Businessman, politician, broadcasting character, and newspaper writer, Cas Walker (1902–1998) was, by his personal estimation, a “dwelling legend” in Knoxville for a lot of the 20th century. Famend for his gravelly voice and country-boy persona, he rose from blue-collar beginnings to make a fortune as a grocer whose chain of supermarkets prolonged from East Tennessee into Virginia and Kentucky. To advertise his shops, he hosted an area selection present, first on radio after which TV, that superior the careers of many famed nation music artists from a younger Dolly Parton to Roy Acuff, Chet Atkins, and Invoice Monroe. As a member of the Knoxville metropolis council, he championed the “little man” whereas ceaselessly irritating the folks he known as the “silk-stocking crowd.”
This splendidly entertaining ebook brings collectively choices from interviews with a rating of Knoxvillians, varied newspaper accounts, Walker’s personal autobiography, and different sources to current a colourful mosaic of Walker’s life. The tales vary from his flamboyant promoting schemes—as when he buried a person alive exterior one in all his shops—to reminiscences of his inimitable managerial fashion—as when he infamously canned the Everly Brothers as a result of he didn’t prefer it after they started performing rock ’n’ roll. Additional recollections recall to mind Walker’s peculiar model of bare-knuckle politics, his generosity to folks in want, his stance on civil rights, and his lifelong love of coon looking (and coon canine). The ebook additionally traces his decline, hastened partially by a profitable libel go well with introduced in opposition to his muckraking weekly newspaper, the Watchdog.
It’s mentioned that any Knoxvillian born earlier than 1980 has a Cas Walker story. In relating a lot of these tales within the voices of those that nonetheless keep in mind him, this ebook not solely affords an interesting portrait of the person himself and his checkered legacy, but additionally opens a brand new window into the historical past and tradition of the town through which he lived and thrived.