THE DIXIE BROADCASTING NETWORK
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One day I was enjoying an afternoon with Dorris Freeman (Cousin Tuny). She had called telling me she wanted to tell me a story. (No way I was going to say no to that invitation)
When her mother died Dorris went to live with older sister
Agnes. Agnes had married to Aaron Robinson Sr. in 1935 and they had two children Aaron Jr and Carol.The story she wanted to tell was about her brother in law.
Aaron Robinson Sr.was born in 1906 by the age of 8 he was selling papers ( Jackson Sun) at the corner of Baltimore and Market (South Highland). His favorite story about that time was about one cold night he was selling his papers and a man stopped to by a paper. The young paper boy looked at the car the man was driving in awe. As Mr Aaron would tell the story he asked the man what kind of car he was driving cause he said it was the best looking car he had ever seen. The gentleman told him it was a Cadillac. Mr Aaron said he told the gentleman
“One of these day I will have a Cadillac.” The gentleman smiled and told him” with hard work you will son.”then handed him .50 for a .05 paper.
Fast forward to 1938 and Mr Aaron was the circulation Manager for the Jackson Sun and manager of WTJS located in the Jackson Sun. At that time the Jackson Sun was located at
104 West Baltimore. In the 1940’s he retired from the Jackson
Sun and started his first radio station WMCA in Corinth,Ms. This was the start of the Dixie Broadcasting Network. Over the next few years he opened WENK in Union City,WDXL in Lexington,
and in 1948 WDXI in Jackson.
WDXI was first opened in the Frankland Building then moved to the Williams Building located at the north east coroner of Lafayette and N. Highland . The station occupied most of the the third floor. Aaron did not stop there he also had WTPR in Paris,WDXE in Lawrenceburg, WDXN in Clarksville. He did not do this on his own he surrounded himself with talented people from staff to investors that shared his vision.
“Of course he had his talented sister in law and his wife
at his side.” Doris added.
His forward thinking made him and investors a lot of money.
Side note the year he started WDXI he purchased his first of many Cadillac. “That first Cadillac was a green and cream four door beauty.” Doris said
In 1955 WDXI TV went on air at the studio in the Willams Building. Soon they had the cameras and other equipment in place since it was set up with lights, stages and seating for audiences for live performances made it easier to go live.
Mr. Aaron Robinson Sr. was a pioneer in broadcasting in the Mid South but his loving and caring ways made a difference in so many lives. He and Agnes always made sure they gave back to their community.
Just months after the death of his beloved Agnes Aaron passed away in December of 1961. On the day of his funeral as the procession headed to cemetery both sides of North Highland was lined with individuals paying their respect to this pioneer and gentle giant.
Thank you to my friend Doris Freeman sharing this bit of Jackson history. I miss her everyday but know she is entertaining the angels in heaven surrounded by all she loves.This story first appeared in Still Wandering Downtown 2004 d n english
Sent from d’s iPad Air