“The Voice-O-Gram” – Wartime Audio Letter Tech


During World War II, soldiers were able to step into a small booth and record an audio letter to family and friends back home. The result was a Voice-O-Gram. Now a lost technology, it was the size and shape of a 45rpm vinyl record and was shipped to the address provided by a soldier in a branded Voice-O-Gram mailer.

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12 responses to ““The Voice-O-Gram” – Wartime Audio Letter Tech

  1. Connie McKenzie

    I resently found one of these records at our local
    thrift shop..I remember my grandmother telling me how young men and women would record these records during the war..I can’t find them in any of my antique books. I googled to see what came up..do you have any idea what they are worth..I can’t imagine someone getting rid of such a treasure.

  2. how do you getb a voice -O-gram fixed.there is a slight bend in record

  3. just found 2 in my 93 yr grandmothers home who died christmas day, and will be missed. wished we could recover the lost voices on those 2 voice o grams we found, im sure there from my papa to the love of her life, but i fear they are to damaged, any suggestions as 2 how we can recover the voices.

  4. hi, very sorry about your grandmother. it may be possible to get some audio from your voice-o-grams. you need a friend with a record player/turntable that will interface with a computer (usb turntable). play the records at 78rpm and see what you can record. you may want to try placing a flat heavy object on top of the record in a warm (not hot) room for a while to flatten it if it is warped. also try putting a nickel on top of the arm of the turntable. i hope you are able to work it out. good luck!

  5. Check out Deep Sky Audio in Vale NC. They did wonders with my father’s World War II recordings. You can find them on the web.

  6. John Sackett

    I have two records from the 1940’s. One was courtesy of Pepsi-Cola and the other the USO.
    The USO record was recorded on boh sides, but looks like it has a protective sealer on it that has ‘wrinkled’. I am not sure if this can be cleaned without damaging the recording. I was able to recover the first recording.

  7. ji.my validator

    The voice-o-gram was also used after the war as a type of entertainment medium of sorts. I have one that my father made for my grandma in 1946 or 47 at the State Fair of Texas. It has a lot of wear on it now and a small crack across it , but could still be played if handled properly. I keep it for pure love of the sender and recover.

    • Hey, Ji.my validator and anyone else who might have audio postcards of their parents/grandparents.

      I’m an audio journalism student, and I’m currently working on a piece on audio postcards. I’d love, love, love to interview you about your postcards and what they mean to you.

      Would you be okay with that?

  8. APPLE has debuted its new Christmas-themed ad and its charming tone is melting hearts everywhere.

    The 90-second commercial is called ‘The Song’ and features a young girl unearthing an old vinyl record, which appears to be a gift from her Grandparents from the 1950s.

    It is clear that the record was made on an old-school piece of technology called the Voice-O-Graph, which allowed people in the 1940s and ‘50s to record directly to vinyl. http://klou.tt/k5ly50kixspu

  9. My wife and I were going through old memorabilia from her parents and ran across 7-10 of these recordings that appear to be in terrific shape. I’m going to find a record player and listen to them. These are from WW2 and the Korean conflict. Should be fun.

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