2 Introduction
3 Stations
4 Pittsburgh
5 Programming
7 Finale
8 Legacy
9 Others
10 Links
11 Bibliography
12 Feedback
13 More Feedback
14 Programs (A-L)
15 Programs (M-Z)
16 News and Sports
17 Electronicam
20 MBC
21 Rocky King
22 Locations
23 Affiliates (1949)
24 A Trail of Bleached Bones
25 More Bleached Bones
26 Notes on Bleached Bones
27 WDTV's Log Books

Appendix 10: A Trail of Bleached Bones

The following is a list of defunct UHF TV stations and construction permits (CPs) from the authorization of UHF in 1952 until the early 1980's. The list also includes a number of UHF stations which vacated the higher UHF channels for lower ones, a common practice in UHF's early days.

The original compiler of this list was Mike Dorner, Jr. of Metairie, Louisiana, with whom the author has unfortunately lost contact in the intervening two decades. (The title, A Trail of Bleached Bones, is original with Dorner.) The author does not know which sources Dorner used for his original research, and he did not differentiate between formerly operating stations and unbuilt construction permits.

Updates to this list were made by the author, and also taken from several articles written by Robert B. Cooper, Jr., former editor of the Community Antenna Television Journal (CATJ). Credit must also be given to the Worldwide TV-FM DX Association (WTFDA), publisher of the VHF-UHF Digest, where this list first appeared in May 1977.

A comprehensive review of the entire list was undertaken in 2011 by Los Angeles-based radio programming consultant K.M. Richards, who used the online library of archived Broadcasting Magazines and Broadcasting Yearbooks at to verify and correct entries on the Dorner list, as well as add dozens of stations, the existence of which were apparently not known to Dorner (undoubtedly due to the lack of easy access to such reference material when he did his research).

Richards also extended the list by an additional five years, to 1982, and rewrote most of the historical notes in Appendix Twelve, adding many new notes in the process and updating the note-linking system so that any note relating to multiple list entries can be more easily located.

Like the original, this list is arranged by channel number, then by state, city, and chronological order of CP or operation. Educational UHF outlets are indicated with an asterisk (*). Stations which changed channels are indicated with the "»" symbol followed by the later channel number, with additional notes added where needed. (If no accompanying entry appears for a station at its new channel number, it can be presumed that the station remained on the air at its new frequency without any "dark" periods.)

Stations which made it on the air, however briefly, have the year(s) of their operation noted in parentheses following their call letters and city of license; if no such notation appears, the station was issued a construction permit but never made it on the air. Stations who received their CP in the first group of UHF permits in 1952 are indicated in boldface type. The "#" symbol denotes a link to an external site with additional information about the station listed.

This list is complete through 1982. Stations that were operating in that year (or those that came later) do not appear in this list; exceptions were made for the very few stations that "went dark" prior to 1982 but returned to the air after then.

The choice of 1982 as the cut-off point is based on the fact that very few UHFs failed past that point, largely due to the expansion of cable television service bringing them to a much larger audience than had been the case when nearly all viewing was off-air reception. Generally speaking, from the late 1970s onward whenever a UHF was failing there was usually a willing buyer, and unused channel allocations were increasingly subject to multiple applications from prospective station operators. In fact, less than a dozen of the outstanding unbuilt CPs at the beginning of 1982 failed to get on the air over the next few years.

It should also be noted that a year earlier (1981) the first low-power television station (LPTV) had gone on the air in Bemidji MN (K26AC), and a great many of the LPTVs that followed over the years were also on UHF. These additional stations -- as well as increasing numbers of new full-power UHFs that took to the air in the 1980s and 1990s -- would make it extremely difficult to keep the list accurate and complete. (K26AC was still on the air as the 21st Century began, owned by a North Dakota-based group that owned four additional LPTVs in Minnesota and six full-power stations in the Dakotas.)

1982 also marked 30 years since the original group of 126 UHF grants were issued, making it an appropriate point of conclusion for the list.

The authors also would like to note the two VHF stations which were moved to the UHF band: KERO-TV, channel 10, Bakersfield CA and KFRE-TV, channel 12, Fresno CA. Both were moved as a result of the FCC's experiment to "de-intermix" some television markets.

