Wisconsin Public Television is a PBS affiliate that serves the entire state of Wisconsin. The station launched on May 3, 1954, making it the oldest station in the state (Milwaukee PBS premiered 3 years later in 1957).
1st Logo (1954?)
Logo: On a gray background, we see five black squares spaced out vertically and the letters "WHATV" inside each of them. The words "Channel 21 MADISON" are there. A darker gray stripe with "WISCONSIN" on the left part and "STATE BROADCASTING" on the right part is located on the middle of the fourth square, and "SERVICE" is under the right part of the stripe.
Music/Sounds: An announcer saying "This broadcast was planned and produced by the Wisconsin State BroadcastingService, WHA-TV, Channel 21 Madison Wisconsin".
Legacy: This is possibly the earliest known PBS/NET logo.
2nd Logo (1954-1960s)
Logo: On a gray background, we see the words "WHA-TV" on the left, with the words "MADISON WISCONSIN" above. The map of Wisconsin is shown on the right, with an antenna near Madison. Particles can be seen behind the Wisconsin map. "channel" and "20" are partially shown next to it.
Music/Sounds: An announcer that says "This is WHA-TV, the state radio council television in Madison, presenting..."
Availability: Was only seen on the Dedication Program.
3rd Logo (1970s)
Logo: On a black background, we see a big blue line with a semicircle on its left side and a white line below. The stacked text "WISCONSIN EDUCATIONAL TELEVISION NETWORK" is centered under the semicircle on the line.
Availability: Was only seen on Target the State.
4rd Logo (1970s)
Logo: On a blue background, we see many houses with trees in front of them and the text "Wisconsin ETV Network", with "Network" below the rest of the text, on top of the screen.
Availability: Was only seen on Target the State.
5th Logo (Late 1970s-Early 1980s)
Logo: On a blue background, we see the text "from Madison" in cursive on top of the screen. As it fades out, orange lines come from the right, forming a "W". Then, cyan lines come from the left, forming an "H". While they form, more orange lines come out from the "H", forming an "A". After that, 2 cyan lines move right to out of the screen each, coming from the "H", and the "T E L E V I S I O N" word fades in below "WHA", which fades to "Presents" in cursive.
Variant: There's a variant where it takes palace on a starry background with a lot of stars shine on it
FX/SFX: The fading, the lines moving. For the starry background variant, the shining stars was added.
Music/Sounds: An trumpet theme with cellos as the lines arrange.
Availability: Can be seen on the Wisconsin Energy Report.
6th Logo (1978-1984)
Logo: On a black background, we see a couple of orange dots appearing on random positions, shining as they appear. More dots appear as the dots expand to form a bloated "W". The text "Wisconsin Educational Network" in a blue glowing font, with the words stacked on top of each other, appears inside the "W", as the camera zooms in on it. The text flashes and "Presents" flashes in.
Variant: There is a variant where on an another black background, we see many blue lines move from the left to the right, and as the lines move, they form (or create) a big "W". Then the black gaps that the "W" has were filled in by the color blue that the lines have. The "W" zooms out a little bit, and after that the text "Wisconsin Educational Television Network" in white appears underneath the "W" right when it stops zoom out.
FX/SFX: The W writing, the shining, the zoom in, and the flashing of the text. For the variant, the lines moving, the color filling in, and the "W" zooming out
Music/Sounds: A trumpet theme that kinda sounds like the 1976 Viacom logo with bongo drums beating when the W zooms in.
Music/Sounds Variants: For the variant, A funky tune with a ding sound when the text appears.
Availability: Can be seen on the Wisconsin Magazine, which can be viewed on the American Archive of Public Broadcasting.
7th Logo (1984-1987)
Logo: On a black background, a large orange "C", in a font that's thicker on one side than the other, flashes in with a tree-like object attached to it. When the glow starts to die down, the tree opens up and reveals an connected, abstract "tp". As it finishes dimming, "CENTER FOR TELEVISION PRODUCTION" fades in below in a stacked formation, along with a red line and the text "UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN - GREEN BAY" below it.
