A “long” time ago, when I was a kid, there was only one channel in my country (in my language). There were also some foreign stations. Not much cartoons then, or TV for kids.
It wasn’t until the first commercial station was founded (I was six or seven), the offer of cartoons became broader. But still only Saturday mornings and before prime-time.
Sometime after was my first contact with some older cartoons from Warner Bros. and Disney (they were cheaper I guess). Later it also included Turtles and Flintstones, and that was it. (No x-men, just recently discovered it)
My favorites were:
The Gummy bears
The Pink Panther
The Legend of Prince Valiant
There also was one series I can’t remember. (just one of the main characters, the minion of the bad guy: a frog-lizard like thing with just two feet and a horn on his forehead. If anyone recognizes this?)
The real increase in cartoons (also the newer ones) came at my mid teens. (after 1997 actually)
(And Thunder-chan, I also watched the first episodes of Pokemon )
These days, there are much more channels and a lot of cartoons.