|This article needs additional citations for verification. (December 2012)|
|Branding||WJZ 13 (general)
WJZ Eyewitness News (newscasts)
|Slogan||Maryland's news station
|Channels||Digital: 13 (VHF)
Virtual: 13 (PSIP)
|Affiliations||CBS (O&O; 1995-present)|
(CBS Television Licenses, LLC)
|Founded||May 1946 |
|First air date||November 2, 1948|
|Call letters' meaning||named after the former callsign of a station which is now WABC (AM), which stood for its original location in New Jersey|
|Sister station(s)||WJZ-AM, WJZ-FM, WLIF-FM, WLZL-FM, WWMX-FM|
|Former callsigns||WAAM-TV (1948–1957)|
|Former channel number(s)||Analog:
13 (VHF, 1948–2009)
38 (UHF, 1997–2009)
|Transmitter power||33.8 kW|
|Height||295 m (968 ft)|
|Public license information:||Profile
WJZ-TV, channel 13, is a CBS (Columbia Broadcasting System)owned-and-operated television station located in the city of Baltimore, Maryland, United States. The station is owned by the CBS Television Stations subsidiary of CBS Corporation (formerly the Columbia Broadcasting System). WJZ-TV's studios and offices are located on "Television Hill" in the Woodberry section of northwest Baltimore, off 41st Street, overlooking the Jones Falls and Jones Falls Expressway (Interstate 83) to the east and adjacent to the landmark "candelabra" transmission tower it shares with four other Baltimore television stations.
- 1 History
- 2 Digital television
- 3 Out-of-market coverage
- 4 Programming
- 5 News operation
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Baltimore's third television station started on November 2, 1948 as WAAM. The station's original owner was Radio-Television of Baltimore, Inc., which was operated by a pair of Baltimore businessmen, brothers Ben and Herman Cohen. Channel 13 was originally an ABC affiliate, the network's fifth outlet to be located on the East Coast. Until 1956, it carried an additional primary affiliation with the DuMont Television Network. On the station's first day of operations, WAAM broadcast the 1948 Presidential Election returns with the incumbent 33rd President, Harry S. Truman, a Democrat, winning an upset victory over Republican candidate, Thomas Dewey, former famous District Attorney of New York City and other various entertainment shows, remaining on the air for 23 consecutive hours, an unusually long period for that time. Channel 13 has been housed in the same studio, located on what is now known as "Television Hill", since its inception; the building was the first in Baltimore specifically designed for television production and broadcasting. Several years later, a competitor station, WBAL-TV, the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) affiliate on Channel 11 also constructed in offices and studios around on the eastern side of the hill. As a Dumont affiliate, WAAM originated many Baltimore Colts games broadcast on emergent television for the network's National Football League coverage as the program "NFL on Dumont".
The Westinghouse Electric Corporation (founded 1886) with their subsidiary Westinghouse Broadcasting, also popularly known later as "Group W" purchased WAAM from the Cohen brothers in May 1957. Westinghouse took control of the station in August of that year, and changed its callsign to "WJZ-TV" the following month. The WJZ call letters had previously resided on ABC's flagship radio/television combination in New York City, which then changed its calls to WABC-AM-FM & TV in 1953. However, Westinghouse's history with that set of call letters went back even further, as it was the original owner of WJZ Radio, the flagship station of NBC's old parallel Blue Network, which would eventually separate and become the American Broadcasting Company, popularly known as ABC, then the smaller and competitive group among the two older networks of NBC and CBS.
All of Baltimore's television stations had fairly short transmitter towers in the medium's early years. But in 1959, the three stations banded together to build the world's first three-pronged candelabra tower (at the top), soon to become a landmark in the metro area on its higher elevation of "TV Hill". Constructed behind the WJZ-TV studios on the southwest side, it was the tallest free standing television antenna in the United States at the time of its completion. The tower significantly improved Channel 13's signal coverage in central Maryland, and also added new viewers in neighboring metropolitan area of the influential nation's capital Washington, D.C., southern Pennsylvania and Delaware, which also greatly increased in later decades those regions' interest in the Baltimore Orioles for American League baseball and the Baltimore Colts of NFL pro football.
