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St. Louis Missouri Television Stations
  KSD-TV, Channel 5, St Louis, MO (KSDK)
  WTVI, Channel 54, Bellville, IL (KTVI, Channel 2)
  KWK, Channel 4, St. Louis, MO (KMOX, KMOV)
  KPRL, Channel 11, St. Louis, MO
  KDNL, Channel 30, St. Louis, MO
  St. Louis Ghost Television Stations


This Ad could be yours....e-mail for information

                                                                              
St. Louis Television, the early years
 
KTVI, Channel 2, St. Louis, Missouri (WTVI, Channel 54, 36)




WTVI, Channel 54
broadcasting from Belleville, Illinois, "serving the Greater St. Louis area"

(from KTVI  & You Tube)




WTVI  making news
in central Illinois as reported by the Springfield, Illinois State Journal-Register in 1953






WTVI, Channel 54, The Second St. Louis TV Signal

When a contest was taking place for the allocation of available VHF channels in St. Louis right after the lifting of the “freeze” in 1952, one prospective broadcast television owner was seeking another way to obtain the goal of a license. By competing with other VHF applicants it would involve having to wait perhaps a year or two, and investing more money, with a good chance of not obtaining the main goal of the construction permit. That prospective owner-group was Signal Hill Telecasting Corporation.

In late October of 1952, Signal Hill Telecasting Corporation would file an application for channel 54 allocated to Belleville, Illinois.  The proposed station would broadcast with an effective radiated power of 220kw from a tower with a height of 593' located on hill on West Main Street in Belleville.  The plans for the facility would include a transmitter and antenna manufactured by RCA.   The next month, in mid November, the FCC would grant Signal Hill channel 54.

The station would broadcast using one of the most powerful UHF transmitters built and its tower/transmitter would be located high on the Illinois bluffs, just 6 ½ miles from downtown St. Louis.  Sometime in the planning process, the RCA transmitter was changed to a General Electric transmitter model number TT-25-A.  This would be the same model of transmitter used by two more future UHF stations in St. Louis, KSTM and KACY.

In December of 1952 an application was filed for the second channel allocated for Belleville, channel 42, by Belleville Broadcasting Company. It's proposed location was to be at radio station WIBV Radio at 2100 West Main in Belleville. That proposed station at channel 42 never was completed.


The WTVI studios in Belleville from 1954. 

(courtesy of St. Louis Media History)
Signal Hill Telecasting Corporation signs a contract with Graybar Electric Company for delivery of one of the world's most powerful transmitters with effective radiated power of 220,000 watts.  Contract is for equipment in excess of $250,000.  Left to right, John P. Lenkerd, manager, electric sales, Graybar Electric Company; Ted Westcott, vice-president in charge of programming, Signal Hill: Bernard T. Wilson, president Signal Hill; C.S. Powell, district manager, Graybar; John Hyatt, vice president in charge of sales, Signal Hill.
(from TV Review and the collection of Wayne Brasler)







Behind the Scenes at Signal Hill

That transmitter/antenna combination stated in the construction permit would give WTVI, Channel 54 an effective radiated power of 220-thousand watts. The stations antenna would be mounted atop a tower which would put the antenna 600 feet above the already highest point around St. Louis area. Material from the station stated that the stations signal would be easily received by viewers 50 or more miles around St. Louis in all directions.

Signal Hill Telecasting Corporation, was organized by Bernard "Ben" Wilson (10% ownership), John Hyatt (10%) and Ted Weiskotten (10%) who were radio and television veterans(as much of a television veteran as there was in those days), along with Paul Peltason (33.75%)  and Harry Tenenbaum (33.75%), a couple of St Louis investment bankers. According to the St. Louis TV (P)Review magazine(a sort of early TV Guide for St. Louis) Wilson and Hyatt were KMOX Radio account executives, and Ted Weiskotten was a producer-director for KSD-TV. 

Ben Wilson's background included 22 years of radio and theater experience. John Hyatt had over 15 years of radio sales experience. Weiskotten had over 18 years experience in theater, radio and television which included stints with WBKB in Chicago, KMOX, KSD-TV and the Gardner Advertising Agency.

Wilson would be the president of Signal Hill and KTVI general manager, while Hyatt would be the vice-president in charge of sales and Weiskotten would be the vice-president in charge of programming.

By January of 1953, WTVI appointed Weed and Company as station national representative. With that press release, it was stated that Channel 54 would be on the air in May of 1953. The next month, WTVI had signed an affiliation agreement with DuMont which would take the part time affiliation away from KSD-TV.



Here is the former site of WTVI located on West Main
Street near Belleville.
(google earth)

That May of 1953 goal was unobtainable. It's unknown what difficulties the station had in going on the air in May. It can be assumed that equipment delivery problems, installation problems as well as tower construction and even studio building problems were to blame. It appears that a delay of a couple of months reset the on-air date to sometime in late July. An article welcoming WTVI to the air was in the July 25 edition of St. Louis TV (P)Review magazine. It stated, “Many difficulties were encounters and many of us were impatient at the long wait for a new station in this area, and we can now realize the thrill of turning the station selector switch.” On July 27, 1953, WTVI, Channel 54 went on the air with a test pattern from its studios at 10200 West Main Street in Belleville. The station would begin programming on August 10, 1953.

At the sign-on it was also announced that the sales department at WTVI had signed more than a half a million dollars in business even before broadcasting began. It was also stated that they conducted research that indicated over 100,000 television sets in the St. Louis area were equipped to receive UHF Channel 54. WTVI also established a business office in St. Louis for its sales department. That office was at 1939 Boatmen's Bank Building in downtown St. Louis.




(from TV Guide, Doug Quick Collection)



WTVI Receives Live Network Service

Shortly after sign-on in August of 1953, WTVI was the second television station in the St. Louis market to be connected to live network service. Network service was provided by Southwestern Bell Telephone and utilized an eleven mile microwave link from the AT and T base in St. Louis. By that time the live network service from AT and T was connected to 147 stations in 98 U.S. cities. WTVI was a “basic” DuMont network affiliate but would also feature programming on a per program basis from ABC and CBS during the early days. By adding a live network feed for WTVI it eliminated the need for the broadcast of kinescopes from DuMont.

Seeking more UHF Viewers for WTVI

One of the largest obstacles to obtain viewers for WTVI was the fact that it would be the first of two other UHF stations going on the air in the next year competing with the already established KSD-TV. A big sales job was going to take place to sell the public on the fact that they would have to invest another $6 to $50 to receive the new UHF station, as most TV sets of the era in major markets, especially were sold to the public without the tuners to receive UHF broadcasts. This would be similar to buying a radio with the AM band only, without FM. Add to the problem, that most St. Louis potential viewers more than likely had a difficult time receiving Channel 54 on indoor antennas because of the location of the transmitter a few miles east of St. Louis.

Station material published in the TV (P)Review encouraged potential viewers to “convert your set” to receive the new UHF band and ultimately WTVI. It explained that 85% of television stations in the country will be found on the UHF frequencies and only 15% would be located on the VHF band.

Some of the advantages of UHF over VHF listed included the fact that “man-made electrical disturbances do not interfere with your viewing pleasure. When someone in the neighborhood runs a vacuum cleaner, or an electric shaver, or an electric mixer, or an attic fan, or when a furnace blower comes on, or an automobile or airplane passes by, the picture on channel 54 will not be affected.  Lightning will not interfere, nor will X-ray machines. You will get a good picture, without interference at all times.” It was good to know that those viewers with at-home x-ray machines would be able to receive UHF stations with no problems.

The material also included testimonials from a Portland, Oregon station which said, “UHF reception is superior in other ways. The picture is improved. The blacks are blacker, the whites are whiter, and different shades of gray show up in better contrast to each other."

More St. Louis UHF Company

Other UHF allocations were granted for St. Louis and by February of 1953 Missouri Broadcasting owner of WIL Radio was granted channel 42, and was the fifth UHF station granted to the St. Louis market. Along with KSTM(Channel 36), KACY(Channel 14), WTVI Channel 54), KFUO-TV(Channel 30) licensed to Clayton, Missouri. A petition was also filed in June of 1953 on behalf of Metropolitan Broadcasting to allocate channel 24 to St. Louis. Meanwhile the multiple applicants for VHF channels 4 and 11 would keep the process tied up for many more months.

In October of 1953, WTVI had company on the UHF band. On October 20th, KSTM, Channel 36 went on the air from a, then, state of the art showplace on Bethold, Oakland and Hampton Avenues in south St. Louis. “The Big Mo” as it was called was an ABC affiliate with secondary affiliation with CBS. More on KSTM below in another segment. Also going on the air was KACY, Channel 14 in November of 1953. KACY was licensed to Festus, Missouri, located south of St. Louis. KACY was trying to become a CBS affiliate with a part time arrangement to pick up the un-cleared CBS shows rejected by KSD-TV.

Like so many UHF stations which went on the air in 1953-54, as many as 40% failed during their first couple of years.  KSTM and KACY failed within their first year!  See more about KSTM and KACY in other segments below.

WTVI, Channel 54, Belleville, Illinois(St. Louis, Missouri market)

Signal Hill Telecasting Corporation
10200 W. Main Street
Belleville, Illinois

Phone: Express 7-0054

Facilities:  Channel 54, Authorized Effective Radiated Power, Visual 245kw, Aural 129kw
Transmitter: GE Model TT-25-A     Antenna: Gaberial Workshop; Type: WA25NFIXX
Height, above average terrain 630 feet, 589 feet above ground

Operation began August 10, 1953

Network Affiliations: DuMont, CBS

Representatives: Sales- Weed Television; Washington attorney: Sher, Oppenheimer and Harris

Services: One studio 20x30 feet, three DuMont camera chains, one DuMont film camera, two type AQ-2 Model 11000CD film projectors, two selectroslide Jr. slide projectors, one Poly FX Federal scanner, one mobile unit News Services: AP, INS

Rate information: Class A one hour Live $400, Film $400.  Minute spot Live $60, film $60,
Frequency discounts from 5% for 13 times up to 30% for 260 times, Rate Card #3

Market Info: Population 2,136,946, families in area: 650,643  Number of sets(June 1, 1954) 255,052(UHF)
retail sales: $3,260,774,000  income per family $4,111  Income per capita: $1,251

(from Television Yearbook 1954-55)

WTVI Personalities

In June of 1953, it was announced that Bruce Hayward was named director of news and special events at WTVI.
An edition of TV Guide from November 20, 1954 included a profile of Channel 54's director of news and special events, Bruce Hayward. Hayward was talking about how newsmen have to “sell” the news, much like other announcers sell products, “It's a lot easier to sell news. While entertainers are dependent upon writers for their material, the whole world provides mine.”

Hayward was the newscaster at WTVI's 6:30 and 10pm newscasts on WTVI. The 32-year old Hayward, was formerly the chief newscaster for 10 years at KWK Radio. He attended the University of Minnesota, majoring in speech. While he was a student, he was an announcer at a Minneapolis radio station, then accepted a job at a large agency to do a network news show originating at KWK Radio in St. Louis. He remained at KWK until he joined the staff at WTVI in the fall of 1953.


In June of 1953, WTVI added an account executive from KMOX Radio, Arnold K. Knippernberg, along with Milo Hamilton as a sports director. By September of 1953, Bill Eckstein and Done Lucy both formerly from WJPF Radio in Herrin, Illinois were added to WTVI's staff in an unknown capacity.

In January of 1954, Harry Tenenbaum was elected vice-president of Signal Hill Broadcasting and WTVI. He was also a major stockholder of the company. Paul Pelteson was a vice president and the general manger of WTVI in early 1954.

One of the earlier local sales managers of WTVI was Harold Kirsch. In February of 1954, he filed a damage suit in U.S. District Court in East St. Louis against Signal Hill Broadcasting for breach of contract. He stated that when he joined WTVI the company was paying him a salary of $15,000 a year plus 2 1/2% of the gross local sales. He stated the agreement was in written form from the management for WTVI. Paul Pelteson, WTVI president and general manager said the first he knew about the suit was when it appeared in the local newspapers. He went on to say, “Mr. Kirsch resigned. In addition he had no contract, no agreement with us. We paid him $1,000 a month and I can truthfully say that he failed to perform.” Just for the record, Kirsch operated the Harold Kirsch Company a St. Louis advertising agency for five years before selling it to go with WTVI. It seems rather improbable that Mr. Kirsch was an underachiever. Its unknown, though, how the suit was resolved.

In March of 1954, John D. Scheuer Jr. was named executive vice president of Signal Hill Telecasting Corporation and general manager of WTVI. The appointment was announced by Paul E. Pelteson, WTVI president. Scheuer was the executive assistant to the general manager at WFIL AM-TV in Philadelphia. He assumed the role on May 1, 1954.

WTVI Programming During First Week of Programming

Below is the WTVI schedule from Thursday, July 30, 1953, during the first week of regular programming.  Note the number of "film" listings, probably filled with syndicated purchased programming, not yet purchased when the schedule was submitted to TV Review.



Thursday, July 30, 1953                        Program Listings for WTVI, Channel 54, Belleville, Illinois
5:42pm Program Previews-(unknown origin)
5:45pm Time for Beany-(syndicated cartoon series)
6:00pm Captain Video-(DuMont-live from network)
6:30pm News and Weather-(local origination at WTVI)
6:45pm Sports-(local origination at WTVI)
7:00pm Film-(unknown origin or subject matter)

7:30pm Film-(unknown origin or subject matter)
8:00pm Treasure Hunt-(unknown origin or format)
8:30pm Author meets the Critics-(unknown origin)
9:00pm The Big Idea-(documentary, Dumont-live from network)
9:30pm Film-(unknown origin or subject matter)
10:00pm News and Weather-(local origination
               at WTVI)
10:15pm Sports-(local origination at WTVI)
10:30pm Feature Film-(unknown)



(from TV Review, Wayne Brasler Collection


WTVI Take the Lead in a National UHF Broadcasting Group

In October of 1953, a UHF trade association formed which included representatives from eight UHF stations, mostly in the midwest. WTVI was represented by Paul Pelteson and Henry Tenenbaum. Henry Tenenbaum of WTVI would be elected treasurer of the group. Other representatives from St. Louis and central Illinois included Marshall H. Pengra from KSTM, Harold Cowgill from WTVP(Decatur), U.R. Norman from WTVH(Peoria), Brownie Ackers(WEEK) and Jack Garrison(KACY). It was at those meetings that KSTM and its ownership would make major proposals for the elimination of allocations for St. Louis for channel 4 and 11 and the addition of other UHF frequencies. The group would also make demands from television equipment manufacturers which would bring about more power from UHF transmitters and to television manufacturers to reduce the price of UHF converters.


"Captain Video"



 

WTVI in the Black

In a report in Broadcasting-Telecasting on profitability of UHF stations, WTVI announced it was operating “in the black” after two months on the air. The work the station had done promotionally to build UHF reception in St. Louis was stated by the stations national representative Joseph Weed at Weed Television, “It's success can be attributed to excellent planning.”

UHF conversion began with 66,799 to receive Channel 54 on June 30, 1953, six weeks before the station's official debut. By October 19, 1953, the count would increase to 127,000. The increase of sets to UHF reception was progressing at 500 sets a day and local TV “servicemen” reported they were 30 to 60 days behind on conversion orders. All of the antennas were pointed eastward to WTVI's Belleville, Illinois transmitter and UHF strip tuners were all set to channel 54.

It was possible that being the first UHF station on the air, would be beneficial to Signal Hill and would help in the future success of the station.






The WTVI control room from 1953 with a view into the studio.

(courtesy St. Louis Media History)


The WTVI transmitter, a GE
Model TT-25-A.

