DuMont Television Network

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The DuMont Television Network, also known as the DuMont Network, DuMont, Du Mont, or (incorrectly) Dumont[a] was one of the world's pioneer commercial television networks, rivalling NBC for the distinction of being first overall. It began operation in the United States in 1946.[1] It was owned by DuMont Laboratories, a television equipment and set manufacturer. The network was hindered by the prohibitive cost of broadcasting, by Federal Communications Commission regulations which restricted the company's growth, and even by the company's partner, Paramount Pictures. Despite several innovations in broadcasting and the creation of one of television's biggest stars of the 1950s, the network never found itself on solid financial ground. Forced to expand on UHF channels during an era when UHF was not profitable, DuMont ceased broadcasting in 1956.

DuMont's latter-day obscurity has prompted at least one notable TV historian to refer to it as the "Forgotten Network".[2] A few popular DuMont programs, such as Cavalcade of Stars and Emmy Award winner Life Is Worth Living, appear in TV retrospectives or are mentioned briefly in books about U.S. television history, but almost all the network's programming was destroyed in the 1970s.

Contents

Origins

DuMont Laboratories was founded in 1931 by Dr. Allen B. DuMont. He and his staff were responsible for many early technical innovations, including the first consumer all-electronic television set in 1938. The company's television sets soon became the gold standard of the industry.[3]

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