KTHI-TV 11 Fargo ND ID Split Second Intro 1972

I realize this isn’t a radio aircheck, but I thought you might enjoy it anyway.  This was recorded off of KTHI-TV in October, 1972.  At the time, the KTHI tower near Blanchard was the tallest manmade structure in the world, rising 2,063 feet above the ground.  This height and location allowed KTHI to provide local service to Grand Forks as well as to Fargo.  The call letters denote “The HIgh” tower for the station known as “Color 11.”  (Yes, color TV was still relatively new in North Dakota at this time!)

Notice the ID is for “Grand Forks and Fargo.”  KTHI was licensed to Fargo, so their Legal ID was given at :00 as “Fargo/Grand Forks.”  At :30, this was reversed to “Grand Forks/Fargo.”  The intro for the game show “Split Second” follows the ID at 11:30AM.  Recordings of this game show are extremely rare since ABC did not save any of the master videotapes.  A partial promo for “Owen Marshall: Counselor at Law” preceeds the ID.

I was only 8 years old when I recorded this.  So, the caliber of my equipment and sophistication of my recording techniques leaves much to be desired.  This was made using an Atlantic “shoebox” cassette recorder with a standard “pencil” microphone.  The mic was held in front of an RCA Victor 25″ color console television.  There is a bit of background noise and tape deteoriation due to age.  Considering that a cheap Audio Magnetics “bag cassette” was used, I believe the tape has held up very well over 42 years.  The recording was made from my grandparents’ house at Michigan, ND.


6 thoughts on “KTHI-TV 11 Fargo ND ID Split Second Intro 1972

  1. Brian


    Great audio clip!

    Since you are a broadcasting “geek” perhaps you will remember this….Did u ever notice that back in the day, the audio coming from the networks sounded different than the local TV audio? That was because network TV at the time was relayed from New York through a combination of high quality telephone lines and microwave television relay. The audio was EQ’s at the local station for optimum quality, yet there was still “reverb”, and you could still hear long distance “sounds” during quieter periods such as in between commercial breaks. With the advent of fiber optics and wide-spread use of satellite starting in the 80’s, all that was eliminated….

  2. Drew

    Hi Brian,

    I was pretty young at the time, but I do “kind of” remember this. I also remember being at my first station (1983) when we switched ABC news from phone lines to direct satellite. The audio quality was *much* better, of course.

    Do you work in radio up there? Ironically enough, I also posted a clip this morning of Jack Hicks from his KDWB days.


  3. Brian

    Yeah Drew I worked in radio for 26 years, ending in 2007, in fact I worked with Jack Hicks in Bemidji at the company that owns Z99.

    If you listen again to your clip, you will hear the noticable difference between the local audio and the network. I grew up in the NYC area where all of the regular network shows originated, so it all sounded local. Yet, when I tuned the TV to a distant Philadelphia station, I could hear the long distance noise. I noticed It became more pronounced when I traveled to cities such as Miami and especially Los Angeles. I was young at the time also, but apparently I had an “ear” for that kind of thing, thus one of the reasons I wound up in broadcasting!

  4. Wade Brandis

    Interesting clip. Im from South Dakota, and I haven’t been able to find many audio or video clips of KELO or KSOO (KSFY) TV, but I am also interested in North Dakota TV history too. There is a KTHI Sign Off posted on Youtube.

    As for those “bag cassettes’, I have been using them a lot over the past 10 or so years making lengthy airchecks of various South Dakota TV stations, and to me, they seem to work good enough when the tape reels aren’t jammed. I think the best bag cassettes I have used were ones sold at Family Dollar and Dollar General. I think they sold them until at least 2006 or so, and these days, they just have four packs of TDK cassettes.

  5. Drew

    Hi Wade,

    I actually looked forward to the local stations signing off because it meant I could see what was “underneath.” Growing up in the Twin Cities, we had 5 local VHFs, so it opened things up when they were signed off. Problem was, most of the co-channel stations were off also.

    On Sunday mornings, WTCN-11 had a late sign-on. 7:45AM, I think it was. We had a small outdoor TV antenna, but it did have a rotor. Sometimes, I could get up early, point the rotor SE, and receive a snowy buy viewable picture from KELO.

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    Fargo and sister city Moorhead also hold ferry rides during the summer, on the historic Red River, to promote education of the fertile soil of the Red River Valley.

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