Frances Buss (1917-2010)

Frances Buss Buch, the first female director at CBS, passed away on January 19th at the age of 92 according to The Archive of American Television. She joined CBS in 1941 and acted as scorekeeper on CBS Television Quiz, which ran from July 1941 to May 1942 (a status guide for the series can be found here).

She was part of the CBS team that covered the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7th, 1941. According to her “She Made It” profile at the Paley Center for Media, Buch became the first female director in 1944 at the behest of Worthington Miner. Among the programs she directed during her career were Missus Goes A-Shopping, It’s a Gift and The Whistling Wizard. On June 25th, 1951 she directed the very first network color broadcast using the CBS Color System.

Buch retired 1954. A five-part interview conducted in 2005 can be found at the Archive of American Television website. Here’s the first part:

Obituaries can be found at the Asheville Citizen-Times and The Wall Street Journal.

1 Comment

  • Barry I. Grauman says:

    At least we have her recollections of early television preserved for posterity, thanks to the Archive of American Television. Forgive me for saying this, but if she were a reel of kinescope film, she would have been “thrown away” by CBS years ago, that’s how much THEY care about their early history!

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