TIL: The Wouff Hong

A Wouff Hong is a tool used to “punish” Amateur Radio operators, who demonstrate poor operating practices

I don’t know how I missed this… but apparently the founder of the ARRL once invented a torture device to deal with unruly hams. I spotted this today over at the ARRL’s ham radio history page.

Legend has it that the Wouff Hong was invented by Hiram Percy Maxim (founder of ARRL) under the pseudonym, “The Old Man,” just as amateurs were getting back on the air after World War One.

Early in 1919, “The Old Man” wrote in QST “I am sending you a specimen of a real live Wouff Hong . . . Keep it in the editorial sanctum where you can lay hands on it quickly in an emergency.” The “specimen of a real live Wouff Hong” was presented to a meeting of the ARRL Board and the Board voted that the Wouff Hong be framed and hung in the office of the Secretary of the League.

On display at ARRL HQ today, the Wouff Hong is a constant reminder to Amateur Radio operators to be mindful of their operating etiquette.

No word on how it was intended to be used.

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