When UHF had difficulty taking off in its early years, the FCC began a years-long discussion over which markets could be made all-UHF, to remove the disadvantage UHFs had in markets where there were already established VHFs. De-intermixture was first proposed in 1955, with the proposed channel reassignment list released in 1957.

As one might expect, stations already on the air on VHF channels, as well as those parties holding construction permits for VHF channels in the proposed markets, were steadfastly opposed, and over the next couple of years there were many counter-proposals made by VHF licensees and permittees, all proposing markets other than their own for the experiment.

By the time all the opposition died down, only two of the markets finally chosen in 1959 to be non-VHF were not already all-UHF (or had a combination of on-air UHF stations and unbuilt construction permits that could be reassigned UHF channels); Bakersfield and Fresno were chosen because they had only a single VHF each and the remaining on-air stations, UHF.

As luck would have it, KFRE-TV had just changed ownership and the new owners were cooperative in the effort, volunteering to immediately move from channel 12 to channel 30 in February, 1961 (KFRE-TV was granted a two-month period of operation on both channels -- later extended for an additional 45 days to facilitate a translator in an area which had lost coverage as a result of the move -- as a "reward" for being cooperative).

KERO-TV, on the other hand, fought against the move at every turn until early 1963 when it finally ran out of legal options and moved from channel 10 to channel 23. KERO-TV was not given a dual-channel operation window similar to KFRE-TV's. Ironically, in the conversion to digital broadcasting four decades later, KERO-TV (still operating under those call letters) ended up transmitting on channel 10 once again!

And also noteworthy are the true UHF pioneers ... the ten stations that got their original 1952 construction permits on the air, and stayed there, through thick and thin, without ever going dark or jockeying for a lower channel number. The call letters may be different on many of them now, but here are the longevity champions, listed by channel, with their original calls from 1952:

  • WTVP (17) Decatur IL
  • WCOV-TV (20) Montgomery AL
  • WGBI-TV (22) Scranton PA
  • KMJ-TV (24) Fresno CA
  • WKBN-TV (27) Youngstown OH
  • WBRE-TV (28) Wilkes-Barre PA
  • KAFY-TV (29) Bakersfield CA
  • WKNB-TV (30) New Britain CT
  • WSBA-TV (43) York PA
  • WLBC-TV (49) Muncie IN

The authors are pleased to present this listing as a tribute to the pioneering UHF broadcasters who made television as we know it today possible. Do you remember any of these stations? Send an E-mail with your thoughts and recollections, as well as any additions or corrections to (or questions about!) this listing. — Mike Dorner, Jr., Clarke Ingram and K.M. Richards

Channel 14

KTRB-TV, Modesto CA [1]
KCSM-TV, San Mateo CA (1964-1978) [2]
KIHP-TV, Santa Barbara CA [3]
WFAN-TV, Washington DC (1963-1972)
WJJY-TV, Jacksonville IL (1969-1974) # #
*WJPT, Jacksonville IL
WTVG, Joliet IL
*KSMH-TV, Hays KS (1980)
WVJS, Owensboro KY
WJZB-TV, Worcester MA (1953-1970) #
KACY-TV, Festus MO (1953-1955)
*WIET, Ithaca NY
KLPR-TV, Oklahoma City OK (1966-1969)
WPSJ, Ponce PR (1970-1973)
WACA-TV, Camden SC [4]
WVEW-TV, Wheeling WV

Channel 15

KLUZ, Phoenix AZ
KRAQ, Sacramento CA [5]
WPFA-TV, Pensacola FL (1953-1955) [6]
WBLN, Bloomington IL (1953-1958) [7]
WINT, Waterloo IN (1954-1957) [8]
KLNI-TV, Lafayette LA (1968-1976)
KPOB-TV, Poplar Bluff MO (1961-1966) [9]
*WHED-TV, Hanover NH (1968-1981) #
WCAF-TV, Oneonta NY
WCBF-TV, Rochester NY [1]
WICA-TV, Ashtabula OH (1953-1956) [10] #
WLBR-TV, Lebanon PA (1953-1954) [11]
WPDT, Florence SC
WVEC-TV, Norfolk VA (1953-1959) [12]

