“Mr. Edison has just written the words you have heard him speak to be broadcast, as it were, to the young eyes of America."[A]
Hearty cheers followed this closing announcement, but as the speakers they had heard were not aware of this, the demonstration soon ceased. Exuberant youth, however, must be heard, and so, led by the irrepressible Ted, they immediately sought fresh inspiration and began to cheer whomever and whatever came quickly into their minds; first Bill and Gus, with demands for a speech from Bill; then in answer to the school yell, they cheered the school and Professor Gray. Finally they began to cheer the refreshments as these suddenly developed a full-form materialization. But this was suddenly switched off into a sort of doubtful hurrah as Mr. Hooper, with his wife trying to dissuade him by his coat-tails, arose and cleared his throat.
“Lads and lasses: I sez to this ’ere lad, Bill Brown, sez I, some time back; I sez: ’Bill, me lad, if you ever fix it so’s I kin hear my old friend Bill Medders talkin’ out loud more’n a hunderd mile off,’ I sez, ‘then,’ I sez, ‘I’ll give you a thousand dollers.’ Well, this Bill, he sez: ‘No, sir, Mr. Hooper,’ he sez: ‘We won’t accept of no sich,’ he sez, an’ what he sez he sticks to, this ‘ere lad Bill does, an’ so does his buddy, Gus, ‘ere. So, young people, I’m goin’ to tell you what I’m a-goin’ to do. I’m goin’ to spend that thousand some way to sort o’ remember this occasion by, an’ it’ll be spent fer whatever your teacher here an’ Bill an’ Gus an’ any more that want to git into it sez it shall be. An’, b’jinks, if you spring anything extry fine an’ highfalutin I’ll double it—make it two thousand; anything to help ’em along, gettin’ an eddication, which I ain’t got, ner never kin git, but my gal shall an’ all her young friends. So, go to it, folks, an’ I’m thinkin’ my friends, Bill an’ Gus—”
Roaring cheers interrupted the earnest speaker. He smiled broadly and sat down. Professor Gray got to his feet, but Bill, not seeing him, was first to be heard when the crowd silenced; the boy had got to the platform and then on a chair. Standing there balanced on his crutch, a hand where his shoulder usually rested, he was a sight to stir the pathos and inspire admiration in any crowd.
“I say, people, give three royal yells for Mr. Hooper! He’s one of the dearest old chaps that ever drew breath! Ready, now——”
The roof didn’t quite raise, but the nails may have been loosened some and the timbers strained. With the ceasing of the cheers, Bill shouted again:
“And now don’t forget Professor Gray! He’s going to be in on this deal, big, as you know!”
Again the walls trembled. Once more Bill was heard:
“And I have this suggestion: We’ll put up a radio broadcasting station at the school. Get a government license, find means to make our service worth while and talk to anyone we want to. How’s that?”