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For the latest news (and current photos) on our building remodel, click here

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Photos Below, the great room, repair shop, Maxwell library as of Nov 2014




 Chrsmap On April 23rd 2014 CHRS took possession of this historic building. 2152 Central Avenue in Alameda CA, will be known as CHRS ‘Radio Central’ and is now the Permanent home of the California Historical Radio Society, the Bay Area Radio Hall Of Fame, W6CF, The Jim Maxwell Communications Library and the Society Of Wireless Pioneers.

On the left, The red arrow points to Alameda Island

BUILDING FUND DONATIONS: more than $1,053,700! HAPPY 40TH BIRTHDAY CHRS! – Our favorite Historical Radio Society has done something that most non-profits only dream about… We have raised enough money to buy a permanent home!

To quote some beloved local balladeers…

“What a long strange trip it’s been.”

In 1974, antique radio collectors Jim Cirner, Norm Berge, Gene Rippen, Dave Brodie, Robert Middleton, Ken Miller and Peter Brickey, decided to organize. These seven collectors realized the importance of preserving radio artifacts and the history that accompanies them. They called themselves the California Historical Radio Society. They were chartered as an educational non-profit corporation, wrote by-laws and secured a 501(c)(3) IRS status. CHRS was born.

These men had the foresight to create an environment for individuals with similar interests to gather and exchange ideas about radio collecting, history and preservation. The first year, CHRS had about 25 members; today we have close to 400.

In the second edition of the CHRS Journal there was a small note that said, “the new home of the CHRS Museum would be announced soon”… that was 1974. In the blink of an eye 40 years has passed. And, thanks to generous and passionate CHRS Members, friends and supporters… We can report that the New CHRS Museum and Educational Center for Radio is now and forever located at 2152 Central Avenue, Alameda, CA, 94501. Phone (510) 522-1974. CHRS has received an outstanding 40th Birthday Present and will be telling radio’s stories at ‘Radio Central’ for generations to come.

Owning ‘Radio Central’ means that CHRS now has complete control of our destiny and you made it happen. We all should feel very proud to be part of such a fine organization that is so dedicated and passionate about keeping radio history alive.

But, we can not let up on fundraising. A big push to continue this campaign is vital. WE ARE NOT DONE  And this is why…

You have heard that in real estate, it’s all about location. We came from a location that many people could not find. So, to be able to find a building with a good location we had to get a fixer-upper. We found a fixer-upper in a great location. This building is 114 years old and in some areas shows its’ age. We have some roofing issues, asbestos issues, minor termite damage and one tiny moldy closet. Don’t be scared, this building has great bones and all these problems can be corrected. We have a Boys Room and Girls Room with many more stalls than we will ever need and a bunch of 24″ sinks. We need to turn these rooms into adult ADA bathrooms. It’s all dooable. It just takes lots of money. Oh yes… We also have to build a Museum.

And speaking of money, your Board of Directors has wisely decided that we will build this facility the best we can make it and do it right, the first time.

It does us no good to have just a building stuffed with radios because we do not have the funds to create our Museum, Hall Of Fame, Library, etc. Chairman Mike Adams says, “We will have a Million dollar warehouse.” Director Tom Bonomo says, “The CHRS team has marched 99 yards down the field and is on the 1 yard line. The last yard is the most important.” Our $1.15 Million dollar goal lets us buy the building, start necessary repairs and construction and most importantly gives CHRS an emergency fund. We feel that this a wise approach. That is why we still need $96,300for this drive.

We are still looking for an angel who would like the building named after them. A $500,000 donation would do it. What a legacy it would be for someone.

THE NEW CHRS RADIO CENTRAL – Is an historical communications building. Not radio but…

When CHRS entered into contract to purchase 2152 Central Avenue, the best information we had was that it was built in 1920 as a church and then it became a school. We are purchasing it from the Children’s Learning Center. Walt Hayden has been doing research and this is what we know now:

2152 Central Avenue was built in 1900 by the Sunset Telephone and Telegraph Company. 2152 Central served as one of the first telephone exchanges in Alameda.



This unique building was built in 1900. It is single story building with a full basement. It is 7,400+ square feet. We had 4,600 at KRE. It is in a great neighborhood, a couple of blocks from Downtown, easy to get to and easy parking. There is a driveway down one side and room in the back for several cars or outbuildings. There is a 45 car parking lot adjacent to the building. This is not part of the purchase and is owned by the Central Baptist Church across the street. We have an agreement with the Church for CHRS to use the lot.

Central Av Mashup Sign

2152 Central 1

2152 Central3

2152 Central 4

Walt Hayden and Robert Swart show Judy Mears building progress at radio Central

Walt Hayden, Judy Mears &Amp; Robert Swart At Radio Central 10Vi14 Img_5522

Below, the “deconstructing” of Central Ave.



  •  Original Asking Price – $975,000
  • Negotiated Sale Price – $940,000
  • Closing Costs – $10,700
  • CHRS Building Emergency Fund – $50,000
  • Funds to Begin Renovation – $55,900… Not nearly enough!

TAKE THE TOUR – Chairman Mike Adams takes us on a tour of our new digs. See our neighborhood and see the potential this vintage building has to offer. CLICK FOR THE RADIO CENTRAL TOUR If you have a passion for Radio, with your help, CHRS will be able to create our new permanent West Coast Educational Center for Radio.