The CBS World News Roundup began on March 13, 1938, as a response to growing tensions in Europe. The initial broadcast was hosted by veteran newscaster Robert Trout, with short-wave reports from Paris, Berlin, Rome, London and Vienna.

Two of the newer, more memorable voices heard on that first broadcast were Edward R. Murrow and William L. Shirer. During the years of war that followed, Murrow’s reports from London and Shirer’s reports from Berlin became essential listening for Americans concerned about events taking place overseas.

The show earned CBS a reputation for outstanding, in-depth reporting and made foreign news coverage a regular part of the network’s programming. CBS World News Roundup remains on the CBS Radio Network today, making it America's longest-running radio news program.

Over the years, Douglas Edwards, Winston Burdett, Ned Calmer, Reid Collins, Dallas Townsend, Bill Lynch and Christopher Glenn have also hosted the show. Other journalists who rose to prominence through CBS World News Roundup include Eric Sevareid, Charles Collingwood and Howard K. Smith.

Robert Trout died on November 14, 2000. William L. Shirer died on December 28, 1993.

The CBS World News Roundup was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 1995.