In August of 1870, the brutal murder of Colonel Thomas Dickins was reported in the Memphis Avalanche. According to the article, Col. Dickins, returning to his farm near Raleigh, "was way-laid by some fiend, and his life destroyed, in daylight, on a public road."
The assassin had ambushed the victim and fired both barrels of a shotgun into Col. Dickins' body from close range.
Sid Selvidge was a cultural voice in Memphis for more than five decades, and he helped start the Beale Street Caravan radio show, which broadcasts live performances of Memphis music to more than 2.4 million people worldwide.
First and foremost a singer, Selvidge made eight albums as a solo artist and three with the Memphis alt/rock band Mud Boy and the Neutrons. Selvidge also ran his own record label for several years and produced Alex Chilton’s Like Flies on Sherbert, Cybill Shepherd’s Vanilla, and Paul Craft’s Warnings!
If you think you’ve been at your job for a long time, think again.
Stan Bronson Jr. has been the bat boy for the baseball team at the University of Memphis for more than half a century. He holds the “most durable bat boy” title in the Guinness Book of World Records, has a retired jersey on the outfield wall, and is a beloved icon to generations of students and Tigers fans.
To acknowledge Bronson’s years of service, at the end of the seventh inning of each home game, Bronson stands on home plate, tips his hat and takes a bow.
Maxine Smith (left) and Dr. Miriam DeCosta-Willis (right) on their way to a jail cell on Dec. 12, 1969. At this time Dr. DeCosta-Willis was known as Miriam Sugarmon. In 1957, both women applied to be graduate students at the University of Memphis, then called Memphis State University. They were rejected because of their race.
Credit Special Collections, University of Memphis Libraries
When Maxine Smith was born in Memphis in 1929, the city was segregated by race.
Smith graduated from Booker T. Washington High School at age 15. She attended Spelman College in Atlanta, where she knew Martin Luther King, Jr., who had also graduated high school early and was attending the nearby Morehouse College.
“He was a nerd,” Smith recalled years later.
Smith earned a Master’s degree at Middlebury College in Vermont and taught college level French.
We remember 1967 as a year which brought us “Lucy In The Sky (With Diamonds)” as well as “Judy In Disguise With Glasses.” But it was also the year Elvis Presley’s recording career began to wake from a deep slumber.
To get a perspective on Presley’s music in 1967, you have to go back to sessions in 1966 and 1961. His music career was still being driven by his movie commitments, and still being hamstrung by his management’s insistence on exclusively cutting songs owned by their publishing company.