WNOP went on the air on August 21, 1948.  It was owned by James and Ann Lang from 1948 to 1970.  The original studios were on Monmouth, and when fire destroyed their studios in the “night spot” area of Newport, they moved, literally, to the river, in what they called “The Jazz Ark.”

Joe Rice notes that in the early days, WNOP could have up to 20 remotes on a Sunday from various churches.  They carried Chicago Bears football games, and for many years had an afternoon classical music program - “Hall of the Masters.”  Other programming formats over the years included hillbilly, pop, Dixieland, and, ultimately, and for most of its existence, jazz.

Cincinnati radio legends Ray Scott and Leo Underhill (a.k.a. Old Undies) were stalwarts of the station in the sixties and seventies.  Scott was interviewed by the producers of the television sit-com WKRP as a character study for the fictional station's “Dr. Johnny Fever.”  Underhill, whose on-the-air sobriety could be reasonably questioned, got his weather reports by looking out the window and reporting what he saw. His aesthetic evaluation of the new-at-that-time Mississippi Queen Riverboat: “It looks like a White Castle slid into the river.” On the station's 22nd anniversary, it was Underhill who announced “To everybody that said we'd never last and be successful [long dead-air pause], you were half right.”

WNOP broadcasts at 740 on the AM dial, from transmitters on top of John's Hill in Cold Spring.

The Enquirer's John Kiesewetter published a great article at WNOP's demise, here

WNOP is still on the air, but it's a Catholic religious station these days, and the Jazz Ark is long gone. 



See Francis M. Nash's Towers Over Kentucky, and Joe Rice's Early Cincinnati Radio Days for more.