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HISTORY NEBRASKA MANUSCRIPT FINDING AID



RG4094.AM:  KFMQ Radio (Lincoln, Neb.)



Records:  ca. 1951-1969

Lincoln, Lancaster County, Neb.:  Radio station

Size:  2.5 cu.ft.; 5 boxes



BACKGROUND NOTE



Herbert William Burton, born in 1916, was raised and educated on the East Coast. Following a career in retail clothing sales, he moved to Lincoln, Nebraska, in the late 1940s and worked as a buyer of boys’ wear, first for Ben Simon & Sons and then for Wells & Frost. Always interested in classical music, in 1957 he began broadcasting over Lincoln station KLMS from a studio he built in his home. In 1958, he founded KFMQ, at the time Lincoln’s only FM Station. Burton’s success with KFMQ was measured by the fact that it was consistently in the top 20% of high-earning FM stations nationwide. Burton also produced special radio programs at KFMQ, including one on “Democracy in America” which was nominated for the Broadcasting Foundation of America’s prestigious Italia Prize.



Burton and KFMQ were often at the forefront of social change. His radio series on Nebraska’s mental hospitals in 1965 generated much public debate and became a catalyst for change. Burton himself was socially active: he was president of B’nai B’rith, a member of the local NAACP board, vice-president of the Lancaster County Mental Health Association, a member of the Nebraska Broadcasters Association and Governor Morrison’s Council For Nebraska’s Cultural Resources, and a candidate for the Unicameral in 1958. In 1964 he purchased and restructured radio station KNDR in Des Moines, Iowa, into KFMQ’s sister station, KFMG. He sold KFMG in 1965 and KFMQ in 1966, and opened a harpsichord manufacturing company in Lincoln. By the late 1960s he had left Nebraska for other opportunities. He and his wife, Edith, had two children, Charles and Elizabeth.



SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE



This collection is arranged in the following way:



Subgroup 1: KFMQ Radio, Lincoln, Nebraska, ca. 1951-1967

Series 1 – Correspondence, 1955-1967, n.d.

Series 2 – Administrative & Financial Records, ca. 1958-1965

Series 3 – Program records, ca. 1958-1965

Series 4 – Marketing & Publicity Records, ca. 1951-1964

Series 5 – FM Radio Industry Literature, ca. 1955-1961



Subgroup 2: KFMG/KNDR Radio, Des Moines, Iowa, ca. 1960-1966

Series 1 – Correspondence, 1960-1965, n.d.

Series 2 – Operating Records, ca. 1960-1966



Subgroup 3: Herbert Burton papers, ca. 1954-1969



The bulk of the materials in this collection relate to Herbert Burton’s establishment and operation of radio station KFMQ, Lincoln’s only FM or classical music station at the time. This was during a time when FM broadcasting was still in its infancy. The records reflect the operation of such a business, and yield much information on subjects on which Burton produced special radio programs, notably the Consumers Public Power District and Nebraska State mental hospitals.



The collection also contains records of Des Moines, Iowa, radio station KFMG, which Burton purchased in 1964, and some of Burton’s own personal papers which reflect his business sense and social activities. As Burton was the driving force behind KFMQ, however, the records of that station also do much to reflect his personality and interests.



See also RG4094.PH for photographs and RG4094.AU for audio recordings.



INVENTORY



Subgroup 1: KFMQ Radio, Lincoln, Nebraska, ca. 1951-1967

Series 1 – Correspondence, 1955-1967, n.d.



Box 1

Folder




  1. Undated

  2. 1955-1957

  3. 1958

  4. 1959

  5. 1960

  6. 1961

  7. 1962

  8. 1963

  9. 1964

  10. 1965

  11. 1966-1967



Series 2 – Administrative & Financial Records, ca. 1958-1965



Box 2

Folder




  1. Financial reports, 1958-1966

  2. Invoices & agreements, ca. 1959-1965

  3. Equipment documentation, ca. 1958-1965

  4. Inventories

  5. Engineering data, 1965

  6. Personnel records, 1962-1965

  7. Procedures for staff

  8. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) documentation, 1958-1965

  9. Floor plan (See OB033)

  10. Contract for sale of KFMQ, 1965

  11. File on Leon Lishner recording



Series 3 – Program records, ca. 1958-1965



Box 2

Folder




  1. Program logs, 1958-1964

  2. Advertising copy

  3. Promotional copy

  4. Editorial copy

  5. Miscellaneous program copy



Box 3

Folder




  1. Miscellaneous program records

  2. Consumers Public Power District research file, ca. 1963

  3. Mental Health Facilities research file, ca. 1964-1965

  4. Mental Health Facilities correspondence, ca. 1965



Series 4 – Marketing & Publicity Records, ca. 1951-1964



Box 3

Folder




  1. Press releases, ca. 1960-1965

  2. Clippings, ca. 1958-1965

  3. Printed advertisements & promotions

  4. Sales records & client lists

  5. Miscellaneous marketing records, ca. 1951-1961



Series 5 – FM Radio Industry Literature, ca. 1955-1961



Box 4

Folder




  1. Literature, ca. 1955-1961

  2. Map of FM coverage, 1957 (see oversize)



Subgroup 2: KFMG/KNDR Radio, Des Moines, Iowa, ca. 1960-1966

Series 1 – Correspondence, 1960-1965, n.d.



Box 4

Folder




  1. Undated

  2. 1960-1961

  3. 1962

  4. 1963

  5. 1964

  6. 1965



Series 2 – Operating Records, ca. 1960-1966



Box 4

Folder




  1. Articles of incorporation, proposed corporate structure, ca. 1963

  2. General background

  3. Financial reports, ca. 1961-1964

  4. Stockholders data, ca. 1961

  5. Stock certificates, 1962

  6. Invoices & agreements, ca. 1960-1966

  7. Lease documents, ca. 1961-1965

  8. Equipment documentation, ca. 1961-1964

  9. Engineering data, ca. 1961-1964

  10. Personnel records, 1962

  11. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) documentation, ca. 1961-1965

  12. Floor plans

  13. Roof plans (see oversize)

  14. Programming schedules, 1961

  15. Program copy

  16. Marketing information

  17. Clippings, news releases, publicity



Subgroup 3: Herbert Burton papers, ca. 1954-1969



Box 5

Folder




  1. Correspondence, 1954, 1959-1966, n.d.

  2. Tax records, 1958-1965

  3. Financial statements, 1959-1963

  4. Biographical data

  5. Clippings & articles, ca. 1958-1969

  6. Legislative campaign material, 1960

  7. Court case: Burton vs. KFMQ, 1967

  8. B’nai B’rith, ca. 1955

  9. Lancaster County Association for Mental Health, ca. 1964-1966

  10. Nebraska Broadcasters Association, ca. 1961-1963

  11. Broadcasting Foundation of America – Italia prize, 1958

  12. Council for Nebraska’s Cultural Resources, 1961-1965



 



Subject headings:



Broadcasting

Broadcasting Foundation of America

Burton, Herbert William, 1916-1972

B’nai B’rith (Lincoln, Neb.)

Consumers Public Power District (Neb.)

Council for Nebraska’s Cultural Resources

Health care

KFMG Radio (Des Moines, Iowa)

KFMQ Radio (Lincoln, Neb.)

KNDR Radio (Des Moines, Iowa)

Lancaster County Association for Mental Health (Lancaster County, Neb.)

Mental health

Music

Nebraska Broadcasters Association

Political campaigns



 



Revised 10-04-2007   TMM