Cas Walker

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Orton Caswell Walker ( March 23, 1902 or 03 - September 28, 1998), better known as Cas Walker, was a Tennessee businessman, politician, and personality on television and radio. Walker founded a successful chain of small grocery stores that grew to include several dozen stores scattered throughout the Knoxville, Tennessee vicinity as well as parts of Virginia and Kentucky. From 1941 through 1971, Walker served on the Knoxville city council where he became legendary for his uncompromising political stances and his vehement opposition to what he claimed was a corrupt elitism in the city's government. "The Cas Walker Farm and Home Hour", a local variety show sponsored by Walker, ran in various radio and television formats between 1929 and 1983 and helped launch the careers of entertainer Dolly Parton and the Everly Brothers.

Early life

Walker was born to a working class family in Sevier County, Tennessee in 1902. He quit school at the age of 14 and spent several years working at different jobs around the region, namely at the Champion Fibre Company in North Carolina and later at various coal mines in Kentucky. In 1924, he returned to East Tennessee where he established the first Cas Walker's Cash Store in Knoxville with money he had saved.Ajay Kalra, "Cas Walker." The Encyclopedia of Appalachia (Knoxville, Tenn.: University of Tennessee Press, 2006), 544-545.Carroll Van West, "." The Tennessee Encyclopedia......
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