A Timeline of Buffalo Broadcasting
January 1, 1947 WHLD-FM signs on - changed to WZIR in 1980, WRXY in 1984 and WKSE in 1985.
January 1, 1959 WBFO-FM, owned by the University of Buffalo, signs on.
January 1, 1973 WGR-FM goes on the air with the top 40 "Super Q" format as WGRQ.
January 3, 1986 After change in ownership, WKBW call letters are rearranged to form WWKB.
January 5, 1985 97 Rock goes off the air at 10 a.m. and replaced by "Lite" WGR-FM (WRLT). Entire staff is fired.
January 6, 1969 WYSL-FM adds a progressive format from 7 p.m. - 5 a.m. with Jim Santella 9 p.m. -1 a.m. and George Hamberger 1 a.m. - 5 a.m.
January 8, 1966 Fred Klestine appointed Chief Announcer of WBNY
January 9, 1956 WBUF-TV, Channel 17, signs on as an NBC owned and operated station. WBUF is NBC’s first UHF station.
January 10, 1970 One year after its switch to a progressive rock format, WYSL-FM changes its call letters to WPHD.
January 14, 1952 Jack Ogilvie joins WBEN-AM.
January 16, 1960 WBEN-AM/FM/TV moves into former NBC studios at 2077 Elmwood Ave.
January 17, 1950 "Meet the Millers" begins a 20 year run on WBEN-TV.
January 19, 1946 First broadcast of "Hi-Teen" with host Bob Wells on WEBR.
January 23, 1930 The Buffalo Evening News is granted radio station WRDA. The station never went on the air. The News eventually took control of WMAK (WBEN).
January 25, 1926 Seneca Vocational High School station WJBP changes call letters to WSVS.
January 26, 1948 WKSN-AM, Jamestown, signs on.
January 29, 1973 Alan Constantini joins WBEN-TV.
February 1, 1965 WHUG-FM, Jamestown, signs on.
February 1, 1949 WHDL-FM (WPIG-FM) Olean, signs on.
February 2, 1949 Hall of Fame Inductee Chuck Healy joins WBEN-TV.
February 6, 1941 WBTA-AM, Batavia, signs on.
February 9, 1964 The Beatles TV debut on The Ed Sullivan Show seen locally on WBEN-TV.
February 10, 1934 Ralph Hubbell conducts his first sports interview with wrestler Sam Cordovano.
February 10, 1975 WGRQ dumped its Top 40 format and became Q-FM-97. Jim Jim Santella, Skip Edmunds, John Rivers, Hank Bell and John McGhan make up first first air staff.
February 15, 1966 Courier Cable, WNY’s first community antenna television outlet, begins service. Courier Cable is owned by The Courier-Express.
February 16, 1963 WDCX-FM, signs on.
February 19, 1957 George "Hound Dog" Lorenz hosts the "Biggest Show of Stars" at Memorial Auditorium. Headliners include Fats Domino, Chuck Berry and Clyde McPhatter.
February 22, 1947 WBEN’s first public demonstration of television at the Masten Street Armory.
February 23, 1926 The Federal Radio Commission is created by Congress.
February 27, 1973 Jackson Armstrong’s last show on WKBW-AM.
February 29, 1948 BBP Hall of Fame member Ralph Hubbell becomes sports director of WBEN-AM.
March 1, 1943 After a 12 year stint at WGR, Clint Buehlman joins WBEN-AM. He would remain as WBEN’s morning man until 1977.
March 2, 1963 Ultravision Broadcasting Co, headed by Stan Jasinski files FCC application for UHF channel 29 (WUTV).
March 3, 1948 WEBR-AM switches to 970 on the dial. Transmitter is moved to Cloverbank Road, Hamburg.
March 10, 1966 Jeff Kaye’s first show on WKBW.
March 11, 1928 WKBW changes dial position from 1380 to 1470 AM.
March 13, 1954 First Network Color TV test on WBEN-TV (Now WIVB).
March 15, 1897 G. Marconi makes demonstrated communication over a distance of 4 miles.
March 18, 1934 W8XH, WBEN’s ultra short wave station becomes first 5 meter station to broadcast a regular schedule. Transmitter is now part of the collection of the Smithsonian Institution.
March 19, 1981 WGRQ’s Snortin Norton begins "Radiothon" to break Guiness World Record of total consecutive hours on the air.
March 21, 1955 Van Miller begins at WBEN-AM.
March 25, 1922 Buffalo’s first radio station, WWT, is granted a license to broadcast.