(courtesy St. Louis Media History)




The St. Louis Cardinals Play Into the Success of WTVI

By November of 1953 a bidding war was taking place for the broadcast rights to the St. Louis Cardinals for the 1954 season. The rights would go to both radio and television facilities. In 1953, the rights to the Cardinals on radio went to WIL Radio, but for 1954, the rights would be granted to KXOK Radio. The television rights would be more difficult to award. This new medium of television brought out more bidders. In the past KSD-TV was the only choice. By 1953 with the additions of WTVI, KSTM and KACY it took more time to examine the financial stability of each possible outlet as well as their potential to serve the local fans of the team and establish a possible network of other local television stations outside the St. Louis market. Soon after the announcement of the radio rights winner, WTVI would be awarded the rights to the cherished St. Louis Cardinal telecasts meaning $200,000 in billing for the station.

Budweiser would sponsor Cardinal baseball on well over one-hundred stations and games of nine Cardinal-franchised teams. Negotiations were completed with television stations in all of the National League cities to provide a means to pipe road games of the Cardinals back to WTVI which won the bid for television rights for the Cardinal broadcasts. Seventy-seven road games would be televised and broadcast by WTVI, Channel 54. Its unknown how many stations were included in the network of stations that would also broadcast the baseball television production. By the way, the baseball play by play was to feature the talents of Harry Carey.


(images from TV Guide, Doug Quick Collection)




This WTVI ad was from November of 1954.  Notice
that WTVI was receiving programming from
CBS, ABC and DuMont at the time and included
the classic Edward R. Murrow broadcasts of
"Person to Person"
(image from TV Guide, Doug Quick Collection)


By 1955, WTVI, Channel 54 had become
KTVI, Channel 36 broadcasting from
the Missouri side of Mississippi River from
the former studios of KSTM.
(image from TV Guide, Doug Quick Collection)

More Power for WTVI

In January of 1954, WTVI was granted a construction permit to increase the effective radiated power of Channel 54 to 245kw. It was also about the time that WTVI was facing other UHF competition from KSTM and KACY which were also reaching higher power levels with the highest powered GE transmitters available at the time.

Legal Challenge from a  UHF Competitor

The competition between the UHF stations in St. Louis was growing while ignoring the dominance of VHF Channel 5, KSD-TV. In March 6,1954 a lawsuit was filed by KACY against both CBS and WTVI. Ozark Television Company and KACY was asking for $844,282 in actual damages and $2,532,848 in “treble” damages under Federal anti trust laws. KACY charged that CBS and WTVI conspired to prevent it from getting CBS clearance of shows not carried by KSD-TV.

KACY alleged that it had anticipated $100,000 in profit since it went on the air, but instead had lost $244,282. The Festus, Missouri station claimed it was the only station that was contractually free from network commitments and could assure that CBS programs could air within its broadcast schedule. The station also claimed a major devaluation of its facility and equipment. A month later KACY would cease operations.

WTVI Applies for Channel 4

KSTM on channel 36 applied for channel 11 along with a number of other applicants, hoping to better its dial position. The station fought during its short life for its future with no success. WTVI also applied for a better dial position, but the station seemed to do little early on to improve its situation concentrating instead on its much talked about sales successes. When there was an attempt to better the dial position, Signal Hill made the move too late in the process with the management failing to show a real commitment to changing the dial position.

On April 20, 1954, Signal Hill Telecasting filed to add its name to the roster of applicants for St. Louis channel 4. This last minute maneuver was similar to the actions taken by KSTM in trying to obtain channel 11. Unfortunately, it was the same time the merging of the various other applicants occurred which placed the ownership of KWK Radio in the most favorable position to obtain the grant of the construction permit for channel 4.

The FCC would award the allocation for channel 4 to the KWK Radio group on May 7, 1954. See KMOV(KWK-TV, KMOX-TV) for more on the history of what would become the St. Louis CBS station.

After the awarding of channel 4 to KWK, Signal Hill and KTVI appealed the FCC decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals saying the FCC granted the revised KWK application even though WTVI filed its application two days before the KWK filing of the merger. WTVI claimed that their application was denied without a hearing. The argument was for a temporary stay of the FCC grant to KWK, pending the court's determination on the appeal. The case was heard by Chief Judge Harold M. Stephens and Judges David L. Baselon and George Thomas Washington. The FCC and the KWK counsel argued that no stay was necessary, since WTVI would receive a fair hearing if the court ordered.

It was also determined that WTVI had no interest in channel 4 until six days after the initial decision and two days before the FCC's final decision. Since the FCC had found that all applicants were qualified, the merged application was not a new application. The case was argued for WTVI by Monroe Oppenheimer of Sher, Oppenheimer and Harris. William C. Koplovitz from Dempsey and Koplovitz for KWK and Daniel R. Ohlbaum for the FCC.

The WTVI case wasn't over yet. Signal Hill challenged the merger once again filing an economic protest with the FCC to challenge the legality of the FCC's merger policy. WTVI contended the channel 4 outlet would represent a $5-million asset, the granting of options to competitors constituted an illegal consideration since KWK would pay only part of the option value for the stock. The procedure would be contrary to both public and FCC policy according to WTVI. A question was also raised concerning the agreement between KWK and KXOK Radio breaking the duopoly rule. Signal Hill also stated that the granting of KWK would mean the end of at least one of the UHF stations now serving St. Louis and the act of the FCC grant of channel 4 to KWK was an act that is legally indefensible.

The U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington would deny the bid by WTVI. The court, though, told the FCC not to issue a license to KWK until it had decided the merits of the WTVI's appeal. The courts did approve for the FCC issuance of special temporary authority to KWK for construction. The efforts of Signal Hill against the awarding of channel 4 to KWK was to no avail. Channel 4 would finally be granted free and clear to KWK-TV and St. Louis would lose two UHF stations during the fall of 1954. After the final decision by the FCC, Signal Hill was granted a withdrawal of its protest against KWK.


Channel 4 Application Indicates Ownership changes at Signal Hill

When the application was made for channel 4 by Signal Hill, the listing of principals had changed since its original application for channel 54. The owners were listed as: president and treasurer, Paul E. Peltason(37.25% ownership); first vice president Harry Tenenbaum(37.25%); secretary H. M. Stolar(0.83%); vice president John I. Hyatt(3.33%); and Mrs. Janet W. Levy(27%).

The Army-McCarthy Hearings and WTVI

The coverage of the Army-McCarthy hearings was a billing bonanza for those DuMont and ABC stations of the era. For WTVI it meant a sponsorship by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Ironically, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch owned competitor KSD AM-TV. Across the country 54 ABC stations and 11 DuMont stations were broadcasting the 78 hours of hearings live. It is unknown if WTVI was taking the ABC or DuMont network feed.

WTVI Testifies as Part of a Senate Subcommittee

In June of 1954 WTVI sent Harry Tenenbaum to testify as to the problems of UHF broadcasters across the country. Tenenbaum called for an immediate “freeze” and a “complete study of the present allocations system” with reference to intermixture of VHF and UHF channels in the same markets. Tenenbaum vied to continue operating as a UHF station despite the odds, and that the station would utilize the maximum allowable power to adequately “do a thorough coverage job in the St. Louis area.” He stated that there were 250,000 UHF sets in the 600,000 set St. Louis area.

The financial picture of WTVI became public knowledge with the admission of a total investment of $828,000 for WTVI. It was also released that the station owed $250,000 in equipment notes. Total losses of WTVI were “slightly under $400,000.” The station had invested $85,000 on UHF promotion. He also referred to $200,000 spent on a 12k transmitter in December of 1953 “despite the fact that we were heavily in the red.”

WTVI according to Tenenbaum had reached the “break even point” in May of 1954. He stated that the published reports that UHF losses should be compared to early VHF losses were “odious, unfair and dishonest.” He told the story of early VHF pioneers were working “from the bottom up” and the station owners could see day to day improvement. He said that that is not the case for UHF stations. He said that as the UHF audience increased, the national business paradoxically decreased.

It was at that hearing that Franklin C. Salisbury announced that KSTM would be losing its ABC affiliation. That would pretty much put an end to Channel 36. It was also soon after that KWK would pick up the CBS affiliation. That would mean more challenges for WTVI as it would be losing its CBS income stream.

WTVI Loses a General Sales Manager and Conducts a Major Promotion

During the summer of 1954 the management of WTVI would lose a major player. John I. Hyatt, vice president and general sales manager of WTVI resigned on my birthday, August 5, 1954. A week later WTVI would host the General Electric “Wonderhome.” This event was hosted by GE and sponsored exclusively by WTVI and televised by Channel 54. The “Wonderhome” would feature a home designed for the future and show the many new technologies involved. The home was revealed in a special program telecast on WTVI using a three camera, ten man production crew. At the conclusion of the program, an invitation was extended to viewers to personally inspect the home the following day. In spite of 110-degree heat, a crowd of 5 to 6-thousand St. Louisans toured the home. The response of the show exceeded the response of similar invitations offered earlier in the year in other VHF only markets across the country.

Programming Challenges

WTVI participated in a plan to set up affordable programming for UHF stations and small VHF stations. John D. Scheuer executive vice president and general manager of WTVI teamed with Harold Goldman of National Telefilm to announce a plan to allow for more affordable high-budget broadcast films.

The arrangement would allow the station to purchase, for example, one hour of programming for $200. The stations time charge is $200 and offering commercial time to amount to $600. That would bring a “profit” of $200, which would be divided between NTA and the station.

The agreement would set up a contract for a certain number of hours of programming over a year commitment. At the beginning 18 stations were a part of the plan with many more in negotiations with NTA. The plan was to have well over 150 stations participate.

This was a much more attractive plan for those stations without a network affiliation agreement and had plenty of time in their schedule for additional programming. Since WTVI was a DuMont affiliate with a rather sparse schedule of programming, this would have been an ideal programming source for Channel 54.

WTVI Becomes an ABC Affiliate

The cancellation of the affiliation agreement by ABC with KSTM and the seemingly ever changing television station scenario in St. Louis brought about an uncertain situation for the network. With the upcoming grants of a total of three VHF stations in St. Louis meant that each network would have an outlet in the future, but the FCC was going to be slow in the issuance of the grant of the last VHF station on channel 11. If CBS would gain the upper hand, and receive channel 11, it was a certainty that channel 11 would be a CBS outlet, leaving Channel 4 as a possible ABC affiliate. So, in the meantime, ABC would need an outlet in St. Louis until such time that the VHF shake down would occur.

Just two weeks after the shutdown of ABC affiliate KSTM, WTVI was announced as ABC affiliate number 206. WTVI joined ABC with programming on Tuesday, August 17, 1954. I would assume it was a short term network affiliation contract.

The Week of August 20, 1955                  Program Listings of KTVI, Channel 36, St. Louis
This listing came from the station which a short time previously was located in Bellville, Illinois.  They had just moved from Belleville to the former home of KSTM(TM) to broadcast on channel 36.  They were not yet of the size the station would become after a few years of operating as a full time ABC affiliate, or as a VHF stations it would become a couple of years later.
Saturday August 20
4:30pm Western Theater-"Man from Utah" John Wayne(local film)
5:30pm Sands of Time(unknown subject/source)
5:45pm Jules Strongbow Presents(unknown subject/source)
6:00pm Roller Derby-(syndicated-kinescope)
6:30pm Championship Bowling-(unknown source)
7:30pm Sports Kaleidoscope-(unknown source)
7:35pm Dugout Chatter-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
7:40pm Great Sports Moments-(live-Cardinal Network)
7:45pm Warm Up Time-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
7:55pm Baseball-"Cardinals vs. Cincinnati Redlegs" from Crosley Field-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
10:40pm Sports Highlights-(source unknown)
10:45pm Name the Face-Quiz-(source unknown)
10:50pm The Scoreboard-Miller-(assumed live local)
11:00pm Million Dollar Movie-"Don Ricardo Returns" Fred Coby, Isabelita, Paul Newland-(local film)

Sunday, August 21
1:00pm Sports Kaleidoscope-(unknown source)
1:05pm Dugout Chatter-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
1:10pm Great Sports Moments-(live-Cardinal Network)
1:15pm Warm Up Time-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
1:25pm Baseball-"Cardinals vs. Cincinnati Redlegs" from Crosley Field-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
4:10pm Sports Highlights-(source unknown)
4:15pm Name the Face-Quiz-(source unknown)
4:20pm The Scoreboard-Miller-(assumed live local)
4:30pm Face the Nation-(CBS live from network)
5:00pm Oral Roberts-(paid religious film program)
5:30pm Holiday-Travelog-(source unknown)
6:00pm It's Magic-(CBS-summer replacement show for "Lassie" starred Paul Tripp
6:30pm Hollywood Backstage-(ABC-also called "Ern Westmore Show"- advise on make-up with beauty consultant to the stars, Ern Westmore.  His wife Betty was also a co-host)
7:00pm Movie-"Bowery Blitzkrieg"-East Side Kids"-(local film)
8:00pm Movie-"Her Sister's Secret" Nancy Coleman, Margaret Lindsay, Phillip Reed(local film)
9:30pm Faith for Today-Religion- (syndicated produced by the Seventh Day Adventist Church)
10:00pm Sacred Heart Show-Religion-(paid religion film)
10:15pm Million Dollar Movie-"Don Ricardo Returns" Note: Repeat from previous evenings movie at 11pm


Monday, August 22
4:30pm Brand 36 Corral-"Feud of the Trail" Tom Tyler also another chapter of the serial "Red Barry" starring Buster Crabbe(possible live in studio kids show, with kids in a studio audience with film features)
6:00pm Soupy Sales-Kids(ABC-live from Detroit)
6:15pm News-John Daley(ABC live from network)
6:30pm News-Roundup-(local origination newscast)
6:45pm The Passerby-Drama(unknown subject/source)
7:00pm Outdoor Sports Club-featuring George Carson-(unknown format/source)
7:30pm Concert-(probably "Voice of Firestone", Host: Howard Barlow-Eugene Conley-(ABC live from network)
8:00pm Big Picture-(military provided film)
8:30pm The Hunter-drama-(syndicated off network filmed drama, originally on CBS and NBC)
9:00pm Boxing-New York-Virgil Akins from St. Louis vs Isaac Logart from Havana.  Chris Schenkel reports from the St. Nicolas Arena.  Bout was fought on Aug 8th.  (filmed boxing match, was received live from ABC network)
9:45pm Sports Spotlight-Miller-(assumed live local sportscast)
10:00pm News-Roundup(anchors, format all unknown but assumed local studio production-perhaps with Bruce Hayward
10:15pm Championship Bowling-(unknown source)

Tuesday, August 23
4:30pm Brand 36 Corral-"Feud of the Trail" Tom Tyler also another chapter of the serial "Red Barry" starring Buster Crabbe(possible live in studio kids show, with kids in a studio audience with film features)
6:00pm Soupy Sales-Kids(ABC-live from Detroit)
6:15pm News-John Daley(ABC live from network)
6:30pm Sports Kaleidoscope-(unknown source)
6:35pm Dugout Chatter-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
6:40pm Great Sports Moments-(live-Cardinal Network)
6:45pm Warm Up Time-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
6:55pm Baseball-"Cardinals vs. New York Giants" from the Polo Grounds in N.Y.-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
9:40pm Sports Highlights-(source unknown)
9:45pm Name the Face-Quiz-(source unknown)
9:50pm The Scoreboard-Miller-(assumed live local)

10:00pm News-Roundup
10:10pm Weather-Forecast
10:15pm Million Dollar Movie-"The French Key" with Albert Dekker, Mike Mazurki

As you look through these listings it becomes obvious that KTVI didn't purchase much programming material, or didn't have it available to purchase.  Movies were run and rerun up to 3 times a week....Even "Championship Bowling" which was probably syndicated(or available through ABC Kinescope) was run and rerun.  Network programming was sparse, having only aired one CBS and one DuMont program the entire week, and only a handful of ABC programs. 