Later ABC years
Over the years, WJZ-TV frequently preempted ABC programming in favor of local shows and syndicated content from Westinghouse's broadcasting division, Group W (notably the former ABC daytime soap opera Dark Shadows, which WJZ-TV preempted during the mid-1960s). However, ABC was more than satisfied with channel 13, which was one of its strongest affiliates. Additionally, Baltimore viewers could watch ABC programs on Washington, D.C.'s WMAL-TV/WJLA-TV (channel 7), whose signal decently covers most of the Baltimore area.
From 1957 to 1964, one of the station's highest-rated programs was The Buddy Deane Show, an in-studio teen dance show similar to ABC's American Bandstand, which WJZ-TV also preempted in favor of the Deane program. Deane's program was the inspiration for the John Waters 1988 motion picture Hairspray and its subsequent Broadway musical version, which in turn has been made into a film.
WJZ-TV nearly lost its ABC affiliation in 1977, when the network briefly pursued WBAL-TV (channel 11) just as ABC became the most-watched broadcast network (in primetime) in the United States for the first time. However, WBAL-TV declined the ABC affiliation offer due to ABC's last-place network evening newscast offerings of the time, keeping ABC on channel 13 for the next 18 years.
Switch to CBS
In 1994, ABC agreed to an affiliation deal with the broadcasting division of the E. W. Scripps Company, which resulted in three of Scripps' television stations becoming ABC affiliates. ABC agreed to the deal as a condition of keeping its affiliation on Scripps' two biggest stations, WXYZ-TV in Detroit and WEWS in Cleveland. Both stations had been heavily courted by CBS, which was about to lose its longtime Detroit and Cleveland affiliates to Fox. One of the stations that was tapped to switch was Baltimore's then-NBC affiliate, WMAR-TV (channel 2). ABC was reluctant to include WMAR in the deal; it had been a ratings also-ran for over 30 years while WJZ-TV was one of the strongest ABC affiliates in the nation. However, not wanting to be relegated to UHF in two markets with few viable choices for a new affiliate, ABC opted to end its 47-year affiliation with channel 13 and move its affiliation to channel 2.
Group W felt betrayed by ABC after so many years of loyalty as channel 13 had been ABC's longest-tenured affiliate at the time (a distinction that now belongs to WJLA-TV). As a safeguard, it began to shop for an affiliation deal of its own. Eventually, Westinghouse agreed to a long-term affiliation contract with CBS. As a result, WJZ-TV and its sister stations in Philadelphia and Boston switched to CBS (Westinghouse's two other television stations, in Pittsburgh and San Francisco, were already CBS affiliates). The affiliation switch, the second in Baltimore television history, occurred early on the morning of January 2, 1995. As a result, channel 13 became the third station in Baltimore to affiliate with CBS. The network had originally affiliated with WMAR-TV in 1948 before moving to WBAL-TV in 1981. Westinghouse then bought CBS on November 24, 1995, making WJZ-TV a CBS owned-and-operated station.
WJZ-TV has used its current stylized "13" logo, using a font face exclusive to Group W, since 1967. The only real change came in May 1997, when it added the CBS Eye to its logo. WJZ currently does not brand under the "CBS Mandate" (which would have required WJZ to call itself "CBS 13"), preferring to use its call letters.
|Channel||Video||Aspect||PSIP Short Name||Programming|
|13.1||1080i||16:9||WJZ-DT||Main WJZ-TV programming / CBS|
WJZ-TV shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 13, on June 12, 2009, the official date in which full-power television stations in the United States transitioned from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station's digital signal relocated from its pre-transition UHF channel 38 to VHF channel 13 for post-transition operations. WMAR-TV took over the channel 38 allocation as it moved its digital signal from channel 52 as a result of the phaseout of channels 52-69.
