February is Black History Month, which was originally started as a special week by historian Carter G. Woodson. Each day we’re going to focus on either a person or a certain topic related to Black History Month.
Today we feature the first Black Radio Network.
The first radio station owned and operated by African-Americans went on the air 63 years ago — WERD in Atlanta, featuring popular DJ Jack Gibson. A radio news network aimed at African-Americans was the National Black Network, started in 1973, now known as the American Urban Radio Networks. Today’s radio dial is fragmented according to the format of stations listeners prefer. The most popular format is news-talk, closely followed by stations appealing to fans of country music each with more than 2,000 stations. There are more than 14,400 radio stations across the nation, about 60 percent broadcasting on FM.
For additional Black History Month profiles, click here.
[Sources: U.S. Census Bureau, Kane's Famous First Facts, 6302
Statistical Abstract of the United States 2012, t. 1132]