February 2, 1893: Birth of Duluth radio personality Gil Fawcett

On this day in Duluth in 1893, future Duluth radio personality Gil Fawcett was born right here in the Zenith City. His father Hugh Fawcett was a prominent local contractor, whose building’s include the 1902 Duluth Public Library. According to biographer David Ouse, Gilbert Fawcett moved to Los Angeles in 1914 to take a job as the private secretary to F. S. McGinnis, vice-president of the Southern Pacific Railway. In his spare time he took acting roles with the Pasadena Community Playhouse and signed up to be an extra in silent movies. He returned to Duluth after serving in World War I and became active in Duluth’s Little Theatre. In 1936 he was part of an investment group that formed KDAL Radio. Fawcett soon became an on-air personality. His 1941 show “Dream Castle” feature local music and poetry. Fawcett showed his love for Duluth history by writing a weekly radio drama called “Historic Site Ahead,” in which he related early stories of the Zenith City and the Arrowhead. The Sunday afternoon broadcasts, sponsored by Freimuth’s Department Store, covered such subjects as “The Old Lighthouse on Minnesota Point,” “Duluth’s First Grain Elevator,” “The Moving of Hibbing,” and “The Vanished Town of Buchanan.” There is much more to Fawcett’s life, and you can read about it here.

This caricature of Fawcett was used to promote his “Tales of the Twin Ports.” (Image: Duluth Public Library)