The only big program on the KTVI schedule were the St. Louis Cardinal away game telecast schedule.  Their coverage of the St. Louis MLB franchise was incredibly important to the station and probably was the factor which contributed to its existence in the future!

ABC by time time was airing many shows which were not aired on KTVI, showing the networks lack of enthusiasm about their affiliate.  Shows on ABC but not on KTVI include: You Asked for It, Names the Same, Twenty Questions, Make Room for Daddy, Disneyland, Stu Erwin Show, Lone Ranger, Kraft Television Theater, Rin Tin Tin, Ozzie and Harriet, Dollar a Second, Dotty Mack Show and others.

(TV Guide Schedule
 from the Doug Quick Collection)
Wednesday, August 24
12:00pm Sports Kaleidoscope-(unknown source)
12:05pm Dugout Chatter-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
12:10pm Great Sports Moments-(live-Cardinal Network)
12:15pm Warm Up Time-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
12:25pm Baseball-"Cardinals vs. New York Giants" from the Polo Grounds in N.Y.-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
3:10pm Sports Highlights-(source unknown)
3:15pm Name the Face-Quiz-(source unknown)
3:20pm The Scoreboard-Miller-(assumed live local)
3:30pm Movie-Western-"The Man from Utah"(local film-repeat from earlier presentation on Sat, 4:30pm)
4:30pm Brand 36 Corral-"Trigger Fingers" Johnny Mack Brown also another chapter of the serial "Red Barry" starring Buster Crabbe(possible live in studio kids show, with kids in a studio audience with film features)
6:00pm Soupy Sales-Kids(ABC-live from Detroit)
6:15pm News-John Daley(ABC live from network)
6:30pm News-Roundup-(local origination newscast)
6:45pm Tell it to the Mayor-(local origination-public affairs)
7:00pm Championship Bowling-(unknown source)
8:00pm Sands of Time-(unknown subject/source)
8:15pm Sacred Heart Show-discussion by Wm. K. Schweinher, S.J.(assumed religious paid program)
8:30pm International Playhouse-(DuMont kinescope-dramatic anthology series with short foreign films and other foreign made dramatic stories, originally ran 1951)
9:00pm Boxing-New York-Russ Hodges reports-(also called "Pabst Blue Ribbon Bouts" live from ABC network)
9:45pm Great Sports Thrills-(format unknown/source unknown)
10:00pm News-Roundup
10:10pm Weather-Forecast
10:15pm Million Dollar Movie-"The French Key" with Albert Dekker, Mike Mazurki
(repeat of movie which previously on Tuesday, Aug 23)
Thursday, August 25
4:30pm Sports Kaleidoscope-(unknown source)
4:35pm Dugout Chatter-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
4:40pm Great Sports Moments-(live-Cardinal Network)
4:45pm Warm Up Time-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
4:55pm Baseball-
"Cardinals vs. Philidelphia Phillies" from Connie Mack Stadium in Philadelphia-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)Note: between games news by Bruce Hayward will be followed by the second game at approximately 7:55pm)
10:40pm Sports Highlights-(source unknown)
10:45pm Name the Face-Quiz-(source unknown)
10:50pm The Scoreboard-Miller-(assumed live local)
11:00pm News and Weather
11:15pm Movie-"The French Key"(local film-third time this same movie has been scheduled this week)

Friday, August 26
4:30pm Brand 36 Corral-"Feud of the Trail" Tom Tyler also another chapter of the serial "Red Barry" starring Buster Crabbe(possible live in studio kids show, with kids in a studio audience with film features)
6:00pm Soupy Sales-Kids(ABC-live from Detroit)
6:15pm News-John Daley(ABC live from network)
6:30pm Sports Kaleidoscope-(unknown source)
6:35pm Dugout Chatter-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
6:40pm Great Sports Moments-(live-Cardinal Network)
6:45pm Warm Up Time-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
6:55pm Baseball-"Cardinals vs. Philidelphia Phillies" from Connie Mack Stadium in Philadelphia-(live-Cardinal Network-KTVI)
9:40pm Sports Highlights-(source unknown)
9:45pm Name the Face-Quiz-(source unknown)
9:50pm The Scoreboard-Miller-(assumed live local)

10:00pm News-Roundup
10:10pm Weather-Forecast
10:15pm Million Dollar Movie-"The Kansan" with Richard Dix








"Roller Derby" aired for several years on WTVI and KTVI on Saturday evenings at 6pm


The TV listings called this one "Concert" to keep from calling it by its sponsored name, "The Voice of Firestone."


"The Big Picture" were half hour public relations features produced for and about the U.S. Military.  It was also a great recruitment tool being provided any and all TV stations at no charge.


This half hour film series was scripted dramas with a religious theme.  It was furnished by the Seventh Day Adventist Church and was hosted by Rev. William A. Sagal.
  

WTVI Sales Department Recovers

In late August 1954, the WTVI sales department added to its ranks with the appointment of Paul R. Litt. It's unknown Mr. Litt's role within the department. In early September WTVI would change its national representative from Weed to Radio TV Representatives Inc.. Also in early September Edgar L. Franciscus was added to the sales department at WTVI. He was formerly an account executive at KXOK Radio. It also seems that the situation with KSTM brought about an exodus of personell and with that, WTVI also picked up a new accountant with the appointment of former KSTM accountant Seral A. Smith.

The Call Letters of KTVI Would Become Available

As it happened a station in Nampa, Idaho, KTVI(TV) owned by Idaho Broadcasting and TV Company merged with another broadcast owner.  In November of 1954 the FCC deleted the former channel 6 KTVI call letters at the request of their attorney. 

Promotional Activity at WTVI

Before the holidays in 1954, WTVI hosted the Cerebral Palsy Telethon. During the charitable initiative pledges were at the $80,000 mark by early January with both pledged and unpledged funds still coming into the station. John D. Scheuer Jr. said the talent lineup for the Dec 17-19 telethon included personalities from a dozen other local TV and radio outlets, plus the services of 4300 volunteer workers. The talent lineup included Ted Mack, Mel Torme, Joe Garagiola and 200 other radio/tv personalities.

On January 11, 1955 the sales department at WTVI hosted 198 Ad Club retail members at a luncheon. At the luncheon the station hired models to pass out a simulated alligator wallet to everyone which contained a new dollar bill with the following message: “This we hope is just one of the many dollars that will make more sales for you on WTVI by buying more audience for less money.” At the luncheon John D. Scheuer Jr. described how WTVI pioneered TV in the St. Louis market.

WTVI moves to St. Louis and Becomes KTVI


The failure of KSTM was a particular lucky break for WTVI. After the KSTM construction permit was turned back to the FCC on September 15, 1954, a decision by Signal Hill Telecasting would bring new life back to Channel 36, not as KSTM, but as WTVI. A request by Signal Hill Telecasting to the FCC would relocate the facilities of WTVI to the then defunct KSTM facilities. The wording of the request included the phrase, “receive and operate” the facilities.

If granted, Signal Hill said it would begin operating within one week of FCC approval. It said it would double its present power to 500kw on channel 36 and change its call letters to KTVI to reflect its change of operation west of the Mississippi River. Signal Hill would also surrender its construction permit on channel 54 back to the FCC.

WTVI at that time was affiliated at least loosely with ABC, CBS and DuMont. The station in its application also stated that the move to the lower UHF channel would permit it to better serve the St. Louis area and save it nearly $50,000 a year in expenses. The savings would come from consolidating its two sales and business offices and reducing the amount the station pays for telephone charges($500 a month). The audience of WTVI was stated as 300,000 households, and described its ability to add to that number by broadcasting with higher power from St. Louis making receiving the signal more easily with inside antennas.

Its also true that UHF tuners of that era were better and simpler for reception of channel 36 than it was for the upper UHF channels like 54. Meanwhile, Belleville would still receive a Grade A signal. Arrangements would include a 15 year lease with the option to purchase the KSTM facilities. The cost of the lease would be about $700 a month, plus taxes and insurance.

General Electric agreed to take back the WTVI transmitter. The note on the KSTM properties, tower and antenna, transmitter building and studio building is held by the Bank of St. Louis. The balance sheet of WTVI by December 31, 1954, showed that WTVI had total assets of $661,701 with $73,712 as current assets. Its liabilities totaled $149,936 with long term obligations of $810,709 and holds an immediate debt of $521,944. WTVI reported a loss of $163,000 in 1954.

In March of 1955, channel 36 was granted to Signal Hill Telecasting Corporation and WTVI. One catch, though, would prevent WTVI from broadcasting simultaneously on channels 54 and 36. Signal Hill would have to surrender the construction permit for channel 54 at the time they would begin to broadcast on channel 36. Also, the FCC would grant the call letters of KTVI to Signal Hill.

By April, plans were announced by general manager and KTVI vice president John D. Scheuer Jr. that KTVI had applied for FCC approval for a power increase to a half-a-million watts by mid May of 1955. The promotional activity which surrounded the changing of WTVI, Channel 54 to KTVI, Channel 36 was detailed in an article in Broadcasting-Telecasting. The promotional budget was set at $60,000 and included full page color ads placed in the two metro daily newspapers (the Post-Dispatch and the St. Louis Globe-Democrat) and on radio, outdoor billboards, taxi and bus cards and other ad outlets.

The campaign was tied to the opening of the St. Louis Cardinal baseball season on April 12, 1955. It would work well, as KTVI would be airing the Cardinal games during the 1955 season. With the promotional activities and the change to channel 36, KTVI was expecting to increase its UHF circulation from 317,000 to 450,000 homes by the end of the baseball season. The station also expected another 20-25% increase in its coverage area when it powers up from 250 to 500kw with the expected FCC approval.

NTA Programming on KTVI

KTVI signs with a group of 19 stations with the heading of “National Affiliated Television Stations, Inc..” NATS is backed by GE and National Telefilm Association which holds the rights to over 700 hours of film which will be turned over to the newly formed organization.

Other stations would be granted loans from GE and deferred film rentals from NTA. NATS would handle promotions and sale campaigns at the local level as well. Out of the 19 stations involved, only three had requested financial assistance, but more affiliates were expected to be added to the list. Other stations in central Illinois which were part of the group included WEEK(Peoria) and WBLN(Bloomington).

Management Shake-Up at WTVI

In July of 1955, after a period of time of extreme gamble and growth, John D. Scheuer Jr. announced his resignation from Signal Hill Telecasting and WTVI. He would take a the position of director of public relations and programming for a group of stations owned by The Triangle Station Group owners of WFIL AM-FM-TV in Philadelphia; WNBF AM-TV Binghamton, New York; and 50% of WHGB Radio in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Rumblings of an Additional Allocation at Channel 2 for St. Louis

During 1955 the controversial assignments of all VHF markets, all UHF markets and those intermixed markets with both VHF and UHF allocations and stations were getting a lot of attention. That attention was coming from station applicants and owners, community leaders and the FCC. The fact that so many of those early UHF broadcast pioneers were failing among other successful VHF stations was an incredibly unfair situation for those early UHF broadcasters. It was difficult to understand why the FCC would be so naive as to allow a broadcast business model which would doom so many investors!

When Springfield, Illinois would be granted allocations on channel 2, 20 and an educational station on channel 26 it set up a scenario which would make it difficult for the FCC to grant a permit for channel 2. If more than one applicant filed for that VHF station, it would automatically tie up the grant for years. It was much more of a sure thing to request the allocation for a UHF station which would not be quite so attractive to other applicants. When Elmer Balaban and his company requested channel 20, the grant was a much simpler process. Meanwhile, there were three meaningful applications for channel 2 in Springfield.

When it seemed a nearly impossible impasse was taking place within the FCC, talk was beginning on the concern of the television situation in St. Louis, and the desire of broadcasters to make St. Louis a four commercial VHF station market with one educational station.

There were many proposals made by various entities involved. Some were quite extreme such as one plan which would drop in VHF stations throughout Illinois. Mentioned in this plan was the drop in of channel 3 for Harrisburg(which actually occurred later), channel 6 in Bloomington, channel 7 to Decatur, channel 10 and 13 to Peoria, channel 11 to Galesburg and channel 8 to Cairo. In this plan, Channel 2 would go to St. Louis.

Many meetings would take place with owners of area stations with the FCC. Owners like Elmer Balaban representing WTVO(Rockford) and WICS(Springfield) as well as Harry Tenenbaum of KTVI(St. Louis). The FCC would be in favor of intermixing VHF and UHF stations while a number of central Illinois stations filed petitions with the FCC to eliminate the VHF stations for Springfield and Peoria. WTVP(Decatur), WEEK and WTVH(Peoria) filed such petitions among others.

Even ABC got involved with a plan to bring about additional VHF stations in markets where there are two or more commercial VHF stations and removing VHF stations in markets where there are existing UHF stations having a good chance of survival. Their plain would also give ABC VHF affiliates in markets which would equalize their prominence in markets where other networks have VHF affiliates.

In November of 1955, the FCC “wiped the deintermixture slate clean” denying all pending petitions to transform mixed VHF/UHF markets into VHF or UHF only markets and set the stage for a complete overhaul of the FCC's allocation system. This action specifically denied the five pending cases of deintermixture cases around the country including that for Peoria and Springfield.

Soon after that action by the FCC, speculation began that the FCC would extend the deadline for comments on the KTVI, channel 2 question. In fact, by later in the month the FCC would would conduct hearings for Peoria and Springfield which would tentatively award or favor those allocations to a particular applicant. For channel 2, the FCC favored Sangamon Valley TV Corporation which was affiliated with WTAX Radio in Springfield.

Results of an FCC Questionaire

In February of 1956 the results of an FCC poll on TV allocation problems was released. The findings stated that most UHF stations wanted VHF stations to reduce power, while others wanted additional VHF allocations and that they be given the chance to apply for those.  Among the St. Louis stations, KWK-TV opposed VHF drop-ins and deintermixture. Naturally, they had their VHF allocation, the hell with everybody else.   KTVI, Channel 36 requested the FCC re-allocate channel 2 to St. Louis from Springfield, Illinois and that Signal Hill Telecasting Corporation be assigned channel 2.

By July of 1955 the re-allocation of channel 2 to St. Louis seemed doomed. The FCC went against its previous near decision and awarded channel 2 to WMAY-TV Incorporated. It did contain one caveat in which the holders of the allocation be restricted from construction until another permit was issued. In other words, the FCC promises to grant you your television station, but don't count on it. We may break our promise....which makes a promise, not a promise and a grant, not a grant!

The next month the legality of the FCC's conditional grant to WMAY-TV were questioned by the FCC Broadcast Bureau. According to the FCC BB, the grant for channel 2(and for channel 8 in Peoria) were made following the FCC's now famous June 26
Report and Order on TV Allocations. In September of 1956, the FCC finally recognizes the actions of taking channel 8 from Peoria and sending the allocation to the Quad Cities (Moline, Davenport, East Moline, Bettendorf). This would add channel 25 to the Peoria list of allocations.

The re-allocation of channel 2 from Springfield to St. Louis was also mentioned making Springfield all UHF. This trial balloon by the FCC would also give channel 39 along with channels 20 and 66 to Springfield and channel 49 to Lincoln, Illinois. It's interesting to note that by adding channel 39 to Springfield, the 6 channel separation between allocated channels would be broken. Meanwhile, St. Louis would end up with channels 2, 4, 5, 9, 11, 36 and 42.

