|Broadcast area||Greater Boston|
|Branding||AM 950 WROL|
|Slogan||The Spirit of Boston|
|Format||Religion, talk, Irish music|
|Affiliations||Salem Radio Network|
|Owner||Salem Media Group |
(Salem Media of Massachusetts, LLC)
First air date
|January 29, 1927 (1927-01-29)|
(current license dates to October 8, 1950 (1950-10-08))
Former call signs
WORL (1935–49; 1950–66)
|1240 kHz (1927)|
780 kHz (1927–29)
920 kHz (1929–41)
Call sign meaning
|Similar to former WORL calls currently being used at its sister station in Orlando|
|Power||5,000 watts daytime|
90 watts nighttime
|Translator(s)||100.3 W262CV (Boston)|
Listen live (via Radio.com)
WROL is a radio station in the Boston, Massachusetts radio market. The station is owned by Salem Media Group, and is located on 950 kHz on the AM dial. Most of WROL's programming is religious including local ministers as well as national radio hosts such as Dr. Charles Stanley, Jay Sekulow and Eric Metaxas. Former WBZ-TV news anchor-turned-minister Liz Walker also has a program on the station. WROL also airs several Irish music blocks on weekends, including the Irish Hit Parade on Saturdays and A Feast of Irish Music on Sundays.
WROL operates with 5000 watts by day but must reduce power to 90 watts at night to protect other stations on 950 kHz. WROL uses a non-directional transmitter located off Route 107 in the Rumney Marsh Reservation in Saugus, Massachusetts. WROL is one of three religious formatted radio stations in the Boston media market owned by Salem Communications; WEZE also airs religious programming, while WWDJ carries Spanish-language religious programming.
WROL's history dates back to 1927 and WBSO, owned by Babson College. The station moved to Boston in 1935 after a sale and became WORL. During the late 1930s, WORL was the first station in Boston to adopt a popular-music format ("The 920 Club", named after the station's former frequency; the title remained even after the move to 950 on March 29, 1941) with disc jockeys spinning the tunes. Although only a daytimer then, WORL built up a following as an entertaining alternative to the daytime programming elsewhere on the Boston radio dial.
The owners, Harold A. Lafount and two others (operating for the interests of Arde Bulova) became embroiled in a long-running dispute with the FCC for having filed false reports regarding ownership and financial structure, and in 1947 their license renewal was rejected. After an appeals process that went to the U.S. Supreme Court, the rejection was upheld. The station, which had stayed on the air via temporary licenses, went off the air on May 30, 1949.
Pilgrim Broadcasting purchased the license and returned the station to the air in October 1950. Later sales led to the station becoming WRYT, with WORL being taken by a station near Orlando, Florida. Carter Broadcasting took over in 1977, and after failing to be able to return the WORL call letters to Boston, settled on WROL. Carter immediately established a religious network with WROL as its flagship, with relays throughout New England. While mostly religious, WROL featured two popular programs during the 1970s and 1980s, a weekday cooking show with longtime Boston radio/TV personality Gus Saunders, and a Saturday block of Irish music featuring John Latchford, and later Paul Sullivan and Matt O'Donnell (among others) which became quite popular among the region's large Irish-American population. In recent years, WROL has expanded Irish music to Sunday afternoons as well.
History of call letters
The call letters WROL were previously assigned to an AM station in Knoxville, Tennessee. WROL-AM 620 in Knoxville, Tennessee in the early '40s employed a then-little-known news announcer who went on to country stardom: Tennessee Ernie Ford. WROL's complete 1,000 watt radio transmitter and wire-array antenna was hand built by the station Engineer Joseph Wofford. The original transmitter was later encased in a glass cabinet and placed in the lobby of the studio.
|City of license||Facility
|Class||Transmitter coordinates||FCC info|