Radio-TV Broadcast History

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WOWK-TV is the CBS-affiliated television station for the Tri-States and Kanawha Valley area of West Virginia that is licensed to Huntington which is the second largest market (in terms of area) east of the Mississippi River. It broadcasts a high definition digital signal on VHF channel 13 from a transmitter northwest of Milton. Due to the nature of VHF signals, this cannot be seen in the Kanawha Valley or Charleston. However, WOWK is offered on Comcast channel 12 and high definition on digital channel 782 (in Huntington) as well as Suddenlink channel 13 and in high definition on digital channel 782 (in Charleston).

Huntington/Charleston, West Virginia
Branding 13 (general)

13 News (newscasts)

Slogan Live and Local From Your Hometown
Channels Digital: 13 (VHF)
Affiliations 13.1 CBS

13.2 Ion Mystery

13.3 Laff

13.4 Rewind TV

Owner West Virginia Media Holdings
First air date October 2, 1955
Call letters' meaning Ohio/West Virginia/Kentucky
Sister station(s) WVNS-TV, WTRF-TV, WBOY-TV
Former callsigns WHTN-TV (1955-1975)
Former channel number(s) 13 (VHF analog, 1955-2009)

47 (UHF digital, 2009-2020)

13 (VHF digital 2020-present)

Former affiliations ABC (1955-1958 & 1962-1986)

CBS (1958-1962)

Transmitter power 12.5 kW
Height 414 m
Facility ID 23342
Transmitter coordinates 38°30′20″N 82°12′32″W / 38.50556°N 82.20889°W / 38.50556; -82.20889

Owned by West Virginia Media Holdings, it is the flagship of the company and has studios on 5th Avenue in Downtown Huntington and secondary facilities on Kanawha Boulevard (U.S. 60) in Charleston along I-64/U.S. 119. Syndicated programming on WOWK includes: Inside Edition, Dr. Phil, The Doctors, and Rachael Ray.

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[edit] Digital programming[]

The station's digital channel is multiplexed.

Channel Programming
13.1 main WOWK-TV/CBS programming
13.2 Ion Mystery

[edit] History[]

The station went on-air October 2, 1955 as WHTN-TV (for HunTingtoN) an ABC affiliate owned by the Greater Huntington Theater Corporation. After only a year, it was bought by Cowles Communications. WHTN swapped affiliations with WCHS-TV and became a CBS station for the first time in 1958. It went back to ABC in 1962 and stayed with that network for 24 years. Cowles sold the station to Gateway Communications in 1974. A year later, it changed its call letters to the current WOWK-TV to reflect the three states it serves (Ohio, West Virginia, and Kentucky). In 1986, it changed affiliations again returning to CBS.

The station was headquartered at the Radio Center Building in Huntington from its inception until 1984 when WOWK moved to its current location on Fifth Avenue. Gateway merged with SJL Broadcasting in 2000. SJL sold it to West Virginia Media Holdings in 2002. WOWK-TV ended analog operations on VHF channel 13 in 2009, as part of the DTV transition in the United States. The station had been broadcasting a digital signal on channel 47, but it returned to channel 13 for its post-transition operations. [1] On January 25, 2009, an ice storm destroyed the temporary UHF channel 47 digital transmitter. Rather than repair it for two more weeks of service, the station shut down its analog transmission early and brought its digital 13 transmitter on-line.

Under federal must-carry rules, broadcasters can either allow cable systems in their market to carry their signals for free or charge a fee under retransmission consent provisions. On December 3, 2008, it was announced that Inter Mountain Cable (IMC), a cable provider serving parts of Eastern Kentucky, announced that it would drop WOWK from its lineup unless an agreement was reached over retransmission consent. [2] According to The Mountain Eagle, this dispute caused concern among officials in the city of Fleming-Neon, Kentucky where IMC holds the cable television franchise. [3] The city council in Fleming-Neon have stated that the removal of WOWK will violate IMC's franchise agreement. [3]

[edit] News operation[]

This station's newscasts have long rated third in the market behind NBC affiliate WSAZ-TV and ABC affiliate WCHS. For a time in the 1990s, it was the highest-rated station in the northern portion of the market (Charleston and Kanawha Valley). WOWK airs the market's only local broadcast weeknights at 7.

[edit] News team[]


  • Zach Gilleland - weekday mornings and reporter
  • Andie Bernhart - weekday mornings and noon
    • reporter
  • Rob Macko, Amanda Barren - weeknights
  • Merrily McAullife- Good Day at Four

StormTracker 13 Meteorologists


  • Cassidy Wood- weeknights
  • Zach Gilleland- weekends


  • Mark Curtis- Political Reporter
  • Lane Ball
  • Nicky Walters
  • Rachel Pellerigno

Station slogans[]

  • We're the One To Turn To (late 1970s)
  • Share the Spirit of West Virginia (1986-1987; localized version of CBS ad campaign)
  • 13 Believes in You (early 1990s-1997)
  • Live. Local. Latebreaking. (1997-2003)
  • Your Town, Your State, Your Future (2003-2008)
  • Live and Local from Your Hometown (2008-2013)
  • Working for You (2013-present)

[edit] References[]

  1. ^ CDBS Print
  2. ^ "WSAZ-TV and WOWK-TV Possible Agreement Issue For 2009". Inter Mountain Cable. 2008-12-03. Retrieved 2009-01-15.
  3. ^ a b Farley, William (2009-01-14). "Neon council upset by threat of TV changes". The Mountain Eagle. pp. 2. Retrieved 2009-01-15.

[edit] External links[]