Radio station celebrates 60 years

Published 4:45 am Wednesday, August 1, 2007

By By Lydia Grimes – features reporter
WEBJ Radio is celebrating its 60th birthday today.
The station has gone through several owners during that time and today is owned by Dennis Dunaway.
Six years ago, the station's format changed to all talk. Dunaway said the change occurred because AM stations were losing ground with the listeners.
Dunaway now broadcasts W.S. Neal football and Little League and Babe Ruth baseball. He has an automated system that can carry on even when he is not at the station. Technology is one of the major changes he has seen over the years.
Dunaway has even added a young man to do the weather, Spinks Megginson. The tenth-grader has been interested in meteorology for several years and plans to make a career of working in the field of meteorology.
The value of having a local radio station was never more evident than after Hurricane Ivan. WEBJ was the connection of what was happening and the people of the community. Many times the radio was the only means of getting information.
The radio has certainly filled the wishes of the original owner and carried out his purpose, which began in 1947.
The year 1947 brought many changes in the lives of people all over the world. World War II was over and the country was on the mend.
Here in Brewton things were also changing. William Emmett Brooks, publisher of The Brewton Standard, made the decision to venture out from the printed word and go into another type of media, a radio station.
He envisioned a local station &#8220and nothing more.”
He acquired the AM frequency 1240 and formed a 250-watt station that he called WEBJ for his son, William Emmett Brooks Jr.
WEBJ officially signed on the air for the first time on Aug. 1, 1947, in the dining room of the Lovelace Hotel in downtown Brewton.