers will of course take exception to the New-York-Centric approach of describing it as starting in NY, so a different version of this post (with the aforementioned route reversed) will appear in the New England edition of The Digest....


****************************************************************** Speaking from a secure undisclosed location. ***** Moderator's Note *****

AFAIK, N.E.T. headquarters was at 185 Franklin in 1947, although I think that New York City's Avenue of the Americas was still called "Sixth Ave." at that time.

Bowdoin Square did have some microwave, but IIRC it served north-south routes that couldn't get to 185 Franklin St. because of Beacon Hill. I think the path that went via Bear Hill terminated at Franklin St.

Since the TVOC was in New York, I'll send the same version to both New England and to the less-important parts of the world. ;-)

Bill Horne Moderator

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LaGuardia, while mayor until 1945, changed the name of 6th Avenue [to] Avenue of the Americas. [It was a] mistake because it was a cumbersome name, and everyone still said 6th Avenue. Even LaGuardia admitted the error, alas never corrected. Thus, other than for postal addresses, no one speaks of Avenue of the Americas.


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earle robinson

And a later mayor made the same mistake for a stretch of 7th Avenue, hoping to dub it Fashion Avenue. Only the street signs themselves now say it that way, not the locals ... nor even the tourists :-) .

Cheers, -- tlvp

-- Avant de repondre, jeter la poubelle, SVP

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Recollection that 'back in the 1950s' Bell Canada and ATT used long haul TD-2 microwave transmission systems in the 2000 megahertz (2.0 gig) band. Not sure what the bandwidth (number of telephone or TV channels they were capable of). These days 2.4 gig. is used for cordless home phones, microwave ovens etc.

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