Ongoing Coverage:

Rick Fredericksen

Correspondent

Rick Fredericksen is a Des Moines based correspondent for Iowa Public Radio.  He has been producing the Iowa Archives series since 2007. Rick joined Iowa Public Radio in 1995 after 13 years abroad. Prior to joining IPR, Rick worked in commercial radio and TV in Iowa and Hawaii. For 10 years, he was bureau chief for CBS News in Bangkok, Thailand, covering stories throughout Southeast Asia. He received a Peabody Award in 1989, for CBS radio coverage of the Tiananmen Square uprising in Beijing. He has also won numerous state, regional and national awards for his reporting. As a young Marine broadcaster, he covered the Vietnam War for the American Forces Vietnam Network in Saigon.

Rick attended the Department of Defense Information School in Indianapolis, and Drake University.

Rick’s favorite public radio program is River to River.

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Iowa Archives
12:00 am
Tue May 3, 2011

WACS Train at Fort Des Moines

An old recruiting poster for the WACs

A new museum exhibit is coming together that will tell the story of how gender equality came to the U.S. Army. It all started at Fort Des Moines.

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Kilimanjaro Bowl
4:00 am
Tue April 19, 2011

Kilimanjaro Bowl

Spring practice is winding down and for most college football players they’ll have to wait until autumn to face their first opponent. Not so at Drake University, where the Bulldogs will make history next month in Tanzania. Iowa Public Radio’s Rick Fredericksen has the story.

Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Mon April 11, 2011

Classical and Classic (Des Moines Symphony)

Special guest Carlos Montoya performed with the Des Moines Symphony in 1965.

The Des Moines Symphony concludes its season next month with a classical Russian program. In 1965, the season ended with something entirely different and a recording of that performance has just surfaced. “Iowa Archives” looks back at the symphony’s early years.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Thu March 10, 2011

Scottish Highlanders

A nationwide search is underway for graduates of the largest pipe and drum band in the world. It is all in preparation for a reunion in Iowa City. Historic sound extends back to 1948.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Mon February 28, 2011

Mental Health Flashbacks

Cherokee Mental Health Institute
Credit Cherokee Chronicle Times

It was 150 years ago this week when the “Iowa Lunatic Asylum” opened in Mount Pleasant and the state’s first mental health patient was admitted. Just about everything has changed since then, but a series of old television documentaries reveals a glimpse of the dark days of mental health care in Iowa, including frightening treatments now abandoned. Original WOI-TV documentary was filmed in 1952.

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Talk of Iowa
11:00 am
Wed December 29, 2010

Best of Iowa Archives

Host Rick Fredericksen dives into archival material compiled from his Iowa Archives project. Among the audio documentaries explored- the story behind the voice of George Washington Carver; the centennials of Camp Dodge; a look back at the state's worst train crash disaster and audio letters from Vietnam.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Tue November 16, 2010

Salute to Vet's Auditorium

Veterans Memorial Auditorium
Credit Iowa Events Center

This is the first time we've applied our historic sound project to a building. Iowa's largest memorial to war veterans is closed for renovation. Sometimes called the "barn," it will never be the same. Historic audio clips come from Iowa Public Television, the Archives of Iowa Broadcasting and IPR. Note: Vets reopened in 2012.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Tue November 9, 2010

Andy Williams (Part Two)

Credit Andy Williams Birthplace Museum

It has been 45 years since the Williams Brothers broke up. That’s when the youngest member launched his own act. Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen was in the audience recently, and concludes his profile on Iowa native Andy Williams, who passed away in 2012. (Part One is posted below) Historic audio courtesy of Iowa Public TV, Andy Williams, his birthplace museum and You Tube.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Mon November 8, 2010

Andy Williams (Part One)

The Williams Brothers quartet, in Chicago.
Credit Andy Williams Birthplace Museum

It was just over 75 years ago when a young Iowa boy joined his brothers in a church choir in western Iowa. Until 2012, when Andy Williams passed away, he was one of the most productive octogenarians in entertainment. Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen traveled to Wall Lake and Branson, Missouri, for this 2-part, Iowa Archives special. Historic audio comes from Andy Williams, his birthplace museum, and You Tube.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Thu September 30, 2010

Hoover Dam Turns 75

Still an engineering marvel today.
Credit US Department of Interior

It was the biggest shovel-ready, public works project of its time. 75-years ago today, a mammoth dam, named after Herbert Hoover, was dedicated on the Colorado River. It remains, perhaps, the biggest accomplishment in the former Iowan's presidency. Historic audio dates back to 1928.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Wed September 15, 2010

