Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Westinghouse Cleveland Legacy-Bill Barrett

KYW-TV 3 Logo from 1959 (TV Guide)

TV Guide Ad for Barnaby and Woodrow's Christmas Party from December, 1961

Most familiar KYW-TV 3 Logo-used approximately 1963-65 in Cleveland and many years thereafter in Philadelphia..KYW-AM Newsradio 1060 in Philadelphia still uses the font style in their logo..Ironically enough, this comes from a March, 1966 Philadelphia TV Guide reprint.

Highlights of a Cleveland Press Column (6-18-65) by Bill Barrett on what Westinghouse meant to Cleveland:


Bill Barrett

Friday, June 18, 1965

Cleveland Press


The nine lively years of KYW end precisely at 5AM tomorrow. The curtain comes down without fuss, flourish or fanfare.

This just isnt the KYW style, somehow. For reasons not entirely clear, the colorful radio and TV operation on East Sixth Street has chosen to steal out of town as if they owed somebody a lot of money.

I hate to see it end this way. The Westinghouse Broadcasting Co., Owners of the stations which return to Philadelphia tomorrow morning at the Government's bidding, has been a congenial and responsible neighbor in most every sense.

Barrett suggests KYW identified with Cleveland and took up its causes..He also mentions "big league television" in the form of the Mike Douglas Show, That Westinghouse was responsible for. He also quotes:

"The record suggests that there would have been a fond farewell from KYW to the old hometown--A final friendly hour, perhaps, in radio or TV Schedule in which to kick up a few fond memories". Barrett then notes the fanfare (1956) when KYW arrived in Cleveland, sound trucks, billboards, balloons, fireworks..."KYW loved us--each and every one" The station waa the first to air editorials in Cleveland (1958)..Barrett notes the "Open Circuit" TV Show-controversial news magazine..

Barrett gives a plug to WCLV and Bob Conrad, who aired a "Goodbye Westinghouse Hello NBC" Party on WCLV that Saturday night at 10:10 PM. Conrad also aired an editorial on his station that stated:

Although many of us quarrel with the choice of music on KYW-AM, it is a fact that the public service rendered by both KYW Radio and TV has been outstanding--and in the highest tradition of American broadcasting.

Barrett closes his thoughts:

"At 5AM tomorrow, the Westinghouse Broadcasting Company quietly leaves town. They'll leave behind the VIP disk jockeys to be sure and the TV performers. But I figured they owed us a fond farewell."

"So, Ok, Westinghouse. But at least you could have said goodbye."

Comment:It occurs to me that as great an owner as Group W/Westinghouse was in Cleveland, They appeared to have a "Get Out of Dodge" mentality once the Justice Department and the FCC gave the ok for the station swap..I know it's 42 years later but it just seems wrong to me somehow..


  1. You did an excellent job as usual, Tim. Good read.

  2. KYW-TV kept the Group W logo until 2005, when it was replaced with the "CBS Mandate" CBS 2 logo.

    A handful of former Group W stations still use that angular font, including WJZ-TV, KYW-TV, WINS-AM, KPIX-TV and WOWO-AM. The closest computer font of any kind is the freeware "Anklepants" font, BTW.

    - nate81

  3. tim--congrats on a very well done series. on the r-i board i was very pleasantly surprised to hear jay lawrence himself chime in to our fond rattlings about our youth.thanks for linking harry. his blogs are hilarious--david5258

  4. David:
    Thanks for the kind words. I went to Cleveland last Thursday to research another subject (WKYC related) when I decided on trying to find some articles about the swap itself. I had no idea it would become a "series"..I too, am surprised at folks that actually worked at KYW would find it and respond so positively. Very humbling..

  5. Wonderful thread on the good old days of KYW. Gosh do I miss those days, staying up late at night to listen to Jay Lawrence and his Mushroom Survey.

    I was fortunate to run across an aircheck of Lawrence's radio "farewell party" on the night of the change. It was hilarious! I stayed up all night to listen to it back then, that Major Moment in Cleveland broadcasting history, and it was nice to be able to turn back the clock and hear that show again.

  6. I wasn't born yet when NBC and Westinghouse first made that swap in 1956 but after reading about how Westinghouse pulled out in 1965 I find it hard to imagine NBC exactly making a whole heck of a lot of racket in 1956.