SW QSL cards
and ephemera

• Belgium
• Belize
• Bulgaria
• Congo
• Czechoslovakia
• Egypt
• El Salvador
• Ethiopia
• Finland
• Germany
• Ghana
• Haiti
• Honduras
• Hungary
• Israel
• Italy
• Japan
• Lebanon
• Netherlands
• Netherlands
• New Zealand
• Norway
• Poland
• Portugal
• Russia
• Romania
• South Africa
• Spain
• Sweden
• Switzerland
• Trop R.Telegraph
• Turkey
• Winward Islands

Ham QSL cards:

• Azores
• Brazil
• Czechoslovakia
• Denmark
• Ghana
• Hungary
• Liberia
• Sierra Leone
• USSR Murmansk
• Venezuela

SW receiver

M31 Transistor
Radio Site

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Ham and SWL QSL cards from the 1960s and 1970s

Well, from the looks of it now, 1970 was a good year for me as a 14-year-old – I hadn’t discovered girls yet, so I had lots of quality time for short wave listening, and I got some pretty nice QSLs out of the deal. Same goes for 1969, and for 1968, when I first started SWLing… My first “receiver” was a Heathkit GR-64 – not the Knight “Star Roamer” shown here – but I know I did most of my DXing at this time on an Allied A-2515 (third photo on this page) with a simple longwire antenna strung across the roof of my parents' house.

My days in the summer of 1970 were spent waiting for the mailman – either at home or at the house of my best friend, Joe Rippe, also a SWLer -- where we lounged on his parents’ porch on Rattan chairs and sofas, poring over our tremendous cache of dozens and dozens of MAD magazines which we had picked up one fine Sunday morning at the Aurora flea market for five or ten dollars for the lot… When I look at these QSL card images now, what I remember is less about my actual tuning in to these stations than it is about waiting for the mailman…

SW broadcasters on the whole have always been quite generous to their listeners, and it seems to have been especially so in those days – a QSL card very often came accompanied by all sorts of ephemera – a personal typewritten letter, a broadcast schedule, DX club info, cultural information about the country, sometimes a program magazine, and of course very often a pennant. And sometimes a broadcaster would go the extra mile and include something really special in its QSL package, such as the silver kiwi stickpin I got from Radio New Zealand -- and darn if I didn’t lose it somehow! -- I still keep searching through my stuff for it…

Anyway, I thought it would be of interest to show here not just the QSL cards and pennants but also some of the many other great things that often came with them.

And there's also a small amateur radio QSL gallery here -- ten cards from the early '70s that I thought were worth sharing. I've been off the air for 30+ years now, but during those years I always made sure to renew my license -- and now I'm back on the air, working a Kenwood TS-940S. My antenna is a multiband dipole strung across the roof of a 4-storey apartment building in a slightly sloping inverted V configuration. I'm living now in Bratislava, Slovakia, in Central Europe. My callsign is OM/WB8IPB. Maybe we'll talk sometime!

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© 2007 by Robert Davidson, transistors@abetterpage.com