In Delaware, WJZ is carried on Comcast in Sussex County. There is no coverage in most of Kent County except in the area of Chesapeake City for Atlantic Broadband cable subscribers. There is no coverage in all of New Castle County. New Castle and Kent counties are part of the Philadelphia market, which also carries WJZ's sister station KYW-TV. Only Sussex County is part of the Salisbury, Maryland market which carries its CBS affiliate, WBOC. In the beginning of CATV, almost if not all of Delaware once carried WJZ.
In Maryland, the eastern shore communities of Cambridge, East New Market/Secretary, Pocomoke City, Ocean City, Salisbury and Snow Hill carry WJZ. These areas are in the Salisbury market which WBOC is carried. From Hagerstown and west towards Cumberland, WJZ is carried there as well in the far northwestern part of the Washington, D.C. market. Between Hagerstown and Cumberland, the towns of Hancock and Oldtown do not carry WJZ.
In Pennsylvania, it is carried in Greencastle, Delta, Hanover, Rising Sun, Waynesboro and York County (but not in the city of York) which are in the Harrisburg-Lancaster-York market. In the Philadelphia market, it is carried in Oxford in Chester County.
WJZ is carried on cable in portions of Virginia located in the far western end of the Washington, D.C. market, alongside Washington's CBS affiliate WUSA. It is carried on cable in the Shenandoah Valley in Elkton, Front Royal, Luray and Winchester. In West Virginia, it is carried in the Martinsburg area; it is part of the Washington, D.C. market, which carries WUSA as well. In Keyser, Mineral County, WJZ is carried on cable.
WJZ's former analog signal could be picked up via antenna as far west as Warrenton and Culpeper, Virginia and as far east as Salem County, New Jersey. There is no satellite coverage outside of the Baltimore market for WJZ.
WJZ-TV is the Baltimore area affiliate of the It's Academic high school quiz competition. Channel 13 has also served two stints as the television home of the Baltimore Orioles baseball team, and has been the over-the-air home of the Orioles since 1994. It is one of the few "Big Three" stations that airs baseball on a regular basis.
WJZ-TV presently broadcasts 32½ hours of locally produced newscasts each week (with 5½ hours on weekdays, three hours on Saturdays and two hours on Sundays). Like other CBS-owned stations, channel 13 offers a web-only newscast, "WJZ At Your Desk", which is produced each weekday.
Soon after Westinghouse bought WJZ-TV, it significantly beefed up the station's news department. On October 12, 1957, WJZ-TV camerman John Kelly filmed a motion picture of the final stage of Sputnik 1's rocket crossing the pre-dawn sky of Baltimore, featured in a half-hour special program on Sputnik, broadcast that evening by Westinghouse sister station WBZ-TV in Boston. Within a few years, it passed WMAR-TV for second place. Like the other Group W stations, WJZ-TV adopted the Eyewitness News format pioneered at Philadelphia sister station KYW-TV. By the early 1970s, WJZ-TV had passed WBAL-TV for first place – a lead it held for over 30 years. Around 2001, however, WBAL-TV passed WJZ-TV for first place in all evening timeslots, though WJZ-TV still placed a strong second. However, in the official November 2009 Nielsen ratings sweeps period, the first since the debut of The Jay Leno Show (which aired on WBAL-TV), WJZ-TV returned to a dominant position at 11 p.m. for the first time since the early 2000s. Both stations spent the next two years in a virtual dead heat in the late news. However, since the November 2011 Nielsen sweeps period, WJZ has dominated over WBAL in all news time slots in both total households and the critical 25-54 demographic; however, WBAL remains a strong second. It has been one of CBS's strongest O&Os ever since the 1995 affiliation switch.