The Week of April 27,1957                            Program Listings of KTVI, Channel 2, St. Louis, Missouri
The local television news section on this edition of the TV Guide included this:  Station KTVI in St. Louis completed its changeover of channel numbers last week, and this edition of TV Guide begins listing their log this week.  The station, previously Ch. 36, will telecast seven days a week from 2pm to midnight.  This is the first week of listings for KTVI at Channel 2.
Saturday, April 27
1:15
pm Baseball Preview(live-Cardinal Network KTVI)
1:25pm Baseball-Cardinals meet the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field in Chicago.  Harry Caray, Joe Garagiola and Jack Buck report(Live-Cardinal Network  KTVI)

5:00pm Big Picture(Army furnished film feature, this time from CBS)
5:30pm Film Feature(assumed local origination, subject unknown)
6:00pm Roller Derby-(assumed syndicated on film or kinescope)
6:30pm Famous Film Festival-"Stranger in Between" 1952 with Dirk Bogarde(from ABC network)
8:00pm Wrestling-(assumed syndicated on film for kinescope)
9:00pm Ozark Jubilee-Variety, with host Red Foley with guests: Gene Vincent, Brenda Lee and others, origination: Springfield, Missouri(ABC live from network)
10:00pm Movie-to be announced
11:30pm News, Weather
11:45pm Movie- "Love in Exile" 1936 with Helen Vinson, Clive Brook

Sunday, April 28
1:15pm Baseball Preview(live-Cardinal Network KTVI)
1:25pm Baseball-Cardinals meet the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field in Chicago.  Harry Caray, Joe Garagiola and Jack Buck report(Live-Cardinal Network  KTVI)

4:00pm Dean Pike-Comments, Dean Pike host(unkown format/source)
4:30pm Open Hearing-John Secondari(ABC-public affairs interview program)
5:00pm Oral Roberts-Religion(possible paid religious program)
5:30pm Film Feature "Henry the Rainmaker" (unknown subject/source)
6:00pm Film Feature (unknown subject/source)
6:30pm Hollywood Film Theater "The Locket" with Laraine Day, Robert Mitchum(ABC network)
8:00pm Kate Smith(SPECIAL)- Variety, guests: Ed Wynn, Benny Goodman, Boris Karloff, Gertrude Berg along with Charlie McCarthy and Edgar Bergen(live from ABC network)
9:00pm Mike Wallace(DEBUT) interview program with yet to be determined guest(live from ABC network)
9:30pm International Playhouse-(unknown format/source)
10:00pm Movie "Young and Willing" 1943
11:30pm News, Weather
11:45pm Movie- to be announced
Monday, April 29
2:00pm Afternoon Film Festival-Drama "Fools Rush In" 1949- Don Gardiner is host(ABC live from network)
3:30pm Movie "Below the Deadline" 1946 with Warren Douglas(local movie origination)
4:30pm Buck Rogers-Adventure(syndicated movie serial with Buster Crabbe, local origination)
5:00pm Top Plays of '57-Drama(unknown format/source)
5:30pm By Line, Steve Wilson(unknown format/source)
6:00pm Kukla, Fran and Ollie-kids(ABC live from network)
6:15pm News-John Daly(ABC live from network)
6:30pm Wire Service-drama, starring Mercedes McCambridge (ABC live from network)
7:30pm Voice of Firestone-classical music concert(ABC live from network)
8:00pm Press Conference-Martha Rountree moderates interview with Wilber M. Brucker, Secretary of the Army(ABC live from network)
8:30pm Movie-"The Cobra Strikes" starring Sheila Ryan(local movie origination)
9:30pm Orient Express-(unknown format/source)
10:00pm Movie-"Love from a Stranger" 1947 starring Sylvia Sidney, John Hodiak(local movie origination)
11:30pm News, Weather
11:45pm Nightcap-with Chuck Norman
Tuesday, April 30
2:00pm Afternoon Film Festival-Drama "The Golden Salamander" 1950
3:30pm Movie "Philo Vance's Gamble" 1947 Alan Curtis(local movie origination)
4:30pm Buck Rogers-Adventure(syndicated movie serial with Buster Crabbe)
5:00pm Top Plays of '57-Drama(unknown format/source)
5:30pm By Line, Steve Wilson(unknown format/source)
6:00pm Kukla, Fran and Ollie-kids(ABC live from network)
6:15pm News-John Daly(ABC live from network)
6:30pm Labor Views the News(unknown format/source)
7:00pm Baseball Preview(live-Cardinal Network KTVI)
7:10pm Baseball-Cardinals meet the Pittsburgh Pirates at Forbes Field in Pittsburg.  Harry Caray, Joe Garagiola and Jack Buck report(Live-Cardinal Network  KTVI)
9:45pm Film Short-(local origination-format/source unknown)
10:00pm Movie "Fog Island" 1945 starring Lionel Atwill(local movie origination)
11:30pm News, Weather
11:45pm Nightcap-Chuck Norman




Wednesday, May 1
2:00pm Afternoon Film Festival-Drama "A Queen is Crowned" 1953
3:30pm Movie "Army Wives" 1944 with Elyse Knox(local movie origination)
4:30pm Buck Rogers-Adventure(syndicated movie serial with Buster Crabbe)
5:00pm Top Plays of '57-Drama(unknown format/source)
5:30pm By Line, Steve Wilson(unknown format/source)
6:00pm Kukla, Fran and Ollie-kids(ABC live from network)
6:15pm News-John Daly(ABC live from network)
6:30pm China Smith-adventure(unknown format/source)
7:00pm Sport Car News-Honig(unknown format/source)
7:30pm Movie "Sweetheart of Sigma Chi" 1946 Phil Regan(local movie origination)
9:00pm Boxing(special)-from Chicago(ABC live from network)
9:45pm News, Weather(local origination)
10:00pm Movie "Golden Boy" 1939 with Barbra Stanwyck(local movie origination)
11:30pm News, Weather
11:45pm Nightcap-Chuck Norman
Thursday, May 2
2:00pm Afternoon Film Festival-Drama "Caravan" 1946- Don Gardiner is host(ABC live from network)
3:30pm Movie "A Wave, a WAC and a Marine" 1944 Elyse Knox(local movie origination)
4:30pm Buck Rogers-Adventure(syndicated movie serial with Buster Crabbe, local origination)
5:00pm Top Plays of '57-Drama(unknown format/source)
5:30pm By Line, Steve Wilson(unknown format/source)
6:00pm Kukla, Fran and Ollie-kids(ABC live from network)
6:15pm News-John Daly(ABC live from network)
6:30pm Sports-Bill Corum(assumed local origination)
6:45pm Baseball Preview(live-Cardinal Network KTVI)
6:55pm Baseball-Cardinals meet the Brooklyn Dodges at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn.  Harry Caray, Joe Garagiola and Jack Buck report(Live-Cardinal Network  KTVI)
10:00pm Movie "The Lone Wolf Returns" 1936 with Arthur Hohl(local movie origination)
11:30pm News, Weather
11:45pm Nightcap-Chuck Norman


Friday, May 3
2:00pm Afternoon Film Festival-Drama "Both Sides of the Law" 1954- Don Gardiner is host(ABC live from network)
3:30pm Movie "Forgotten Women" 1949 Elyse Knox(local movie origination)
4:30pm Buck Rogers-Adventure(syndicated movie serial with Buster Crabbe, local origination)
5:00pm Top Plays of '57-Drama(unknown format/source)
5:30pm By Line, Steve Wilson(unknown format/source)
6:00pm Kukla, Fran and Ollie-kids(ABC live from network)
6:15pm News-John Daly(ABC live from network)
6:30pm Film Short-(subject uknown-assumed local source)
6:45pm Baseball Preview(live-Cardinal Network KTVI)
6:55pm Baseball-Cardinals meet the Brooklyn Dodges at Roosevelt Field in Jersey City.  Harry Caray, Joe Garagiola and Jack Buck report(Live-Cardinal Network  KTVI)
10:00pm Movie "Crime Doctor's Gamble" 1947 with Warner Baxter(local movie origination)
11:30pm News, Weather
11:45pm Nightcap-Chuck Norman


(TV Guide Schedule
 from the Doug Quick Collection)



The Channel 2 Controversy

When the FCC made advances to award channel 2 to WMAY-TV and channel 8 to Peoria and WIRL-TV it appeared that both Springfield and Peoria would be permanently intermixed. There were entities and owners from both sides of the issue making statements, filing protests and petitions to the FCC to try to sway the Commission to either continue or in what seemed to be an incredible uphill battle have them contradict their initial decisions.

Both WMAY-TV and WIRL-TV had asked the FCC to reconsider their prohibition against construction on the newly granted channels. Meanwhile WMAY-TV was granted an extension of time to respond to a rehearing and reconsideration filed in channel 2 proceedings on July 30, 1956. The FCC's Broadcast Bureau came forth in late August to question the legality of the FCC's conditional grants for Springfield and Peoria. The Broadcast Bureau stated that all permittees should be treated equally, whether they received grants before or after the deintermixture proposals.

By early September the FCC floats another trial balloon which would move the allocation of channel 2 to St. Louis and send channel 8 to Peoria. It would also add channel 39 to Springfield to give Springfield allocations for channels 20, 39 and 66, while Lincoln, Illinois would get channel 49. St. Louis would have allocations for channels 2, 4, 5, 9, 11, 36 and 42. Peoria would get the addition of channel 25 to their current channels including 19 and 43.

There were other intermixture/deintermixture plans put forth during the fall of 1956. One plan was calling for all TV channels to be only on the UHF band. This plan was ultimately called “too radical” by the FCC. Others backed the FCC with that decision including CBS, NBC, RCA, NARTB, several states organizations and others. RCA/NBC made recommendations that deintermixture continue and with the use of directional antennas, repeal of the excise tax on all-channel receivers and the encouragement of qualified owners/operators for UHF stations, the problems would be eliminated. The FCC stated that comments from interested parties be submitted by October 1, 1956.

Over 200 comments on the feasibility of moving all channels to UHF poured into the FCC. The consensus: the VHF stations said “no” with many of the largest broadcast groups urged the existing policies to continue. UHF stations made comments which included VHF drop-ins(many of those drop-ins would be taken by current UHF broadcasters), cut VHF transmitter outputs to eliminate the VHF stations from blanketing smaller adjacent community UHF outlets. They also warned against UHF stations with super power outputs which could do the same thing as these high powered VHF stations.

Two weeks later, the FCC invited comments due by November 15, 1956 on a proposed action which would send channel 2 to St. Louis, move channel 36 to Springfield, substituting channel 49 for channel 29 in Jacksonville. One note on the channel 36 move, would involve the concern of the station meeting minimum spacing and coverage requirements.

The day after the deadline for comments, WICS, Channel 20 in Springfield filed to delete channel 2 from Springfield and assign it to St. Louis along with Terre Haute. WICS also proposed an idea which would add channel 26 and either 36 or 39 to Springfield along with education allocation for channel 66.

By December 10, 1956 the industry was introduced to an FCC proposed plan which would give the city of Springfield allocations for channels 20, 39, 66*, St. Louis with 2, 4, 5, 9*, 11, 30, 36 and 42. As you would expect central Illinois UHF stations WICS, WTVP along with St. Louis' KTVI were all in favor. ABC favored the proposal which would give the network a St. Louis VHF affiliate. WTHI-TV, Terre Haute, was in favor of channel 2 to Salem, Illinois. WCIA(Channel 3), Champaign, Illinois proposed the addition of channel 26 and 36 to Springfield. A radio station group from Cape Giraudeau stated that channel 2 should go to that city much further south of St. Louis along the Mississippi River. WSIL, Carbondale, Illinois asked that the FCC deny Cape Giraudeau and favored the rule that would place channel 2 in St. Louis, but place channel 3 in Harrisburg, Illinois. Also, as you would expect, WMAY-TV reported to favor leaving channel 2 in Springfield.

Pieces of the St. Louis TV Puzzle Fall into Place

On January 21, 1957, the FCC announcement was made public on several pending controversial proposals which involved St. Louis television stations of the present and future. Among the decisions, channel 11 in St. Louis was granted to CBS, Inc.. Channel 2 was being moved from Springfield, Illinois to St. Louis and was awarded to Signal Hill Telecasting Co. owners/operators of KTVI(TV), Channel 36 effective April 15, 1957. Meanwhile, WMAY-TV was awarded channel 36 for Springfield, Illinois. Also effecting central Illinois, channel 8 was moved from Peoria to Rock Island, Illinois. WIRL-TV was soon to be granted to channel 25.

Challenges to the Channel 2 Move Come Forward

In March the FCC, expecting a backlash of protests, wanted to arm themselves with enough ammunition to logically explain their decision on channel 2. KTVI was asked to furnish an engineering study by April 1, 1957 before beginning to temporarily operate on channel 2. KTVI admitted that the station has lost in excess of $1-million since going on the air in 1953.

It was also noted that WMAY-TV had agreed to merge with the other group (WTAX) if granted free and clear channel 2, but with the prospect of getting a UHF station in exchange, has called off that proposed merger and was considering to file a court appeal. Also, being announced, was the expected court appeal by WIRL-TV in Peoria.

In March the FCC defended its actions before a Senate Commerce Committee. Illinois was represented by Rep. William Springer(R) of Illinois' District 22 which covered southwestern Illinois. He complained that there were no TV stations in his district, noting that at least one of the St. Louis stations should be licensed for the Illinois side of the river. He stated that the FCC should consider distribution of TV stations from state to state as well as city to city.

Representative John V. Beamer(R-Indiana) questioned the many split votes of the FCC and questioned why there have been so many. He noted that perhaps the FCC laws were either weak or that the FCC had failed to establish “some specific policy.” FCC Chairman McConnaughey stated that UHF has been quite successful in parts of Indiana and Illinois and felt the the future would be bright due to upcoming developments of high powered UHF transmitters, better receivers and antennas that UHF would eventually be “very comparable” to VHF. He also thought that two UHF's could survive in cities with one VHF.

McConnaughey also made the statement that the deintermixture had been successful in Springfield, Illinois. Representative Peter F. Mack Jr.(D-Ill) contended that the people of Springfield, which he represents, did not agree. Mack called the moving of channel 2 to St. Louis and the awarding to KTVI as “a disgraceful episode to follow the channel 2 application.”

Not So Fast....!(Part 1)

A “blistering” attack to the FCC was made in mid March of 1957 from Lon Hocker, a St. Louis attorney and head of a company which plans to file for channel 2. Hocker was president of the Louisiana Purchase Co.. He wired the FCC that his firm had an option to purchase the site which was home to short lived KACY, Channel 14 licensed to Festus, Missouri, and was preparing to operate on channel 2 and was to file an application for the newly established VHF allocation. Hocker said, “We regard today's action....so quickly as to foreclose opportunity of others to show that temporary grant to them would better serve public interests, as in violation of due process of law” and in contravention of the Communications Act. He added his proposed facility would better meet the requirements of spacing of channel 2 from the proposed channel 2 in Terre Haute, Indiana.

By March 22 1957, KTVI formerly applied for channel 2. Louisiana Purchase Co. filed earlier the same week for channel 2. KTVI didn't waste anytime on its plans to convert to channel 2. Amidst protests from Louisiana Purchase, KTVI took channel 36 off the air and proceeded to replace the stations transmitter and antenna.

Lon Hocker went to the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington for permission to file a petition for writ of mandamus, to force the FCC to resend its authorization to KTVI. Without an argument by counsel, the three judge court refused to accept the petition.

Meanwhile, additional opposition was coming from Cape Girardequ TV Co with the principal of V. W. Lillard, claimed his company was denied the due process of law and was injured by the FCC action. He opposed any use of channel 2 in St. Louis or channel 36 in Springfield until the courts had reviewed the FCC Action.

