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  • Writer's pictureJumpin' Joe

Cleveland Survey #2 - KYW - 6/11/1965

This is the second to last KYW Sound 11 Survey issued as the call letters would soon change due to a series of strange events.

It all started 10 years earlier in 1955 when NBC owned WTAM (the original call letters of 1100-AM) in Cleveland. NBC was looking to own a radio and television station in Philadelphia, then the third largest city in the United States. NBC convinced Westinghouse to trade radio and television stations in return for Cleveland's radio and television stations and $3 million in cash.

Westinghouse agreed to the trade as long as they got to keep the KYW call letters. In February of 1956, the former NBC owned Cleveland stations became KYW-AM (1100) KYW-FM (105.7) and KYW-TV (Channel 3). Philadelphia's stations became WRCV-AM and WRCV-TV. Because of the deal, some of the Cleveland TV personalities were also sent packing to Philadelphia, including Cleveland legend Dick Goddard.

In the early 1960s, KYW-AM switched to a top 40 format, competing head on with WHK. The line-up of DJs included Jim Runyon (of Chickenman fame), Jim Stagg, Jay Lawrence, Jerry G. and the morning duo of Harry Martin and Specs Howard.

Soon after the trade was finalized, Westinghouse filed a complaint with the FCC stating that NBC threatened to pull programming from Westinghouse NBC affiliates in Philadelphia and Boston if they didn't agree to the trade.

After a lengthy legal battle, the FCC ordered the reversal of the trade in 1964. The call letters KYW returned to Philadelphia on June 19, 1965, and the Cleveland stations became WKYC-AM, WKYC-FM, and WKYC-TV, with the call letters meaning "We're KY in Cleveland." NBC would own the Cleveland radio stations until 1972 when they were sold to Ohio Communications, led by Nick Mileti and Tom & Jim Embrescia.

WKYC-AM became WWWE (3WE) and WKYC-FM became WWWM (M105). AM 1060 in Philadelphia still remains KYW-AM.

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