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1953–1959 1953–1959 1959–1961 1961–1969 1969–1971 1971–1979
1953–1959 1953–1959 1959–1961 1961–1969 1969–1971 1971–1979
1979–1987 1987–1989 1989–1993 1993–1995 1995–2004 2004–present
1979–1987 1987–1989 1989–1993 1993–1995 1995–2004 2004–present



Originally signed on the air on November 1, 1953 as the only station on VHF channel 10 that founded by then-Rochester-based (now based in McLean, Virginia) Gannett Company [publisher of the Democrat and Chronicle and the Rochester Times-Union and owners of CBS Radio Network affiliate WHEC (1460 AM, now WHIC)] and WVET-TV, co-owned with the Veterans Broadcasting Company, owners of WVET radio (1280 AM, now WHTK), were granted shared operation of channel 10; the two separately owned stations would use the same broadcast license and transmitter, but broadcast from separate studios.



On November 15, 1961, the split-channel, shared-time arrangement ended as Veterans sold its half of channel 10 to Gannett. Veterans subsequently acquired its own, fully owned station, WROC-TV (then on VHF channel 5) from Transcontinent Broadcasting. The completion of the deal made WHEC-TV the sole occupant of the channel 10 frequency in Rochester. The following year WHEC-TV became a full-time CBS affiliate, as the ABC affiliation moved to newly signed-on WOKR (VHF channel 13, now WHAM-TV)



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WHEC-TV (1970).svg


WHEC-TV (1975).svg

When Gannett purchased the Combined Communications Corporation for $370 million on June 7, 1979, they sold channel 10 to a minority-led firm owned by Ragan Henry after concerns that Gannett would either have to sell off channel 10 or its newspapers due to the FCC's crackdown on television and radio stations and newspaper co-ownership.


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In 1983, the Henry group traded channel 10 to the original Viacom in exchange for a pair of radio stations, WDIA in Memphis and KDIA (now KMKY) in Oakland.


WHEC-TV (1988).svg

The lines outside of the 10 were removed.

On April 6, 1989, channel 10 announced that it would switch to NBC, replacing WROC-TV (now on VHF channel 8). This move was the result of WROC-TV's poor performance and constant preemptions of its network programming (NBC was very intolerant of preemptions at this time). The swap brought channel 10 in-line with sister stations WNYT in Albany and WVIT in New Britain, Connecticut, which had recently renewed their NBC relationships. Channel 8 began airing Saturday morning programs and some daytime programs from CBS shortly after WHEC-TV announced its intent to affiliate with NBC, but the network switch did not take effect until August 13, 1989, which was the day after channel 10's affiliation contract with CBS expired.


WHEC-TV (1991).svg

The station would keep its 1979 "lined 10" logo even with the affiliation swap.


WHEC-TV (1994).svg

Viacom purchased Paramount Pictures in 1994, and merged its five-station group (WNYT in Albany, WVIT in New Britain, Connecticut, KMOV in St. Louis, and KSLA in Shreveport, Louisiana) into the Paramount Stations Group.

The "10" here was simplified into 3 lines instead of six lines (five for the transparent parts).


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After Paramount announced the formation of the United Paramount Network (UPN), which started operating on January 16, 1995, it also announced it would sell off all of its non-UPN stations. In June 1996, the Paramount Stations Group agreed to trade channels 10 and 13 to Saint Paul, Minnesota–based Hubbard Broadcasting in return for UPN affiliate WTOG (UHF channel 44) in St. Petersburg, Florida.


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