The original home of KTWR FM & KLAY FM

KLAY-KTWR-PeckResearch has changed my earlier notion that the downtown location of KLAY was the original location…
KLAY, named for its owner, Clay Huntington, was the first Puget Sound area FM station to broadcast in STEREO. It was also one of the first “beautiful music” stations in the market. Beautiful Music was what otherwise would have been called “elavator music.” It was the music heard in offices and grocery stores as background sound. Some claimed that the music piped into groceries stores was manipulated, sometimes with subliminal messaging, in order to cause shoppers to buy more goods. Though there were no known subliminal messages broadcast over KLAY, the beautiful music station also split programming, in later years, to include evening sessions of popular Progressive Rock, competing with Seattle’s KOL and later KISW. This was quite a dichotomy in formats. Beautiful music to soothe the mind of office workers, secretaries, and store shoppers by day, and raucous, booming, rock and roll, for a totally different crowd, by night.
Clay Huntington was the forward-thinking owner of KLAY, long a sports broadcaster over many Tacoma radio stations as KTAC, KMO and KMO TV. Huntington was credited with having a huge impact in the drive to bring Pacific Coast League baseball to Tacoma and a huge promoter of the new, [in 1960], Cheney Stadium. Huntington was a mover & shaker in the Puget Sound sports community and made great strides in FM broadcasting with KLAY. Huntington eventually sold the FM, retained an AM station which still broadcasts, per his wish, through the Clay Huntington Legacy, operated by Huntington family members and broadcasting the same talk format with local sports, as the AM station had all the years under Huntington’s watch.
The original building which housed KLAY FM, was located in the Peck Building at 1712 Sixth Avenue, but only for a brief period while Huntington and associate Tom Read, fine-tuned their seperate FM stations. KTWR FM, owned by Thomas Wilmot Read, [hence the call letters K-TWR], was located in the same building. Read also sold advertising for both stations for many of the early years. KLAY moved studio and transmitter several times in order to improve the stations signal. KLAY began broadcasting in STEREO while located at 201 S. 5th St, [which I cannot locate with Google maps - perhaps the names of the streets have since changed]. KLAY was later moved up the road to 260 S. 5th Street and finally to the station’s longtime home downtown at 215 Tacoma Avenue South, overlooking Commencement Bay, a name originally given to the city now called Tacoma. This was the building where the beautiful music/progressive rock schedule began.
The only ‘notorious’ moment in the history of KLAY’s progressive rock era, came when one of the disc jockeys was arrested during his on-air broadcast. The station was turned off for the evening, leaving listeners to have to tune to KOL FM, the only other alternative for this ‘alternative’ format, at the time. In many respects KLAY’s evening progressive presentation was superior in format and delivery to that of KOL FM.

The Peck Building, still standing today, is the original home to 2 radio stations: KTWR which later became KTAC FM, KMTT The Mountain and is now KHTP FM, and KLAY FM which is now KBKS FM.
Peck Building today

Firsts – Among Tacoma FM stations

KTNT FM – Tacoma’s first FM station.
KLAY FM – Tacoma’s first FM Stereo station.
KLAY FM – First and only Tacoma station with call letters to mimic owner’s first name, CLAY Huntington.
KTWR Tacoma’s first radio station with call letters matching the owner’s initials [Thomas Wilmot Read].
KTNT FM – Tacoma’s first station to play rock & roll music. In fact, LIVE remote broadcasts of popular Tacoma area rock groups from local clubs.
KTNT FM – by virtue of AM simulcasts, first Tacoma station to become a network affiliate [Mutual Broadcasting System].
KLAY FM – first Tacoma FM station to play Progressive Rock music.
KTAC FM [formerly KTWR FM] first Tacoma FM radio station to be owned by an out-of-state corporation, Entercom.
KTNT FM now KIRO FM – KLAY FM now KBKS FM – KTAC FM now KHPT FM [what in the heck do those call letters stand for?]

Radio/TV combos in Tacoma:
KMO AM/TV 13
KMO is now KKMO-Spanish. 13 is now KCPQ
KTNT AM/FM/TV 11
KTNT AM silent/KTNT FM is now KIRO FM. 11 is now KSTW owned by CBS.
KTOY FM/KTPS TV 62
KTOY FM is now KXOT FM. KTPS 62 is now KBTC 28
KPEC FM/KPEC TV 56
KPEC FM is now KVTI and is operated by remote control from WSU Pullman. 56 became the original KCPQ 13 Public Television, later sold to Kelly Broadcasting, now Tribune Corp., Chicago.

You Don’t Say

FEBRUARY 15, 1942

February 15 1942 brutal operation


This article, from 1942, did not explicitly speak about the medical procedure that hurt the lady. But, use of the language and the words BRUTAL & ILLEGAL lead us to believe it wasn’t a “butt lift.” They didn’t need TMZ back in the day. These stories were all over the newspapers. You just had to read into them a little.