About KFVS 12On October 3, 1954, KFVS began transmitting an analog signal on VHF channel 12. It was owned by Oscar C. Hirsch, a broadcasting pioneer who had signed on the area's first radio station, KFVS radio (AM 960, now KZIM), at his radio shop in 1925. Herbert Hoover, then-Secretary of Commerce, awarded the KFVS call letters at random. Channel 12 did not have any video cameras at first. Instead, its initial broadcast featured slides of its new transmitter tower, which was being built at the time. Channel 12 shared a building with its radio sibling until 1968, when it relocated to its current site on Broadway Avenue. Hirsch sold the station to AFLAC in 1979, receiving a good return on his 54-year investment.
AFLAC sold its entire broadcasting operation, including KFVS, to a company led by the Retirement Systems of Alabama in 1997. A few months later, it merged with Ellis Communications to establish Raycom Media. On its third digital subchannel, KFVS carried The Tube Music Network (a 24-hour digital music video channel), which terminated operations on October 1, 2007.
KFVS serves almost fifty counties in four states, including the whole state of Missouri, Southern Illinois, Western Kentucky, and Western Tennessee. KFVS considers Clay County to be the sole Arkansas county in its viewing region, as reflected in the local temperature graphic during its nightly weather programs. KFVS is available on local cable systems in Corning, Piggott, Rector, Marmaduke, Pollard, Greenway, St. Francis, and Lafe, Arkansas. However, the station is not available on the Jonesboro or Lake City cable networks. According to DirecTV, KFVS is a local channel available in the Jonesboro region.
While carrying an analog signal, a section of its off-air signal overlapped with sister stations WMC-TV in Memphis, Tennessee and KAIT-TV in Jonesboro, Missouri. KFVS refers to its viewing region as "The Heartland," which is also used in the on-air branding of WQTV/WQWQ. KFVS' service region overlapped with KMOV in St. Louis during the analog era. In actuality, channel 12's over-the-air coverage went as far north as Belleville, Illinois, a St. Louis suburb. Both stations were carried by cable networks in various northern KFVS and southern KMOV counties.