Amateur Radio from Navassa

We thank Thomas Roscoe, K8CX, for his generous permission to copy some material from his excellent Navassa pages at Hamgallery - linkext. Link

February 2014: K1N

February 2014: K1Nzoom22 October 2014 - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - From The KP1-5 project
The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has notified the KP1-5 Project that they will be the team to activate Navassa Island (KP1) in January 2015.
The DXpedition will be a maximum of fourteen days. The exact dates in January will be determined by USFWS mission requirements and weather windows.
Our experienced team of fifteen is complete and is ready for the challenge. The weeks ahead will be extremely busy as the team has less than 90 days before the DXpedition comes on the air.
January is the month of minimum bird nesting activity and this is the primary reason USFWS is asking that the operation be completed during that month. However, the weather is unpredictable in January and because Navassa is surrounded by cliffs, this may preclude a safe landing by boat. For safety reasons and in order to maximize our time on the Island and on the air, a helicopter operation is planned. Navassa is over 100 miles (160 km) from the nearest helicopter staging point and as many as ten round trips will be required at the beginning and end of the operation. Obviously, this means that there will be a significant cost for activating this #1 ranked DXCC entity.
In the next few weeks, we be working with USFWS and as details firm up, we will issue periodic press releases. Check our webpage, the KP1-5 Project for more details of the operation and how you may financially support this DXpedition.
The KP1-5 Project team has committed to fund 50% of the total costs. We are hopeful the DX community will fund the remainder.
for The KP1-5 Project, Bob Allphin, K4UEE, President - Glenn Johnson, WØGJ, Vice-president - Mike Thomas, NA5U, Secretary

Expedition Website: linkext. Link
Here are the three planned exclusive interviews with Glenn Johnson, W0GJ (photo), Co-Teamleader of K1N.

Download [9.36 MB]Exclusive Interview with Glenn Johnson, W0GJ, Co-Team-Leader - December 17, 2014 [MP3 , 9.36 MB]
Download [7.68 MB]Exclusive Satphone interview with Glenn Johnson, G0GJ, on Navassa (9 February, 2015, 13:00z) [MP3 , 7.68 MB]
Download [12.41 MB]Exclusive Interview mit Glenn Johnson, W0GJ, K1N Navassa-DXpedition sum-up, 02 March 2015 [WAV , 12.41 MB]
Download [8.57 MB]Deliberate interference - 03 February, 13:15z 17 SSB [MP3 , 8.57 MB]
Download [1.16 MB]Deliberate interference - 6 February 13:30 10 CW [MP3 , 1.16 MB]
Download [34.13 KB]K1N Interview by Glenn Johnson, W0GJ, for the MDXC - Mediterranean DXClub [PDF , 34.13 KB]

Press Releases and public announcements

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Video: Bill Warrens Flug über Navassa / Bill Warren's flight over Navassa:

History and Geography

Continent: North America - Grid: 18N 75W, FK28LJ - Zones: WAZ 8, ITU 11 - Allocations: KC4, KP1 - IOTA NA-098

History and Geographyzoom(Picture: inofficial flag) Navassa Island (French: La Navasse, Haitian Creole: Lanavaz or Lavash) is a small, uninhabited and disputed island in the Caribbean Sea. It is administered as unorganized unincorporated territory of the United States, which administers it through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Navassa Island is about 2 square miles (5.2 km2) in area. It is located 40 nautical miles (46 mi; 74 km) west of Jérémie, Haiti, on the south-west peninsula, 90 nautical miles (100 mi; 170 km) south of the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and about one-quarter of the way from Haiti to Jamaica in the Jamaica Channel. It reaches an elevation of 250 feet (76 m) at Dunning Hill 110 yards (100 m) south of the lighthouse, Navassa Island Light. This location is 440 yards (400 m) from the southwestern coast or 655 yards (600 m) east of Lulu Bay.