After the Louisiana Purchase application was filed the stockholders were revealed. There were nine with the most notable being Lon Hocker(former director of the Globe-Democrat Publishing Co., 23% owner of KWK-TV): William O. and Charles W. DeWitt(former majority stock holders of the old St. Louis Browns); Ethan A. H. Sepley(a trustee of K ETC-TV-educational station); John R. Shepley(less than 1% owner of KWK-TV); and George J. Nooney(profession unknown). They proposed a channel 2 with a maximum allowable wattage of 100kw broadcasting with an RCA antenna atop a nearly 1,000 foot tower from the former site of KACY(TV) in Jefferson County, Missouri. Construction costs of $448,352 were planned along with first year costs of $1,500,000. The group also said that this location would meet all millage requirements for channel 2 in Terre Haute, Indiana.

It was described as a hornets nest of activity around the FCC action in the channel 2 case, the FCC denied that request by Louisiana Purchase asking for the stay of KTVI's conversion to channel 2. WMAY-TV asked the FCC to reconsider its action, KWK filed a protest against KTVI and the Sangamon Valley TV Corp.(WTAX) protested and asked for a rehearing. St. Louis Telecast agreed with the channel 2 move to St. Louis but objected to the KTVI assignment to the channel. In support of the FCC's decision WICS, Channel 20, Springfield filed in support of the FCC decision.




A Change at the Top of the New VHF KTVI


The week before the channel 2 conversion, Signal Hill Telecasting announces a new leader. J. J. Bernard resgined as vice president and general manager of WGR AM-TV in Buffalo, New York to become vice president and general manager of the board of Signal Hill and station KTVI(TV).


(from Broadcasting-Telecasting)

Three weeks after the shut down of channel 36 from the Bethold Avenue studios and transmitter site, the new KTVI(TV), Channel 2 would go on the air March 15, 1957. KTVI(TV) from that time on was listed and contracted to be a basic ABC affiliate. This would bring ABC another VHF affiliate in one of the major U. S. markets.

In early April, it was announced that KTVI would be home to the St. Louis Cardinals for the 1957 baseball season. By mid April KTVI(TV) had appointed Blair TV its national sales representative.

In May of 1957, the former promotions manager of KWK-TV and moved to KTVI as assistant to the promotions manager there. Later that same month, the FCC extended the permit for KTVI to operate on channel 2 through at least February 1, 1959 or until an applicant is awarded the construction permit for the facility. Along with the current operator at channel 2, Signal Hill was challenged by the upstart Louisiana Purchase.



ABC Salutes KTVI, It's New Basic Affiliate

ABC needed major market VHF affiliates to compete with the already established VHF, NBC and CBS network stations. This apparent VHF affiliate addition to the ABC roster was another step in gaining some equilibrium with the other full service networks. It was also at a time when ABC was getting aggressive with better and more attracting and expensive programming. As a result ABC was gaining popularity with viewers and becoming more competitive in the ratings as well as revenue.

In June of 1957, ABC with the help of KTVI and its national rep firm, Blair TV put together a special presentation called “No More St. Louis Blues” directed at national, regional and local advertisers in the St. Louis area, but it was primarily a salute to KTVI and its new Channel 2 dial position. It was a follow-up to a presentation earlier in the year at New York when ABC representatives claimed to be threatening NBC's second place ranking in billing and ratings. It was also announced that KTVI would carry almost all regular ABC programs by the fall of 1957.

“No Moe St. Louis Blues” was held at the Chase Hotel where Oliver Treyz, vice president in charge of ABC and J. Joseph Bernard, vice-president and general manager of KTVI were hosts. St. Louis was ranked 11 in U.S. retail sales and was a very important market for ABC. Interestingly enough in recent years, the ABC affiliate(now KDNL, Channel 30) has been listed as one of the lowest rated ABC affiliates in the nation!
ABC salutes KTVI with "No More St. Louis Blues!"  Pictured above at the promotional event are Jack Davis, vice president of Blair TV, Chicago; James Aubrey, vice president of programming and talent for ABC; J.Joseph Bernard vice president and general manager of KTVI; Joseph Thul, advertising manager of 7-Up St. Louis(and alternate sponsor of ABC's "Tales of Zoro"; and Oliver Treyz, vice president in charge of ABC.

(photo from Broadcasting-Telecasting)

ABC Shows Seen on KTVI

"Maverick"
"Lawman"
"Bonco"
"Wyatt Earp"
"Ozark Jubilee"
"Ozzie and Harriet"
"Lawrence Welk"
"The Donna Reed Show"
"The Real McCoys"
"77 Sunset Strip"
"American Bandstand"
"Leave it to Beaver"





“Cheyenne” Comes to St. Louis and KTVI


ABC was pulling out all the stops to include St. Louis as part of its promotional tours once KTVI became a “legitimate” television power in St. Louis. Clint Walker, who played the character of Cheyenne Bodie in the Warner Brothers production of ABC's “Cheyenne.”

KTVI's Bruce Hayward, its long time news editor and newscaster, hosted Walker on a KTVI telecast while he was in town for an appearance at a rodeo on June 2, 1957. The event was a benefit sponsored by the Alton Police Department with proceeds going to the Alton Police Youth Camp. During his appearance at the rodeo, he was selling autographs for $1 and permitting all fans to shoot his six shooter for $5. It's unknown how much money was raised for the Alton Police Youth Camp.



Clint Walker as "Cheyenne Bodie" in
ABC's "Cheyenne"



KTVI Gains New Leadership, a New Partner....and the Numbers are Revealed

By mid summer of 1957, Harry Tenenbaum became president of Signal Hill Broadcasting, while Paul E. Peltason replaced Tenenbaum as executive vice president of Signal Hill. It was at that time J. Joseph Bernard was appointed vice-president and general manager of KTVI.

By late summer, it was becoming more obvious that the channel 2 move to St. Louis was going to be a likelihood, with the only question being which company was going to broadcast from the lowest VHF channel. In fact the entire St. Louis television station line-up was very unsettled. It was during this time CBS was granted channel 11, then soon after CBS, preferring channel 4, agreed to purchase KWK-TV and gave(sold) their allocation to 220 Television with the stipulation that 220 would “settle” with the other applicants in the form of a cash payment.

It was from the sale of KWK-TV to CBS(KMOX-TV) that KTVI would pick up a new part owner and investor which would increase the viability of the station. The St. Louis Globe-Democrat in selling KWK-TV, in which they were 23% owner, would turn around and invest in its former competitor, KTVI as a 22.2% owner. According to the agreement, upon the FCC approved sale of KWK-TV to CBS, the newspaper would lend KTVI $360,000 and pay $31,000 for 310,000 shares of common stock.

The newspaper would take over two mortgages now held by Harry Tenenbaum and Paul E. Peltason amounting to $145,280. The agreement provides that $160,000 of the $360,000 will go to Tenenbaum and Peltason with $200,000 going into KTVI's capital. The $160,000, in was noted, would be considered partial payment on $795,500 due the two stockholders by the company, but no additional payments would be made to the two until the level of the $279,951 working capital is raised. The interst on the $360,000 loan is for five years at 4%.

Tenenbaum and Peltason agreed to surrender to the company 300 shares of 6% first preferred capitol stock. The two stockholders also agreed to subordinate their claims to the Globe-Democrat's loan. The Globe-Democrat also received option rights to purchase 100 shares of 6% first preferred capital stock for $10,000.

The addition of the Globe-Democrat as a part owner of KTVI also revealed some financial information about Signal Hill and KTVI. The KTVI balance sheet showed total assets of more than $575,450 with current assets listed at more than $142,750. The current liabilities were given at $124,800, fixed liabilities were $265,780 with total indebtedness at almost $1,189,925 and deficit at almost $1,365,000.

Tenenbaum and Peltason each owned 614,500 shares of common stock, 150 shares of first preferred and 900 shares of second preferred. Bernard T. Wilson owned 1,000 shares of common, while Riverside Insurance Company held 100 shares of first preferred.

KTVI Makes Headlines

It was the late 1950's and the United States public was intrigued and somewhat fearful of the Russian's first steps in what would become the space race of the 1960's. The Russian's launch of the first man-made satellites to orbit the earth was becoming quite a big part of the cold war paranoia, but it was also getting becoming an influence on the pop culture of the day.

KTVI cameraman Larry Johnson actually took the first film taken of “Sputnik II,” the bright white spot moving across the dark skies over St. Louis. His footage of the satellite was used on KTVI's local news coverage as well as by other ABC affiliates and the network.

Johnson made his historic films of “Sputnik II” at 5:30 one morning from the roof of a downtown St. Louis building, using a six inch lens and he filmed the bullet shaped satellite the full two minutes it was visible.



KTVI Sales Leadership Changes

Recently hired Shaun Murphy, who was sales director at KTVI was named national sales manager. Murphy's experience included stints at WATS in Sayre, Pennsylvania and at WTVE(TV) in Elmira, New York. He would coordinate sales activities at KTVI with the station's national representative, Blair TV Associates, Inc..

Not so Fast...!(Part 2 and the conclusion)

Now that the future of KTVI was looking somewhat bright, there was more motivation of Signal Hill Telecasting to fight....and fight hard against the application for channel 2 filed by the Louisiana Purchase Company. The FCC in early November of 1957 decided to consolidate the hearings which were for Louisiana Purchase Co which challenged the permit granted KTVI to operate on channel 2, and the request by Signal Hill(KTVI) for an upgrade from their special permit to a more permanent construction permit.

In early December of 1957, Signal Hill Telecasting asked the FCC to dismiss the competing application filed by Louisiana Purchase on the grounds that almost 10% of the company was owned by St. Louis Amusement Company which according the filing of KTVI is still a applicant for channel 11 in St. Louis. This according to KTVI was illegal as involvement in multiple applications in the same market were against FCC rules.

Louisiana Purchase responded by saying that it has not been demonstrated that its stock holder St. Louis Amusement has actual standing as an applicant and is expected to dispute the charge at either a January 10, 1958 pre-hearing conference or at the actual combined hearing on February 28, 1958.

Soon after, the FCC denied the request of Louisiana Purchase to terminate the temporary permit granted KTVI to operate on channel 2. That was a close one....for KTVI, but it still seemed that Signal Hill was still quite nervous about the challenge of Louisana Purchase.

Many early applicants of local television allocations solved problems by merging. This eliminated the sometimes long drawn out process of awarding construction permits for stations which many times took years. The best example in the St. Louis market were the fights for channel 4 and 11 which had been underway since 1953, some 5 years from that time.

In 1958, KTVI was offering a host of locally produced television programming.   Here KTVI
aired "The Tom Dailey Show" weekdays from 11:30 to 12:30 and the Fred Moegle Show on Saturdays from 11am to Noon.

(from Broadcasting-Telecasting)

The uncertainty of Signal Hill's future would surely be a problem if their ability to broadcast on channel 2 would be up for a long drawn out fight with even a much smaller adversary. That was the situation under which a solution would have to be found to bring Louisiana Purchase Company into the fold and eliminate their challenge. It was in early February before the FCC hearing that an agreement was reached and submitted to the FCC.

This agreement to merge would make Louisiana Purchase Company a 10% owner of Signal Hill Telecasting....right after the announced merger which would bring in the St. Louis Globe-Democrat newspaper! At this point the KWK-TV and CBS sale had not been approved. Remember, the merger of the Globe-Democrat with Signal Hill was contingent on the final sale of KWK-TV with CBS.

The principals of the Louisiana Purchase Company would individually pay 10 cents a share for an aggregate 135,190 shares of Signal Hill Telecasting stock. KTVI will repay the Louisiana Purchase $41,000 for out of pocket expenses the company made in the application process for channel 2 since the first filing. KTVI, meanwhile, retains the right to repurchase the 10% interest with a period of 3 years at $1.20 per share. The FCC examiner Herbert Sharfman closed the record and would issue an initial decision within a short period of time. Indeed, within a few days, the FCC gave an official approval of the initial decision by Sharfman.

In early March of 1958, the FCC approved the KWK-TV sale and the dominoes began to fall. Even though the channel 11 decision was on hold, the Globe-Democrat, as part owner of KWK-TV, would be bought out by CBS and would shift its ownership into Signal Hill Telecasting and KTVI. The closing of the purchase of KWK-TV by CBS, immediately made the newspaper a 26.2% owner of KTVI by mid March, 1958.

In very early April of 1958, the FCC granted the construction permit for channel 2 to Signal Hill Telecasting making the station the nearly free and clear owner of the channel without any more challenges....almost. The only “but” in the granting of channel 2 to KTVI was the possible mileage separation issue which could come up when the granting of channel 2 in Terre Haute, Indiana. Since channel 2 in Terre Haute had not yet been granted, it was assumed that the transmitter location of the Indiana station would be placed at the tower farm at Farmersburg, Indiana, south of Terre Haute. The mileage question would be an issue, but one which could be settled by off setting the frequency of the future channel 2 in Terre Haute, or with a directional antenna.



The Springfield Channel 2 Controversy Receives National Attention


In late May of 1958, the Springfield channel 2 story was probed in a legislative over site subcommittee involving Rep. Oren Harris (D-Ark) which revealed the first of several cases in which his committee charges the FCC had made decisions on channel grants made on the basis of personal relationships rather than by established criteria.  The case in question went back to June of 1956 when the grant of a permit for WMAY-TV to operate channel 2 in Springfield.  Top republicans were named as working behind the scenes on behalf of WMAY-TV, which was also competing with Sangamon Valley TV (whose one former part owner was related to former presidential candidate Adlai Stevenson, a Democrat).

Among the controversial charges was one made to Robert E. Lee, FCC commissioner who changed his vote to favor WMAY-TV after learning that Sangamon Valley TV had one owner related to a prominent Democrat owner,  Adlai Stevenson.  Commissioner Lee had changed his previous vote when he found out his previous vote would favor of “ a bunch of New Dealers,” meaning Democrats.

Orville Hodge, a former Illinois auditor who later served a term in prison for embezzling state funds, was responsible for swinging the grant to WMAY-TV.  Leonard Hall, then chairman of the National Republican Committee, at the urging of Mr. Hodge was active in working in favor of WMAY-TV.  Representatives Leslie C. Arends and Sid Simpson, both Republicans of Illinois also were brought to the case to favor WMAY-TV by Mr. Hodge. 

The staff attorney of Rep Oren Harris hurriedly assembled a report which researched the channel 2 grant and the rest of the St. Louis television situation.  The report questioned the following:  the move of channel 2 to St. Louis; the grant of channel 11 to CBS; CBS later purchase of KWK-TV; the assignment of channel 11 to 220 TV Incorporated as well as the St. Louis Globe-Democrat purchase of interest in KTVI and selling its stock to KWK-TV to CBS.

Representative Harris said the St. Louis actions were all “intertwined” with channel 2 in Springfield, Illinois and would show a pattern of grants from the FCC based on illegal contacts.  Subcommittee Chief Council Robert Lishman said he was reserving several questions on the matter saying, “it would appear that the ex parte pressures were more responsible for the decision that the announced standards themselves.... The so-called standards and reasons for decisions apparently have no substance in reality.”  He went on to say he was prepared to prove the charges “beyond a reasonable doubt.”

During interviews by Stephen Angland, the staff attorney of Representative Oren Harris,  the former, Illinois auditor, Orville Hodge as accused by several individuals as being the “mastermind” behind the alleged political influence behind the channel 2 decision.  In an interview with Orville Hodge from behind prison walls, where he was serving a 10 to 15 year sentence, he said he was asked to intervene in the case by close personal friends Louis and Herman Cohen.  Richard Cohen, the son of Louis Cohen was vice president and 18% owner of WMAY-TV.

