WHGM 70th Anniversary
WHGM Celebrates 70 Years of Broadcasting
HAVRE DE GRACE, DECEMBER 18, 2018 Today, Harford County Executive, Barry Glassman and Havre de Grace Councilman Glenn stopped by our studios to recognize WHGM (formerly WASA) for 70 years of broadcasting across our region.
WHGM originally signed on the air on May 15th, 1948 as WASA 1330 AM (May 15 by coincidence is also the birthday of the current owner, Jeff Davis and was the 1st radio station in Harford & Cecil County. The station was then owned by Jason Pate and his wife, Virginia Pate-Wetter.
In 1960, the station gave birth to it's FM radio station WHDG on 103.7 FM. In 1989, the FM frequency was sold to Delmarva Broadcasting and it became WXCY. WASA was then a stand alone AM radio station and in 2000, was sold and became WJSS (Where Jesus Saves Souls), a black gospel radio format.
From 2000 to 2014, WJSS 1330 AM was bought and sold several times and then finally fell silent for many years. In December of 2014, the interest of the station was handed over to Imperial Broadcasting Company to manage under agreement.
On December 24th, 2014, WHGM (Wonderful Havre de Grace Maryland) signed on the air with an Adult Standards format which proved to be quit popular to the local community.
"We began broadcasting from the original studios on Hwy. 155, says President & General Manager Jeff Davis, and it was like breathing life back into the heritage radio station. Firing up the transmitter for the first time was an awesome experience!"
"At the time, really, the only viable format for the station was Adult Standards (Perry Como, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand etc.)." Behind the scene, Mr. Davis was busy researching ways in which to grow the audience and on Monday, June 6th, 2016, the station flipped formats to Adult Hits and signed on it's 104.7 FM frequency. Shortly thereafter, the station brought the Rouse & Company Morning show back to the airwaves with Baltimore Legend, Steve Rouse at the helm and it received well by the listening public.
The new FM signal was a great improvement to the station, however, it was Mr. Davis vision to have the FM signal to copy that of the primary AM signal. On November 29th 2016, WHGM's 2nd signal came on the air on 100.5 FM from Chesapeake City to serve the majority of Cecil County. Now with 2/3rds of the AM coverage area covered by FM signals, Mr. Davis realized that the Bel Air area was still not covered. On March 07th, 2017, through a rare opportunity from the F.C.C., 107.5 FM signed on the air from Main street in Bel Air, making the station the only commercial radio signal licensed to the town of Bel Air.
In October of 2017, the entire operation, both studios and offices were relocated to the Arts & Entertainment district of Downtown Havre de Grace. The new studios use the latest, state of the art equipment, making the studios the most modern broadcast studios in both counties.
Today, the signal can be heard from Middletown, DE to New Freedom, PA and from 695 where 95 meets to Newark, DE.
The station is now building a state of the art AM transmission site which will utilize the latest AM HD (High Definition) technology which allows an AM radio station to broadcast digitally in stereo with RDS which provides the Artist and Title information to AM HD radios. Most new cars sold are already equipped with HD radios which provide High Definition quality sound.
"It is very rewarding to me that we have built a true, hyper local radio station for Harford & Cecil Counties and knowing that we were able to save our area's heritage station with so many memories that were made over the past 70 years", say Mr. Davis.