Posted on 08/23/2008

Photo taken on January  1, 1952

See also...

Old Photographs Old Photographs

Women's History Women's History


The Bernice Thompson Show
Radio Station
Vintage Clothing
Disc Jockey
Howard University Hospital
African American
Washington DC
Bernice Thompson

Authorizations, license

Visible by: Everyone
All rights reserved

337 visits

First African American Female Disc Jockey in Philly

First African American Female Disc Jockey in Philly
Bernice Thompson, who trained her voice by reading the fine print on cereal boxes and can labels to become Philadelphia's first African American female disc jockey and TV personality almost a half century ago.

"She used to sit at the kitchen table and read the labels and fantasize about being a broadcast star," said her daughter, Juanita Thompson. When the opportunity came, she was prepared for a one-hour Sunday show on WDAS radio station, playing spirituals. Eventually, she became host of a two-hour daily "Bernice Thompson Show" during which she gave beauty tips and household hints between the music. She also held the position of Director of Women's Programs.

In the early 1960s, she took her show to a TV station in Wilmington, Delaware, before leaving the industry to become a public information officer for the Philadelphia Antipoverty Action Commission.

Ms. Thompson died April of 1996, of breast cancer at Howard University Hospital in Washington, DC. She was 75.

Image and Bio: WDAS History