The strength of our museum is our volunteers. They come from a variety of backgrounds and bring their experience and passion for explaining the history of communications. This page honors these volunteers.
Peter Knight Interview (10-20-2016)
VRCM: Tell me a little bit about your background; schooling, profession, and so on.
PK: I was born at Manchester hospital when my family lived in a part of Windsor called Wapping. When I as four, we moved to Manchester and then to Glastonbury about a year later. I attended Glastonbury High School and then moved after my dad got transferred to Florida and I attended high school there. I received my associate’s degree at University of South Florida and then accepted a position as an Engineering technician, writing computer codes at Pratt & Whitney in West Palm Beach. A couple of years later I accepting a position at Pratt &Whitney in East Hartford. From there I went to University of Hartford and received a BS in Computer Science and a minor in Mathematics. Read More..
Dick Stebbins Interview (5-19-2016)
VRCM: Dick, tell me a little about your background, the work you did, how you got into amateur radio and how got interested in the radio museum.
DS: Well, my interest in radio started with an oscillator my father had in his junk. And I figured out that I could transmit with this oscillator by putting an antenna on it.
VRCM: Was he in the radio business?
DS: No, he was an electrical engineer. His uncle was an early ham radio operator, probably in the early 20s, so he had some influence there. It sparked my interest. I couldn’t understand why the radio in the car worked, because you had no connection…. (laughs). Read More..
Bob Allison Interview ( 3-13-2016)
VRCM: Tell me a little about your background
BA: Well, I grew up in Glastonbury, Connecticut. I’ve always been a big fan of radio ever since I was sick with the chicken pox at age five I discovered AM radio and listening to WHYN up in Springfield. It came in real good on this little transistor radio that I had and I was hooked and soon I was listening to WDRC and all the top hits. My brother and sister were older so they had an influence on my musical tastes which were advanced for my age. So yes, I really liked listening to the Beetle’s latest hits in the mid-sixties and I sort of evolved with the music… with my musical taste. Read More..
Portraits of Volunteers II
Founder & Executive Director
Davida Michaels Interview (10-03-2016)
VRCM: Tell me a little about your background and how you became involved with the radio museum.
DM: I got involved in the radio museum through my husband, Bernie. He and I had a close friend who basically let us know one day that there was a radio museum in Connecticut which was in East Hartford at that time. And so we went out one day and found what was in an old I-Hop. There was a restaurant next to it and we decided we would go there for lunch but we wanted to go into the museum. We walked in and it was just a sea… an absolute sea of old radios and one after the other in the old I-Hop, which wasn’t that big. My husband, who is an amateur radio operator and has been interested in radio and communications for a long time… by the way, before we got married, I also had my amateur radio license. So I had some knowledge, but not a lot I’m not a radio tech person at all. Read More..
John Ellsworth Interview 3-19-2016
VCRM: I’m interested in hearing about your background, how you began collecting old radios and how that lead to the radio museum.
JE: I was a public school teacher and I was teaching technology education, and saw myself as a wood shop teacher and a drafting teacher. And a couple years into working at Southington High School they asked me to teach electronics which I knew nothing about. So I started learning very, very quickly and kind of got into electronics and enjoyed it. So as time went on and I developed a little bit of knowledge I used to go out tag sailing and flea marketing all the time and I saw a little old vacuum tube radio sitting at a flea market one day and picked it up for five bucks thinking I would take it home and fix it with my new-found knowledge. And I did and got it working and that was my first mistake! Read More..
Mark Heiss Interview (5-21-2016)
VRCM: Mark, tell me a little about your background, what you did for a living, how you got interested in collecting and how you got involved with the museum.
MH: I was born at Grace New Haven Hospital when my parents lived in Seymour. I later lived in Milford and then Woodbury, where I attended Nonnewaug High School. For college, I went to the University of Hartford in West Hartford. Eventually I settled in Prospect.
VRCM: When you went to the University, what was your major?
MH: Electrical Engineering, I have a B.S.E.E. My first job was for Dataproducts New England (DNE) in Wallingford. They made data communications test equipment. Read More..
Larry Butler Interview (1-16-2016)
VRCM: Please tell me a little about your background, how you got interested in radio and your involvement with the radio museum.
LB: Well, my life wasn’t always oriented toward radio. I was an English major at the University of Wisconsin. I was educated in the long haul meaning that I took a couple of years and then dropped out and worked a few years in roofing, and then came back to finish my English degree. It took me a while but I thought I was headed toward a writing career, but creative writing didn’t seem to be extremely marketable at the time I got my degree, and I worked a string of jobs to support my wife who was still in school. Read More..