A native of Lawrence, Kansas, Jones (1909-1990) moved to Kansas City, Missouri, as a young child, where he attended Lincoln High School and Lincoln Junior College. After living in nearly forty different U.S. cities, he moved to Tampa in 1950. He later settled in St. Petersburg in 1955, where he lived until his death. A photographer, publicist, and journalist, Mr. Jones worked as Florida editor for the Pittsburgh Courier and edited the African American pages of the St. Petersburg Times and St. Petersburg Evening Independent. For almost twenty years, beginning in 1956, he contributed a column entitled “Let's Talk Politics” to various black newspapers throughout Florida. He also produced his own radio program on two Tampa stations. Until his health failed in the 1970s, he ran an advertising and public relations business in St. Petersburg. Active in politics for over fifty years, Jones became a supporter of George Wallace's presidential campaign. Jones’s writings and broadcasts offered him an opportunity to share his contrarian and conservative political views. Many of his statements, considered heretical or at least unorthodox by other members of the black community, certainly added some interesting dimensions to the critical debates of his times. To him, the only color that mattered was the color "green." He praised the accommodationism of Booker T. Washington and preached economic self-sufficiency and self-determination rather than racial integration.
Nelson Poynter Memorial Library. Special Collections and University Archives.; Schnur, James Anthony; Arsenault, Kathleen; Whitney, Justin C.; and Jones, Norman E. 1909-1990, "Papers of Norman E. Jones, Sr. : A Collection Guide" (2007). Special Collections and University Archives Finding Aids: All Items. 8.
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