Channel 16

KMYO-TV, Little Rock AR
KPIC-TV, El Centro CA
KKOG-TV, Ventura CA (1968-1969) #
WOTV, Lakeland FL
WTKW, Key West FL
KEDD, Wichita KS [13]
WJSK, Corbin KY
WTAC-TV, Flint MI (1953-1954)
*WUNE, Linville NC (1967-1968)
WKTR-TV, Kettering OH (1967-1971) [14]
KOOS-TV, Coos Bay OR
WENS, Pittsburgh PA (1953-1955) [15]
WARM-TV, Scranton PA (1954-1958) [16]
WMGZ, Mayaguez PR (1970-1972)
WNET, Providence RI (1954-1956) [6] #
KVVV-TV, Galveston TX (1968-1971) #
KHER-TV, Longview TX [17]
KICH, Longview TX
KMSL, Marshall TX
WWOD-TV, Lynchburg VA
KBAS-TV, Ephrata WA (1957-1962)
WOSA, Wausau WI

Channel 17

KRTV, Little Rock AR (1953-1954) [18]
WITV, Ft. Lauderdale FL (1953-1958)
KGTV, Des Moines IA (1953-1955)
KSO-TV, Des Moines IA
WTBO-TV, Cumberland MD
WLAM-TV, Lewiston ME (1953-1955)
WCOW-TV, St. Paul MN
*WTVZ, Albany NY
WBUF, Buffalo NY (1953-1958) [19] #
KSPG, Tulsa OK [4]
WPCA-TV, Philadelphia PA (1960-1963) [20]
WSCV, Spartanburg SC
WTLT, Nashville TN (1968-1971)

Channel 18

KITO-TV, San Bernardino CA
KCHU, San Bernardino CA (1962-1964)
KIHP-TV, San Bernardino CA [3]
WEAL-TV, Orlando FL [4]
KSTT-TV, Davenport IA
WWLD-TV, Jackson MI
KGMO-TV, Cape Girardeau MO
WFLB-TV, Fayetteville NC (1958)
WECT, Elmira NY (1953-1954)
WTSJ, San Juan PR (1964-1973)
KCTV, Austin TX
KDCD-TV, Midland TX (1961-1962) [21]
*KWCS-TV, Ogden UT (1960-1974)

Channel 19

WTVI, Fort Pierce FL (1961-1962)
WTVH, Peoria IL (1953-1965) [22]
WJFT-TV, Albany GA
WVJS-TV, Owensboro KY
WMGT, Adams MA (1955-1956) [23]
KTIC-TV, St. Cloud MN
WLNS-TV, Jacksonville NC
*WTLV, New Brunswick NJ [24]
WFRB, Utica NY [25]
WHK-TV, Cleveland OH
WCTF, Cleveland OH
KMPT, Oklahoma City OK (1954-1955) [1] [26]
KLPR-TV, Oklahoma City OK [26]
KNBT-TV, Brownswood TX [4]
KAEC-TV, Nacogdoches TX (1969-1970)
KETX, Tyler TX (1953-1954)
KMVA-TV, Victoria TX
WOKY-TV, Milwaukee WI (1953) [27]

Channel 20

KEMO-TV, San Francisco CA (1968-1971) [28] [29] #
KIRV, Denver CO
KHBC, Denver CO
WETV, Washington DC
KUII-TV, Honolulu HI
KEYC, Cedar Rapids IA
WIND-TV, Chicago IL [4]
WTLO, New Orleans LA
WJMR-TV, New Orleans LA (1955-1959) [30]
WULT-TV, New Orleans LA
WAAB-TV, Worcester MA [13]
WPAG-TV, Ann Arbor MI (1953-1957)
WJMY, Allen Park MI (1962-1963) [31]
WHCU-TV, Ithaca NY [1]
KTVF, Springfield OR
KOAV, Denison TX
KTCO, Fort Worth TX
KUAB, Houston TX
WARL-TV, Arlington VA [4]
KCTL, Seattle WA
KLAY-TV, Tacoma WA

