Looking Back At WANN: A Radio Station That Broadcast To A Growing African American Middle Class
Now, we’re going to look back at an Annapolis radio station that broadcast music for an African American audience for 50 years from 1947 to 1997. Ephemera and objects from the station, called WANN, are on display at the Smithsonian Museum of American history, which has a permanent exhibit that opened in July called American Enterprise part of the museum’s new innovation wing. The exhibit traces America’s development from a small, agriculturally-dependent country to a global economic powerhouse. It’s an eclectic collection: things like an early Monopoly board game and the name tag of a shoe clerk who worked at the department store, Woodward & Lothrup.
To highlight the African American experience from the consumer era, what the Smithsonian is calling the 1940s through the 1970s, they selected artifacts from WANN.
Last month, I spoke with Larry Blum the son of the founder and owner of WANN, Morris Blum. Dr. Charlie McGovern, a history professor at the College of William and Mary also joined us as well.