October 17, 1956 was ground breaking day for construction of the WRAL-TV studios and offices located at 2619 Western Boulevard in Raleigh, North Carolina. WRAL-FM carried the dedication ceremonies LIVE with Fred Fletcher, VP of Capitol Broadcasting introducing the guest speakers and providing commentary. George Geoghegan, VP of Wachovia Bank and Trust served as Master of Ceremonies. Other speakers included Charles Campbell, President of the Raleigh Chamber of Commerce and Wesley Williams, Secretary of the Raleigh Merchants Association.
The highlight of the event was Dorothy Collins, star of the NBC television program “Your Hit Parade,” joining CBC Founder and President AJ Fletcher to turn the soil with a gold color shovel. The day was rainy and gray, but everyone beamed with excitement. Dorothy Collins said, “I hope this station goes on forever and ever.”
The construction seen in the video occurred in the weeks and months after the dedication ceremony. WRAL-TV signed on the air December 15, 1956 and initially broadcasted from the transmitter building until the completion of the building on Western Boulevard.