Wilson Caddess Radio & TV Repair


By Ron Collins.

December 25, 2002




After serving in the United States Army Civilian Conservation Corps and 840th Aviation Engineers, my uncle Wilson (Uncle “Oogie”) Caddess owned Caddess’ Radio and TV Repair Shop in Vaiden.  He was also the Fire Chief and Water Superintendent of Vaiden for over 40 years.   He retired on January 31, 1990.


Caddess Radio & TV Repair was located on Back Street behind the current (2002) Bank of Vaiden.  The current Bank of Vaiden building was originally known as the second Summers’ Grocery, and was built to replace the former Summers’ Grocery building, which was destroyed by fire in the mid-1960s, along with several other buildings on Back Street, including a pool hall, and an unoccupied building that contained junk and old farming implements.  The Radio & TV Shop was spared. 


The original Bank of Vaiden was built in the 1890s, and operated as such until it moved into the new (second Summers’ Grocery) location in the early 1970s.  The original bank building later became (and is currently) the Vaiden City Hall.


In some of the following photos, you will see the old Vaiden Courthouse (1905-1989) in the background.  The building was built in 1946 by my Grandfather John Cleveland Hambrick, who owned the Hambrick Blacksmith Shop on Back Street, which later became known as (Carl) Austin’s Dry Cleaners.  It originally sat only about 20 feet south of Summers’ Grocery, across a small alley.  At one time a gristmill sat between the back of Summers’ Grocery and the second Hambrick Blacksmith Shop/Caddess Shop (see the location in the photos below), until the gristmill was torn down in the 1960s.


In 1946, Grandfather Hambrick decided that he needed a new building for his Blacksmith Shop, and built the building in the photos below.  His son-in-law, Wilson Caddess, originally operated the Radio & TV Repair Shop in a rented room above the old Vaiden Hotel.  The Vaiden Hotel building was later occupied by several other businesses, including the J.G. Fullilove Grocery, Holmes Rexall Drug Store, the Vaiden Theater, and others.  Roscoe Rosamond owned Rosamond’s Barber Shop, at the rear of the Vaiden Hotel site on Back Street.  Ironically, when the original Summers’ Grocery was destroyed in the 1960s by fire, Mr. Summers moved temporarily into the former Fullilove’s Grocery building until the new (second) Summers’ Grocery building (now the Vaiden Bank) could be built.  Upon completion, Mr. Summers moved into the new building (currently Vaiden Bank) until his (Summers’) death in 1968.  In the early 1970s (approximately 1973) the Vaiden Hotel/Fullilove Grocery building/Vaiden Theater/etc., was destroyed by fire (arson).


Upon the death of Grandfather Hambrick in 1951, my Grandmother, Exyah Bond Hambrick, put the new shop up for sale.  Wilson Caddess (now Exyah’s son-in-law) moved the Radio & TV Repair shop into the building you’ll see below in the photos.  Caddess operated the Repair Shop until the late 1960s when transistors replaced vacuum tubes as a means of radio and tv amplification.  At that time, Caddess focused his work solely on the Vaiden Water Department until his retirement in 1990 after 41 years as Water Superintendent.  In the early 1980s, the Vaiden Bank bought the Caddess Radio & TV Repair Shop and razed it for additional parking space.  In exchange, the Vaiden Bank built Caddess a shop at his home, which he used until his placement in the VA Home in Jackson, and subsequent death on 11/18/1997.


Wilson Monroe Caddess (06/18/1917 – 11/18/1997), was originally from Doddsville, MS, but moved to Winona at an early age.  He married Louise (Aunt “E”) Hambrick, who worked at the Chenille Plant in Winona, MS, in addition to being a homemaker, active in community organizations, and babysitter for children in Vaiden throughout the 1960s and 1970s. 




Front (facing South) and Side (facing West) of the Shop



East Side of Building (the old gristmill sat in the empty spot in the right of this picture)



East Side of Building as viewed from the North

(the old gristmill sat in the empty spot in the left of this picture)



Rear (North Side) of Shop as viewed from the old gristmill location



Front (South Side) of Shop with “J.C. Hambrick 1946

engraved in the face of building



Front of Shop (South Side) – the fallen building to the left was

formerly Alexander’s ? Welding Shop and Auto Repair



Front (South Side) of building



Front (South Side) of Shop – the rear of the new (current) Vaiden Bank/second Summer’s Grocery building is to the immediate right in the photo – the rear of the old Vaiden Bank (built in the 1890s, and currently the Vaiden City Hall) building is to the left of the rear of the new Vaiden Bank – the front of the former Lee’s Grocery is in the middle of the photo – the space between the Shop and the rear of the new Vaiden Bank building was the former location of the gristmill



Southern view of the front of the Shop from Magnolia Street



Another Southern view of the front of the Shop from Magnolia Street



Another Southern view of the front of the Shop from Magnolia Street

(enlarged from the photo in the Vaiden Heritage)



Same view of Photo 9, with buildings labeled