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Monday, February 22, 2010

Wonderful WFAA

WFAA, Dallas-Fort Worth. Call letters established 6/26/1922 at 833 kc (other sources say 750 kc,) moved to 630 kc on 5/15/1923, moved to 600 kc on 4/15/1927, moved to 550 kc on 11/16/1927, moved to 800 kc on 5/25/1929 (shared with WBAP, and existed only on 800 to 1939,) moved to 600 kc in the late 1930s, moved and merged with KGKO at 570 kc on 5/1/1938
(WBAP's Amon Carter bought KGKO in 1938 as a second frequency for WBAP and WFAA to share; Carter sold half of it to WFAA on 7/26/1940 for $250,000,) moved with WBAP to 820 kc on 3/29/1941 (the national moving day for clear channel stations as a result of the Treaty of Havana.) Station shared frequencies with WBAP-820 from 1929 to 5/1/1970 to maximize use of 820's clear channel signal (they traded dayparts, and each used the 600 or 570 frequency when the other was using 820 (see KGKO, below.) Expanded to current 50kW on 5/10/1930 (using transmitter near Grapevine, built in 1929; new tower opened in 1938, and was the tallest man-made structure in the Southwest at the time.)

Original FRC license date was 6/5/1922. Granted dual-city license on 2/22/1973. Format: Variety, Middle of the Road (4/27/1970-?,) Top 40 (?-11/2/1976,) News/Talk. Owner: A. H. Belo (Alfred Horatio Belo) Broadcasting.

Call letters stood for "Working For All Alike," and also noted as "World's Finest Air Attraction." Nickname: "Newstalk 57" (11/2/1976 to 1983.) Sister station to KERA-FM (1947 version)/WFAA-FM/ KZEW-FM and the "Dallas Morning News" (formerly "Dallas News and Journal" in WFAA's earliest days.)

First network-affiliated station in Texas (initially with NBC beginning 4/2/1923; later with Texas Quality Network, ABC [to 8/1/1975] and CBS thereafter,) first US station to carry educational programs, first to produce a serious radio drama series, first to air a state championship football game, the first to air inaugural ceremonies. Original personalities for the station were drawn from columnists and editors at sister "Dallas Morning News." The phrase, "Shut 'er down, Eddie!", was the nightly signoff indicator.

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