On May 6, 1956, Channel 3 signed on in Chattanooga as NBC affiliate WRGP-TV. The original facility was located across the street from the rose garden in the 1200 block of McCallie Avenue. Most of the early programming that didn't come from NBC was live and local.
Channel 3 was the first station in Chattanooga to broadcast live from remote locations in the early 60's. Sock hops and wrestling were common events on the young station back then. In 1959, WSTV Inc. bought the station from Raymond G. Patterson (RGP) and several local investors. In November of 1961, the Federal Communications Commission gave approval to a Massachusetts greeting card company to acquire the station, and United Printers and Publishers, which later became Rust Craft Broadcasters (RCB), took over.
In 1963 WRGP was changed to WRCB. The facility on McCallie was small; so, in order to accommodate the growing station's personnel and equipment, the current studios were built at 900 Whitehall Road and became the official home of WRCB in 1968. Ziff Corporation bought WRCB from Rust Craft in May of 1978. In 1982, Ziff Corporation sold the station to Sarkes Tarzian, Inc., which owns it today. Sarkes Tarzian, Inc. is named for Sarkes Tarzian. Mr. Tarzian was a prolific inventor. He developed several important components and systems used in radio and television sets. Sarkes Tarzian held the position of Chairman of the Board until his death in October of 1987. Tom Tarzian, Sarkes' son, became Chairman upon his father's death, and continues in that position today. In 2008, WRCB began broadcasting local commercials, promos, and syndicated programming in high definition. The station completed its HD transition by launching local news in high definition on September 29, 2012.
The current management team represents years of television experience and a firm commitment to serve local residents. The top priority at Channel 3 is to provide its viewers with the best local news and weather coverage. The Channel 3 Eyewitness News team works hard every day to make sure Channel 3 Eyewitness News is Coverage You Can Count On. The news team of WRCB has earned a prestigious Edward R. Murrow Award if for its region of Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, and West Virginia in 2011, 2012, and 2013 including the 2012 Award for Overall Excellence.
In addition to WRCB, Sarkes Tarzian, Inc. owns and operates KTVN-TV in Reno, Nevada; WAJI-FM and WLDE-FM in Ft. Wayne, Indiana; and WGCL-AM and WTTS-FM in Bloomington, Indiana. Sarkes Tarzian, Inc. headquarters are located in Bloomington, Indiana.
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