March 29, 1941 WKBW moves up the dial to 1520 AM.
March 30, 1959 WNED-TV, Channel 17, begins Public Broadcasting in Western New York.
April 1, 1967 WKBW jocks travel to Hartford, Conn. Switch positions with WPOP during April Fools joke.
April 1, 1957 Elvis and George "Hound Dog" Lorenz rock Memorial Auditorium.
April 4, 1997 Smooth Jazz WSJZ-FM becomes ALICE at 92.9 (WLCE-FM).
April 7, 1954 Construction permit granted to Niagara Frontier Amusement Corporation to build Channel 2. Name would change to the WGR Corporation.
April 7, 1927 The first practical demonstration of television between Washington and NYC.
April 8, 1981 After a record breaking 484 hours (20 days, 4 hours), WGRQ’s Larry Norton enters the Guiness Book of World Records for consecutive hours on the air. A record that stands to this day!
April 13, 1975 WSBU-FM, owned by St. Bonaventure University, signs on.
April 15, 1977 John Beard joins WBEN-TV.
April 19, 1944 WEBR-AM becomes affiliated with the Mutual Broadcasting System.
April 20, 1986 WSPQ-AM, Springville, signs on.
April 22, 1967 Jim McLaughlin joins WYSL-AM as news director; would join WKBW in 1970.
April 29, 1959 Buffalo’s first trafficopter takes to the air on WEBR-AM with reporter Jack Sharpe.
May 1, 1964 FCC requires that all new television sets produced receive UHF band.
May 1, 1948 CBS links New York and Los Angeles with coaxial cable. CBS Television Network is born.
May 1, 1983 Taft Broadcasting sells WGR-TV to General Cinema Corp. Station call letters are changed to WGRZ.
May 6, 1974 Jeff Kaye leaves WKBW to become afternoon man on WBEN.
May 8, 1948 WUSJ-AM (Now WLVL-AM) signs on.
May 10 1965 Tom Jolls joins WKBW-TV.
May 12, 1987 Tom Shannon joins WGR-AM as morning man.
May 13, 1987 Western New York Public Broadcasting signs on second television station WNEQ-TV.
May 13, 1948 Buffalo’s first scheduled live telecast; Consecration of Rev. Lauriston Scaife as the Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Buffalo on WBEN-TV.
May 14, 1948 WBEN-TV (Now WIVB-TV) begins regular program service. Becomes the 25th television station in the United States.
May 19, 1940 WHLD-AM signs on from studios located in the Hotel Niagara.
May 20, 1957 WMNS-AM, Olean, signs on.
May 22, 1922 WGR-AM signs on.
May 22, 1951 Dick Rifenberg joins WBEN.
May 27, 1957 CHUM-AM, Toronto, launches Top 40 format.
May 28, 1972 George "Hound Dog" Lorenz passes away at the age of 52.
June **, 1968 Sandy Beach joins WKBW-AM.
June 1, 1956 Rick Azar joins WBUF-TV (Channel 17) as weatherman and sports announcer.
June 1, 1986 WUWU, 107.7 becomes the "The Bear," WBYR-FM. Tony Magoo, J.P. and Tom Tiberi are among the first jocks under new format.
June 10, 1971 WGR-AM moves to the former offices of the Contemporary School of Broadcasting at 464 Franklin.
June 4, 1934 The first test broadcast of an FM signal is sent out from the Empire State Building in NYC.
June 5, 1998 After a 43 year stint at WBEN-AM/TV (WIVB), Van Miller retires from the sports anchor desk.
June 6, 1960 WEBR-FM (WNED-FM) signs on.
June 6, 1986 The CHUM, Toronto, "CHUM Chart" discontinued. Was the longest running hit record chart in North America. Ran for 1, 512 consecutive weeks.
June 18, 1957 WGGO-AM, Salamanca, signs on.
June 18, 1988 "KB Becomes a Thing of the Past" Part 2. WWKB-AM switches to satellite oldies format ending nearly 30 years of rock ‘n roll.
June 20, 1988 Dan Neaverth joins WHTT-FM.
June 26, 1930 WMAK changes call letters to WBEN.
June 29, 1977 Buffalo Evening News sells WBEN-TV for $25.5 million.
July 1, 1958 "Night Patrol" with Jack Sharpe debuts on WEBR-AM.
July 3, 1955 Guy King (Tom Clay) conducts famous "Billboard" stunt in Shelton Square on WWOL-AM.
July 4, 1958 WKBW-AM makes switch to Top 40 format.