Once the frequency shift took place, KTVI opened the flood gates to a barrage of ads to advertising agencies touting the benefits of advertising with the newly named permanent ABC affiliate for St. Louis.  This is one of dozens of similar ads placed in Broadcasting-Telecasting and other media publications at the time.

(from Broadcasting-Telecasting)


Hodge admitted talking to Representatives Arends and Simpson and Senator Everette Dirkson (R-Ill) on behalf of the WMAY application.  Hodge said he didn't remember talking to Leonard Hall and stated he had never met any FCC commissioners.  It was also stated by Oliver Keller  from the competing company, Sangamon Valley Broadcasting, that Leslie C. Johnson, vice-president and 25% owner of WHBF AM/TV in the Quad Cities, told him that Hodge was supporting WMAY because a construction company he owned would be building the WMAY-TV facility.

Mr. Keller also admitted that upon hearing about Hodge's company being involved directly in the proposed WMAY-TV he and the other three principal owners of Sangamon Valley met with Senator Dirkson.  Keller would tell Sen. Dirkson that his only political activity of Sangamon was a campaign to neutralize the “New Dealer” label for his company.  In fact, he would show Dirkson that all of the Sangamon principal owners were active Republicans except for the sister of two time Democratic presidential nominee Adlai Stevenson, and she only owned less than 5% of Sangamon. 

Even after the decision that the FCC vote had gone against Sangamon, Oliver Keller said his Washington council recommended it would be improper to reach out to the FCC commissioners.  Testimony from Representative Arends confirmed that Mr. Hodge had asked him to contact Commissioner Lee and urged him to give WMAY-TV a “fair shake.”  Soon after, representative(s) from Sangamon Valley contacted him when he immediately called the FCC to “get completely neutral.”  He also had lunch with Commissioner Lee, but did not get into the politics of the situation and never called anyone “a bunch of New Dealers.”

In later testimony Representative Simpson admitted he was a good friend of Mr. Hodge and was a frequent visitor of Hodge's office in Washington, but did not recall any conversations concerning channel 2 and did not have a “recollection in any shape or form” of ever contacting the FCC.

Richard A. Mack, a FCC commissioner who did not vote on the channel 2 grant testified that he was a recipient of a character recommendation for Lee Ruwitch, the current executive vice-president and general manager of WTVJ(TV) of Miami, Florida who was also vice-president of WMAY-TV, and would be the general manager of the Springfield VHF station. 
Also a part of the evidence was the record of several phone calls between FCC commissioner Mack and a Tampa, Florida attorney, Sam Buckalew.  The subject of at least one call was a memo on the channel 2 situation that was prepared for Commissioner Mack to relay to Buckalew.  According to records the Tampa attorney had loaned the commissioner money in the past.

Subcommittee Chairman Oren Harris', staff council Steven Angland testified that Attorney Buckalew was getting information for “a friend” with interest in the channel 2 case.  The identity of the friend was never released. 

In on-going testimony, Representative John Bell Williams (D-Miss) said he thought that all the applicants wanted was “a fair advantage.”  He went on to question, “How far will they go to obtain this advantage?” 

The Subcommittee Chief Counsel Robert Lishman felt that he thought it certain that a deal was made between WMAY and KTVI, in that he saw it that WMAY-TV had madde no effort to retain its right to channel 2 in Springfield.  He predicted that WMAY-TV has no intention to build and operate a channel 36 television station now.  Further questioning from others subcommittee members appeared to share the beliefs of Mr. Lishman.  WMAY-TV paraded a number of witnesses who defended the actions of the company and denied those allegations made by Mr. Lishman.

Subcommittee Chairman Harris (D-Ark) also stated that a number of letters were to be introduced to the committee which would show a “pattern of interference” with the FCC, not only in this case but others as well.

Others testifying on behalf of the testimony of Stephen Angland included the four stockholders of Sangamon Valley Broadcasting, Oliver Keller, Charles H Lanphier, C.W. Campbell and George W. Bunn Jr..  Each told of meeting with Senator Everette Dirkson (R-Ill) in which the senator would give them an “impression” that he (the senator) received  the information on the alleged shift of the vote of Commissioner Robert E. Lee from another FCC commissioner.  But their testimony would say that Commissioner Lee's name was ever mentioned at the meeting or at any other time.  Mr. Lanphier stated that Sen. Dirkson was “extremely upset” that Leonard Hall, the chairman of the Republican National Committee, should be interfering in the politics of the state of Illinois.

Sangamon's Oliver Keller, said Senator Dirkson had plans to talk to Mr. Hall about the channel 2 situation, but  was uncertain that nay talk took place.  When asked about this alleged meeting between Senator Dirkson and Leonard Hall of the National Republican committee, the senator replied, “I don't think its anybody's business.”   Throughout the subcommittee's questioning, Mr. Hall denied any role in the channel 2 case or any other matter before the FCC.
At this point the staff attorney to Orren Hatch, Stephen Angland said, “I believe that when this hearing is completed on channel 2, the Commission will have reason before it to set aside the award to WMAY-TV and to set aside the deintermixture order sending channel 36 to Springfield and channel 2 to St. Louis.”

Representative Peter Mack (D-Ill) who represented Springfield as part of his district called the decision to move channel 2 to St. Louis a “a gross violation of the basic law by the FCC.”  Stephen Angland would join Leonard Lishman in a suspicion that there was a “deal” between KTVI and WMAY-TV to allow the allocation to be shifted to St. Louis.  In fact by the time of the hearings, WMAY-TV was pretty much dissolved as a company with most of the players being scattered by the lack of any action on actually building a television station on channel 2 or 36.  WMAY-TV by that time had nothing to lose, but certainly could gain some kind of a “payoff” from Signal Hill and KTVI to let the allocation be shifted.  It was evidence of that “payoff” that was being sought by the Subcommittee with the opinions of both Angland and Lishman.

Stephen Angland said that fifteen months had passed and no station resulted at channel 36.  He went on to say that it appeared to him that Signal Hill seemed to know it was going to be on the receiving end of channel 2 from Springfield.  He even had an unsigned contract with General Electric dated January 25, 1957 by KTVI for equipment (assuming transmitter and antenna).  The permit was announced on February 26, 1957.  In fact, negotiations for VHF broadcast equipment had actually begun as early as Octoer 1956, and he had the documents to back it up!

The principals of WMAY-TV would also testify.  The group was represented by former US Senator and Democratic majority leader Scott Lucas, plus Washington counsel Marcus Cohn.  The three witnesses for WMAY-TV were Gordon Sherman, vice-president, Richard S. Cohen and Springfield restauranteur Herman Cohen (who had no stock interest).  All of their testimony admitted to no application of political pressure to benefit WMAY-TV.

Mr Sherman also stated that the FCC vote was 5 to 1 in favor of issuing the allocation of channel 2 to WMAY-TV.   In addition he would testify that the FCC examiner, Millard French, was trying his first television case and he, “had no background whatsoever in the field of communication.”  Mr. French, according to Sherman, failed to cover all of the facets of the decision, while the FCC decision did eventually granted channel 2 to WMAY-TV.

Sherman did respond to the allegations made by Angland and Lisham in angrily testifying that it had fought to the end to retain channel 2.   Mr. Lishman took issue with the statement and questioned Mr Sherman a length on the various petitions it filed with the FCC.  Lishman also presented a letter from January of 1958 from the mayor of Springfield, Nelson Howarth to Oliver Keller of Sangamon Valley Telecasting expressing concern that WMAY-TV didn't seem to want to fight for the retention of channel 2 for the Capitol City.

Sherman then shot back that a condition on WMAY-TV receiving the grant for channel 36 was that it not protest the move of channel 2 to St. Louis.  So, on the advise of counsel, WMAY-TV would not appeal the change to the courts.

Testimony from there would tell of a proposed merger with WTAX even after WMAY-TV had secured the grant.  He would offer evidence that WMAY-TV was still serious about putting a television station on channel 36 that included seeking network affiliation (although the network was not identified).  He also admitted that he was hoping that if he was going to be “stuck” with a UHF channel it be on channel 36 because used equipment was readily available with the former KSTM and KTVI and from General Electric. 

Sherman also would testify that he had received two visitors from KTVI by the name of Harry Tenenbaum and  Paul Peltason during early 1956 and at that time they told him that they were certain that channel 2 would be shifted to St. Louis. 

Gordon Sherman would also tell of a meeting with Orville Hodge on three different occasions.  Richard Cohen from WMAY-TV testified that Mr. Hodge told the group at least on one occasion that, “I'm your bookkeeper, I'm working for you.” 

Richard Cohen was evidently aware of the overall Republican statis of the stockholders of Sangamon Valley Telecasting, beyond the seemingly Democratic persuasion of Mrs Ives-the sister of Adlai Stevenson.  He testified that he had asked Mr. Hodge for “advise” on what WMAY-TV could do to counteract the “strong political position” that Sangamon was perceived to have in the contest, but never asked him to take any action.  He said he never discussed the WMAY-TV application with Orville Hodge or Leonard Hall or anyone else.   

Cohen would also say that he and his brother Louis had loaned WMAY-TV $13,000 to purchase a site for the proposed building which would be used as home base for WMAY-TV.  It was proposed to be a $175,000 facility, but owned by the Cohens and leased to the station.   

Mr. Cohen also denied knowing anything about two $7200 entries in Orville Hodge's “brown envelope” bank account.  One was allegedly a check by Hodge in payment to Louis Cohen and the second to the account of a “Mrs. Cohen” of Granite City, Illinois.

Next to tesify was KTVI's Harry Tenenbaum and Paul E. Peltson.  The account in Broadcasting-Telecasting included the first mention of any ex parte contacts, political influences and secret agreements to the arrive at the channel 2 shift to St. Louis. 

Harry Tenenbaum opened up a huge can of worms in his testimony which he readily offered before the Subcommittee.  He testified that he wrote many letters, made many phone calls and personal visits with FCC commissioners supporting the shift!  He did maintain his actions were legal and within the rules of the commission since the proceeding was a rule making nature.   He did deny that he sought channel 2 without a comparative hearing or by contacting commissioners while the KTVI application was being challenged by Louisiana Purchase.

Mr. Tenenbaum also denied having close contact with Commissioner Lee's office as a central point of operations during his many visits to Washington.  He admitted to taking 37 trips to Washington during this time while the Springfield deintermixture case was pending and had taken practically all of the FCC commissioners to lunch at various times!

After being questioned at great length about his trips to Washington, he said he couldn't remember specific conversations, but he also testified that he did not attempt to influence the FCC and that he was mostly interested only in the overall UHF problem, not merely the St. Louis-Springfield situation.  Tenenbaum also admitted to paying for lunches and even Christmas turkeys provided to FCC commissioners in both 1955 and 1956.   More on his other alleged improper activities later.
Chairman of the Subcommittee, Representative Oren Harris accused Tenenbaum as being “evasive” to which he said he wasn't.  Rep. Harris quickly responded with “But your are!”  Harris asked Tenenbaum if he felt that he did influence the FCC's channel 2 decision.  Mr. Tenenbaum answered with, “I don't think I did.”
One letter was submitted in evidence that included a statement that channel 2 would serve more people if it was in St. Louis rather than be left in Springfield.  Robert Lishman felt this was a key piece of evidence because it constituted an “off the record” argument and opponents of the move did not have a chance to answer.  With this statement by Mr. Lisman, Tenenbaum had no response.

Tenenbaum denied that he asked for any intervention by any government officials in behalf of Signal Hill and KTVI, specifically Senator Stuart Symington (D-Missouri).  Stephen Angland did bring up several contacts made by Senator Symington to Commissioner Richard A Mack while the case was pending.  According to UPI published reports Symington denied any influence on the channel 2 move to St. Louis.  There was at least an indirect connection as the senator's son Stuart Symington Jr. was a member in a St. Louis law firm which was hired by Harry Tenenbaum.  Symington, though, would admit according to a UPI report that he acted “in behalf of my constituents in Missouri.”  An aid to the senator responded that it was customary for the senator to contact government agencies in regards to any problems brought to his attention by constituents.  The aid said, “We don't try to settle them.”

Tenenbaum and Pelton were both questioned at great length by Stephen Angland concerning the early contact with General Electric for transmitter and antenna electronics for the channel 2.  They admitted at least some early talks were taking place in the fall of 1956, several months ahead of the grant which would be issued in March of 1957.  An article in Broadcasting-Telecasting would alert Harry Tenenbaum of the grant of channel 2 to KTVI.  He also stated that it was traditionally common to know of any FCC decision before it was actually announced. 

Mr. Tenenbaum did later testify that “someone in Washington” called him on January 18, 1957, which happened to the be same day a contract was signed with GE for the needed equipment for the channel 2 conversion.  Both Tenenbaum and Peltason denied any secrecy of the situation concerning the equipment or about any purposeful delay request to keep the equipment off the grounds of he facility prior to the announcement.  Mr. Anglund did submit as evidence a letter to GE from the chief engineer of KTVI stating, “We do not feel it advisable to have any of the equipment on the ground before authority is granted.”  According to Peltason, the contract specified a delivery date as March 15, 1957.

The questioning of Harry Tenenbaum then shifted to the hiring of a former FCC commissioner, that being Robert F. Jones, as counsel for Signal-Hill and KTVI.  Evidently Jones was hired in September of 1956 according to Mr. Tenenbaum's testimony, because of a difference in opinion between the station’s other Washington attorney's, Monroe Oppenheimer and William A. Roberts. 

Mr. Jones was paid a $5,000 retainer and another $50,000 nine months later.  Meanwhile William Roberts was paid only $5,000 of a $25,000 total fee.  Mr. Oppenheimer was consulted by Tenenbaum on the hiring of Robert Jones, but William Roberts was not, because Tenenbaum thought he might not want to deal with the advise of another communications lawyer.

With this Stephen Angland suggested that Robert Jones was hired to use his influence to get the FCC to shift channel 36 to Springfield, Illinois.  This was denied by Mr. Tenenbaum.  Angland continued by pointing out that the FCC had received no formal petition to shift the allocation of channel 36 to Springfield and Jones had been hired by KTVI just before the FCC came up with the proposal to move 36 to Springfield.  His proof consisted of records of contacts between Commissioner Mack in 1956.

Of course, Harry Tenenbaum denied any knowledge of Robert Jones making any informal request to shift channel 36, thus making it more logical that KTVI would be assigned channel 2.  He said he first learned the FCC was considering the shift of channel 36 to Springfield from a commissioner in the Fall of 1956.  He couldn't remember which commissioner had told him about it.

The affiliate agreement between KTVI and ABC was also questioned by the subcommittee.  Mr. Tenenbaum testified that KTVI never at at time state that the channel  number would change from 36 to VHF channel when the network contract was signed.  He said he couldn't give the network any assurance that the station would ever broadcast on channel 2.

By late August, Representative Peter Mack (D-Ill) attacked the FCC decision to move channel 2 to St. Louis before the Subcommittee by saying there “seems to present clear evidence that many irregularities were involved in the transfer.....  Channel 2 was taken from Springfield under the guise of deintermixture.  Deintermixture does not exist today in Springfield and undoubtedly the city will not be deintermixed.”  He was also critical of the alleged ex parte contacts by Harry Tenenbaum.


The Supreme Court Makes a Non-Decision

The US Supreme Court handed down a decision in October of 1958 with was an unprecedented move to hand the cases for both the channel 2 (Springfield-St. Louis) and channel 8 (Peoria) back to the US Court of Appeals in Washington.  The Supreme Court told the lower court to take “appropriate action” in light of the more recent allegations of ex parte contacts being made to the FCC.  These two cases weren't the only ones being argued as there were at the time two other ex parte cases in regards to Miami's Channel 10 and Boston's Channel 5.  In those two cases, the US Court of Appeals handed the cases back to the FCC to sort out.