FX/SFX: The glow, the letters moving, the text fading in.
Music/Sounds: A ringing bell can be heard throughout, with a flute tune playing as soon as the logo appears. When the text fades in, a single ringing note can be heard.
Availability: Can be seen on Encompass, which can be seen on video.wpt.org.
8th Logo (1982-1987)
Logo: On a black background, we see the "WHA" logo from the 4th logo, but the colors are now gold and blue. Two white lines come out and stop at the corners of the logo and "TELEVISION" is formed by the bottom laser. "Madison" fades in during the process.
Variant: A long version exists. It starts with several gold lines slanted to the left drawing downwards, followed by blue lines slanted to the left going upwards. Thicker, larger gold lines then form part of the logo then zoom out, with the other lines collapsing into the logo as well before the rest of the animation plays out, but "Madison" fades in later.
FX/SFX: The lines, "TELEVISION" being formed by the bottom laser, "Madison" fading in.
Music/Sounds: A 5-note trumpet theme.
Availability: Can be seen on Backlash and other WHA programs of the time.
Wisconsin Public Television
1st Logo (1988-1992)
Logo: On a rock face background, we see a gray gradient box with the word "Wisconsin" and a blue line below it. Below the blue line is "Public Television", and below the gray box is "P R E S E N T S". The shadows move throughout the whole logo.
Variant: A long version exists where the gray box fades in.
FX/SFX: The background.
Music/Sounds: A guitar tune. The long version has 6 more notes at the beginning, followed by a cymbal.
Availability: Can be seen on Shadow Game. The long version can be seen on Stranded: Migrant Workers in Wisconsin.
2nd Logo (1992-1994)
Logo: On a cracked gray background, we see a concrete version of the Wisconsin Public Television logo of the time, which is a box with a long "W" in it, splitting the box into a blue and green section. The frame then fades to black, revealing "WISCONSIN PUBLIC TELEVISION" on the bottom border, as well as changing the blue to a sky time-lapse and the green to a shot of grass.
Variant: A still version exists with the text already formed and in black.
FX/SFX: The logo changing.
Music/Sounds: A violin theme.
Availability: Can be seen on Gambling on Trial.
3rd Logo (1994-2002)
Logo: On a cloudy sky background, we see a copper line coming from the left and the text "WISCONSIN PUBLIC TELEVISION" coming from the right. The sky background then fades out, revealing a rough blue background. The "W" is drawn in and the rest of the rectangle comes together. When the parts connect, the sky below the "W" turns into grass and the logo shines.
Variant: A short version exists starting with the logo forming up.
FX/SFX: The sky, the logo being formed.
Music/Sounds: A long violin note, then 4 piano notes when the W is being formed.
Availability: Can be seen on America's Battleground. The short version can be seen on Campaign '94: Religion and Politics.
4th Logo (2002-2005)
Logo: On a black background, we see the Wisconsin Public Television logo in flat colors, with the PBS logo to the right in blue and "Wisconsin Public Television Production" wiping in below. The logo zooms in slowly throughout.
FX/SFX: The logo zooming in slowly, the text writing in.
Music/Sounds: The 4 piano notes from before.
Availability: Can be seen on El Derecho Al Trabajo and UW Extension.
5th Logo (December 8, 2005-November 4, 2019)
Logo: On a sky timelapse background, we see the Wisconsin Public Television and PBS logos with "WISCONSIN PUBLIC TELEVISION" below them fading in. As it fades in, a mask appears from the top and bottom of the screen. The text then shines and wipes into "ORIGINAL PRODUCTION". The logo slowly zooms in.
- A widescreen variant exists.
- The Wisconsin Public Television logo was later changed to be in a rounded rectangle.
FX/SFX: The sky timelapse, the logos slowly zooming in, the text wiping, the mask effect.
Music/Sounds: A relaxing and mellow theme.
Availability: Common, can be seen on Here and Now and Wisconsin Life. Don't expect to see this on Sewing with Nancy. This also appears on Birds of Wisconsin.