25 Years of 'Sunday Morning'

On Jan. 25, CBS News Sunday Morning celebrates its quarter century of taking viewers places they wouldn't see anywhere else on television. Don't miss the special look back -- at least as much of 25 years as it can fit into 90 minutes. The special started with the show's original traveling companion, Charles Kuralt.




In the late 1960s, the spirit of Sunday Morning was born "On the Road" with Charles Kuralt.

During that turbulent time in America, Kuralt convinced CBS brass that something was missing from network news.

The thing missing, he believed, was stories about small towns, people and events that never made headlines. And, they were stories America needed to hear.

"So once or twice a week would come on some cheerful little story about a woman who carved fiddles in the Ozarks," said Kuralt. "Something that reminded people that the whole country was not flying apart … that many people still lived at peace with their neighbors. And generosity of spirit still existed in our country."

Generosity of spirit was Charles Kuralt's stock in trade. In 1979, when he teamed up with executive producer Shad Northshield, a lover of nature and a part-time wildlife photographer, their two visions combined to create Sunday Morning.

"We dreamed up a program about music and art and nature, we touched on the news of course, but because of it's necessary preoccupation with politics and wars and calamities, TV journalism doesn't get around to those gentler subjects very often," said Kuralt.

For 25 years, Sunday Morning tried to take viewers places and show things they wouldn't see anywhere else on television, or at least it tried to show them to viewers first.

Moments were shared, places were traveled and people were met, all with the perfect traveling companion as Sunday Morning's guide.

But, in 1994, after 15 years at Sunday Morning, Charles Kuralt said goodbye in his own inimitable style.

Another Charles did his best to fill Kuralt's shoes.

"I'm Charles Osgood and this is Sunday Morning, I know, it sounds strange to me too," he said on his debut.

In the years since, Sunday Morning itself hasn't changed much. It tries to stick to the backroads when we it can.

But there are differences -- after all, 25 years is a long time. Those back-roads sometimes led to busier roads.

Whatever road Sunday Morning find itself traveling on, the goal remains the same -- to take viewers wherever something remarkable is happening.

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