A Demonstration


CBS stages the first public showing of color television in 1950, in Washington, D.C. The Federal Communications Commission approved a competing standard in 1953.

Credit: Bettmann/CORBIS


Beginning of a Ritual


A family watches one of the first color televisions in 1954. NBC conducted the first coast-to-coast color broadcast, the Tournament of Roses Parade, on Jan. 1 of that year. Initially the sets cost as much as a car. Color TV didn't catch on widely until the mid-1960s.

Credit: Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS