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Ham Radio History: PJ2T—Ham Radio’s Most-Logged Callsign

Tim Duffy, K3LR, DX Engineering Chief Operating Officer and member of the CQ Contest Hall of Fame, received this QSL card commemorating the first-ever contest operation from Coral Cliff, Curacao—an island in the southern Caribbean Sea. Conducted by six U.S. operators in November 1967, the team used modest antennas and equipment (and took advantage of excellent propagation) to win World #1 in CQWW CW Multi-Multi.

The inside of the booklet/card reads, “Impressed by the incredible propagation conditions from Curacao many teams followed, and half a century of intense contest operation ensued from this Curacao neighborhood. In 1971, W1BIH (John Thompson, SK) had a house built there for contesting, and since 2000 the PJ2T group has continued the neighborhood’s contesting tradition from that W1BIH house. We believe that more contest QSOs have been made from this locale in the remote west end of Curacao than from anywhere else worldwide, and PJ2T has become the most-logged callsign in our hobby.”

The six original operators, hosted by Chester Brandon (PJ3CC), were Victor C. Clark, W4KFC (SK), president of the ARRL from 1963-74; Bill Grenfell, W4GF (SK), longtime FCC Chief of the Rules Branch; John Thompson, W1BIH, PJ9JT (SK); Roy Fosberg, W1TX (SK), engineer and avid DXer; Len Cheretok, W3GRF (SK), longtime leader of the Potomac Valley Radio Club; and Al Rousseau, W1FJ, 60+ year contester, DXer, and the only surviving member of the PJ3CC 1967 CQWW CW win.

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of PJ3CC’s 1967 contest victory, a nine-operator crew activated PJ2T for a weekend celebration in November 2017 with Al, W1FJ, serving as the guest of honor. Operators were W8WTS, NA2U, N7IR, N5OT, W0CG, W0TT, K1YR, KB7Q, and K2PLF.

Tim, K3LR, made contact with PJ2T (address: #1 Groot Santa Marta, Curacao) on November 25 on 160, 80, 40, 20, 15, and 10 meter CW.

The W1BIH house is owned by Geoff Howard, W0CG, leader of the PJ2T contest station. Click here for a great interview conducted by Tim, K3LR with Geoff, W0CG, about his involvement with Caribbean contesting; his purchase of the house from John Thompson in November 2000; formation and growth of the Caribbean Contesting Consortium; and the 800,000 (as of 2016) contesting QSOs made from that spot.

Tell us about your contacts with PJ2T over the years. We’d love to hear about them.

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