|Channels||Digital: 48 (UHF)
Virtual: 47 (PSIP)
|Owner||LeSEA Broadcasting Corporation
(LeSEA Broadcasting of Tulsa, Inc.)
|First air date||1985[when?]|
|Call letters' meaning||World
|Former callsigns||KTCT (1985-1986)|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
47 (UHF, 1985-2009)
|Former affiliations||independent (1985-1995)
The WB (1995-1999)
|Transmitter power||29 kW|
KWHB is the LeSEA-affiliated television station serving Oklahoma's Green Country region that is licensed to Tulsa. It broadcasts a high-definition digital signal on UHF channel 48 (or virtual channel 47.1 via PSIP) from a transmitter located near South 273rd Avenue East and the Muskogee Turnpike (near Broken Arrow) in southeastern Tulsa County.
Owned by LeSEA Broadcasting Corporation, KWHB maintains studios located on South Memorial Drive (just east of the Chimney Hills addition) in southeastern Tulsa. The station can also be seen on Cox Communications channel 7. Syndicated programming on this station includes The Cosby Show, Bonanza, Highway to Heaven, Family Ties and Hogan's Heroes.
|47.1||480i||4:3||main KWHB-TV programming / LeSea|
The station originally signed on the air in 1985 as Christian television station KTCT (its callsign believed to stand for "Tulsa Christian Television"), owned by Coit Drapery and Cleaners, Inc. It ran programming from the PTL Satellite Network, included shows like The PTL Club, Heritage Village USA, 100 Huntley Street, as well as programs from televangelists such as Kenneth Copeland, Jerry Falwell, Jimmy Swaggart, Richard Roberts and many others.
The station suffered financial problems early on and had cut back its programming hours to approximately six hours a day by late 1985, and was put up for sale thereafter. Coit Drapery and Cleaners wanted to sell the station to a Christian religious broadcast ministry. Soon after, LeSea Evangelistic Ministries (also known as World Harvest Ministries), headed by the late Lester Sumerall along with his sons and based out of South Bend, Indiana, would purchase the station. After being acquired by LeSea in 1986, the station changed its callsign to KWHB and initially retained some PTL programming and added shows such as The 700 Club, LeSea Alive, Lester Sumerall Teaches, Dwight Thompson, among other religious programs. By 1987, the station also added secular family-oriented entertainment programming on weekday afternoons between 2 and 7 p.m. and on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and began accepting advertising during secular programming hours.
After KGCT went dark in 1987 after an ice storm destroyed its transmission tower (unable to construct a new tower due to a lack of funds), KWHB began to air some cartoons previously carried on that station. Over the years, KWHB ran syndicated reruns from the 1950s to the 1980s such as Ozzie & Harriet, Mister Ed, Little Rascals, Dennis The Menace (both the sitcom and the animated series), The Brady Bunch, I Love Lucy, Andy Griffith, The Jetsons, Yogi & Friends and DuckTales, among many others. Though the station ran a decent amount of general entertainment programming, the Tulsa area of TV Guide never included the station in its listings for reasons unknown, given the magazine had included full-time Christian stations in its listings in its other regional editions elsewhere around the United States.
In 1995, KWHB became an informal affiliate of The WB and began carrying the network's Kids WB! children's programming lineup, as well as its family-oriented primetime shows. The WB affiliation did not include carriage of shows that were too suggestive in content due to the station's ownership by LeSEA Broadcasting. As a result, The WB did not have a full-time primary affiliate in Tulsa for the network's first four years in existence; the remaining WB programs that were not carried by KWHB aired in the Tulsa market via cable through the superstation feed of WGN-TV/Chicago.
In 1999, Acme Communications signed on KWBT (channel 19, now CW affiliate KQCW-DT) as the market's The WB affiliate, carrying the network's full slate of programming; at that point, Kids' WB! and the few WB primetime shows that KWHB carried moved to that station, making KWHB an independent station once again.
- Official site
- Query the FCC's TV station database for KWHB
- BIAfn's Media Web Database -- Information on KWHB-TV
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