Friday, July 20, 2012

Damon Williams, Local Icon

   Damon Williams was a local well-liked figure in Baldwyn in the 40s and 50s. A kind and gentle man, he always hung around uptown, mostly near Jones and Co. Dry Goods store. He would wait for traveling salesmen to visit the stores and would get a nickel or dime tip from them by carrying their sample cases in and out of the stores
   He had two nicknames that we remember - "Hot" and "Hosie". The latter, according to him, was from the "prophet Hosea" in the Bible. He was a cigarette smoker and conceived a way to get free cigarettes. He could hold a single cigarette in one hand at waist level, hit it somehow with his other hand, sending it flying in the air and catch it in his mouth just right for lighting. Then you had to light it for him as he carried no match or lighter (he may have had some matches).
   He knew many gospel songs and hymns I am told and would sing in the porch swing at his home on Cemetery Street near the ice plant across from the old cotton loading platform.

This is probably the only known photo of him and is the property of John Olan Cunningham. Sorry it couldn't be restored any better.


  1. I do remember him.. and his cigreate trick, too.

  2. May have told this story before, but here goes anyway. When the Tornado hit Baldwyn Billy Bob lampkin was delivering papers up town My grandmother Etna Lampkin left out for town looking for him. when she arrived in town the second one hit and she took shelter in the alcove at Mr. Gorden's store. she was down on her knees praying and She looked over, there was Damon kneeled beside her. He later told someone that he knew if God would hear anyone's prayers it would be Mrs Lampkin so he got down there with her. Anyone around Baldwyn at that time would know Damon.

    1. Thanks for reposting, Thomas. That was a day when many prayers were needed.