Harry Cheetham's Radio Operator License

Harry Cheetham was one of the pioneers of early radio in the United States. His 1911 radio operator's license was issued shortly before Titanic sank, and the Boston Globe newspaper hired him to listen for and intercept radio communications messages from Carpathia while it steamed back to New York with the Titanic survivors aboard. Although Carpathia's captain had imposed a general radio blackout, it did communicate the names of survivors for the benefit of the families ashore who were anxiously awaiting news of their relatives' fates. Cheetham intercepted one of the survivor messages and sold the information to the Globe for $175.00.
Currently not on view
Object Name
radio licenses
date made
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
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Work and Industry: Electricity
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
from Harry R. Chetham
Additional Media

Visitor Comments

1/14/2017 11:49:04 AM
Joel Fix
The notes above said that he sold the intercepted message to the Boston Globe for $175. Yet the license on display indicates that he agreed to keep secret the messages that he received, So did he commit a crime when he sold the message transcript of the names of the survivors of the Titanic?
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