WJJM recognized on National Register
What does WJJM have in common with Tate’s Store in Belfast or Cornersville United Methodist Church?
As of July 10, the radio station joined them on the National Register of Historic Places.
“We were really thrilled about it,” said Missie Haislip, co-owner and operator of the station with her husband Jeff.
It’s a nice birthday present for the station, which recently celebrated its 70th anniversary on May 15 as a family owned, community focused business.
The Tribune ran a story on June 7 exploring the station’s long and forward-looking history. That history is what ultimately earned the station its inclusion on the list of historic sites.
Lots of churches and houses in Tennessee have been so honored but WJJM joins only WSM, the iconic radio home for the Grand Ole Opry, as the only radio stations so honored.
Jimmie Joe Murray first conceived of the station as an agriculturally focused station, supporting his vision of developing a strong agricultural industry in the county, Haislip said.
Murray passed away weeks before the station went on air, but the station continued under his sister’s leadership, providing Marshall County with entertainment, news, and music ever since, although probably fewer horse auctions than Murray had originally intended.
The Haislips are still waiting on the official paperwork from Washington, but the Tennessee Historical Commission has confirmed the station’s acceptance.
The process was not an easy one, said Haislip.
Historian Lynda Potts worked with the station for two years, uncovering the details and records required to make the station’s case for inclusion.
The process has brought out even more stories and information, said Haislip.
One resident brought in the Christmas card that the station sent out in 1947 to share with the Haislips.
“It’s amazing how much bringing up 1947 has brought out memories and momentoes,” she said.
In 2047, the next big anniversary, Lewisburg and Marshall County residents can share their memories over a bronze plaque confirming what they already know.
The importance of WJJM to the community.