Channel 21

WTVS, Gadsden AL
KDAS, Hanford CA (1962-1965) [32]
KUSH, San Diego CA
WIRK-TV, West Palm Beach FL
KQTV, Fort Dodge IA (1953) [33]
WCUI, Champaign IL
WKLO-TV, Louisville KY (1953-1954) [34]
WANC-TV, Asheville NC (1971-1975)
WEOK-TV, Poughkeepsie NY
*WXXI, Rochester NY (1966-1973) [35]
WQHO, Greensburg PA
WLAN-TV, Lancaster PA [1]
WWLA, Lancaster PA [36]
WCRS-TV, Greenswood SC
KFWT, Fort Worth TX (1967-1970)
KVAN-TV, Vancouver WA [4]

Channel 22

KFSA-TV, Fort Smith AR (1953-1958) [37]
KEFS-TV, Fort Smith AR
KBIC-TV, Los Angeles CA [38]
KNCO, Fort Collins CO
WJNR-TV, Clearwater FL
WSIL-TV, Harrisburg IL (1953-1960)
*WMAU, Greenwood MS
WJHF, Raleigh NC
WIFE, Dayton OH (1953-1954) [39]
WENS, Pittsburgh PA [15]
WUHM-TV, Mayaguez PR
KVDO-TV, Corpus Christi TX (1954-1957)
KTVW, Wichita Falls TX
KTLF, Seattle WA
KNBS, Walla Walla WA (1960-1963)

Channel 23

WMSL-TV, Decatur AL (1954-1969) » 48
KETV, Little Rock AR
WFTL-TV, Fort Lauderdale FL (1953-1955) [40]
WGBS-TV, Miami FL (1955-1957) [40]
*WJIA-TV, Auburn GA
WMCN, Grand Rapids MI [1]
KTMA-TV, Minneapolis MN
WPTR-TV, Albany NY [4]
WNEC, Albany NY
*WTVF, Buffalo NY
WMAC-TV, Massillon OH [4] [41]
KCEB, Tulsa OK (1954-1955) [6]
WIBG-TV, Philadelphia PA [42]
WPHD, Philadelphia PA [1]
*WHMC, Conway SC
WGVL, Greenville SC (1953-1956)
KDTX, Dallas TX
KTVP, Houston TX
*KRET-TV, Richardson TX (1960-1970)
KIT-TV, Yakima WA
KRSM, Yakima WA
WTIP-TV, Charleston WV

Channel 24

KAON-TV, Fort Smith AR
*WTTW, Chicago IL [43]
WICD, Danville IL (1953-1967) » 15
*WQPT, Moline IL
KWIS-TV, Wichita KS
WTLF, Baltimore MD (1961) [36] [44]
KGSL-TV, St. Louis MO
WTVE, Elmira NY (1953-1954)
KPVC-TV, Portland OR [17]
KPIC, Salem OR [45]
KTVA, Austin TX
WBTM-TV, Danville VA (1954-1955) [6]
WCAN-TV, Milwaukee WI [27] #

Channel 25

WJUD, West Palm Beach FL
KTAG-TV, Lake Charles LA (1953-1963)
WREP, Boston MA
KCTY, Kansas City MO (1953-1954) [46]
WROA-TV, Gulfport MS
WJTV, Jackson MS (1953-1955) [47]
WJAQ-TV, Jackson MS
*WGTV, New York NY
KTVQ, Oklahoma City OK (1953-1954)
WCOS-TV, Columbia SC (1953-1956)
KAVU, Victoria TX [48]
WCAN-TV, Milwaukee WI (1953-1955) [27]

Channel 26

WVNA-TV, Florence AL
KPRT, San Francisco CA
KDEN, Denver CO
WNLC-TV, New London CT [1]
WEHS, Chicago IL [1]
WJRE, Indianapolis IN
*WISU-TV, Terre Haute IN
WCKG, New Orleans LA [4]
*WUOM-TV, Ann Arbor MI
WTOB-TV, Winston-Salem NC (1953-1957)
WNYP, Jamestown NY (1967-1970)
WSWO-TV, Springfield OH (1968-1970)
WRAK-TV, Williamsport PA [1] [36]

