AM Technical Profile: WKDG


Frequency:
1540
Format:
Gospel
Transmitter Location:
[map] [street view — from 2014] [bird's eye] Just east of Old Highway 78, south of Sumiton.
Power (ERP):
Day: 1 kW
Night: 3 watts (authorized)
Antenna:
1 tower
Other Information:
0.5 mV/m Daytime Groundwave Service Contour from the FCC's Public Files
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Silent
Owned by Save Our Daughterz, Inc.
// W249EC Sumiton, AL
(CP)
History:
This station dates back to an original construction permit issued in 1977 to Sumiton Broadcasting Company in Sumiton.  It signed on June 27th, 1978 as a 1 kW daytimer playing country music.  The call sign was WRSM.  The station chugged along from the day it signed on until some time in 2003 when it fell silent after one of the two station owners took it off the air.  The station remained off and did not notify the FCC of the silent period, which passed the magic 12 month mark for automatic deletion per FCC rules, wherein the commission deleted the license. 

After a minority shareholder plead the company's case to the FCC, the license was re-instated in March 2007.  It's unclear if the station remained on the air before the license was re-instated, and whether it operated at full power afterwards.

Sumiton Broadcasting Company attempted to sell the station for just over $105,000 in 2008 to a group called American Trust Corporation, but the deal fell through.  Afterwards, they wound up donating the license to Joy Communications, Inc., who at the time operated a few other struggling small town AMs as part of a fledgling Christian programming network.  They flipped the format to southern gospel and changed the calls to WKDG in August 2009.  Joy was able to run the station until about March of 2010 when they were forced to take the station off the air due to financial issues.  It was noted that after Joy took the station off the air, copper thieves vandalized the site, leaving it in a state of total disrepair.

Before March of 2010 was out, Joy donated the license to Communications and Educational Development Initiatives (spelled “Iniative” on some FCC forms).  They got the station up and running with their Kingdom Radio Network programming by the end of January 2011, and ran the station until they too were forced to take the station silent in 2017, citing loss of lease on the tower site.  It appears the station may have been off much longer that this, however, as there is no evidence of a broadcast tower at the licensed site going back to at least 2015.

Despite being off the air for who-knows-how-long, the station appears to have been granted a permit for an FM translator on 97.7 MHz, in July 2018.

In October 2018, a transfer application was filed to hand the license for the station and its translator permit over to Save Our Daughterz, Inc.