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Caldwell, Bill, of Pletcher

Note: This article first appeared in the Union-Banner, December 1, 1927 in "Who's Who In Clanton" and was reprinted in The Chiltonian, the newsletter of the Chilton County Historical Society and Archives, Inc. in Volume 29, Number 2 April 2009.

Some men are born leaders and it is through their leadership and guidance that the businesses of today are making progress never before known in the history of the world.

The advertising business leads the list in its originality, modern ideas and progress.

Mr. Bill Caldwell, advertising sales manager for the Southern territory of the Paramount Famous Lasky Corporation, through his cleverness and originality has put over some of the cleverest and most up-to-date advertising schemes of the times [sic] it is this ability that has won for him the position he now holds.

The world knows him as Mr. Caldwell but we natives of Chilton County know him as Bill, and it is for this reason that we wish to go back to the years that we knew him just as Bill, and review his boyhood days.

Bill Caldwell, the son of Mr. and Mrs. E. G. Caldwell of Pletcher was born in Pletcher in 1901. He attended school in Billingsley and Pletcher. When just a lad he began tinkering with telegraphy, and at the remarkable age of 12 he worked as a telegraph operator for the M. _ O. Railroad Co. in Pletcher. Two years later Bill became relief operator for the M. _ O., and a short while after that he became agent and operator at Elrod, Alabama.

Further schooling was received from Professor Askins with whom he studied one and one-half years, after which he again worked as relief operator and agent for the M. _ O. At the age of 18, Bill discontinued his work with the Railroad and was employed by the Postal Telegraph Company in Birmingham. His next position was with the Goodyear Tire _ Rubber Co., where he did clerical work. He was associated with them in Birmingham, Nashville, Columbia, S.C., and Atlanta.

It was during his stay in Atlanta that he secured his position with the Paramount Famous Lasky Players, the largest moving picture concern and owner of picture theaters in the United States. His record with them has been an interesting and enviable one. From Atlanta he was transferred to Oklahoma City and given the position as ad[vertising] Sales Manager. He was then promoted to Chicago and later to the home office as supervisor of advertising sales for the Southern territory which consists of Jacksonville, Atlanta, New Orleans, Dallas, and Memphis. He has occupied the position for two years. During the first period of the present fiscal year his district led the United States in Sales [sic].

“The Hundred Percenter,” a magazine gotten out by his Company in New York says “Bill Caldwell with the energetic support of the Southerners is the big noise just now,” and a circular letter to all offices from the Company read “All Bill Caldwell’s districts went over the top and have been doing this constantly.”

Remembering Bill as we do, we are not surprised that he is able to go over the top in anything he undertakes. Energy, determination, enthusiasm and fairness are the qualities that have made him a success.

While Mr. Caldwell has always displayed rare judgement [sic] in business deals he has showed his very best judgment in the selection of the splendid little wife from Texas whom he brought to his father’s home several weeks ago.

Chilton County is proud of Mr. Caldwell’s record and we hope that other boys may catch the vision and make something out of their lives.