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Remembering Seattle's First TV Newscast

It was 59 years ago today that KING TV in Seattle launched a regular daily newscast with Charles Herring. Herring's September 10, 1951 broadcast is considered to be the first local TV news program north of Los Angeles and west of Minneapolis. Early September 1951 is also when the network "coax" cable reached Seattle, allowing KING to carry live broadcasts from New York rather than kinescopes of programs already several days old (it's unclear if there's any direct connection between the timing of the arrival of the coax and the launch of the local news program--if you can provide any insight, please comment below).

Seattle's Museum of History & Industry (MOHAI) honored Herring on the 50th anniversary back in 2001, which turned out to be the night before the 9/11 attacks (full disclosure: as a MOHAI staffer, I produced the event honoring Mr. Herring and we also co-led several walking tours of Seattle TV facilities over the years).

Herring was also featured on KING's early evening newscast the night of September 10, 2001, and was allowed to do the sign-off. A subsequent appearance the next morning on KING-affiliated Northwest Cable News was bumped due to the events in New York and Washington, DC.

Kay McFadden of the Seattle Times wrote about the 50th anniversary, and the paper published an obituary when Mr. Herring died in 2006.

(Posted by Feliks Banel)

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Western States Museum of Broadcasting 2021