In the late fall of 1968, three U.S. Pacific coast amateurs, Ken Hughes, W6IS, Fred Behrman, K7LNS and Howard Pyle, W7OE, came increasingly aware of the lack of a purely member oriented organization of radio amateurs encompassing the states of Washington, Oregon and California. The need for such had become quite apparent during some two years of operations in a group of the Western Division of a prominent internal amateur radio club. A poll of the active membership of this group produced. A favorable response indicating an eagerness for an independent organization devoted exclusively to the interests of the Radio Amateurs on the Pacific Coast.
A number of independent radio clubs were in existence in this area at that time, however their activities were confirmed almost exclusively to small geographical limits permitting periodic assembly in person at a common meeting place. A need for closer liason between a wider dispersal of the individual amateurs involved in the “far-west” was apparent. As a result the Pacific Amateur Radio Guild came into being on February 1st of 1969, with an initial charter membership of some sixty active amateurs, plus a few active and sympathetic amateurs residing outside of the three Pacific Coast states.
The organization of the geographical areas was first established as Area-1, comprised of the states of Washington and Oregon; and Area-2 the state of California. Subsequent membership growth outside of these areas necessitated the designation of Area-3, for all territory in the U.S. and Canada outside of Areas 1 and 2.
The broad overall objective of PARGuild is to contribute in whatever manner possible to the benefit of Amateur Radio in general and to the amateurs of the Pacific Radio in general and to the Pacific Coast in particular.
The founders recognized one of the most acute problems facing the amateurs was the steady increase in inter-station interference between amateur stations. The steadingly increasing numbers of amateurs in the U.S. and our neighboring countries to the North and South indicated that the situation would not improve with time. A major contributing factor was identified as the use of excessive power to accomplish the desired communications. This became the objective of PARGuild to encourage by example, compliance with that part of the International and U.S.Radio Laws witch specify that…”the least amount of power necessary to establish communications” be used. This is clearly established by the provisions of paragraph 97.61 (b.) U.S. Regulations (FCC). The provision of this regulation are respected by PARGuild; it is a definite objective to encourage only sufficient power to effect reliable communications. A simple 100 watt limit is recommended for PARGuild activity operations, and members are encouraged to use this limit in their contacts outside PARGuild as much as possible. Simply put, the amount of power used for any communication must be a matter of individual judgement coupled with common sense. This PARGuild members realize, respect, and abide by.
PARGuild provides an excellent training ground for operators who could well serve in the event of a variety of disaster and emergency situations. The membership has an excellent source of equipment for such use, having fixed, portable and mobile stations available. Also, members who are interested in increasing their operating skills and code speed can do that by listening and participating in the daily activities of the nets finding this to be instructive and of assistance in developing their skills.
Thesocial aspects of an organization such as PARGuild may at first thought appear to be minor; they are not so, however. In addition to the on-the-air exchange of information between members there are local get-to-gethers of members. In addition, each of the Areas 1 & 2 schedule an annual Round Up of members at various locations in their respective areas.
PARGuild Nets are conducted on an informal basis, except that the Net Control Station (NCS) is used to keep transmissions in an orderly sequence for the exchange of comments that members may wish to make. Since social rapport with fellow amateurs has alwsys played an outstanding role in amateur radio, PARGuild activities are conducted to retrain this distinct asset.