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Document Details


Title: Claude Stevanus
Document type: Oral history
Accessibility: Free Only
Repository: Cable Center. Barco Library. Special Collections
Collection: Cable Center Oral History Collection
Description: Claude Stevanus built one of the first cable systems in the Midwest, in his home town of Sugarcreek, Ohio, Born in 1931, Stevanus grew up on a farm about 65 miles outside of Cleveland. After graduating from high school in Sugarcreek and business school in Canton, he returned to Sugarcreek and took a job in his father-in-law’s hardware store. The store also sold appliances and in the late 1940s began to sell television sets. For each customer Stevanus would have to construct a huge rooftop antenna to pick up the signal from Cleveland. At a meeting of Philco dealers in 1950 he heard about cable television. A friend took a job with Jerold and Stevanus signed up with the electronics company to supply his system in Sugarcreek. He charged $3.5o a month for service and $150 installation charge. Jerrold supplied the training and equipment. Stevanus’ company was called Tower Antennas after the rooftop antennas he had started out building. In the mid-1950s he began to expand in Ohio and other areas in the mid-West. In the mid-1960s he took his company public in one of the first public offerings of stock in a cable company. He served on the board of directors of the National Cable Television Association in the 1960s and pioneered some of the early techniques in billing cable customers. In 1971 he merged his company with CPI, owned by Jack Crosby and Ben Conroy. Stevanus continued to manage the new company’s properties in the Midwest until CPI was purchased by the Times Mirror Company.
URL: http://www.cablecenter.org/education/library/oralHistoryDetails.cfm?id=263
Original Language: English
Time span: Not indicated ... to 1990 (Year of interview)
Speaker: Stevanus, Claude Miller, 1913-
Speaker gender: Male
Speaker date of birth: 31-Jul-1913
Speaker place of birth: Sugar Creek, OH; Ohio; United States; North America
Age at speaking: 77
Document date: Oct-1990
Interviewer: Pavelko, Kathleen
Locations discussed: North America; United States
Topics discussed - ASP terms: Broadcasting; Cable television--United States; North America; Oral history; Public broadcasting; Television; Television programs; United States
Topics discussed - Other terms: Cable administrators
ASP release: 2005-06
Document code: OHI0022853-24270