KCMO-TV signed on the air on September 27, 1953. The station was owned by the KCMO Broadcasting Corporation along with KCMO radio. It was originally an ABC affiliate with DuMont programming. A week after its launch, Meredith Broadcasting acquired KCMO-AM-TV and this merger was completed less than two months later.
On June 7, 1983, KCMO-TV changed its call letters to the current KCTV after its radio sister stations were sold off. It also moved its operations to Fairway, Kansas; on the Kansas side of the market. The newscast title Eyewitness News remained until 1985, and became Kansas City's News (putting it in line with the station's then-slogan "Kansas City's Television").
Neon version of logo
Station ID using CBS' "We've Got the Touch" campaign (1983–1984)
The "Kansas City's Television" slogan and the Kansas City's News branding were retired in 1993. The title of KCTV's newscasts became News 5, thus adopting the station slogan "5 Stands for News"; that slogan lasted until 1997 when it adopted "Taking Action" as its slogan until 1999.
"5 Stands for News" station ID (1993–1997)
News 5 5:00 p.m. end-of-intro title logo (1993–1997)
News 5 10:00 p.m. end-of-intro title logo (1997–1999)
In 1999, KCTV eliminated the "5" as their main logo and introduced a stylized "tower" with seismic waves. It represents the station's 1,042-foot transmitter tower at its former studios on East 31st Street on Union Hill south of Downtown Kansas City. During this time, the current newscast title KCTV 5 News was adopted. The slogan for this era was "News That Makes a Difference".
In 2002, KCTV switched to a more traditional logo with a large italic "5". The colors were also changed to red, white, and blue (which were meant to be patriotic colors commemorating the first year anniversary of 9/11). The slogan during this period was "Live. Late-Breaking. Investigative." This same slogan was also used for sister station KPHO from 2002 to 2008.