Local reaction was similar between the two concerned companies.  WICS, Channel 20 in Springfield was stated as doing some “watchful waiting,” while the owners of WEEK-TV, Channel 43 in Peoria was “seriously considering” the Supreme Court to reconsider its “non-decision.”

An editorial in Broadcasting-Telecasting said the Supreme Court “goofed.”  According to the broadcast magazine, there were no questions of irregularities at the time of the original case yet the courts actions was taking the more recent facts which came to light in their action to pass the cases back to the US Court of Appeals.



(from KTVI Video)

1959 Tornado Brings KTVI Broadcast Tower Down

Tuesday morning, February 11, 1959 was a day that St. Louis wouldn't forget for decades. A killer tornado was bearing down on St. Louis and all of the local radio and television stations were giving live up-to-the-minute reports as this incredible storm was moving in from the southwest.

Winds were gusting across southwest St. Louis estimated in excess of 110 miles an hour when two broadcast stations went off the air, leaving their viewers and listeners wondering what happened. What did happen would be determined to be a killer tornado passed across the suburbs of south St. Louis and twisted all but the lower section of the 577-foot tower and antenna of KTVI. The tornado also claimed the tower of Brentwood, Missouri radio station KXLW.


The storm was estimated to have caused over $200,000 in damage to the tower, not counting a number of vehicles which were totaled by the twisted tower sections which fell to the ground. There were also reports of structural damage to neighboring buildings.

It didn't take long for Channel 2 to return to broadcasting as a temporary antenna was mounted on a temporary tower which allowed the station to return to broadcasting at reduced power by 4pm on the same day.

Plans were underway to replace the temporary structure and antenna with something more substantial by the following weekend, some 4 days later. The story of the quick action was summarized by Harry Tenenbaum, KTVI president. In a press release, he stated that General Electric had flown a duplicate four-bay antenna from Syracuse, New York. Two engineers were there to supervise the installation with hopes that Channel 2 would return to air at its full 100kw power by the weekend. The antenna would be mounted on the top of the remaining bottom tower four legged tower section which remained after the tornado.

KTVI returned to air at 4pm, then prepared a special 15-minute newscast at 6pm, less than two hours later to summarize the tornado story for viewers. The other St. Louis broadcasters would also air special reports including KWK Radio airing special reports from newscaster Ken Daust describing the damage from his Cessna flying over the area. KMOX-TV aired a 30-minute special the following evening with civil officials, the mayor of St. Louis and others and asked for donations to the Red Cross and other groups to help those who were victims of the storm.

KMOX Radio broadcast a 26-hour radio-thon which drew pledges of around $50,000. Immediately after the tornado, KSD Radio signed on earlier that morning to reports from its mobile unit at one of the hardest hit areas. KSD-TV went live from the area at 8:20am that morning showing rescuers digging through the rubble looking for victims. Later the radio-TV combo reported raising more than $85,000 to fund tornado victims.

NBC-TV and “The Today Show” aired footage from the tornado at 8:30am followed by live coverage from the KSD-TV's mobile unit. WIL Radio was on the air before the storm hit and kept St. Louis listeners advised while most other radio stations were in sign-off mode overnight. Forty-five minutes after the first touchdown, WIL was live with five mobile units broadcasting from areas of the disaster. WIL was also feeding details to radio stations from Chicago to Los Angeles. KXOK Radio was offering on-the-spot details with its mobile unit and was reported to have fed 25 other radio stations across the United States.


(from KTVI Video)

Meanwhile, KTVI in July had asked the FCC a permit to operate with reduced power from 100kw to 20kw at the present site on Bethold Avenue at Hampton and Oakland Avenue just off what would be the U.S. 40 corridor in south-west St. Louis. Plans were being made to build a new tower/transmitter site near others at an antenna farm. There was one stipulation which could cause the temporary permit to be withdrawn from KTVI, and that as the outcome of the FCC decision in regards to the Sangamon Valley TV Corporation vs U.S. And FCC case.

In August of 1959, KTVI was proposing a 1,049 foot Kimco Tower with a 100kw transmitter at its base. The total cost of the new equipment and tower was listed as $500,000. The eventual tower was redesigned and ultimately ended up being a 1,649 foot broadcast tower.












This is a film segment featuring Danny and the Juniors and used on "American Bandstand."  It mixes another video from an appearance in New Orleans.


Stag Beer was a major advertiser on TV stations during the late 1950s and early 1960s.  This clip was recorded in 1960 and appeared to be a part of the "Charlotte Peter's Show", but something went wrong....check it out.


Issues from the Congressional Oversight Subcommittee

From the testimony of the Subcommittee, it seems that most of the attention was directed at the actions of Harry Tenenbaum.  Points of the hearings are as follows:

-KTVI president Harry Tenenbaum lobbied with virtually all of the FCC commissioners to have channel 2 moved from Springfield to St. Louis.

-KTVI hired former FCC commissioner Robert F. Jones and paid him $55,000 without making him an attorney of record and without the knowledge of KTVI's counsel of record, William A. Roberts

-KTVI tried to enlist the help of Senator Struart Symington (D-Missouri) and Cleveland attorney Charles Steadman

-KTVI ordered equipment from General Electric for the conversion of channel 36 to VHF channel 2 plus signed an affiliation contract with ABC before the final assignment was made by the FCC.

In retrospect this entire proceeding was initiated with Sangamon Valley Telecasting's writ of certiorari which was opposed by KTVI, WICS and ABC.  Sangamon Valley was the cause of the involvement with the US Court of Appeals.  It would be forever referred to in television history as the Sangamon Valley Case. 

KTVI Reaction

Paul Peltason issued a statement after the Supreme Court ruling.  “It is inherent in the nature of proceedings such as these that they could be long and drawn-out and that many months might pass before an ultimate decision is reached.  Confident that this decision will be favorable, KTVI is going forward and intends to give the greater St. Louis area public the same good programming and its sponsors, local and national, the same good service it has attempted to provide since the inception of operation.”


The Court Hears from the FCC, the Justice Department and the Players

The FCC's new counsel Max Paglin testified before the U.S. Court of Appeals on March 19, 1959. The testimony was the result of the FCC and the Justice Department disagreeing on terms in the channel 2 controversy which was now in its fourth year. Remember, this all stemmed from the Sangamon Valley TV Corporation appeal after being an unsuccessful applicant for the allocation in Springfield, Illinois.

The Justice Department had the opinion that there was enough evidence that the alleged ex parte activities of Harry Tenenbaum was enough to warrant a full scale hearing by the FCC. The Justice Department also questioned the disqualification of any of the FCC commissioners who are of question after being contacted by Mr. Tenenbaum.

Mr. Paglin said the contacts of Mr. Tenenbaum to FCC commissioners were not improper, as they were in keeping with the Administrative Procedures Act and were a regular part of doing business.

Meanwhile, Sangamon Valley stated it agreed with the Justice Department's position and feels the FCC should reconsider the two applicants, that being WMAY-TV and Sangamon Valley Telecasting Corporation (WTAX Radio). Interesting though, that when WMAY-TV offered the opinion that it didn't believe any impropriety was involved in the Tenenbaum actions with the commissioners of the FCC.

In May of 1959, the U.S. Appeals Court would return what was called the “Sangamon Valley Case” back to the FCC with orders to investigate the ex parte contacts of Harry Tenenbaum with those FCC commissioners.

The judges who heard the arguments were Henry W. Edgerton, Charles Fahey and Walter M. Bastian, who agreed with the Justice Department. Circuit Judge Edgerton wrote, “Accordingly, the private approaches of the members of the Commission vitiated its action and the proceedings much be reopened.” The Court ordered the new hearing, “with the aid of a specially appointed hearing examiner” to determine the nature of those ex parte contacts and “any other factors that might be thought to require either disqualifications” of some commissioners or other participants.

The court, though, said the FCC could continue having KTVI broadcast on channel 2 in St. Louis at “its own discretion.” It should be noted, even seemingly a unique case in the history of broadcasting, it was actually the fifth such case involving rule-making proceedings. Other cases include the Miami, Channel 10, Channel 7; Boston, Channel 5 and Orlando, Channel 9.







Here is the KTVI studios taken in 1960 picturing the building once located at 5915 Berthold Avenue in southwest St. Louis.   The top of the original tower was blown off during the 1959 tornado, but the base was retained for signage as a tower for the mounting of microwave dishes which would relay the signal to its new tower/transmitter located southwest of St. Louis.

(photo courtesy of the St. Louis Media site)





Celebration at KTVI with New Tower

On August 24, 1959, KTVI was celebrating the completion of its new tower and transmitter, not in St. Louis, but at the Tavern of the Green in Central Park, New York! The party was held for advertising executives included those from KTVI's national representative Blair TV, ABC-TV and various other New York ad agencies. Joe Bernard, KTVI's vice-president and general manager presented a cash grand prize of $1649 to a guest ad agency representative, Bernie Sclossman of Benton and Bowles Advertising. The odd dollar amount was to represent the new tower height of 1,649 feet.


An Unsent Letter Gets Attention

Once again the Sangamon Valley TV Corporation case came to trial in Philadelphia with new charges against key principals at KTVI and Signal Hill. Harry Tenenbaum would take the stand and be there for three entire days of the four days of testimony, while being challenged on his campaign to have the allocation for channel 2 shifted to St. Louis.

Mr. Tenenbaum would once again tell of his three year struggle to get the FCC to deintermix the St. Louis market and make it over as an all VHF television market. He even stated that at one point he tried to convince the FCC to make the gateway city an all UHF market, except for the existing KSD-TV at channel 5.

He testified that it was in 1955 when the owners of WICS, Plains Television filed a petition to move channel 2 out of their city of Springfield to St. Louis, that he reversed his position of an all UHF market and followed the lead of Plains.

One piece of evidence came to light in the form of an “unsent” letter written on February 20, 1957 by Tenenbaum to the FCC commissioners before the final decision was made to move channel 2 to St. Louis. It was also said that the letters were never sent or were there any reports of it being received at the Commission.

Another letter, or at least a draft of a letter, was never sent either. This one was written by John Hyatt, from the D'Arcy Adverising Agency of St. Louis and intended to be sent to the FCC to counter an argument made by some in Springfield that Illinois residents would lose television service by moving channel 2 to St. Louis. His argument included the fact that more people of Illinois would be able to watch television from channel 2 from St. Louis than from Springfield, Illinois. Hyatt testified that the letter was never sent because the management of D'Arcy didn't feel comfortable getting into the controversy and told him not to send it. Instead he dictated the letter by phone to Mr. Tenenbaum, then sent it to Tenenbaum at KTVI for him to send under his name. The unsent letter was found by House investigators.

According to FCC lawyers, they did come up with two additional documents which would serve as evidence on ex parte conduct by Harry Tenenbaum. One was a memo on the logical move of channel 36 from St. Louis to Springfield while the other was a legal opinion on the issuance of a temporary permit to operate at channel 2 after the allocation was moved to St. Louis. Both documents were dated in March of 1957.
(top above): An ad for KTV from the Edwardsville Intelligencer about the coverage area of the new tower. 

(bottom above): A screen grab from KTVI announcing "maximum tower, maximum power."

That second memo would imply that the FCC would find it easier to grant the temporary permit for KTVI to broadcast on channel 2 than a final permit.

The complete list of the alledged ex parte actions undertaken by Harry Tenenbaum is as follows:

-Had lunch with FCC Chairman (at the time), George C. McConnaughey

-Had Commissioner Robert E. Lee as a dinner guest when Lee was in St. Louis to see UHF broadcasting in action

-Had Commissioner Edward M. Webster and his wife as guests at his home in St. Louis. Commissioner Webster was in town to attend at U.S. Coast Guard Meeting.

-Had Commissioner Robert T. Bartley as his guest to a theater engagement in New York when Mr. Bartley and other commissioners were attending a New York Radio-TV Executives Society Conference

-Tenenbaum sent all FCC commissioners turkeys for Christmas in 1955 and for Thanksgiving in 1956.

-Tenenbaum sent all commissioners' secretaries stockings for Christmas in 1955 and 1956.

-Tenenbaum had a “social” dinner with FCC Rules and Standards chief Hart S. Cowperthwaite.

-Tenenbaum saw a number of political contacts including Senator Stuart Symington (D-Missouri), Warren G. Magnuson (D-Washington), John L. McClennand (D-Arkansas) and then Senator John W. Bricker (R-Ohio) and Charles E. Potter (R-Michigan). Mr. Tenenbaum explained to one or more of them that he was originally from Arkansas.

Harry Tenenbaum's testimony also included much of the previous statements from earlier testimony at the House Subcommittee hearings.

The mayor of Springfield, Nelson O. Howart evidently was not happy with the service of WICS, Channel 20 as he actively lobbied for the retention of channel 2 for the Capitol City (Howard was mayor from 1955 to 1959). He testified that he felt that it was not improper for him to travel to Washington with Illinois Senator George Drach. The duo had meetings with all of the FCC commissioners except Commissioners Rosel H. Hyde and Robert Bartley. They also tried to have meetings with Sherman Adams, the White House assistant to President Eisenhower, but got no further than the secretary of Mr. Adams.

One other piece of testimony came from Robert F. Jones, the former FCC commissioner who was employed by Signal-Hill and Harry Tenenbaum on the side to help in the lobbying effort to move channel 2 to St. Louis. He previously testified that he did not speak to any FCC commissioner about the channel 2 situation, but did return to clarify that he might have sent a memo to Commissioner T.A.M. Craven before the final decision was handed down on March 1, 1957.

A letter dated January 24, 1957 was found in the files of Commissioner Craven along with a map showing the proposed coverage areas of channel 2 in St. Louis and Terre Haute, Indiana and a “time table” of proposed FCC decisions on the relocation of channel 2. Mr. Jones said the memo was an attempt to “feel out” both commissioners Craven and perhaps Chairman C. McConnaughey in regards to the changing of the separation requirements of two VHF stations.

By February of 1960, it was announced that the FCC examiner's ruling on the Sangamon Valley case re-hearing may come as early as March of 1960. Horace Stern was the special examiner during the Philadelphia hearings.

In mid April of 1960, the FCC Hearing Examiner Horace Stern announced that the decision is “contrary to the weight of the evidence and incomplete.” Judge Stern ruled that the shift of channel 2, because of the actions of Harry Tenenbaum was “voidable.” Meanwhile Sangamon Valley TV Corporation said that the initial decision “has made it clear that channel 2 now is allocated to Springfield.....” and that Signal-Hill should be disqualified from any future actions for use of channel 2.

WICS, obviously, took an opposing view saying that channel 2 had been deleted from Springfield's allocation table and that Sangamon should have no legal interest in broadcasting on channel 2.

FCC Associate General Counsel Edgar W. Holtz had four reasons to disagree with the initial decision. He stated:

-The actions of Tenenbaum were not proper

-Tenenbaum's contacts were always made privately and they were never intended to be made known to the other parties

-The examiner erred in saying that the activities of Tenenbaum was “generally acceptable”

-and that most of his contacts didn't feel comfortable with the channel shift idea, but should have forbid any of the private communications from Mr. Tenenbaum

Both Signal-Hill and ABC stated they felt that the case was a rule making proceeding and that off the record presentations and contacts were perfectly legal and accepted practices. Signal-Hill admitted that the only period that required a closer look was from June 26, 1956 to February 26, 1957. KTVI and ABC testified that the the Examiner Stern erred in that the shift of channel 2 to St. Louis is not in fact “voidable” because of the actions of Harry Tenenbaum. Mr. Tenenbaum's presentation related to collateral issues and not directly to the shift of channel 2 to St. Louis. Signal-Hill and KTVI had the opinion that there was no reason why the FCC could not reaffirm its originally decision for the move of channel 2.