Channel 27

KFMX-TV, San Diego CA [1]
KVVG, Tulare CA (1953-1957)
KCOK-TV, Tulare CA
WSTF, Stamford CT [4]
WMIE-TV, Miami FL [40]
WHKP-TV, Hendersonville NC
WRNY-TV, Rochester NY
KPTV, Portland OR (1952-1957) [49] #
KHTV, Portland OR (1959) [7]
WCMB-TV, Harrisburg PA (1954-1957) [50]
KLIF-TV, Dallas TX
WTOV-TV, Norfolk VA (1953-1954) [12]
WYAH-TV, Portsmouth VA (1961-1972)
WROV-TV, Roanoke VA (1953) [46]
WRLU-TV, Roanoke VA (1966-1976)
KDWN-TV, Cheyenne WY

Channel 28

*KTHE, Los Angeles CA (1953-1954) [46]
KICU, Salinas CA
WFTS, Tampa FL
WTVM, Columbus GA (1953-1959) » 9
WAFB-TV Baton Rouge LA (1953-1958) » 9
WNBH-TV, New Bedford MA
WTEV-TV, New Bedford MA
WCTV, Flint MI
WCBI-TV, Columbus MS [51]
WJSF, Raleigh NC
WNAO-TV, Raleigh NC (1953-1957)
WNCI-TV, Columbus OH
*WGSF, Newark OH (1963-1970)

Channel 29

KTXL, Sacramento CA [52]
WDXR-TV, Paducah KY (1971-1976) [53]
KIKS-TV, Lake Charles LA
WGTC-TV, St. Paul MN
WNYT-TV, Buffalo NY [4]
WCDB, Hagaman NY (1957-1960)
WJAN, Canton OH
WTLC, Canton OH [1]
KVMP, Tulsa OK
WIP-TV, Philadelphia PA
WIBF-TV, Philadelphia PA [6] #
*WTIE-TV, State College PA
KLIF-TV, Dallas TX [54]
KAEI, Dallas TX
KXYZ-TV, Houston TX [4]
KBRT, San Antonio TX
WOTV, Richmond VA [13]

Channel 30

WQIK-TV, Jacksonville FL
WDUV-TV, Jacksonville FL
KFUO-TV, Clayton MO
WCOC-TV, Meridian MS [6]
WRLO, Portsmouth OH (1966-1969)
WITA-TV, San Juan PR (1966-1967)
WMTU-TV, Memphis TN
WKTO-TV, Nashville TN
WFOX-TV, Milwaukee WI [1] [27]
WMKE-TV, Milwaukee WI (1968-1970)

Channel 31

KTVJ, Stockton CA
KTOV-TV, Denver CO
WPCT, Melbourne FL
WSFD-TV, Marion IN (1962-1969)
WDCL, Owensboro KY
WRLH, Lebanon NH (1971-1975)
WUHF, New York NY (1961-1962) [55]
WPYH, Rochester NY
WEOL-TV, Elyria OH [4]
*WGSF, Newark OH (1963-1975)
KBMT, Beaumont TX (1954-1956) [56]
KTRX, Kennewick WA (1958)
WMIL-TV Milwaukee WI

Channel 32

KSAN-TV, San Francisco CA (1954-1958) [57] #
*WETX, Washington DC
WPGT, Clearwater FL
WFTV, Clearwater FL
WTLE, Evanston IL [1]
WCNO-TV, New Orleans LA
WWEZ-TV, New Orleans LA
WRLP, Greenfield MA (1957-1978) # #
WBPZ, Lock Haven PA (1958-1959) [6]
KWKC-TV, Abilene TX
KTVE, Longview TX (1953-1955)

Channel 33

KGPA-TV, Phoenix AZ
WMFL, Miami FL
WGCT, Miami FL
WCHU, Champaign IL (1959-1967)
WDTV, Harrisburg PA (1961-1963) [36] [50]
WKST-TV, New Castle PA (1959-1964) [58]
WEEU-TV, Reading PA (1953-1955)
KMEC-TV, Dallas TX (1967-68) [59] #
KTVE, Longview TX
WACH, Newport News VA (1953-1954) [6]
WNTU-TV, Norfolk VA
WMTV, Madison WI (1953-1961) » 15

