Nordic Broadcasting Corporation

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The Nordic Broadcasting AG (NORAG) was on 16 January 1924 by a group of merchants around the grain dealer Friedrich Blonck in Hamburg , and it began on May 2, 1924 with four hours of programming on the air.

The transmitter had a power of 1 kW and radiated on shaft 359 (i.e. 835 kHz = 359 m).

From 1932 the name was Norddeutsche Rundfunk GmbH and in 1934, as Reichssender Hamburg, it became part of the German unity broadcast, which broadcast under the name Großdeutscher Rundfunk from January 1, 1939 .


On May 2, 1924, the Nordische Rundfunkgesellschaft AG, financed by the Hamburg merchant Friedrich Blonck, started operations at the Hamburg station Billwerder . Only 896 registered listeners followed the first broadcast from an improvised studio in the Hamburg telephone exchange on Schlüterstrasse . The general manager Hans Bodenstedt began personally with the words “Here is NORAG!” The number of listeners rose to 7,000 within six months.

On November 30, 1924, the "intermediate transmitter" Bremen went into operation. He distributed the program from Hamburg and produced 3–4 hours of programming for NORAG every day. Today's successor is Radio Bremen .

The participation fees of 60 RM annually at the beginning  were collected by the Reichspost . The broadcasting companies received 50 to 60% of this. The Reichspost used the remainder to cover the costs of setting up and operating the transmission systems and collecting fees.

The broadcasts could be received with a detector receiver , often self-made, with only a short range or a tube receiver . Components could be bought from chemists or watchmakers. The receipt had to be approved by the head post offices. For this " audion test permit " to set up and operate a radio receiving system for private use, an examination had to be taken in which the basic concepts of electrical engineering, vibration theory, the mode of operation of tubes, the guidelines for antenna construction and knowledge of the organization of German broadcasting were asked. In addition, the radio reception system had to be approved by the building authorities.

In May 1925, the Reichs-Rundfunk-Gesellschaft (RRG) was founded in Berlin as the umbrella organization of the regional broadcasting companies in the German Reich , which initially comprised the companies NORAG, MIRAG (Leipzig), SÜWRAG (Frankfurt / M.), ORAG (Königsberg i. Pr. ) and Schlesische Funkstunde (Breslau). The three companies in Berlin ( Funk-Stunden ), Münster ( WERAG ) and Stuttgart ( SÜRAG ) also joined in after sometimes lengthy negotiations, while due to financial bottlenecks, the company now operating as Bayerischer Rundfunk ( German hour in Bavaria until 1930 ) in Munich It was not until 1931 that RRG became a partner.

On October 5, 1924, the station began, every Monday at 18:00 News in Esperanto under the title Dek minutoi as Esperanto , Esperanto Ten minutes' broadcast.

Since 1928 the programs have been produced in the Rothenbaumchaussee in Hamburg. In November 1932 NORAG was converted into Norddeutsche Rundfunk GmbH.

After the seizure of power of the NSDAP regional companies to branches of the Reichs-Rundfunk-Gesellschaft were. From April 1, 1934, the previous names were based on the scheme: Reichssender (headquarters) unified and North German Broadcasting became the Reichssender Hamburg .

On the evening of May 1, 1945, a broadcaster for the Reich broadcaster in Hamburg announced that Adolf Hitler had "fallen" and that he had appointed Grand Admiral Karl Dönitz as his successor. Following this announcement, Dönitz gave a personal address to the Germans, especially to the Wehrmacht soldiers, on the radio, in which he declared that the war against Bolshevism should continue. After Hamburg's combat commandant Alwin Wolz signed the conditions for handing over Hamburg to the British in the Villa Möllering on May 3rd after authorization by Karl Dönitz near Lüneburg , the British soldiers marched into the city that afternoon. The British began to control all areas of public life in the city. On May 4, 1945, the station reported with the words “This is Radio Hamburg, a station of the allied military government” for the first time under British management. Dönitz settled his government in Flensburg - Mürwik . Further announcements by Dönitz were therefore made in the following days via the Reichsender Flensburg . The partial capitulation signed on May 4th was only announced on May 6th at midnight by the Reichsender Flensburg and not from Hamburg.

After the war, the Northwest German Broadcasting Corporation (NWDR) emerged from NORAG and the Reichsender Hamburg .


The popular programs were also continued by NORAG's successors. The Hamburg Harbor Concert, broadcast for the first time on June 9, 1929, is one of the oldest radio programs still being broadcast in the world.

On August 24, 1925, NORAG broadcast the first original radio play in Europe by the British writer Richard Hughes , entitled Danger , which had not previously been broadcast by any other German broadcaster. The speakers were Paul Ellmar , Edith Scholz and Karl Pündter .

The station's signature melody was the NORAG march "Here is NORAG!"



See also

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. ^ The German Broadcasting Network . In: The radio technology . No. 10 , December 14, 1924, p. 377 ( ANNO - AustriaN Newspapers Online [accessed May 5, 2020]).
  2. NORAG 1924–1933 ( Memento from June 3, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 248 kB)
  3. Radio license fees from 1924 ( Memento from March 19, 2012 in the Internet Archive )
  4. 40 years of broadcasting in Bremen. Reminders, reports, documents . Radio Bremen, press office, Bremen 1964.
  5. ^ Esperanto radio in Hamburg . In: Germana Esperantisto . No. October 10 , 1924, p. 187 ( ANNO - AustriaN Newspapers Online [accessed May 5, 2020]).
  6. Cf. DRA: Information Service Wort 2005 (25th anniversary of Karl Dönitz's death) ( Memento from October 20, 2014 in the Internet Archive ), Stiftung Deutsches Rundfunkarchiv and Radio Bremen. Hitler is dead ( memento of November 29, 2016 in the Internet Archive ), accessed on: May 3, 2017
  7. Gerhard Paul, Broder Schwensen (Ed.): May '45. End of the war in Flensburg , Flensburg 2015, p. 70
  8. ^ Letter to the Citizen. Announcements of the Bürgererverein Lüneburg eV number 75 , from: May 2015; Page 11 f .; accessed on: May 1, 2017
  9. Oliver Schirg: By night and fog: Hamburg's surrender. In: Hamburger Abendblatt, April 18, 2015, pp. 20–21 ( online ).
  10. Norddeutscher Rundfunk : On the silk thread: Hamburg's way to surrender , from: May 2, 2015; accessed on: May 1, 2017
  11. Rundfunkchronik 1945 ( Memento from February 2, 2016 in the Internet Archive )
  12. State Center for Civic Education Schleswig-Holstein (ed.): Der Untergang 1945 in Flensburg , p. 11 (lecture on January 10, 2012 by Gerhard Paul ; PDF)
  13. Gerhard Paul, Broder Schwensen (Ed.): May '45. End of the war in Flensburg. Flensburg 2015, p. 71.