Sunday, December 11, 2011

"Fishin' Buddies" promotional cardboard fan from WGAL-TV

Here's an interesting item: An undated cardboard fan featuring a photo of two blond boys fishing with a Lassie-like dog. Printed on the front, in tiny type, is: "FISHIN' BUDDIES, 8687 LITHO IN U.S.A., © A. SCHEER."

Here is what's printed on the back:
  • The WGAL-TV Channel 8 logo
  • "Your Favorite Programs Are On WGAL-TV"
  • "Always Stay Tuned To Channel 8"
  • "PAT. NO. 2,449,701, OTHER PATS PENDING"1
One thing that is not immediately clear is whether this is supposed to represent the long-running TV show "Lassie," or whether it's just a generic Rough Collie. I am now leaning toward the second possibility. If it was "Lassie," I think they would have just stated that somewhere.

WGAL-TV began operations on March 18, 1949, as the fourth television station in Pennsylvania and the first outside Philadelphia.2 According to WGAL-TV's own history web page: "Early entertainment programming on WGAL consisted of film features and shorts. Later, WGAL carried selective programming from CBS, ABC, NBC and the now defunct Dumont Network before becoming the exclusive NBC affiliate for the Harrisburg-Lancaster-York-Lebanon area."3

It was 1963 when WGAL-TV became exclusively an NBC affiliate. So, it's possible that, at one point, WGAL-TV aired episodes of the CBS series "Lassie," which ran from 1954 to 1973.

It's not too hard to find old WGAL-TV-related memorabilia, especially here in southcentral Pennsylvania. I did a quick scan of eBay auctions and found plenty of items with WGAL logos, including rulers, ashtrays, keychains, matchbooks and, most interestingly, a barometer.

And, back in September, Blake Stough wrote about WGAL-TV Christmas Carol lyric sheets on Preserving York.

Here's the back of the cardboard fan:

1. Patent 2,449,701 was issued on September 21, 1948.
2. WGAL-TV beat the broadcast debut of Pittsburgh's KDKA-TV by about nine months.
3. To see a neat old trade advertisement for WGAL-TV, check out Page 3 of this PDF of the April 12, 1955, issue of "Broadcasting-Telecasting" magazine, which is archived online by David Gleason.

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