A Different Sort of Ham Radio Drop-Out

Owsley K6HEN backstage

An interesting article in Southgate Ham Radio News:  http://www.southgatearc.org/news/2022/august/radio-ham-who-kickstarted-the-counterculture-movement.htm

Owsley was the Radio ham who kickstarted the counterculture movement, including making some of the synthetic drugs that fueled an era.

Radio ham who kickstarted the counterculture movement

The UK’s Far Out Magazine has published an article about the radio amateur who played a pivotal role in the 1960’s counterculture movement – Augustus Owsley Stanley III K6HEN

His Wiki entry notes: In June 1956, he enlisted in the United States Air Force as an electronics specialist, serving for 18 months (including stints at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Edwards Air Force Base’s Rocket Engine Test Facility) before being discharged in 1958. During his service, he secured an amateur radio license [K6HEN] and a general radiotelephone operator license.

In 1963 [aged 28], he enrolled at the University of California, Berkeley, where he became involved in the psychoactive drug scene. He dropped out after a semester, took a technical job at KGO-TV, and began producing LSD [patent had expired and it was legal then] in a small lab located in the bathroom of a house near campus.

Read the Far Out Magazine article by Tom Taylor at:

One wonders if Owsley (Bear) continued his amateur radio interests as he mingled with the likes of the Grateful Dead, the Beatles and Three Dog Night?

More on Owsley:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Owsley_Stanley

His K6HEN callsign is now a vanity call for someone who’s initials are “H.E.N.”



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