July 4, 1980 WHLD-FM (WKSE-FM) is transformed into album rock format WZIR, Wizard 98+. Gary Storm and Jim Nowicki are among the first on air.
July 11, 1934 Federal Communications Commission opens for business.
July 11, 1994 WUBJ-FM, Jamestown, begins simulcast of WBFO, Buffalo, owned by the University of Buffalo.
July 15, 1936 WEBR-AM is sold to the Buffalo Evening News. Begins affiliation with the NBC Blue Network. New tower is built on top of the Larkin Company.
July 20, 1969 Landing of Apollo 11 on moon, Walter Cronkite exclaims "Man on Moon... Man finally standing on the surface of the moon... My Golly!"
July 23, 1942 WEBR-AM is sold to the Buffalo Courier-Express.
July 26, 1971 After seven long months, NABET ends strike against WGR-AM-FM-TV.
July 26, 1952 After a freeze on television applications, The Courier-Express reapplies for VHF channel 7.
July 28, 1953 Niagara Frontier Amusement Corporation files application for channel 2. NFAC investors would include prominent WNY businessmen George Goodyear, Seymour Knox and Paul Schoelkoph.
July 29, 1977 Clint Buelhman’s Last Show on WBEN-AM.
July 30, 1998 "Buffalo" Bob Smith passes way at age 80.
August 1, 1998 WEDG morning personalities, Shread and Reagan brave the waves of Lake Erie and ride a Seadoo watercraft to Cleveland.
August 14, 1958 WKBW Program Director Dick Lawrence hires Irv Weinstein.
August 14, 1954 WGR-TV (Now WGRZ-TV) signs on.
August 16, 1956 WNIA (changed to WECK in 1980) signs on.
August 17, 1953 WBUF-TV (Channel 17) signs on.
August 24, 1981 Bob Koop joins Carol Jasen behind the WIVB-TV news desk for the first time.
August 25, 1997 Former WKBW disc jockey Sandy Beach returns to local airwaves on WBEN-AM.
August 28, 1922 Account Executives celebrate! WEAF, New York becomes first station in the United States to sell air time. Calls it "toll broadcasting."
September 2, 1987 WNYB-TV (changed to WNYO in 1996), Channel 49, signs on.
September 6, 1941 WBEN dedicates it’s new transmitting facility on Grand Island.
September 7, 1964 "Dialing for Dollars" Premieres at 9 a.m. on WKBW-TV.
September 8, 1930 WBEN-AM Officially signs on.
September 9, 1927 NBC Network is formed by parent RCA.
September 10, 1962 "Rocketship 7" makes debut at 7 a.m. on WKBW-TV.
September 11, 1928 WMAK in conjunction with WGY, Schenectady, debuts television in Buffalo. WNY Broadcasting Hall of Fame member Ike Lounsberry make arrangements for historic broadcast.
September 12, 1955 George "Hound Dog" Lorenz joins WKBW-AM.
September 12, 1948 WBEN-TV first live broadcast from Niagara Falls.
September 14, 1959 WGR-FM signs on (now WGRF-FM).
September 15, 1922 License to broadcast granted to WMAK (now WBEN).
September 18, 1927 William S. Paley forms the CBS Radio Network.
September 20, 1988 "Back & Rockin". After a 3 1/2 year hiatus, Rich Communications brings back "97 Rock".
September 21, 1955 NBC purchases WBUF-TV, Channel 17.
September 23, 1989 WPHD lets go more team "Taylor & Moore" and becomes WUFX, "The Fox".
September 25, 1973 "KB Becomes a Thing of the Past" Part 1. Marked the end of personality-driven WKBW, replaced by the more music-oriented "KB 15, The Great American Music Machine."
September 29, 1953 WBES-TV (Channel 56) signs on.
September 30, 1958 WBUF-TV (Channel 17) goes dark. Owner NBC cites lack of public interest in UHF for station’s demise.
October 1, 1926 Dr. Clinton Churchill applies for a radio station license with the call letters WAY-AM. Calls were already assigned to a ship. Churchill is randomly assigned WKBW.
October 2, 1922 WWT, Buffalo’s first radio station, discontinues broadcasting.
October 3, 1954 WWOL-FM signs on. (Now WHTT-FM)
October 4, 1947 WWSE (WJTN-FM), Jamestown signs on. Call letters stand for "Wonderful World of Stereo Entertainment."
October 6, 1997 Former WKBW disc jockey Tommy Shannon returns to local airwaves on WHTT-FM.
