The Old WHDH-TV Channel 5 equipment (was Re: The courtship of NBC by the Herald-Traveler)

Kevin Vahey
Mon Jun 22 12:27:37 EDT 2009

Something else happened in 1969 to make the Kennedy Family even
angrier at the Herald-Traveler and it involved an auto accident on
Chappaquiddick Island.

That accident happened on a Friday night/Saturday morning but both the
Globe and Herald did not print anything until Monday but the Herald
went big with the story on Sunday with a banner headline.

Now did the family try to squash the story which by then a public
record? Possibly but in any event the Herald ran with it and everybody
played catch up the next day.

Now in fairness there was another news event that weekend that was
perhaps one of the Top Five news stories of the 20th Century...The
First Moon Landing.

A little irony the following Friday as the Kennedy Family had Ted
issue a live statement from Hyannisport and paid WHDH-TV for the
mobile unit and AT&T long lines set up back to Boston. It was supposed
to be an address to Massachusetts voters only but wound up be carried
live worldwide. I myself saw it at a department store in Toronto on

What crime did the Herald do as all they did was report the story as
they should have. Why did Tom Winship sit on it for 2 days is a better
question. But it also showed the Kennedy Family could not control the
Herald and that did not help their case in DC.

Did the Herald use influence to get the license? Most certainly...but
it pales by comparison on what the Chicago Tribune was able to pull
off. The Tribune managed to get a VHF allocation in NYC on Channel 11
which ultimately forced WJAR to move to Channel 10 but also in co
hoots with the Milwaukee Journal (WTMJ) to have the only VHF indy in
Chicago as Channel 4's allocation was moved to Milwaukee and CBS who
had bought Channel 4 in Chicago was moved to Channel 2 and Zenith lost

The FCC has always treated the Tribune with kid gloves which makes the
Herald case that much sadder.

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