Artifacts of the Week: The Radio

The History of Radios at the Hillary House

By Shelby Clifford

In the Hillary House, we have two different radios that we use to compare our change of the times, regarding its ability to share news, music and advertisements. The older model that we have comes from the company called WestingHouse Electric Corporation, that was founded in the US in 1886. Originally titled the Westinghouse Electric Company, it was created with the intentions of radio and electrical generator building and broadcasting by the inventor, George Westinghouse. Over the course of 100 years, the corporation built a variety of different radio styles and generators to be placed all around modern homes for all families and businesses across the globe. One of its largest factories was located in Hamilton, Ontario! The radios WEC produced were used when broadcasting news about both WW1 and WW2 and became an important step into the future of technology and communication. To this day, the Westinghouse Electric Corporation has since been changed and is a part of the infamous CBS Corporation that has a worldwide mass media name. The exact age of the radio in our house is undetermined, but from the information we can gather it is in the midst of being 5-7 decades old!

The second radio we have in the Hillary House is the Panasonic Tabletop radio. This portable radio, with a plug in to the wall, was much easier to use during the aging times in the Hillary House to listen to broadcasts and music. The company that created the radio, Panasonic, is a very common radio and tv manufacturer in man modern homes across the world. Founded in 1918 in Japan by Konosuke Matsushita, this company was made with the mindset of becoming a multinational electronic producers in the world (and that is what it became.) The company, over the period of its 99 years so far, has created radios, shavers, televisions, rice cookers, and other household appliances that are bought every year. This radio in particular, Model Re-6513 was created in 1972 to be used in the kitchen or living room upon tabletops. As the years changed, it would be used for a variety of different tasks, much like the Westinghouse Electric company radio.

Together, these two radios kept in our historical house show the significant changes made into modern society regarding radios and music/ broadcasting techniques. As we can see today, cellphones and televisions take up the majority of our attention when receiving news or new music. But the past is not forgotten; to reminisce in the old ways of the inhabitants in this house remain, the tuned ears against the speakers and the laughing as music ran through the walls of the house, never to be forgotten. We constantly remember the ways the future has changed our living standards, but we will always remember where it all started.