WJZ-TV was the first station in Baltimore to hire a full-time consumer reporter, as well as the first station to organize an investigative reporting team. In 1965, shortly after it adopted the Eyewitness News format, Wiley Daniels became the first African-American anchor in Baltimore. He worked alongside Jerry Turner, one of the most popular anchormen in Baltimore television history. Al Sanders succeeded Daniels in 1977; he and Turner were the top news team until Turner succumbed to esophageal cancer. Denise Koch succeeded Turner upon his death in 1987; she remains at the anchor desk alongside Vic Carter, who succeeded Sanders following the latter's death in 1995.
In 1976, Oprah Winfrey became an anchor for the station's 6:00 p.m. newscast. She also co-hosted channel 13's local talk show, People Are Talking with Richard Sher, which premiered on August 14, 1978, and ran until she left for Chicago in 1983. The segment continues to run on the morning newscasts.
Since 1987, WJZ-TV's news theme has been "Chroma Cues" by Music Oasis, which was specifically written for the station. Although the other CBS-owned stations (including WCBS-TV, KCBS-TV and WBBM-TV) are currently using The CBS Enforcer Music Collection by Gari Media Group and a standardized graphics package, WJZ has yet to switch.
Since September 2008, The Baltimore Sun has been the newspaper partner of WJZ-TV; involving sharing content, story leads, and cooperating together on stories. WJZ promotes stories featured in the Sun on its news broadcasts. The Sun promotes WJZ's stories and weather team on its pages (coincidentally, The Baltimore Sun was the founder and original owner of WMAR-TV).
On October 25, 2009, WJZ-TV became the third Baltimore station to begin airing newscasts in high definition. For several months after the upgrade, field reports were still presented in 4:3 standard definition until it switched over to the 16:9 widescreen format. As of September 2011, all of WJZ-TV's locally produced video footage, including remote field reports, are in HD, making it the first station in Baltimore to do so.
- Your Esso Reporter (1950s-1960s)
- (WJZ) Eyewitness News (1960s-present)
- That's What Friends Are For (1981-1982)
- It's a Good Feeling To Know (1982-1987)
- That Special Feeling On Channel 13 (1983-1984; based on ABC campaign slogan)
- We'll See You Through (1988-1993?)
- Baltimore's Watching WJZ (1990-1992; based on ABC campaign slogan)
- There's Only One 'JZ (mid 1990s)
- Baltimore's Most Watched Newscast (1992–2002)
- Baltimore's News Station (2002–2008)
- Complete Coverage (2002–present)
- Maryland's News Station (2008–present)
- Only WJZ 13 (2009–present; based on CBS campaign slogan)
Current on-air staff
WJZ-TV's primary news anchors are Gigi Barnett (weekend mornings on Eyewitness News Morning Edition; also weekday reporter); Mary Bubala (weekdays at 4 and weeknights at 5 p.m.; also reporter); Vic Carter (weekdays at 4 and weeknights at 6 and 11 p.m.); Jessica Kartalija (Monday and Tuesday at noon and weekdays at 5pm; also reporter); Denise Koch (weekdays at 4:30 and weeknights at 6 and 11 p.m.); Linh Bui (weekday mornings on Rise n' Shine / Eyewitness News Morning Edition (5-7 a.m.) and weekdays at noon; also reporter); and Marcus Washington (Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 6:30 and 11 p.m.; also weekday reporter);.
The First Warning Weather team includes Bob Turk (associate member, AMS; weekdays at 4 and 4:30, and weeknights at 5, 6 and 11 p.m.); Marty Bass (weekday mornings on Rise n' Shine / Eyewitness News Morning Edition (5-7 a.m.) and weekdays at noon), Meteorologist Chelsea Ingram (AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Seal of Approval; Monday-Wednesdays at noon and Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 6:30 and weekends at 11 p.m.) and Meteorologist Tim Williams (AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist Seal of Approval; weekend mornings, and Thursdays and Fridays at noon).
