KRHO Honolulu 1944

KRHO was a powerful shortwave radio station broadcasting in English and Japanese languages to the Far Eastern Pacific region in the closing stages of WWII.

We continue our tour of the facilities by introducing Joseph Whitehouse, Engineering Director of the Central Pacific Operations. He supervised installation of the transmitter at Lualualei on Oahu. Operating at full capacity, Station KRHO, one of the most powerful shortwave stations in the world, was on the air 20 hours a day.

Ira Mercer, Chief Engineer is responsible for the maintenance and operation of all studio and transmitter facilities of KRHO.

Section of rhombic antenna system beamed to the Far East from the transmitter at Lualualei. It took the largest crane in the Hawaiian islands, the only one with a 120-foot boom, to erect these poles.

Joseph Whitehouse
© John C Seehaas Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation.
Ira Mercer
© John C Seehaas Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation.
KRHO antenna system
© John C Seehaas Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation

Panel view of the 100kW transmitter at Lualualei, about 20 miles from Honolulu, on the west coast of Oahu, where Engineer James Bird was the studio supervisor.

KRHO transmitter
© John C Seehaas Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation.

Producer-Announcer Jack Hitchcock at Master Control gives the cue for a program rehearsal, and Engineer John Signer supervises the installation of broadcasting and recording equipment whilst engineers prepare a bank of record cutting lathes.

James Robert Bird
Jack Hitchcock

© John C Seehaas Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation.

John Signer
© John C Seehaas Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation.
KRHO record cutting lathes
© John C Seehaas Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation.

In the third part of this series, a visit to the radio broadcasting and news and features teams of KRHO Honolulu and sister station KSAI Saipan.

All images in this series are from an untitled OWI booklet in the collection of John C Seehaas, and the original of which is now held in the Radio Heritage Foundation Collection.

This material has been kindly made available by Bruce Portzer of Seattle who received it as a result of genealogy research undertaken by an Ebay on-line auction purchaser in the early 2000’s.

John Seehaas, who worked at OWI Honolulu, died in 1972.

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