At 8 p.m. on March 25th, 1930, KTRH began broadcasting from the 6th floor studios of downtown Houston's Rice Hotel. But KTRH was ‘born’ in Austin, Texas. What is now KTRH originally started broadcasting as KUT, an experimental, educational radio station assigned to the University of Texas in Austin. When the Depression hit, the University Board of Regents cut expenses by selling the radio station to the Houston Chronicle Publishing Company.
It took two trips in a red Model ‘A’ Ford pick-up to bring the station to Houston and set up headquarters in a single room at the Rice Hotel, owned by legendary business tycoon Jesse Jones.
Rice charged the Chronicle no rent for the room, but it did require hourly announcements advertising the hotel, its laundry and its amenities. Even the call letters were in deference to the Rice Hotel -- "K-The Rice Hotel."
When it went on the air, KTRH was one of only a handful of radio stations operating in Houston. Thomas White's US Early Radio History credits KTRH as the 35th oldest radio station in the United States. READ THE REST
KTRH news reporter Joe Gomez talked with Dan Rather about his time at the station. LISTEN
Think 80 years is a long time for a radio station to be on the air then you'll really be amazed that KTRH sister station 950 KPRC turns 85 later this year!