The station's sports team includes sports director Mark Viviano (weeknights at 5, 6 and 11 p.m.) and sports anchor Rob Long (Saturdays at 6, Sundays at 6:30 and weekends at 11 p.m.; also sports reporter and heard middays on CBS-owned WJZ-FM, 105.7 The Fan ).
Traffic reporters are Sharon Gibala (weekday mornings on Rise n' Shine / Eyewitness News Morning Edition (5-7 a.m.); also Sunday morning reporter) and Kristy Breslin (weekdays at 4, 4:30 and 5 p.m.).
The station's reporting staff includes general assignment reporters Mike Hellgren, Christie Ileto, Tracey Leong, Ron Matz (also guest personality on the Eyewitness News Morning Edition, and formerly appeared as faux-Hollywood reporter, Harry Horni), Meghan McCorkell, Rochelle Ritchie, Rick Ritter, Mike Schuh, Derek Valcourt and Pat Warren; environmental and investigative reporter Alex DeMetrick; and "SkyEye Chopper 13" pilot/reporter Captain Jeff Long.
Notable former on-air staff
- Nick Charles
- Boomer Esiason - intern while attending the University of Maryland ()
- Kai Jackson ()
- Bob McAllister
- Michael Olesker
- Royal Parker
- Al Sanders
- Don Scott - Retired from the station after 40 years on July 12, 2014
- Richard Sher
- Sally Thorner
- Jerry Turner
- Gerry Wheeler (Lorenzo the Tramp)
- Oprah Winfrey
- "Television stations granted to three." Broadcasting - Telecasting, May 27, 1946, pg. 90.
- "Baltimore's WAAM(TV) opens as DuMont affiliate." Broadcasting - Telecasting, November 8, 1948, pg. 27. 
- "WAAM's big day; new TV outlet was on air 23 hours Nov. 2-3." Broadcasting - Telecasting, November 15, 1948, pg. 98. 
- "WBC'S WAAM (TV) buy: $4.4 million." Broadcasting, May 13, 1957, pg. 112. 
- "WAAM (TV) becomes WJZ-TV as FCC waives call rule." Broadcasting, August 5, 1957, pg. 92. 
- "Candelabra." Broadcasting, August 10, 1959, pg. 60
- "In brief." Broadcasting, March 21, 1977, pg. 30
- "In brief." Broadcasting, March 28, 1977, pg. 34
- Foisie, Geoffrey (June 20, 1994). "ABC pre-empts CBS in Cleveland, Detroit.". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved March 16, 2013.
- Zier, Julie A. (July 18, 1994). "CBS, Group W form historic alliance". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved March 16, 2013.
- Zurawik, David (1 January 1995). "Get ready, get set, get confused, in TV's big switch in Baltimore Changing Channels". Baltimore Sun. Retrieved 29 June 2012.
- RabbitEars TV Query for WJZ
- "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and the Second Rounds" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-03-24.
- CDBS Print
- Dickson, Glen (2009-06-22). "WPVI Gets Power Boost From FCC". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved 2009-06-25.
- Molczan, T. (June 30, 2013). "Motion Picture of Sputnik 1 Rocket from Baltimore on October 12, 1957". satobs.org. Retrieved September 1, 2013.
- WJZ-TV anchors and reporters
- Official website
- WJZ-TV at the Wayback Machine (archived December 19, 1996)
- WJZ-TV at the Wayback Machine (archived April 15, 1997)
- WJZ-TV at the Wayback Machine (archived July 9, 2001)
- WJZ-TV at the Wayback Machine (archived August 2, 2002)
- WJZ-TV at the Wayback Machine (archived September 12, 2005)
- WJZ-TV at the Wayback Machine (archived December 4, 2010)
- Query the FCC's TV station database for WJZ-TV
- View archival footage held by the University of Baltimore