Jack Shelley 1912-2010

Jack Shelley (left) helps news reporter Rick Fredericksen with IPR awards won at the Iowa Broadcast News Association
Credit Rick Fredericksen

A beloved Iowa journalist is being remembered today. Jack Shelley passed away last night at the age of 98. Shelley was there in the early days of radio and television and sent home riveting stories from WWII. We look back at the career of this pioneer broadcaster. Sounds from 1945-1953 in Guam, Belgium, Tokyo Bay and the state of Nevada. Major events related to the atomic bomb are closely linked to Shelley's news coverage. Old audio is from WHO's original recordings, on fire at the Archives of Iowa Broadcasting.

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Signals From Space
11:00 pm
Sun August 29, 2010

Signals From Space

Astronomers at the University of Iowa are learning that the sun is more unique that we used to believe. The key tool in their research is a massive radio telescope. Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen visited the observatory in this Radio Field Trip to eastern Iowa.

News
11:00 pm
Sun July 25, 2010

Wadena Rocks at 40

Forty years ago, the big news story was a controversial court battle to block a massive rock concert from taking place on a farm in northeast Iowa. The legal efforts failed and the little town of Wadena became part of Iowa folklore. This is look back at the Wadena Rock Festival, produced by Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen. Photo courtesy of The Fayette County Union.

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Arts and Culture
11:00 pm
Wed July 14, 2010

American Dream Machine

Despite the sluggish auto economy, sales never did slow down for an exclusive Iowa car dealership. In fact, the company has attracted some of the nation's biggest celebrities. Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen reports from American Dream Machines.

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Arts and Culture
11:00 pm
Mon July 5, 2010

Economy Impacts Family Pets

Iowans hit hard by the economy are losing more than their jobs or their houses. In many cases, they face losing their pets. Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen begins his story in southern Iowa.

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Talk of Iowa
11:00 am
Mon June 21, 2010

Best of Iowa Archives III

In a special edition of Talk of Iowa, more highlights from our award-winning historic sound project. It's an audio museum on the air with Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen. Among the destinations, Clear Lake where three rock and roll pioneers died in a tragic plane crash, plus the birth places of baseball great Bob Feller and actor George Reeves.

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Talk of Iowa
11:00 am
Tue June 15, 2010

Best of Iowa Archives Part II

In a special edition of Talk of Iowa, more highlights from our award-winning historic sound project. It's an audio museum on the air with Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen. Among the destinations, an antique roller rink, the site of a nuclear explosion and the Amana Colonies.

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Iowa Archives
11:00 pm
Thu May 27, 2010

Winterset Remembers "The Alamo"

The 1960 movie is still widely available.
Credit John Wayne Birthplace Museum

They're remembering the Alamo this weekend in Madison County. Specifically, the epic film that was the first movie ever directed by John Wayne. Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen reports from the actor's home town of Winterset.

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Talk of Iowa
11:00 am
Tue May 25, 2010

Best of Iowa Archives, Part One

The original program in the series of Best of Iowa Archives. In Part One, Rick Fredericksen presents a collection of his features crafted with historic sound from Iowa's past, this hour with the voices of Nan Wood, Karl King, John Wayne and others.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Mon May 24, 2010

Buffalo Bill Speaks

William Cody, better known as Buffalo Bill, was an early Pony Express rider.

Long before email, and even the Postal Service, the fastest way to get a letter from point-A to point-B, was on horseback. This is the 150th anniversary of the Pony Express, and an Iowan was one of these early mail carriers. Iowa Public Radio's Rick Fredericksen profiles the man, who would later become an icon of the Wild West. Historic audio clips go back to 1914.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Fri April 30, 2010

Audio Letters from Vietnam

Flares light up the night on the outskirts of Saigon, 1969.
Rick Fredericksen

An Iowa soldier took along a small tape recorder for his tour of duty in Vietnam and sent tapes home to his family in Burlington. We witness the Vietnam War through the voice recordings of Lt. Robert McKnight. John Pemble provided technical assistance. The 1968 recordings are held by the State Historical Society of Iowa.

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Iowa Archives
5:00 am
Tue April 6, 2010

The Voice of George Washington Carver

George Washington Carver

An author researching the life of famous agricultural scientist George Washington Carver has compiled a rare collection of his recordings. For a man who was educated in Iowa and contributed so much to mankind, Carver’s unusual voice was just as prominent as his vocation. Our oldest recording is about 1938.

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