George Caldwell (Sells)
George (Caldwell) Sells
George Caldwell's real name is George Sells. His middle name is Caldwell. Broadcast Pioneers member Al Primo, who was News Director at Channel 3 at the time, hired Caldwell, but didn't want him to use his real last name, Sells.
Here's how George told us the story:
In Philly, I was George Caldwell. There’s even a Primo story to that. He didn’t want me to be George Sells because our 6 p.m. News ran opposite comedian Soupy Sales. Al asked, “What’s your middle name?” “Caldwell,” I replied. “Perfect,” he said. “Old, rich Philadelphia name.”
George was born in Kingsport, Tennessee. After being graduated from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, Caldwell found himself at WSMV in Nashville, Tennesee. Caldwell ended up in Philadelphia shortly thereafter as the co-anchor with Marciarose Shestack. George was at Channel 3 from 1966 to 1973. After Philly, he worked at KPRC-TV in Houston, KCNC-TV in Denver, WJBK-TV in Detroit and ABC-TV for five years.
AT the rip old age of 21, he was the youngest announcer in the history of the Grand Ole Opry. He covered stories like the installation of cardinals and the Church at the Vatican. He did stories on aviation security in Yugoslavia (he holds a commercial pilot's license with instrument rating), the automobile industry in Japan and hurricanes in Honduras.
George Caldwell Sells is a ham radio operator with the call sign, W5GQ. He went to WAFB-TV (the CBS affiliate in Baton Rouge, Louisiana) in 1988 and is their 6 pm and 10 pm anchor as well as Managing Editor. George and his wife, Sandra, have a son, George Caldwell Sells IV. The younger George worked with his dad at WAFB and is now at News 12 in Long Island, NY.
About his stay at WAFB-TV, George Caldwell Sells tells us:
I retro-ed to a small market where we’re able to have the same sensational numbers that KYW-TV had back in the late 60’s for a 6 pm newscast. For instance, 22 rating, 43 share. Unheard of in the big city. Unheard of in smaller markets but we got a big lead early and smart managers.
From the official archives of the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia
B&W Photo originally donated by Broadcast Pioneers member Marciarose Shestack
Color Photo courtesy of WAFB-TV
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