From 1931 to 1955, one of the most popular programs on the radio was Lum and Abner, about two gentlemen and a community of friends in rural Arkansas. Those that want to peek into that era today can visit the Lum and Abner Museum and Jot ‘Em Down Store located along Highway 88 in the Pine Ridge community. The museum opened in the 1970s and is now on the National Register of Historic Places.
The nearby city of Mena also hosts an annual Lum & Abner Festival each summer. This year’s 36th anniversary celebration will be held June 7-8.
In 1931 two men from Mena, Chet Lauck and Tuffy Goff, created Lum and Abner and their many friends for the radio program. The action took place at the Jot ‘Em Down Store in fictional Pine Ridge. The characters were based on the people who lived in the real village of Waters. In 1936, the town’s name was officially changed to Pine Ridge. The community, post office and stores are still standing. Today these buildings house the Lum and Abner Museum.
In addition to Lum and Abner radio history, the museum houses examples of early general store merchandise, vintage fixtures and farm and household items from earlier days. It’s open March 1 – November 1 and by appointment.
For more information, contact Lon or Kathy Stucker, store managers at 870-326-4442 or visit lum-n-abner.com.