Organized in September of 1933 the Starved Rock Radio Club has a rich history of over 80 years. Their affiliation as a club with the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) dates back to March of 1934. This club has tried to give faithful, co-operative service and assistance for the betterment of amateur radio, in the promotion of interest in amateur radio communications, for the advancement of the radio art, for the use of amateur radio for public service and welfare, and for the maintenance of fraternalism and the promotion of good fellowship along with a high standard of conduct.
SRRC Co-founder Leslie E. Anderson W9MKS devoted most of his time to amateur radio. He made acquaintances with countless radio associates. Endowed with a wonderful personality which attributed to his secret of making and keeping friends, he possessed a rare sense of humor which can be seen in the minutes he left back before he joined the “Silent Keys”.
The call sign of co-founder Leslie E. Anderson W9MKS, was adopted as the club call after his death. We believed this to be the second time in the history of amateur radio that a club received an honorary call sign. The first being W1AW the call of Hiram Percy Maxim founder and organizer of the American Radio Relay League in 1914.
In 1958 the SRRC was 25 years old. At that time they had a permanent club house near the Starved Rock State Park on Route 178, North of Lowell, Illinois. The club house consisted of a reception room, radio room, and complete kitchen.
On October 30, 1958 at the Tonica, Illinois Fireman Hall the members of the SRRC enjoyed their 25th anniversary. Over 40 attended what was described as a “delightful delectable delicious dinner…A SRRC SPECIAL”. The entertainment consisted of colorful pictures of the Polar Radar Dew Line, and heard remarks about this defense line from Mr. Thomas Hummer, instructor at Federal Electric of Streator, Illinois. Members present that were also at the first preliminary meeting in of the SRRC in July of 1933 were: W9NIU, W9NGG, AND W9LIG.
Today the SRRC has a spacious and remodeld club house in Leonore, Illinois, with over 50 members from around the local North Central Illinois area. Two of them were charter members, C.H. Perdew W9BIN, who was granted a life-time membership, and Hugo Borri W9LIG now a Silent Key, may no longer attend regular meetings, but their spirit lingers on. The membership today are still committed to the ideals of the original founders members of 1934 with two members today that are descendants of original members.
ed: Hugo Borri, W9LIG passed away November 10, 2001.