Originally signed on the air on February 15, 1950 as KEYL, a primary CBS affiliate on VHF channel 5. In 1951, Storer Broadcasting (which had good relations with the network) purchased KEYL and KABC. On February 1, 1954, channel 5 changed its call letters to KGBS-TV; KABC's calls were subsequently changed to match its television sister, as KGBS, on March 1. In November of that year, Storer was forced to sell KGBS-AM-TV to the San Antonio Express-News, in order to complete the company's purchase of WXEL-TV (now WJW) in Cleveland, Ohio as keeping KGBS-TV would have put the company one station over the Federal Communications Commission's ownership regulations that went into effect that year which limited the number of television stations that can be owned by one company to seven, with no more than five of those allocated to the VHF band (at the time, newspapers could own television and/or radio stations in the same market provided that such ownership complied with the FCC-mandated ownership limits of each property in effect at the time).
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The Express-News then changed the call letters of the television and radio stations to KENS-TV and KENS (the -TV suffix was dropped from the callsign of the television station following the digital television transition on June 12, 2009, when several other Belo stations dropped the suffix from their legal call signs; Storer later re-used the KGBS calls on what is now KTNQ and KNOU in Los Angeles).
KENS-TV 5 ALIVE is claimed to be used on-air name from September 13, 1976 to September 9, 1979.
KENS-TV 5 ALIVE (CBS) is used from September 13, 1976 to September 9, 1979 and it's on-air ID on Friday April 20, 1979.
Channel 5 Eyewitness News Open (1969-1979)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News Open (1979-1981)
KENS station ID, 1987
Channel 5 Eyewitness News Open (1981–1983)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News Open (1983–1987)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News Open (1987–1991)
KENS Eyewitness News open (1991-1994)
color bars, 1987
Channel 5 Eyewitness News logo (1994–1998)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News - South Texas Sunrise Open (1994–1996)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News This Morning Open (1994–1996)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News at Noon Open (1994–1996)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News at Five Open (1994–1996)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News at Six Open (1994-1996)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News at Ten Open (1994–1996)
Channel 5 Eyewitness News Open (1996-1998)
In September 1997, Harte-Hanks sold its remaining media properties, including the KENS stations, to The E.W. Scripps Company in order to concentrate on the company's direct marketing operations. At the same time, Belo Corporation announced that it would trade its controlling stake in the Food Network to Scripps in exchange for the KENS stations. The Harte-Hanks/Scripps deal and the transfer of Belo's stake in the Food Network to Scripps were both completed on October 15 of that year. At that time, Belo took over the operations of the KENS stations through a time brokerage agreement (TBA).