October 9, 1978 WKBW moves from 1430 Main Street to 695 Delaware Ave.
October 11, 1956 NBC’s Today Show host Dave Garroway broadcasts live from the new NBC/WBUF-TV studios at 2077 Elmwood Ave (current home of WIVB).
October 14, 1924 WEBR-AM (Now WNED-AM) signs on. First studios located in the back of the Howell Electric Company at Niagara & Franklin Streets.
October 15, 1988 WQRT-FM, Salamanca, signs on.
October 15, 1951 "I Love Lucy" Premieres on WBEN-TV.
October 20, 1926 Inaugural broadcast on WKBW-AM. First station to use a commercially built transmitter.
October 22, 1940 Stan "Stas" Jasinski, age 25, broadcasts his first Polish radio program in Buffalo.
October 23, 1996 WNYO-TV (WNYB) Ch. 49 signs on. as Warner Brothers (WB) affiliate.
October 25, 1950 WKBW moves studios from the 13th floor of the Rand Bldg. to a new "Radio Center" at 1430 Main Street.
October 31, 1938 Mercury Theater of the Air broadcasts Orson Welles’ "War of the Worlds".
October 31, 1968 Broadcast of the WKBW-AM version of the "War of the Worlds".
November 1, 1977 WBEN-TV officially changes to WIVB after change in ownership.
November 1, 1978 WMXO-FM, Olean, signs on.
November 1, 1970 Local country music pioneer "Ramblin" Lou Schriver purchases WMMJ-AM from Stan Jasinski. Call letters changed to WXRL.
November 2, 1970 News Anchor Chuck Lampkin joins WBEN-TV.
November 2, 1920 Radio’s Official Birthday. KDKA - Pittsburgh,PA Broadcasts Presidential Election Results.
November 3, 1930 First regular broadcast of the weekly Fr. Justin Rosary Hour, now the oldest Polish language radio program in America.
November 8, 1998 Buffalo Bills vs. New York Jets: The first football game to be broadcast in high-definition television (HDTV).
November 9, 1925 Seneca Vocational High School signs on (WJBP-AM).
November 9, 1977 WBTF-FM, Batavia signs on.
November 11, 1946 WBEN-FM (Now WMJQ-FM) signs on.
November 11, 1966 WBNY-FM (Now WJYE-FM) signs on.
November 14, 1962 WADV-FM (Now WYRK-FM) signs on.
November 14, 1990 WKRP’s Les Nesman visits the 97 Rock "Turkey Drop" at the Thruway Mall."
November 15, 1986 WWKB hosts Weekend Reunion.
November 16, 1993 Western New York Public Broadcasting dedicates new facilities at Horizons Plaza.
November 26, 1970 NABET strike at WGR-AM-FM-TV begins on Thanksgiving Day.
November 26 1961 "Pic-a-Polka" premiers on WGR -TV with host Joe Macielag at 5 p.m.
November 28, 1974 Kevin O’Connell joins WBEN-TV.
November 29, 1957 Lou Douglas begins 30 year tenure at WBEN-AM.
November 30, 1958 WKBW-TV signs on.
December 3, 1956 The first use of magnetic tape for television broadcast. "Douglas Edwards with the News" taped for the west coast.
December 3, 1979 Carol Crissey, later Jasen, joins WIVB-TV.
December 6, 1954 WBEN-TV’s Santa Claus Show is the first telecast of a "live" color program.
December 7, 1996 WNGS-TV, Channel 67, signs on.
December 11, 1934 WHDL-AM, Olean, signs on., License and call letters were originally assigned to Lake Placid (Feb. 1929).
December 12, 1964 George "Hound Dog" Lorenz signs on WBLK-FM. The call letters "BLK" stand for "Ben L. Kulick," a major financial backer of the station and local Admiral distributor.
December 18, 1947 The Courier-Express files FCC application for VHF channel 7.
December 19, 1953 WBES-TV folds due to lack of income.
December 20, 1965 "The Commander Tom Show" debuts on WKBW-TV.
December 21, 1947 WJJL-AM, Niagara Falls signs on.
December 21, 1970 WUTV, Channel 29, Signs-On with Stan Jasinski at the helm.
December 24, 1949 WDOE-AM, Dunkirk, signs on.
December 27, 1947 The Howdy Show with "Buffalo" Bob Smith debuts on NBC.
December 30, 1955 NBC takes control of WBUF, Channel 17.
December 31, 1924 WJTN-AM, Jamestown, signs on.