It ought to be pretty easy to tell the difference between 
"transcribed" programs that were made directly from the studio at KHJ 
(either live to the network or pre-recorded) and those that came back 
to KHJ through several thousand miles of AT&T network circuits 
equalized at 5 KC (this would have been before KHz were discovered). 
The lack of a high end and the reduced dynamic range should be very 
obvious on the incoming network feeds.

The ultimate source of information about Mutual Network operations is 
probably the daily (or hourly) logs that were maintained at the time, 
which would have shown the time of transmission and point of origin 
for each program that moved through the logging location. The 
original WOR/Mutual logs are now held by the Library of Congress but 
the last time I asked (about twelve years ago), they were in a 
warehouse in Maryland, completely uncataloged.

However, the decentralized structure of the Mutual Network might mean 
that the WOR logs may not have included programs that did not go 
through New York (such as a program from KHJ to the Don Lee stations 
in the West, or from WNAC to the Yankee Network). So it would also be 
instructive to find out if the KHJ/Mutual Don Lee logs have survived.

John Ross

At  2/9/2006 10:22 PM, Rod Stephens wrote:
>I just checked a number of our Family Theater radio shows that 
>originated on the Mutual Network from Hollywood (KHJ) and found 
>several different conditions as far as delayed broadcasts.  In 1948, 
>probably due to scheduling difficulties, a show opened with "A 
>program transcribed from Hollywood" which meant they didn't play the 
>show live, and instead had recorded it earlier to transcription 
>disks.  Usually, "transcribed" meant that it had been recorded at 
>previous time to be used for a later or delayed broadcast.  Later 
>that year, the announcer just said,"Transcribed" at the beginning of 
>one of the shows, so I guess that meant that my set of disks were 
>made from a previous set of transcriptions.
>Of course, maybe all of my disks were made and used for Hollywood 
>rebroadcasts while the shows went out live over the network to New 
>York and the east.  Or, maybe they did the show twice (not as 
>likely) for the two time zones.  I think I've heard of that being 
>done.  I don't have any direct information on that.  If anyone does 
>know what Mutual actually did, we at Family Theater would like to 
>know to add to our database and archival background.
>On 8-29-51, the show opened with "The following feature was 
>transcribed from Eastern Mutual".  I would guess something happened 
>to our transcription masters in Hollywood, so they rerecorded the 
>show in Hollywood from the disks made and fed from New York.  That 
>reinforces my idea that the shows were done live and fed to New York 
>(who recorded them for protection) and also recorded in Hollywood at 
>the same (earlier) time for feeding later for west coast air time.
>On 12-19-51, the show opened with "The following is transcribed", so 
>it would seem these were special situations, since none of the other 
>shows had this disclaimer at their opening.
>Of course, there were a few rebroadcasts via transcription (reruns) 
>of earlier shows to periodically fill the schedule, since the show 
>went year round without any hiatuses; quite an accomplishment 
>considering they were done with a new music score and script every 
>week without stopping.