ABC stated that the FCC should follow through with the reaffirming its original action because of the ex parte contacts in no way affected the assignment of channel 2 to St. Louis. The network observed that rule making activities are under the Administrative Procedures Act in which there is no guarantee that all interested parties would have the opportunity to make their views known.

Meanwhile Sangamon Valley made the charge that Mr Stern, the FCC examiner did not carry out the order of court in that he dismissed many of the activities of Mr. Tenenbaum which did not include any direct contact with any of the commissioners at the FCC. Sangamon also had the opinion that with only one UHF station operating in Springfield (WICS) three years after the move of channel 2 to St. Louis, Springfield was not deintermixed as WCIA (VHF, Channel 3) “saturates” the Capitol City from Champaign.

Representatives from WICS said that the current developments of local television since the shift of channel 2 “have fully supported the wisdom of the commissions actions.” Central Illinois had eight television stations instead of three which probably would be the only ones operating if channel 2 and channel 8 (in Peoria) had not been deleted.

FCC Counsel James T. Brennan agreed that there was no ban against commissioners talking to those involved in rule making procedures at that time. He did add, though, that he felt that Mr. Tenenbaum “went to far.” He further thought it was time that a review of the rule making case be made later.

Also, Vernon K. Wilkinson, who was representing both WICS (Springfield) and ABC had expressed a warning that the FCC would affect other cases negatively if the Sangamon Cases was opened wide. The case in question was the Peoria channel 8 controversy.











KTVI's news documentary series "Expedition 1960" aired occasionally on Channel 2.  It was important to establish a strong commitment to public affairs and service as the struggle to maintain the KTVI license continued into the early 1960s.  Bruce Hayward was the reporter.  This particular segment was called "St. Louis: The City Fights Back."


This is another installment of "Expedition 1960." This was entitled "St. Louis: Hot City."  Once again it was hosted by Bruce Hayward.


ABC Shows Seen on KTVI

"The Rebel"
"Surfside 6"
"Adventures in Paradise"
"Bugs Bunny Show"
"The Untouchables"
"Hawaiian Eye"
"Naked City"
"My Three Sons"
"Top Cat"
"The Roaring 20s"
"Peter Gunn"
"The Detectives"

FCC May Reopen the Channel 2 Case

In February of 1961, there was talk of the FCC re-opening the case on the move of channel 2 from Springfield to St. Louis. The FCC had recommended to the U.S. Appellate Court that it should be reconsidered. The request for reopening the case was based on the findings that only three of the seven commissioners on the FCC was in favor of leaving the case as is. The FCC commissioners were in agreement that the activities of Harry Tenenbaum of KTVI was basically irrelevant to the conclusion of the case, and that only his contacts that were made after March 1, 1957 were on the only ones of question. The FCC also recommended a time for interested parties to respond to the possible reopening.


FCC Decides to Institute New Rule-making Proceeding for Channel 2

In early September of 1961 the FCC, following a mandate from the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, decided to open up a proceeding on the channel 2 case. The Commission proposed opening up the original rule-making record to give those parties involved in the controversy an opportunity to be heard. However, the court ruled that simply re-opening the original record would not be enough and that the FCC must start fresh with a new proceeding.

Meanwhile, KTVI will be permitted to continue to operate on channel 2 pending the rule-making session. It was stated that Sangamon Valley Telecasting Corporation was still seeking the channel 2 allocation for Springfield.

In November of 1961, Sangamon Valley asked the FCC to defer the deadline for comments in the case. Sangamon asked for the deadline to be moved to February 5, 1962 on the date that deintermixture comments are due for those markets in the U.S.which are of question, including the question for WCIA, Channel 3 in Champaign.


The Public Speaks on the Channel 2 Issue

The December 11, 1961 edition of Broadcasting-Telecasting included a story of the number of complaints from the public against deintermixing eight markets across the country. The television viewers liked having their VHF television service, along with their UHF options. Protests were pouring into the FCC from civic groups, state organizations and individuals from all of the areas in which the FCC has proposed eliminating key VHF television stations, and making them UHF stations. Among them WCIA and its position at channel 3.

In regards to KTVI, supporters of having KTVI at channel 2 outnumbered those who wanted it to stay in Springfield. KTVI also argued that the relatively flat terrain of central Illinois was more supportive of UHF broadcasting. It was the opinion of Signal-Hill and KTVI that St. Louis was adequately serviced with having four VHF stations (channels 2, 4, 5 11) and one educational VHF station (channel 9). KTVI also was correct in saying that Channel 2 in St. Louis has much more impact in public service from St. Louis and that it would have being in Springfield.



"The Steve Allen Show" on ABC and KTVI from a newspaper ad.

(from Edwardsville Intellegencer)


Sangamon Valley Telecasting, though, wasn't giving up the fight. They were still arguing that the deintermixing of Springfield was “contrary of the public interest” and is “absolutely barred by the Communications Act.” They went on to say that the deletion of VHF channels to benefit the expansion of UHF broadcasting was contrary to the doctrine of “equitable distribution” of television stations. Sangamon used the fact that there were no additional television stations in the Springfield area during the years since the decision as proof of the failure of the FCC's deintermixture plan for central Illinois.

Sangamon's statement was contradicted by two central competitors, Plains Television (WICS, Channel 20, Springfield) and Metromedia (WTVP, Channel 17, Decatur). Both station groups contridicted the claims made by Sangamon, saying that if channel 2 was returned to Springfield and became operational national advertising revenues would be divided by the two VHF stations, Channel 2 in Springfield, and Channel 3, WCIA from Champaign. The UHF stations would no longer get any significant national advertising. Both UHF stations would lose network service and at least one would fail.

The State of Illinois, though the office of the attorney general claimed an unfair distribution of VHF channels was noted between Missouri and Illinois. Missouri had 16 VHF channels and Illinois only had nine, even though Illinois is twice the size of Missouri. Also noted was the acute observation that the FCC should attempt to establish a law to require that television set manufacturers produce television sets with both VHF and UHF tuners.

There was one other argument against having channel 2 in St. Louis from another recently asigned VHF channel. KPLR, Channel 11, St. Louis proposed that channel 2 be deleted from both Springfield and St. Louis and assigned to Salem-Rolla, Missouri instead.

In support of the FCC's decision to leave channel 2 with St. Louis was the American Broadcasting Company. There were other benefactors as well. Those include three applicants for channel 2 in Terre Haute, Indiana: Fort Harrison Telecasting Corporation; Illiana Telecasting Corporation and WTHI-TV which at the time wanted to shift its operation to the lower VHF dial position from channel 10.






KTVI Gains Color from ABC

ABC wasn't the first national network to offer color, but it wasn't the last either. Just a few months before it was stated that ABC wouldn't consider going all color until such time that the television audience demanded it. In April of 1962, ABC announced it would be feeding color programs to affiliates during the fall of 1962 for the 1962-63 television season. Among the programs the network was planning to broadcast in color included: “Voice of Firestone,” “Going My Way(starring Gene Kelly),” “Ben Casey,” “Fred Astaire Premiere(special),” “ Our man Higgins(sit-com),” “My Three Sons (sit-com),” “Leave it to Beaver (sit com),” “The Flintsones (animated sit-com),” “Close-up (news, public affairs)” and “Howard K. Smith's News and Comments.”



ABC Color Shows
ABC Logos from 1953-1964

ABC finally joined the move to color in the fall of 1962 with two cartoon series from the Hanna-Barbara Production group with the addition of "The Jetsons" and "The Flintstones" to the prime time lineup.  There were the first two programs broadcast in color by ABC 











"Romper Room" was a franchise children's show which local stations would present with their own hosts, using  approved themes, sets, etc. as established by the owners of the company.  Each station subsriber would host their own show with their own teacher and local kids.   Here is a sample of "Romper Room as produced at KTVI from August 2, 1962.


Children's panel shows were big business for local television stations in the 1950s and early 1960s.  It was a great way to establish young kids as TV viewers (and their parents and relatives) to the local station.  At KTVI one of the more popular efforts was "Mr. Patches."  Here is a example of the show from the early 1970s long after many were already termed extinct.

The Channel 2 Case Continues, Concludes and Continues

The FCC completed the hearing phases of the ex parte cases involving in appropriate contacts between owners of television stations or proposed television stations and select commissioners of the FCC. There were six such cases discovered by the House Legislative Oversight Subcommittee which closed in early April of 1962. Among the cases was that which was called the Sangamon Valley Case. The hearings concluded that the channel 2 case was a “rule-making” case with the shift of channel 2 from Springfield to St. Louis and the subsequent granting of the allocation to Signal-Hill and KTVI. The FCC also ruled that “officially” the allocation of channel 2 belonged to Springfield, Illinois.

In late July of 1962, the FCC ruled in favor of channel 2 staying in St. Louis! Their decision stated that having channel 2 in Springfield would have a “blighting effect” on UHF development and it would make “little sense to take dislocating action to worsen the competitive situation....” on UHF stations there already. Channel 2 would remain in St. Louis where it has been since 1957 and Springfield would remain a UHF market. The FCC admitted that channel 2 would undoubtedly become a dominant station in the broader market area.” At that time, it seemed that the most likely solution to the inequality of the VHF and UHF stations would fall on the “all channel receiver” legislation. The Commission also said that the “all receiver” legislation would alleviate the UHF situation over time, but for now, it would harm UHF outlets.

Along with the final decision in the Sangamon Case, the allocation table was amended for Springfield to include the already issued channel 20 to WICS, but also channels 26. Channel 49 was issued to Jacksonville and channel 68 was given to the Quad Cities.

In August of 1962, the Justice Department and the FCC asked the U. S. Court of Appeals in Chicago to either dismiss the appeal of Sangamon Valley TV Corporation against the channel 2 decision, or transfer the case to the Court of Appeals in Washington, DC. Both the Justice Department and KTVI asked the court to deny a stay of the shift of channel 2. The Justice Department and KTVI both asked the court to deny a stay of the shift of channel 2 to St. Louis. The reasons behind their request include:

-Sangamon Valley Telecasters has failed to show it will suffer any injury if channel 2 remains in St. Louis while the appeal is pending

-Sangamon has not show a likelihood than its appeal will be successful

-the grant of a stay will adversely affect the public interest of KTVI in St. Louis-Springfield

Sangamon, meanwhile, said it would withdrawal the portion of its petition for a review which said the FCC ignored the Washington court's mandate to avoid a “extensive semantic debate” on the case.

The Springfield group also said the case was ultimately decided on a “vastly different record” from that which could be before the Chicago Court. They disputed the decision being made with in unison with the Peoria channel 8 case and that it was “absolutely irrelevant to Sangamon's right to see judicial review.”

In early September, a federal court in Chicago turned down a request for a stay of the FCC's decision to move channel 2 to St. Louis, but took under advisement the request from the Justice Department that the case be sent to the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C..

By mid September, the entire deintermixture issues is considered dead in eight television markets in the U.S. The FCC dropped the issue because of its promise to Congress to declare a moratorium on the deintermixture controversy if the bill to have manufactures to produce all channel television sets became law.

The Sangamon Valley Case Reviewed

The U.S. Appeals Court in Washington, D.C. reviewed the five year old action taken by the FCC. Also before the court were others vying for the allocation for channel 2 in St. Louis along with Sangamon Valley Telecasters seeking channel 2 for Springfield.

From St. Louis appearing before the court was 220 Television Incorporated as well as Signal-Hill/KTVI. An applicant for Terre Haute, Indiana's channel 2 also appeared, Fort Harrison Corporation. They both claimed that since the FCC has to review its order made in 1957, that new applications should be considered for all of the allocations for channel 2 in St. Louis and channel 10 in Terre Haute.

The Terre Haute channel 2 had been in hearing since 1959 with an initial decision issued favoring WTHI-TV in its move from channel 10. There were also others seeking channel 10 if its vacated by WTHI-TV. Those inlcude Livesay Broadcasting and Illiana Telecasting (associated with stations WSJV(TV) Elkhart, Indiana and WKJG-TV Fort Wayne, Indiana).

Ultimately, the FCC's decision from six years ago was upheld by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. It was stated by the court that the FCC did not act in an “arbitrary or capricious manner” in moving channel 2 from Springfield to St. Louis. This may just be the end of the Sangamon Valley Telecasting Case.

The Terre Haute story ends in December of 1963 with the FCC agreeing to renew the license of WTHI-TV on channel 10 and not to allow the station to move to channel 2. The FCC dismissed all other applications and agreed to a new set of hearings from those wanting to reapply and any new applicants for the new allocation for channel 2, Terre Haute.

ABC Shows Seen on KTVI

"The Sunday Night Movie"
"The Rifleman"
"Stoney Burke"
"The Roy Rogers and Dale Evans Show"
"The Greatest Show on Earth"
"Bachelor Father"
"Ben Casey"
"Wagon Train"
"McHale's Navy"
"Combat!"
"I'm Dickens...He's Fenster"
"The Flintstones"





  





The "Charlotte Peters Show" was a popular local TV variety show hosted by the flamboyant Ms. Peters for many years.  Here is a special produced at KTVI about her career as a TV host.





1986 Ad in TV Guide

(from Doug Quick Collection of TV Guide)


KTVI Into the Future, 1963-2015

It appears sometime in the 1960s Signal-Hill would be owned by the Newhouse newspaper chain owners of the St. Louis-Globe Democrat Newspaper. In 1978, the station was sold to the Times Mirror company which owned KTVI until it was sold to Argyle Television.

Argyle was purchased by New World Communications which brokered a deal to turn a number of its major affiliates to FOX. On August 7, 1995, KTVI would end its association with ABC and become the St. Louis FOX affiliate. Later New World Communications would merge with FOX Television Stations and would become a FOX television network owned and operated station in early 1997. Ten years later FOX would sell KTVI to Local TV, a group formed by Oak Hill Capitol Partners. The following year, in 2008, Local TV agreed to a local marketing agreement to operate the CW affiliate, KPLR-TV, Channel 11 which was owned by Tribune Broadcasting.

In 2008, KTVI moved from its home on Berthold Avenue in St. Louis to the facilities at Maryland Heights, Missouri. Both stations joined many of their operations together including that of news, sales and engineering. By 2013, the Tribune Company purchased Local TV and began to operate its own station, KPLR with KTVI.

As a digital television station it now broadcasts on UHF, channel 43 using the virtual channel 2.1. The station also broadcasts the television nostalgic channel Antenna TV at 2.2. KTVI as a FOX affiliate continues with a rather ambitious news commitment with what as been reported as nearly 60 hours of local news production a week.




The final chapter of the former KSTM ("The Big Mo")


Progress is progress, but it pained me to see the destruction of this historical TV facility on Berthold Avenue in St. Louis.  Once the home of the "Big 'Mo" and KSTM it had outlived its usefulness as a television facility and evidently had signs of wear and tear which were beyond repair.   Did anyone uncover the floor mosaic in the former lobby of the battleship "Missouri?"

thanks to:
Wayne Brasler
wikipedia.org
KTVI via You Tube
Broadcasting-Telecasting
"Total Television" by Alex McNeil
TV Guide® copyright Triangle Publications



Next is The History of KWK Channel 4 (later KMOX-TV, KMOV)

St. Louis Missouri Television Stations
  KSD-TV, Channel 5, St Louis, MO (KSDK)
  WTVI, Channel 54, Bellville, IL (KTVI, Channel 2)
  KWK, Channel 4, St. Louis, MO (KMOX, KMOV)
  KPRL, Channel 11, St. Louis, MO
  KDNL, Channel 30, St. Louis, MO
  St. Louis Ghost Television Stations


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updated 1/1/2017
web master:  Doug Quick
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