ADKINS, JACK "HOBO JACK" (1922-1977)

Born in Regina, Kentucky, “Hobo Jack” Adkins acquired his nickname because of his rambling around the country. He was in the Civilian Conservation Corps, worked in the coal mines, was a carpenter, and eventually joined the Navy. When he got out of the Navy, he and his wife settled in Millard, Kentucky. He got a job with the gas company and began playing music on the radio around 1946 on various Kentucky radio stations. Musicians who played in his band over the years included Cuddles Newsome, Estil Stewart, Walt and Jim Hensley, and Melvin and Ray Goins. He began writing songs and in 1958 wrote and recorded “Kentucky School Bus” about a tragedy in Floyd County, Kentucky. It was subsequently revised and recorded by the Stanley Brothers as “No School Bus In Heaven.” Other songs he wrote included “Our Lady of Angels,” about a Chicago school fire, “30 Inch Coal,” “Windy Mountain,” and “Another Night.” He left Millard in 1960 and moved to Cincinnati, where he acquired a recording studio and started the Adco record label. In addition to Adco, he recorded on Lucky, Ace, Acme, Big A, Starday, and Nashville. A nice retrospective of his recording career was issued in 2013 on the English label B.A.C.M. In the mid 1960s, he was very involved in religion and became a preacher. After that, he recorded primarily gospel music. In 1975 he moved back to Millard and operated a record shop and recording facility near Elkhorn City.

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