Edward Samuel Rogers

Plot U, Lot 120
Mount Pleasant Cemetery, Toronto

Ted Rogers was born on June 21, 1900 and educated in the University of Toronto School. While still a youngster, Rogers was fascinated with wireless telephony and he and his brother, Elsworth, could frequently be found experimenting with the newest wonder of the age in the living room of their home at 49 Nanton Avenue in Toronto’s posh Rosedale neighbourhood. After finishing UTS Ted went on to the University of Toronto where he graduated with a degree in engineering.
   In 1922, he joined the Independent Telephone Company. For the next two years, the company’s well-stocked lab became the young inventor’s home away from home. During a visit to a radio laboratory in the States, Rogers met an inventor who had perfected the alternating current radio tube. The young Torontonian saw the possibilities of integrating this new tube with special circuitry, that he himself would design, thereby creating a so-called “batteryless” radio. Rogers purchased the Canadian rights for the tube, returned to Toronto, and in 1924 started his own company which he called the Standard Radio Manufacturing Corporation (which after agreeing to sell the American-made Majestic model, became the Rogers-Majestic Corporation). The next year, 1925, Rogers put the world’s first alternating current radio on the market. Now radio listeners could forego the costly and cumbersome batteries that had been necessary to power the older sets. Instead, for $260, plus $45 for a speaker, they could purchase one of Ted Rogers’ “batteryless” models and simply plug it into the wall.
   Now that he was producing radios, the next logical step was for the young man to start his own radio station where he could air programs that would give people a reason to purchase radios — his, he hoped. The 27-year-old transformed his amateur radio station 3BP into CFRB (the letters RB for Rogers Batteryless) that went on the air for the first time February 19, 1927 from the second floor of Tommy Ryan’s Jarvis Street art gallery. With a future as bright as the tuning eye on his “batteryless” radio, Edward Samuel Rogers died at the all-too-young age of 38 on May 6, 1939.

Mike Filey
Mount Pleasant Cemetery: An Illustrated Guide
Second Edition Revised and Expanded

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