by William Eric McFadden



The William Howard Taft boyhood home -- click to enlarge Two members of the Southeast Ohio Radio Adventure Team succeeded in activating William Howard Taft National Historical Site as part of the ARRL's year-long National Parks on the Air (link). Eric McFadden, WD8RIF, and Miles McFadden, KD8NKC, activated William Howard Taft National Historic Site, NS78 (link) in Cincinnati, Ohio, after attending the Georgetown (Ohio) Hamfest.

The pair arrived at the park earlier than planned and took the opportunity to do the ranger-guided tour of the Taft house before setting up to do the activation. Eric had exchanged emails regarding the proposed activation with a park staff member and the ranger on duty quickly agreed to allow the activation. As at his previous activation at the park, Eric set up and operated in the grassy area near the overflow parking area behind the historic Taft house and Education Center. Eric took the opportunity to stamp his Passport 2016 before he and Miles proceeded to set up.

As at previous activations, Eric's station consisted of his Enhanced KX3 Travel Kit, his MFJ-1910 33' fiberglass telescoping mast, and a custom clipboard. Eric and Miles quickly erected the mast, deployed the antenna, and set up the rest of the station, and Eric was on the air by about 1700 UTC.

Eric began operations on 20m. His first QSO came at 1702 UTC with WR8O. QSOs came steadily until Eric's 12th QSO on 20m at 1716 UTC with K0BJ. Eric changed to 40m and his first QSO there came at 1722 UTC with KB3VVE. QSOs came continuously on 40m until Eric's 26th QSO on 40m and 39th QSO overall at 1947 UTC with W4OIS. All QSOs were made at the 5-watt level.

Miles did not operate but helped with set-up and tear-down and did all of the activation photography.