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Interview with Walter Allen Jr., November 30, 2019

Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia
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00:00:00 - Early Experiences/ Education

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Partial Transcript: Alright, so, growing up here in Athens...

Segment Synopsis: Walter Allen Jr. recalls his fondest memories visiting family in his youth. He attended the University of Georgia for two years after graduating from Cedar Shoals High School before dropping out to work full time for Athens radio station WXAG.

Keywords: Allendale, South Carolina; Athens, GA; Chattanooga, Tennessee; Top 40 Radio; UGA

00:03:15 - Athletics/ Travel

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Partial Transcript: Um, did you have any other activities...

Segment Synopsis: Allen discussed playing sports in high school and recently coaching basketball and baseball teams in alignment with his ongoing interest in sports casting. He also details his three month long travel over a few southern states following issues with the owner of radio station WBKZ.

Keywords: Alcorn State University; Athens, GA; Cedar Shoals High School; Fayette, Mississippi; Grambling State University; Jackson, Mississippi; Meridian, Mississippi; Texas Southern University

00:06:46 - Returning to Athens

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Partial Transcript: ...and mom got sick with a hip...

Segment Synopsis: Allen shares that travelling and witnessing successful black people, as well as publisher John H. Johnson, inspired him to start Zebra Magazine. After Zebra was stable, Allen got back into radio, continuing both forms of media today.

Keywords: Athens, GA; Black Magazines; Ebony magazine; Jet magazine; John Harold Johnson; WXAG Radio; black lifestyle publications

00:09:20 - Black and White Radio

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Partial Transcript: I noticed you, you distinguished...

Segment Synopsis: Allen distinguishes the difference between black radio and white radio, particularly in comparison with his time with Top 40 Radio.

Keywords: African-American music (Race Music); Black Magazines; Zebra Magazine; black lifestyle publications

00:11:14 - Civil War History

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Partial Transcript: But, you know what, I went the other day...

Segment Synopsis: Allen briefly describes the history of Smith Chapel Baptist Church's bell. He mentions the earliest display of Memorial Day on record, when freed slaves reburied black Union soldiers in Charleston, SC. Allen also discusses Union soldiers taking over the UGA campus and freed slave gathering in Athens after emancipation.

Keywords: Athens, GA; Civil War; First Decoration Day; Old Slave Mart Museum; University of Georgia; Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW)

00:15:37 - Growing Up in Athens

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Partial Transcript: But, you know, growing up here...

Segment Synopsis: Allen explains how he feels growing up in an area with such a rich Confederate history has interfered with his life as an African American. He also opines that the communities biggest issues include affordable housing and local purchasing.

Keywords: Athens, Ga; Confederate States of America

00:18:28 - Problems in Athens

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Partial Transcript: What is the biggest thing, you said...

Segment Synopsis: Allen believes one of the biggest challenges today's youth must face has to do with the negative messages coming from popular music. He talks about problems in the educational system, emphasizing juridification not only as a problem in education but all over the Athens area.

Keywords: Athens, GA; Bethel Homes; Jack R. Wells Homes (Pauldoe); University of Georgia (UGA)

00:22:11 - Career Values

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Partial Transcript: So, what is, um, what is the thing...

Segment Synopsis: Allen states his wishes for Zebra and radio stations to be continued and appreciated.

Keywords: Athens,GA; Marketing and Advertising; Zebra Magazine

00:25:43 - Advice for Youth

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Partial Transcript: Let me ask you something else...

Segment Synopsis: Allen advises today's youth to take any opportunity to continue their education and college experience.

Keywords: Athens, GA; Hope Scholarship; University of Georgia (UGA)