From Small Beginnings

A Brief History of the Guelph,
Kitchener-Waterloo and the
South Waterloo Amateur Radio Clubs.

Produced by the Kitchener-Waterloo Amateur Radio Club.

End Of World War II & It's Effect On Our High Tech Population

The formation of the three amateur radio clubs in the district was very interesting. None so more than the Guelph Club under the eye of Professor Mike Gammon. The Professor was unfortunately electrocuted while testing a high voltage power pack.

We are indebted to Mr. Earl Stickney VE3QW who realized the historic value of the newspaper clippings from the Guelph Mercury newspaper. The clippings have been added to the book and we urge the reader to carefully read them.

The effects of a technical war are quite interesting and this always shows up in the population figures. Your editors endeavoured to find out, from the various city clerks what the population figures were for various chronological dates of interest to us. We were not successful in all cases. The population figures for a municipality seem only to be of passing interest to the municipality's administrative group. However we were able to obtain sufficient figures to show the general truth of our statements.

Various cities and towns are often known quite widely for their technical businesses. In the case of Kitchener, Waterloo, Galt and Guelph such a statement is true. Then when a war is declared there is an immediate requirement for various items for the armed services. The various factories require technical people and they migrate to the manufacturing centres.

February 3, 1983
Take for instance Waterloo. On January 1, 1930 the population was 8,389. In August 1939, it had increased to 8,623 and during the war years it increased 1300. The city became very technically minded and since the war has increased tremendously, with numerous firms, NCR, Leigh Instruments, radio parts, etc., in operation. The two universities, now enjoying world wide distinction, have been a large economic factor in Waterloo's growth.

Kitchener has grown remarkable with its various new manufacturing plants. The city grew from 31,114 to 39,150 during the war. It has continued growing, the January 1987 figure of 141,438 includes some people from the Waterloo Region rearrangement.

Similar increases were posted in Guelph and Galt, which became Cambridge and took over Preston and Hespeler.

When the war ended the various populations were left with numerous technical men. During the seven years of war these people and their families had settled down, chosen their churches, transferred their children to schools, bought houses and were enjoying the life the district provided.

It was quite natural then, that these people wished to stay here. With the pressures of the war effort removed their thoughts and activities turned to their hobbies and a proportion of the total decided they would like to be radio amateurs. There were now more radio amateur prospects in the district so it was quite normal that separate radio clubs came into being i.e. the Guelph Radio Club, the Kitchener-Waterloo Radio Club and the South Waterloo Radio Club. These clubs have enjoyed the many aspects of radio communication and the excellent fellowship which accompanies their meetings.

With the European war over and the Japanese war coming to a close the Federal Government again allowed amateur operations.

The Kitchener-Waterloo Radio Club was originally founded at the Kitchener-Waterloo Radio Amateur Club in 1922.  It appeared to fold only to resurrect after the war on April 20, 1946.

The Guelph Club was formed in 1949. The South Waterloo Club was formed in 1964.

Some details of these clubs and the men who formed them are presented in the following chapters.

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