Kilo Zero Naval Reserve

I don’t usually get pulled into historical investigations, but I recently found something interesting about my call sign, KØNR. I received this vanity call in April 2002. Before me, Craig Larson W3MS held this call sign starting in 1975. These are the only two entries in the FCC database (Universal Licensing System).

The story starts with me poking around the Digital Library of Amateur Radio & Communications (DLARC), an online archive of radio communications media. I search on “K0NR” and got a number of hits, including an entry from a 1962 Callbook. Back in the olden days, ham radio callsigns and contact info were published in a thick book, kind of like a phone book.

The callsign was listed with “USNR” in the name or organization field. I wasn’t sure what USNR meant so I asked for help via Twitter. Quite a few people came back with “United States Naval Reserve”, which did turn out to be correct. The graphic below is from the 1962 call book and it has multiple callsigns labeled USNR and one labeled USN.

Then Jason W5IPA came up with a page from the July 1949 issue of QST.This article shows there were many amateur call signs assigned to naval reserve stations.

Click to access QST-1949-07.pdf

Then N8URE poked around and came up with this from a 1960 telephone book:

I suspect the 5-digit telephone number is long been obsolete. There still is an address for the Naval Reserve in Dubuque but it is on Jet Center Drive, near the airport.

So there you have it: it was common for Naval Reserve centers to have amateur radio call signs assigned to them. For obvious reasons, they tended to have NR in the call sign. K0NR was assigned to the station in Dubuque, IA.

Thanks for the help from: W5IPA, N8URE, K8BCR, K4ZDH

73 Bob, Kilo Zero Naval Reserve

The post Kilo Zero Naval Reserve appeared first on The KØNR Radio Site.

Bob Witte, KØNR, is a regular contributor to and writes from Colorado, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

One Response to “Kilo Zero Naval Reserve”

  • Robin W1RXF:

    In 1960, five-digit telephone numbers had a two-letter prefix indicating the telephone exchange servicing them, a relic of the time when a human operator had to connect two ends of a call. For example, when I was growing up, the phone number my parents forced me to memorize was “Forest 9-6405,” which later migrated to “369-6405.”

    If you’re really interested in finding more about the Naval Reserve center in Dubuque having K0NR, that phonebook from which you posted the excerpt should have been organized by exchange, which serviced a small geographic area. Best of luck!

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