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Navassa on air

01A/B - K4NI - April 4, 1929 - Russell - An extremely rare QSL. Russell Dunaja jr., K4NI (1905-1989), first licensed as 3ADY in 1921. Last call W3BBF. He was one of the Navassa lighthouse keepers during 1928 and 1929. The island was supplied by the U.S. Navy at Guantanamo Bay, hence the Navy postmark on his QSL card.(© K8CX Ham Gallery, from the estate of W3CJ)
02 - KC4AB August, 1954 (4 days) - Don Miller, W4VZQ; Bob Eshleman, W4QCW, now W4DR; Carl Shenk, WN4HBC - First post-war operation, first to be counted for DXCC.
03A/B - W2HQL/KC4 - June 1957 - Joe Reisert, now W1JP (© K8CX Ham Gallery, collection W8SU) and Fred Capossela, W2IWC/KC4, now K6SSS (© K8CX Ham Gallery, Collection N2AU)
04A - KC4AF - March 26-31 1958 -Wayne Green, W2NSD; Don Chesser, W4KVX; Dale Streiter, W8DJN; Narvell "Red" Reece, W8EZF; Jake Schott, W8FGX; Frank Koval, W8RSW - 7.000 contacts . Hallicrafter HT32, Viking Ranger; Drake 1A, Collins 75A3. CW, AM, SSB auf 10, 11, 15, 20, 40 und 80m. - QSL: W8JIN - 04B QSL variation (© K8CX Ham Gallery, from the estate of W8JN)
05A - K1IMP/KC4 - August 1966 - Don Miller, W9WNV; Herb Kline, K1IMP - Collins 32S3, 75S3B - QSL: W4ECI - 05B Photo QSL has the faint imprint of the call KC4AF that was never used. (© K8CX Ham Gallery, collection K6IC) - Not counted for DXCC though Don claimed to really have been there
06A/B - K4IA/KC4 - June 22-26, 1969 - Ernie Hendry, KC4AH (team leader); Hank, K4FU; Ed, K4IA; Herb, KV4FZ; Frank, WA4HTR; Dale, W4DQS; Herb, W4KET; Lou; W4PJG; Bob Eshleman, W4QCW, now W4DR; Bob, W4USQ . Drake T4XB/R4B, Drake TR4/EV4. 4 Stationen - QSL: WA4WIP
07 - W0EXD/KC4 - February, 1971 - Dr. Richard J. Brown, DVM - Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Parthologists; Diplomate, American College of Toxiology, "Governor, Navassa Island, Feb 1971" - Drake T4X/AC4/RV4 - See 10A-C
08 - K4CSY/KC4 - February & July, 1971 -Barry Merrill, now W5GN and EI/W5GN, ex KG4CS W9MVE and others
09 - W4VPD/KC4 - August, 1969 - Enos L. Shera, Eugene Shera
10 - KC4DX - May 12-15, 1972 - Phil Lata, W4GTS†; Wayne Green, W2NSD†; Rick Field, K3FPY; Ray Cobb, K4PGM†; Skip Staub, K4TMA; Steve Smith, WA4VWV†; Chaz Cone, W4GKF; Don Kasten, WB4SST (later NM4DK); Neil Stone, WB4UPC; Bill Donovan, WB4WMG
11 - KC4NI - October 26-29, 1974 - Sy Adler, K2KA; Frank Adler, WB2BXV; Miles Brown, W2PAU; Joe Duffin, W2ORA; Bill Gallick, K2FT; Amor Klotzbach, W2FYS - Collins 75S1/32S1, Drake R-4A/T-4X
12A/B - W0RJU/KP1 & N0TG/KP1 - November 26-December 03, 1978 - Randy Rowe, N0TG; Dave Bowker, W0RJU; Myron Kern, W0ZH; Tony Trice, AD0P; Joe Markowski, N0WL; Sy Adler, K2KA; Miles Brown, W2PAU; Joe Duffin, W2ORA; Dave Johnson, WA4SSU; Jon Lindsay, W6OIG - 22.303 contacts - QSL: N0TG
13 - HH0N - July 19-26, 1981 - Jan-Bernard Montes, HH2BM; Jean-Robert Gaillard, HH2JR; Réginald Chauvet, HH2CR; S.G. Daniel, HH2PW; Bernard Russo; HH2B; Francis Mitchell - 7.000 contacts, Kenwood 520, 2 x Yaesu, 5kW (!) - Claiming Navassa to be Haitian territory. Not counted for DXCC
14A - KP2A/KP1 - March, 1982 - Jim Dionne, K1MEM; John Ackley, KP2A; Ed Magnuson, W2IJB; Stu Green, WA2MOE; Bob Schenk, N2OO; Terry Baxter, N6CW; Al Fischer, K8CW; Bob Dennison, W0DX, VP2VI; Pat Benson, K0OO - 33.552 contacts.- QSL: WB2MSH - 14B N2OO/KP1 Bob Schenk's card for friends
15A/B - 6Y5NR/KP1 - April 04-09, 1985 - Riaz, 6Y5NR; Wenty, 6Y5IC; Nigel, 6Y5HN; Frank, 6Y5KC; Bob, N2EDF; Tony, K2SG; Henry, HK3AYM; Reville, 6Y5FS - 12.800 contacts. TS430, 930, 180, 120 - (15B: © Les Nouvelles DX, Collection F3LY ex ON8HF)
16A-C - N2EDF/NP1 - K2SG/NP1 - February 10-18, 1988 - Bob, N2EDF; Tony, K2SG; Letfy, KE4VU; Bob,W3GH; Dan, N4GNR; Larry, KD2NT; Rick, KT2Q - 18.500 contacts - 16B/CK2SG/NP1 Credit: OE3EVA
17A-C KP1... - January, 1992 - Randy Rowe, N0TG/KP1; Bob, KW2P/KP1; Will Roberts AA4NC/KP1; Ron Oates, AA4VK/WP1, AA4VK/WP1; Murray, WA4DAN/KP1 - 33.462 contacts
18 - W5IJU/KP1 - March 28- April 02, 1993 - W5IJU; NF6S; KH2S; KH2W; JH4RHF; JR4DUW; KB4VLO; K0IYF; VE1AOE; W2JO - see article
19A-C - W4VN/5 -1 991-1996 - Dr. Richard J. Brown - Not counted, not verified, using his US call sign - see 07

