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Re: WBZ-TV and the Bradford

On Mon, 14 Jul 1997, KEVIN VAHEY wrote:

>  On a side note, in looking up the old news accounts I took a quick look
> at the beginning of WHDH-TV in November of 1957. The Sunday Herald had a
> "full color" supplement about 2 weeks prior to going on the air, and has
> some great photos of Channel 5's on air staff. The station itself
> litteraly went on the air with no fanfare whatever, as they were waiting
> for the go ahead from the FCC. According to the next days Herald when the
> telegram arrived from Washington around 4 PM they decided to go on the air
> that night. 

I remember that color supplement.  It came out when it did because they
expected the station to go on the air at that time.  But windy weather at
the top of the tower prevented the workers from getting up there to make
the final connections to the antenna -- or that's what I understood at the

One of the other things I remember from that time is that Channel 2
carried "Meet the Press" at that time on Sunday afternoon, and, when it
was assumed that Channel 5 would be coming on, they announced that "Next
week, Meet the Press will be seen on Channel 5, WHDH-TV."  That didn't
happen, and Channel 2 continued to carry Meet the Press for a couple more

Finally, one day just before Thanksgiving, I came home from school and, as
I had been doing every day, turned on the TV to channel 5 to see if they
were on yet.  And they were, running a test pattern.  Since the test
pattern was a generic test pattern, without station identification on it,
they had a periodic voice announcement identifying the station.  The
actual sign on was around 6:30 PM that evening.  Programming began with
the Huntley-Brinkley report at 6:45.  I remember reading the report in the
next day's Herald or Traveler that they went on after they had received
the go-ahead from the FCC.

And, of course, since the station was an ABC affiliate, you may be
wondering why they were carrying Meet the Press and Huntley-Brinkley,
which were NBC programs.  Well, besides their ABC affiliation, they
carried any other network programs that the other two stations didn't
carry.  So they also carried the CBS evening news with Douglas Edwards, as
well as NBC's noontime game shows, "Tic Tac Dough" and "It Could Be You,"
which WBZ-TV didn't carry.  And ABC's Mickey Mouse Club remained on
Channel 7 until the following season.

  A. Joseph Ross, J.D.                                          617.367.0468
  15 Court Square                                       lawyer@world.std.com
  Boston, MA 02108-2503                        http://world.std.com/~lawyer/