KHON-TV first signed on the air on December 15, 1952 as a primary NBC affiliate, KONA-TV, occupying the channel 11 position. It also had a secondary affiliation with DuMont (which it later shared with KULA-TV, now KITV, after it signed on in 1954) until its demise in 1955. The station, which is Hawaii's second-oldest television station (behind KGMB, originally on channel 9, now on channel 5), was originally owned by Herbert Richards. Two years later in 1954, the Honolulu Advertiser purchased the station. On October 16, 1955, KONA changed channels from 11 to 2 due to the lower VHF positions (2 to 6) having the most powerful ERPs at the time. The channel 11 frequency now belongs to PBS member station KHET. In 1956, KONA was sold to Pacific and Southern Broadcasting, the forerunner of Combined Communications. KAII signed on in 1958, with KHAW following in 1961. In 1965, the station's call letters were changed to the current KHON-TV.