Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Handiham World for 17 June 2009

Welcome to Handiham World!

Handiham History: Early history notes from N0SBU

N0SBU reaches 1,000 hour volunteer milestone

George LaValle, N0SBU, found this early history of the Handiham System and re-typed it for us. He is continuing to examine and sort through hundreds of documents and photos as we work on what we are now calling "The Handiham History Project". You will notice as you read this decades-old text that terms and language innocently used in that era are ones that are now considered passé or even politically incorrect. Rather than change the original text, we are leaving it intact so that you can see how society has changed and so that you can get a flavor of what things were like 40 years ago. You will also notice references to hams whose callsigns have long ago changed, and to those who are now silent keys. Some of the grammar isn't the best, but you will get the idea. Back in those days, money was a problem. Well, I guess some things never change! Now, please enjoy this early history, thanks to N0SBU.

Patrick Tice, WA0TDA
Handiham Manager

The Handi-Ham-System of Minnesota

Supported by PICONET a 13 county southeastern Minnesota Civil Defense Net.
Expanded By MISCCA the Minnesota Society for Crippled Children and Adults.

This program is designed to help handicapped individuals obtain their amateur radio licenses by providing on loan study materials, antennas, novice receivers and transmitters and HELP as needed.


During the Fall of 1966, in a small town in southern Minnesota, a handicapped YL announced her intentions of becoming an amateur radio operator and asked a ham-type handicapped friend how to begin.

He told Ned, W0ZSW, whose job for the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN took him past the YL's QTH every once in a while. Ned visited her, strung up an antenna and with his transmitter gave her a first glimpse of hamming.

Soon he found her a spare Civil Defense receiver to listen to and a tape recorder complete with code lessons and books. In Rochester two other YL’s started learning radio, via the Rochester Amateur Radio Club’s Novice class and using receivers borrowed for them.

By the Summer of 1967 there were three new Novice tickets in the area and the search was on for Novice transmitters to go with them.

Talking with members of the PICONET group not only produced the three needed transmitters, but also a few spare receivers and transmitters.


In time of emergency, PICONET did need active stations in more small towns. Why not put this unused equipment to work by placing it with interested handicapped persons in the area and so create the needed stations?