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The 2021 CQ-WE Contest

Held the weekend of November 13-14  —  62 years of friendly competition!

CQ-WE stands for CQ - Western Electric, the company whose ham employees originated the contest. The annual CQ-WE Contest is open to all Radio Amateurs. The objective is to contact as many Bell System Radio Amateurs as possible via ham radio. A Bell System amateur is any ham who is a current or former employee of any part of the pre-divestiture Bell System — that is, any company that was spun off from or shares a part of its heritage with the original AT&T Corporation. Examples include the current-day AT&T, Bell Labs, Western Electric, the Baby Bells, Bellcore, NCR, Alcatel-Lucent, Avaya, Agere, as well as other companies that have sprung from them. Normally held the second full weekend in November, the contest combines a spirit of competitive contesting with the chance to relax, have fun, and renew acquaintances with old friends and colleagues while fostering friendships with new ones.

CQ-WE Welcomes N1MM logger: CQ-WE has always been inclusive when it comes to loggers. We accept any logs we can read -- even paper ones. However, when it comes to the incentive points, we've only accepted the results produced by our official logger. We've had contestants complain that they are more familiar with the N1MM logging program, ahd would prefer to use that. You spoke and we listened. Effective with the 2021 contest, we are officially supporting both the N4HAI and N1MM loggers. The N4HAI logger is free, and is designed explicitly for th CQ-WE contest, so if you are not a serious contester, we'd expect you'd want to use that. But serious contesters who are already familar with the N1MM logger may want to use it instead. And now you can. But whatever logger you choose to use, make sure you submit your results so that we can give you the proper credit in the contest.

CQ-WE 62nd Contest took place over the weekend of November 13 and 14th. At least here in central Ohio the band conditions left a lot to be desired on Saturday. By Sunday they had improved, though hopes for an open 10 meters did not pan out. The major complaint I heard voiced was a general lack of participants, and while this could be blamed in part on the bands, I don't believe their condition tells the whole story. Still, I believe most of those who took part in the contest had a good time. We hope you enjoyed it and we look forward to receiving your scores, which are due to your location coordinators (or the National Coordinator) by December 1st. So please make a note on you calendars and don't let this date slip by. Even if you don't have the winning score in the contest, you can still support your location, and the greater contest, by sending in your logs.

CONTEST HOST: The role of Contest Host is an important one, and we appreciate the time and effort the various locations have put into designing and distributing their certificates in years past. Want to highlight your location? Then please consider volunteering to design and produce the certs for our 62nd contest year coming up. It's really not that hard, your name will be recorded for posterity on the website, and we'll even handle the distribution. So give it some thought; we'd love to hear from you.

HELP US COMPILE a Historical Record of our Bell System Locations and Ham Clubs: A big part of the CQ-WE contest is communicating with as many different Location Codes as possible. The locations these codes represent made up the once great Bell System. Today, many — actually, most — of these locations, along with their location-sanctioned ham clubs, are either defunct or a shadow of their former selves.

The CQ-WE committee is undertaking a project to resurrect and preserve a history of the various Bell System locations before this information and heritage is permanently lost. But, its success depends on you! Please check our Location Histories page, and if you can provide some information on a missing location — or additional information on one that has already been published — consider authoring a short article describing your location. If it supported a corporate ham club, please include your remembrances of that, too. Use the existing write-ups as guides for style and format. Please send your material to the CQ-WE webmaster, cqwe-web-2020@cboh.org, and we'll put it up on the web site to highlight your location for posterity, and even give you credit in the byline. By taking a few minutes to document what you know from your personal experience with AT&T and its subsidiaries, we hope to preserve some of the rich history of the many facets of the once proud and great Bell System.

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