And that’s the way it was: February 25, 1928

The Federal Radio Commission grants the first commercial television license in the United States

On February 25, 1928, Charles Jenkins Laboratories of Washington, DC, became the first holder of a US television license. W3XK, the first TV station, began broadcasting from Jenkins Labs later that year. Initially, the station, which aired programming five nights a week, could only transmit silhouette images due to narrow bandwidth; but its capacity was soon expanded, and actual black-and-white footage was then broadcast.

Charles Jenkins Laboratories was run by Charles Francis Jenkins, a pioneer in TV technology. His work is remembered by the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences during its annual primetime Emmy Awards. Each year the Academy presents an individual the Charles F. Jenkins Lifetime Achievement Award for a career of contributions to television technology and engineering.

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The Editors are the staffers of Columbia Journalism Review. Tags: , , , ,