1480 AM, Lincoln
First Air Date: October 31, 1949
Operating Power: 1,000 watts, full time, directional pattern at night
Original Call Letters: KLMS
General Manager: J. Russell Joynt
Issued To: Lincoln Broadcasting Corporation
Through the Years
October 31- KLMS signs on. Studio at 130 North 16th Street in Lincoln. Transmitter-East of town between A & O Streets. Five tower array. The owner was Lincoln Broadcasting Corporation (Howard Shuman, President). Shuman was the founder of KFOR 25 years earlier. Some sources indicate he placed KLMS on the air as the result of a dispute with Stuart Broadcasting, to whom he sold KFOR.
Format adjustment as reported to Broadcasting Magazine. “There is a new emphasis on block music shows and in evening record shows where the accent will be on smooth and semi-classical music. The daily block will consist of popular releases and the evening record shows will feature carefully selected ‘smooth’ record for KLMS’ disc library.”
KLMS adopts Top 40 format. Successful ratings follow. Program Director Lee Thomas begins long run, becomes station manager from 1979-1986. Thomas later heads up the broadcast sequence for Doane College in Crete, NE and is later named to the Nebraska Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame in 2009.
Howard Shuman acquires full control of Lincoln Broadcasting Corporation.
Harvey Swenson, manager, describes the programming of KLMS as “music and news. The music is modified Top 40, skimming off the hard rock and mixing in standards and C&W. Our four mobile units do a concentrated job of local news coverage.”
The FCC grants a shortened (one-year) license renewal to KLMS because of substantial departures from their proposed commercial policies and practices (meaning over-commercialization).
October, 1974-Lincoln Broadcasting Corporation (Howard Shuman) sells to Telegraph-Herald, Inc., Dubuque, Iowa (Robert Woodward and family) for $900,000.
July, 1979-Telegraph-Herald, Inc, acquires KFMQ 101.9 FM from KFMQ, Inc.(Steve Agnew) for $1.8 million, including a $200,000 non-compete agreement.
Program Director Lee Thomas succeeds General Manager Harold Lampman, who takes over as General Manager of KFMQ. KLMS format adjusts from Top 50 to Middle of the Road.
April, 1980- KLMS is authorized for 5,000 watts. The new signal pattern requires additional towers.
Telegraph-Herald changes its name to Woodward Communications. KLMS begins AM stereo.
New transmitter site at 98th & A Streets. Eight towers for different day and night patterns. Now 5,000 watts daytime power.
AM and FM operations move in together at 1540 South 70th Street.
KLMS picks up The Breeze, a satellite-delivered New Age/Jazz Infusion format.
July, 1988- Sold by Woodward Communications (William R. Williamson, Dubuque, IA) to Midwest Communications ( D.E “Duke” Wright, Green Bay, WI, later renamed KLMS/KFMQ Inc.) for $2.8 million. Includes KFMQ 101.9 FM.
Station drops light jazz and new age music, returns to Oldies. Ratings had dropped from a 4.9 to .7 in just over six months.
KLMS begins simulcast of sister KFMQ, Album Rock format, and changes call letters to KFMQ AM.
April, 1993- KLMS/KFMQ Inc. (Duke Wright, Green Bay, WI) sells KFMQ AM 1480 (the AM only) to Radio One Nebraska, Inc. (Raymond Lamb, Sioux Falls, SD) for $200,000. Buyer also owns KLDZ 95.1 Lincoln, KTTT and KWMG, Columbus, NE, plus six other stations in Minnesota and South Dakota. Studios/offices move to 1230 O Street.
KFMQ AM takes over the Big Band format abandoned by now-silent KHAT 1530 AM. Changes call letters to KMEM for “Memory Music.”
June, 1996-Sold by Radio One Broadcasting (Ray Lamb) to Three Eagles Communications (Rolland Johnson, CEO, Gary Buchanan, President) for $10.2 million. Sale includes KNET 95.1 (ex-KLDZ) Lincoln and eight more stations outside of Lincoln.
September, 1996- Three Eagles also buys KFOR and KFRX FM Lincoln for $5.3 million.
Studios/offices move to 6900 Van Dorn Street in Lincoln.
KMEM flips format to All-Sports, returns the call letters to KLMS.
Localization programming is reduced and ESPN is given the vast majority of air time.
Studios/offices move to 3800 Cornhusker Highway in Lincoln.
February, 2010- Format flips from Sports to Oldies, capitalizing on station’s Top 40 heritage.
March, 2010- Format flips back to Sports as a result of listener complaints.
Three Eagles sells its 48 stations, including KLMS 1480 to Digity for $66.5 million.
Modification of license to reduce power to 1,000 watts daytime, 750 watts night time.
Alpha Media (Larry Wilson, CEO, Portland, OR) buys Digity Media’s (Dean Goodman, CEO) 116 stations in 26 markets including KLMS for $264 million.
July, 2017- Translator K268DF, 101.5, 130 watts signs on carrying KLMS programming.