UTARC History Compiled By Daniel Bowen
The Amateur Radio Club at the University of Tennessee was initiated in 1947 by a group of student and faculty Ham radio operators. Since that time, the club has gone through many changes, and various levels of activity. As of September 2000, the UT Amateur Radio Club began a campaign of vigorous reinstatement, with all new, active members working to establish a strong and worthwhile presence on the University of Tennessee, Knoxville campus. In the fall of 1999, after the club had been inactive for several ye ars, three student Amateur Radio operators, Mike Swiatkowski, Daniel Bowen, and Past Club President Chris Brown, began actions that would lead to the complete reinstatement of the UTARC. Access was obtained to the old radio room, and the location was dee med unusable for permanently operating radios any longer. This was due to the changes in the environment around the location of 401 East Stadium Hall. After the recent completion (Summer 2000) of the East Neyland Stadium Skybox, the location of antennas would be very problematic if at all possible. Prior to the East Skybox construction, there was an antenna tower mounted on the northeasternmost stadium lighting array that supported a tri-bander beam and a 2m yagi. This setup was featured in the photo section of the March 2000 issue of QST magazine, as seen here on this page. In spite of repeated UTARC efforts to remove and preserve the antenna equipment, along with ~150 of feed and control lines, they were destroyed without UTARC consent during const ruction. " They are visible in this picture taken in front of Estabrook Hall after they were removed from the stadium. As a result of unwavering determination of the club vice president, the Club was promised a full replacement in kind through the cooperation of th e Office of Facilities Planning and the Athletics Department upon locating a suitable space for placement of the antennas.
The search for a room continued in Fall 2000, and to support and assist the club's cause, a membership recruitment campaign was initiated. Having a stong membership of 20 in February of 2001, the club has been growing at a h ealthy rate with students, faculty, staff and community members. The membership is very positive news for the future of the UTARC, and soon the officers of the club anticipate that the club may have a new home on campus in Spring of 2001. In February of 2001, members of the club completed a temporary installation of the club's TenTec Paragon 585 HF radio in the existing radio room. This consisted of clearing a space in the room (no small task!), setting up the radio and borrowed antenna t uner (courtesy Mike Coffey, KJ4Z), and erecting an antenna. We chose to use a long-wire style antenna for its simplicity and cost, a slingshot method was used to place the antenna and support rope out through the stadium superstructure and to a tree in f ront of Estabrook Hall. The first reinstated UTARC HF Contact was made on February 3, 2001 by KJ4Z. Many contacts were made on this antenna, and now serves as a secondary antenna to a horizontal vee extending out from the stadium. The club owns a large library of QST, Ham Radio Magazine, and 73 dating back to the 1920's, and we continue to preserve many historic club documents. The club continues to grow and prosper, gaining members, equipment, funds, activites and expeditions all the time! Please visit our website for more up to date information, and the history sub-page for pictures to go along with this bio. Thanks, UTARC
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