Channel 34

KMYR, Los Angeles CA [1]
KMER, Merced CA
WSBT-TV, South Bend IN (1952-1958) » 22
KSLN-TV, Salina KS (1962-1969)
WHLS-TV, Port Huron MI [1]
WTVX, Goldsboro NC [60]
WILK-TV, Wilkes-Barre PA (1953-1958) [16]
KKBC-TV, Lubbock TX (1967-1970) [61]
KANG-TV, Waco TX (1953-1956) [62]
KFIZ-TV, Fond du Lac WI (1968-1974)

Channel 35

WORU, Orlando FL
WSWB-TV, Orlando FL (1974-1976) [63]
WEEQ-TV, La Salle IL (1957-1974)
WTVM, Muskegon MI
WTRI, Albany NY (1953-1955) » 13
*WHYY-TV, Philadelphia PA (1957-1963) [64]
*WUHY-TV, Philadelphia PA (1964-1975)
KALA, San Antonio TX
WRTU-TV, Richmond VA
WJPB-TV, Fairmont WV (1954-1955) [65]

Channel 36

KTVU, Stockton CA (1953-1956)
WJHP-TV, Jacksonville FL (1953-1957)
WQXI-TV, Atlanta GA (1954-1955) [28] [66] #
KDIO, Davenport IA
KCTV, Sioux City IA
WMAY-TV, Springfield IL
*WISU-TV, Terre Haute IN
WNOH, Northampton MA
WKMI-TV, Kalamazoo MI
KSTM-TV, St. Louis MO (1953-1954) [67]
WQMC, Charlotte NC (1954-1955) [68]
WTVG, Mansfield OH [4]
WRAK-TV, Williamsport PA

Channel 37

WGOV-TV, Valdosta GA [69]

Channel 38

KMTR, San Francisco CA
KUDO, San Francisco CA (1968-1971) [70]
WKME-TV, Seaford DE
WSUN-TV, St. Petersburg FL (1953-1970) #
WGNO-TV, New Orleans LA
WXEL, Boston MA [1]
WFTV, Duluth MN (1953-1954)
WKOK-TV Sunbury PA [4]
*WEKT, Corpus Christi TX
*KWTT, Tyler TX
WTLB, La Crosse WI

Channel 39

KBFL, Bakersfield CA
KAAR-TV, San Diego CA (1965-1966) [71]
WFTL-TV, Fort Lauderdale FL [40]
WGBS-TV, Miami FL [40]
WTML, Miami FL [17]
WTVO, Rockford IL (1953-1967) » 17
KUZN-TV, West Monroe LA (1967-1968) [72]
WQCY, Allentown PA [1]
WSHA, Sharon PA [73]
KNUZ-TV, Houston TX (1953-1954) [74]

Channel 40

KCCC-TV, Sacramento CA (1953-1957) [75]
WHRN, Dover DE
WNFA-TV, Tallahassee FL
KHTV, Baton Rouge LA
*WEDB, Berlin NH (1969-1981) #
*KUCU-TV, St, Louis MO
WWHO-TV, Jackson MS
WCCT, Fayetteville NC [17]
WRJK-TV, Bluefield VA

Channel 41

WTTM-TV, Trenton NJ
WCDA-TV, Albany NY (1953-1957) » 10 [76]
KTVR, Galveston TX

Channel 42

WSGN-TV, Birmingham AL
KCFT-TV, Concord CA (1966-1967)
KTKA, Topeka KS
WHFB-TV, Benton Harbor MI
WIL-TV, St. Louis MO
KAKS, Omaha NE
WLEC-TV, Sandusky OH
WAMT, Memphis TN [1]
KHFI-TV, Austin TX (1965-1974)
WNAM-TV, Neenah WI (1954-1955) [77]

Channel 43

KAKI, Visalia CA
KICU-TV, Visalia CA (1961-1975)
WICC-TV, Bridgeport CT (1953-1960) [6] #
WFTT, Bridgeport CT
WGNH, Bloomington IL
WEEK-TV, Peoria IL (1953-1965) » 25 [22]
WACH-TV, Richmond IN
WTLK, Paducah KY
KFAZ-TV, Monroe LA (1953-1954)
*WHTV, Syracuse NY
WTVT, Chattanooga TN
KTLG, Corpus Christi TX
WTMB-TV, Suring WV

Go to Appendix 11: More Bleached Bones

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