Today on Days to Remember we celebrate how on January 22nd 1947 KTLA Channel 5 began operation as the first commerical television station west of the Mississippi River.
Today KTLA Channel 5 News is located Los Angeles, California, United States.
The station is owned by the Tribune Broadcasting subsidiary of Tribune Media. KTLA maintains studio facilities located at the Sunset Bronson Studios on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood, and its transmitter is located atop Mount Wilson.
The station was licensed by the Federal Communications Commission in 1939 as experimental station W6XYZ, broadcasting on VHF channel 4; it did not sign on the air until September 1942. The station was originally owned by Paramount Pictures subsidiary Television Productions, Inc., and was based at the Paramount Studios lot.
Klaus Landsberg, already an accomplished television pioneer at the age of 26, was the original station manager and engineer.
On January 22, 1947, the station was licensed for commercial broadcasting as KTLA on channel 5, becoming the first commercial television station in Los Angeles, the first to broadcast west of the Mississippi River, and the eighth television station overall in the United States.
In November 1963, KTLA was purchased by actor and singer Gene Autry for $12 million; upon the sale’s finalization in May 1964, Autry merged the station with his other broadcasting properties, including KMPC radio (710 AM, now KSPN) into an umbrella company known as Golden West Broadcasters.
In 1979, KTLA acquired much of the programming inventory of struggling independent competitor KBSC-TV (channel 52, now Telemundo owned-and-operated station KVEA-TV) including Little Rascals, Three Stooges, Munsters, Addams Family, Gilligan’s Island, Leave It To Beaver, among others.
These shows ran weekend mornings and weekend early afternoons. In 1979, KTLA acquired Happy Days, in 1981 Laverne and Shirley, Little House On The Prairie, in 1982 Taxi, and Chips, among other shows.
The station continued to emphasize hour long dramas during the day on weekdays but began to run recent sitcoms in the evenings.
On October 14, 2009, KTLA unveiled a new logo and a redesigned news set, bringing back the classic stylized number “5” that was previously used by the station from 1981 to 1997, and eliminating The CW’s logo from regular usage (though it is still used in promotions for the network’s programs).
The “LA” in the KTLA call sign is rendered in bold lettering to emphasize the station’s Los Angeles location and coverage area, similar to a previous word mark logo used from 1997 to 2005.
As we celebrate Channel 5 News’s birthday today!
Written & Designed by JD Mitchell