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WTOB Radio tower at Thruway Shopping Center, lighted for Christmas, 1957.

WTOB Radio tower at Thruway Shopping Center, lighted for Christmas, 1957.

WTOB Radio tower at Thruway Shopping Center, lighted for Christmas, 1957. WTOB Radio station was located in the building near the base of the tower. The Thruway Shopping Center is at right.

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  1. This picture was actually the WTOB television tower. WTOB television went on the air around 1953 on channel 26. Southern broadcasting had lost it’s bid for channel 12 so they settled for 26. Unfortunately very few televisions were equipped with UHF at that time and that was the death knell for WTOB TV. The station went off the air sometime in the late 50’s. The chief engineer at the station was Ray Vogler. The tower was taken down some time in the late 60’s. The WTOB radio transmitter was located off Silas Creek Parkway north of Robin Hood Rd.

  2. The WTOB Television tower was indeed removed from Thruway in the late 1960’s. It was purchased by a Greensboro radio station and is now located on Warehouse Street off of Bessemer Ave. in Greensboro. I own a scale model of this tower that was made in the early 1970’s. As for Southern Broadcasting Company getting into TV in this area, since WTOB-TV didn’t work, they got the license for Channel 8, WGHP-TV in High Point. It was a shame that the tower was removed from Thruway, as it’s lighted tower and lights at Christmas time was a highlight for me as a kid. I’m glad to find this picture as I was not aware that there was a picture of the tower with it’s Christmas lights on it, in exsistance. Thank You.

  3. … i had a clear view from my bedroom window all thru the 60’s

  4. I remember looking out my bedroom window as a child. The sight of this tower was awe-inspiring. It lit many a Christmas for me. It was a sad day when it came down. Thanks for the memories.

  5. I used to love looking at the WTOB tower at Christmas. I could see it from my grandmother’s back porch on Maplewood Ave. I was told the reason it was taken down was that ice would form on the tower and would fall on the cars parked below. Somehow that reason was just not enough for a little girl who loved the pretty lights. So happy to stumble upon this picture!

  6. ‘TOB brings back mixed emotions. I knew George before he died, and “dutch” who is in Texas and retired and some of the others who I have no idea where they are, John Stanton, Lee Bryant, and “Bob-A-Loo”: Mclean. I played basketball with them one night in the 60’s against the Globetrotters; we lost.
    My point is it wasn’t just the music that sold “TOB and the goodguys, it was the personalities and the contests and the jokes, A couple of them spent the night at my parent’s home when the roads were bad and my father picked them up because he could get around in a truck.
    That part of “TOB will never come back. I stil have a ‘TOB license plate. I wanted to be a DJ and work for ‘TOB, but I knew I didn’t have the voice for it. George let me on the air one time; it was his last night at the station. RIP George Lee

  7. Frank Brewer was chief engineer for ‘TOB at the time; I use to date his wife.
    Anyhow, there were also relay towers somewhere along Silas Creek parkway. He took me there a few
    times and me get my 3rd class engineer license in order to operate a radio station. He showed how to ground a tower before climbing to change a burned-out light on top.
    There was enough static electricity to kill a person without grounding.

  8. WTOB is coming back on 4-1-13 w/ oldies and beach music. I can’t wait to hear some of the old songs and jingles from that era.

    I remember listening to George Lee, Lee Bryant, the Dutchman and Bob-a-loo. I listened to the station almost 24/7.

    The radio personalties and the music was a big part of my growing up in Winston-Salem.

    I was able to visit the station one night in 1967 when the DJ was George McGovern.

    I also had a short stint in radio in the late 60’s, but just didn’t have the voice for it.

  9. An errie sight those long nights picking up baseballs at the Batt Batt. Remember ? 9 balls for 25 cents and next to the Putt Putt and Jump Jump.

  10. Almost all of us baby boomers remember WTOB as a big part of lives growing up and as teenagers going to the HI-Fi Club were teenagers from all high schools gathered and had a great time together. The tower was a landmark especially at Christmas.

  11. Yahoo, the very best radio station ever and coming back. The tower was beautiful at Christmas. Welcome back, WTOB

  12. I was an Engineer there in 1956 The station went on the air Laborday weekend in 1953. I think it waa Feb 1957 when it went dark. I remember DJ Ray Burke was there until signoff. His theme song was Silver Fizz. I haave never been able to find a copy. The permit for WTOBTV was given up and a bid made for channel 8 which went on the air in Oct 1963. I built channel 8 that summer and was the first employee starting July 14 1963

  13. I was hired to do news at WTOB in 1975. Bill McGuage was news director and the station was owned by John Woods. He decided to move the station from Thruway to a renovated space on the first floor of a building on West 5th Street sometime in 1976. John Isley of John Boy and Billy fame worked there for a while. I left in ’77 to go WBT, leaving WTOB News in the capable hands of Randy Wolfe who later went on to a career as Bob Schieffer’s producer at CBS.

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