Media Development in Weber County

Richard C. Roberts and Richard W. Sadler
History of Weber County

The twentieth century saw some major developments in the media. In 1920 the Ogden Standard and the Ogden Examiner were consolidated into the Ogden Standard-Examiner. Frank Cannon founded the Ogden Standard in 1888; and William Glasmann joined him in 1892. The Morning Examiner was first established by Glasmann family money with Frank Francis as editor; in 1911 it was sold to a group of Utah businessmen headed by J. U. Eldredge, Jr. Eldredge became the Examiner‘s general manager, and he ran the paper until 1920 when the two papers were consolidated. After the consolidation, which made Ogden a one-newspaper town, Abraham Lincoln Glasmann operated the paper. The two papers had operated out of two downtown buildings; but, following the merger, they moved into the Kiesel Building. The paper later moved to its headquarters on 23rd Street, which was the old National Guard Armory building.

Another means of public communication in Weber County in the period was the development of the radio industry. Radio broadcasting started in Utah with the KZN (which later became KSL) station making its debut on 6 May 1922. Other stations soon followed in Salt Lake City and other cities in the state. Ogden’s first stations were KDZL in 1922, KFPC in 1923, and KFUR and KFWA in 1924. Only KFUR survived the first “hectic decade,” and in the early 1930s A. L. “Abe” Glasmann, owner of the Ogden Standard-Examiner, helped KFUR financially through the hard times and changed the call letters to KLO. Glasmann established the Interstate Broadcasting Corporation as the parent organization to KLO in 1934 and hired son-in-law George Hatch to manage the Ogden station in 1941. Other radio stations including KOPP and KVOG were established after World War II.

Several individuals born in Weber County had an impact on radio and television development. Earl J. Glade was a pioneer in building the KSL empire and was also elected mayor of Salt Lake City. Rolfe Peterson, one-time student body president at Weber College, became a broadcaster at KLO and participated in 1939 in the first television program of the college presented in Salt Lake City. Peterson later went on to become a radio announcer and television personality in the San Francisco area. Douglas Stringfellow worked as an announcer at KLO for a period of time before his involvement in politics. Utah radio and television personalities Roy Gibson and Paul James, both graduates of Ogden High School, had a great impact on Utah broadcasting. Len Allen has had perhaps the longest stint as an announcer at KLO, beginning his career in 1947 and continuing his career to the present.