KRNT - 1350 Khz
Iowa's First Introduction to TV
1946 Iowa State Fair


Before any stations were on the air in the State of Iowa, KRNT radio, in cooperation with RCA and International Harvester, gave 1946 Iowa State Fair visitors a preview of television. The large International Harvester tent was set up at the southwest corner of what is now known as the Varied Industries Building.

Throughout the fair, closed circuit TV programs were produced using KRNT personalities, guests and audience participation.

Bob Cannon, whose father was a KRNT engineer has supplied us with these fascinating pictures of what is believed to be Iowa's first exposure to television. Bob Cannon was a teenager at the time and worked as one of the camera men.

Inteview with Ray Dennis and Bob Cannon on Iowa Public Televsion about 1946 State Fair TV demonstration

Pictures and descriptions provided by Bob Cannon

This was outside of the International Harvester tent at the state fair, 1946 showing the KRNT personalities at that time. The tent was located on the southwest corner of the Varied Industies building.


This is a photo of the whole crew that was used for the showing what TV was all about. The crew were people from, RCA from New York City, KRNT engineers and staff personalities. It was a closed circuit showing as there were no live television stations in Iowa in 1946.

This is a photo of Radio engineer Buford Cannon (Bob's father), who is unloading audio gear from the back of of the KRNT "remote truck" at the state fair in 1946.

This photo shows on stage at the fair, from left to right, John denBoer, cameraman; Bill Hippee, floor director who was a sales person that later became the station manager; and Bob Cannon, cameraman. The cameras had no viewfinders
and the cameramen took their directions from the director by intercom in the video control room where an engineer focused the cameras from there also. The cameras as well as the cameramen were placed on plywood platforms with wheels and were moved about by boy scouts, to move back and forth and around on the stage.

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