Take a look back at the beginnings of WIS-TV

Read by Joe Pinner Nov. 21, 1978:
On Nov. 25, 1950, The Columbia Record informed readers that WIS-TV was coming.
The headline read: "Television application made by WIS." The application was for channel 7 and indicated that it would serve the Columbia area from a 400-foot tower on Bull Street.

When I arrived at WIS last year to bring you Palmetto Weekend, I found, in my new desk, a stack of old photos dating back to the late '50s. As the newest employee at WIS, finding these photos helped me to appreciate the countless numbers of talented people that have worked since day one to make WIS-TV one of the best broadcasters in the southeast.

Here is a look at some of those photos!
- By Ryan Burgee

A foundation is laid for a new future in broadcast television.

Date: Unknown

The original construction permit for WIS-TV was filed February 11, 1953. Studios were constructed inside the WIS radio building at 1111 Bull Street, where we still operate today.

Tower Construction

Now an integral piece of the Columbia skyline, construction on our red and white striped, 400 foot tall, tower began September 18, 1953

Inspecting a joint on the WIS-TV tower

You have to appreciate that ’50s fashion!

What a view!

Watch your step!

WIS-TV transmits its first signal, a test pattern and tone, October 25, 1953.

Don't look down!

On Saturday, November 7, 1953 a locally produced pre-game show for the telecast of the South Carolina/North Carolina football game commenced at 1:25 PM. WIS-TV became a reality

Rock and Roll!

Date: Unknown
WIS-TV began broadcasting black and white images with sound at the start. Our first color broadcast was the NBC special, “Skin of our Teeth”….

Children check out the latest in mid-century TV technology

WIS-TV goes to full studio color in 1965

How far we've come.


As broadcast technology steams ahead WIS-TV continues to lead from the cutting edge. I wonder if this camera operator from years ago could even believe the technology we use today to bring you live content in crisp ultra-HD resolutions with light weight cameras that fit in the palm of your hand!

When you find a great place to work, you stay...

Just ask Joe Pinner. Here’s Mr. Knozit signing autographs in 1963!

“If we know where we came from, we may better know where to go. If we know who we came from, we may better understand who we are.” -Anonymous