The Museum is a work in progress. Volunteers are lovingly and expertly crafting an experience to interpret the history of the Voice of America at Bethany Relay Station. While this effort will require several years to complete, you can visit the Museum on the Third Saturday of Every Month from 1PM to 4 PM. Volunteer docents are available to answer your questions. Some volunteers were part of the Bethany Station when it was operational and can relate personal stories and experiences.
Below is a current diagram of the museum.
The Main exhibits at the Museum deal with the history of the Bethany Station and the Voice of America.
There are three partner organizations making the Museum their home:
The Voice of America Exhibit
When you first arrive don't miss watching our award winning documentary video. It summarizes the history and importance of the Voice of America and,more specifically, the Bethany Relay Station, home of the Museum.
From there you will be ushered into the main control room where you can see first hand how operators controlled the six high power transmitters and switched between programming in more than 20 languages.
Above - Circa 1950 Control Desk in the Transmitter Room
Below - Circa 1966 Control Room
Right -The facility once boasted six of the most powerful radio transmitters on earth. The vintage Crosley-built behemoths are long gone but you can still view one of the 1960 vintage Collins transmitters on your tour.
Below - The six transmitters were connected to dozens of large antennas spread across a one square mile area. Some of the concrete tower bases can still be seen in the adjacent Butler County MetroPark located at the rear of the Museum. Many people remember seeing these towers as they drove on Interstate 75.
Right - You can still see up close the Antenna Switching Matrix at the rear of the museum building. These switches allowed the various antenna arrays to target the radio signals to specific areas in Europe, North Africa and South America. Be sure to walk out to see it up close when you visit.
During your tour be sure to drop into the "Ham Shack." Members of the West Chester Amateur Radio Association are on hand to demonstrate some of the amateur radio equipment still transmitting from Bethany Station.
Volunteer docents are on hand in the Media Heritage and Gray History of Wireless exhibit areas. There you can relive some memories of radio and TV in the tri-sate area as well as learning about the pioneers in the development of radio technology.