Watch CBS News

Almanac: Walter Cronkite

Almanac: Walter Cronkite
Almanac: Walter Cronkite 02:30

On November 4, 1916, 102 years ago today, future CBS News correspondent Walter Cronkite was born in St. Joseph, Missouri. Cronkite became a journalist at a young age as a reporter for the United Press during World War II.

He joined CBS News in 1950, and in September 1963, he anchored a television news breakthrough: The first daily half-hour network news program.

Just two months later, Cronkite would break into afternoon network programming with a bulletin that chills us to this day:

JFK assassination: Cronkite informs a shocked nation by CBS Sunday Morning on YouTube

In 1968, Cronkite traveled to Vietnam, and made headlines of his own, with his assessment of the war: "It is increasingly clear to this reporter that the only rational way out will be to negotiate, not as victors, but as an honorable people who lived up to their pledge to defend democracy, and did the best they could."

50 years ago: Walter Cronkite calls for the U.S. to get out of Vietnam by CBS Evening News on YouTube

Then in July of 1969, a far happier moment: the first manned landing on the moon: "Man on the moon! Oh, boy!"

Cronkite Anchors First Moonwalk by CBS News on YouTube

Cronkite's even-handed and authoritative reporting earned him the unofficial title, "The Most Trusted Man in America." And after nearly two decades in the "Evening News" anchor chair, he signed off one last time with his signature close:

"And that's the way it is, Friday, March 6th, 1981."

"And that's the way it is": Walter Cronkite's final sign off by CBS Evening News on YouTube

Walter Cronkite died in 2009 at the age of 92.  The high standards he established guide CBS News to this day.

For more info:

Story produced by Juliana Kracov. 

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.