Additional background on some activations

zoom01A/B - K4NI
Picture: Russell Dunaja, jr (1928) - Sein Bericht zu K4IA / His account of K4IA, in: QST, December, 1969

Download [970.37 KB]K4NI - Navassa Island 1928 (QST, December, 1969) [PDF , 970.37 KB]

03A - W2HQL/KC4
Joe Reisert bio: linkext. Link

02 - KC4AB
"I began amateur radio at age 14 in 1950 with the call W4QCW. In 1954 I was on the first Navassa Island DXpedition as KC4AB. In 1967 I guest operated at EA9EJ in Rio de Oro and in 1969 I was a member of the K4IA/KC4 Navassa Dxpediton. That same year I earned the #1 5BDXCC award. In 1977 I became W4DR. My wife of 57 years is N4CFL and a surviving son is KK4HJ. In 2001 I was a member of the YK9A DXpedition to Syria. This same year I was awarded the first, and as of 2007, only Clinton B DeSoto Cup for the most documented Band/Entities (DXCC countries) on 160 through 6 meters. I am a member of CQ Magazine's DX Hall of Fame and qsl manager for Jon Rudy who has operated from A2/ZS5UZ, C91CO, DU9/N0NM, 3DA0CA and 4W3ZZ. My profession is Dentistry and I have served on the faculty of Virginia Commonwealth University School of Dentistry for 54 years. I am active on all bands, but can most often be found on 160, 60 and 6 meters. My most exciting QSO in 64 years of DX'ing." John Robert Eshleman
( - 30 October 30, 2014)
"Navassa Revisited", by Robert Eshleman, W4QCW - QST, December, 1969
"DX Determination", by J. Robert Eshleman, W4DR - QST, October, 2012

Download [1.38 MB]Navassa Revisited - QST December, 1969 [PDF , 1.38 MB]
Download [901.67 KB]DX Determination - QST October, 2012 [PDF , 901.67 KB]

04A/B - KC4AF
01, 02 - Lulu Bay
03 - M/V Empress
04 - Unloading generator fuel
05 - Cargo platform. Lulu Bay
06 - "No admittance to the lighthouse and a heavy padlock on the steel entry doors. First unexpected surprise, the group was advised the lighthouse would be unlocked. Prior to this, they had ideas of hauling a station up to the lighthouse, running an antenna from the top and setting the world on fire (RF wise)."
07 - Cistern CW antenna base
08 - Setting up the phone-aux-cw-station
09 - Main power, old style magneto, required good batteries to start and while running. "Hauling up the generator with a hoist onto Navassa, the spark plug was broken in half. Nobody had thought to bring a spare. Well, Dale had brought his tool box - a while before he had changed the plug on his lawn mower. Luckily he had tossed the old one into his tool box, and the show could go on!"
10 - Jake Schott, W8FGX
11 - "On the way to Navassa they tried genny and found their batteries would not do the job. Good fortune followed, M/V Empress put out a call for some marine style 6 volt jobs and a fellow shrimper answered the need."
12 - left: Frank Koval, W8RSW; right: Jake Schott, W8FGX
13 - Aux. CW - Phone Position, Jake Scott, W8FGX; Frank Koval, W8RSW. "The HT32 was a work horse. You will never see anything like it again. Receiver was a new style Drake 2A."
14 - Frank Koval, W8RSW
More: linkext. Link


Download [6.1 MB]Complete Documentation concerning the recognition of Don's Navassa and St.Peter&Paul operations [PDF , 6.1 MB]

zoom06A/B - K4IA/KC4

08- K4CSY/KC4 - Barry Merrill, Expedition report (E-Mail to DokuFunk)

Located 125 miles SE of Guantanamo, acquired in the Guano Islands Act of 1856: "If an uninhabited island has guano, it is now US territory". Mined by the Baltimore and Navassa Phosphate Company in the late 1800's before Nitrogen became available, the crew killed their island manager, which led to a Supreme Court decision that Navassa Island was a ship at sea in maritime law for a mutiny. It's lighthouse, the first light for ships leaving the Panama Canal for Europe, originally acetylene fueled, is powered by batteries that need to be replaced regularly. In 1956, a secret Marine Base was established on Navassa for several weeks for the planned-but-aborted invasion of the Dominican Republic. In late 1970, Dick, W0EXD, found me on 20 meters and asked if I could help. He explained he was with NAMI, the Navy Aerospace Medical Institute in Pensacola, and they wanted to study the goats on Navassa Island. They ultimately confirmed that the DDT in the US had gotten into the 700 goats, from the fish that were eaten by the birds whose guano grew the grass that the goats ate. NAMI was fully funded and had the use of the NAS Pensacola RD-5 aircraft to transport the team of about a dozen and their gear, to NAS GTMO, but they had no way to get to and from Navassa; they planned to be on the island for a week. They would take radios, but did not plan to announce in advance nor operate as a DXPedition; they were there for serious science. I went to see the Admiral; I was not only on his staff, I ran his phone patches so I had ready access, and he had been to our quarters and seen the station, so he was predisposed to my desire to operate from Navassa, and gave me the green light to see what I could put together for NAMI.

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10A/B - KC4DX
KC4DXVideo by Chaz Cone:

"Navassa. The intimate inside story of KC4DX!", by Wayne Green, W2NSD/1
73magazine for radio amateurs, August 1972 #143

Download [2.64 MB]KC4DX__73mag__august_1973 [PDF , 2.64 MB]

11 - KC4NI
"KC4NI, Navasa Island 1974", by Amor R. Klotzbach, W2FYS (CQ, August 1976)

Download [8.53 MB]KC4NI 1974 (CQ, August 1976) [PDF , 8.53 MB]

12A/B - W0RJU/KP1 & N0TG/KP1 Kein Ton/No Sound

13 - HH0N
Haiti claimes L'Isle de la Navase to be part of her territory. To demonstrate this claim, the HH0N DXpedition was launched July 19-26, 1981. The operation was not acccepted for the DXCC. - Jean-Robert Gaillard, HH2JR, President of the Radio Club D'Haiti provided DokuFunk with his report of the DXpedition and a map showing Navassa to be part of Haiti. The QSLs of the team members were added from DokuFunk's QSL Collection.
Remembering HH0N DXpedition, 19-26 July 1981
During the month of April 1981, at the Club we were contemplating an expedition to Navassa. We knew local fishermen visit regularly l’Ile de la Navase , and thought of searching for a suitable boat. After asking around, we were discouraged due to the danger involved. It became evident the safe way would be via helicopter. Jan Bernard Montes HH2BM (sk) suggested we should write to Jean-Claude Duvalier, then President of Hati.

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14A/B - KP2A/KP1
With kind permission of N2OO and N6CW

Download [1.45 MB]Time Magazine, 1 May, 1982 [PDF , 1.45 MB]

16A-C - N2EDF/NP1 - K2SG/NP1

17A-C - KP1
Op: Randy Rowe, N0TG; Murray Adams, WA4DAN; Ron Oates, AA4VK; Bob, KW2P; Will Roberts, AA4NC; Carter Rowe - 33.462 Contacts - Expedition homepage: linkext. Link

Download [5.07 MB]Navassa Island 1992, The DX Magazine, Vol IV Nr 6, June, 1992 [PDF , 5.07 MB]

18 - W5IJU/KP1
A group of nine operators being organized by Vance, W5IJU (SK). Two camps, the upper öne in the lighthouse ruins (nicknamed a long time ago as the Navassa Hilton), the lower one down by Lulu Bay and the famous ladder. Each camp had it's own 5000 watt generator.
Operators at the upper camp: Vance, W5IJU, team leader; Don, VE1AOE, satellite op; Bob, K0IYF (now N0RN), 160m; Dave, KB4VLO (now N9DI); Dave, WJ2O.
Operators at the lower camp: Larry, NF6S (now W4UAT), CW; Jun, JH4RHF (also KH2S); Kumiko, JR4DUW (also KH2W), 1st YL on KP1; Toshi, JR8RUZ, digital modes.
Jamaican crew for the voyage, ferrying equipment to the island and toting it up the hill, preparing the meals. - Website: linkext. Link

QSL Collection - Dokumentationsarchiv Funk

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