Dixie Inn


Jim Morgan's son, Whitford Morgan, built and operated a restaurant and motel
called Dixie Inn where the Village now exists.

 Submitted by Tommy White, Class of 1968

Billy says he remembered this restaurant and behind it were "tourist cabins".. when his family moved to Dixie Inn Dec. 1942...
 
He was 6 years old and can't to remember too much detail, but does recall this place was till in business.. Later on, the Prescotts Family, purchase this restaurant and ran it for a while. They tore the old restaurant  down and built a new one.

 

Billy recalls the village of Dixie Inn was actually bigger  than you'd think.  Back then,  he was little and everything looked big then. Says Billy " There was a service station that had a large extension that would accommodate 4 or 5 cars, big for that day,  Anyway customers could fill their cas without getting in the rain on..
 
To give you an idea were this restuarant and tourist cabins was located, across the street now, is a Mexican restaurant, Mickey's...
 
The Kidd family was the 3rd. family to move into these government houses... a total of 74 houses were build.. there was even a lumber yard located on the back side of this housing project down on the last street near Dorcheat.  When this houses project was completed the lumber yard was removed.. 
 
The next housing projects were, Oak Ridge, Tillman Addition, (built on land that belonged to John Tillman, Chris Temple's father-in law) then the Fairfield Apartments.. These little towns had no housing available for the influx of workers moving here to work at the Shell Plant .. Must have been overwhelming to the city fathers...
Billy says the FEDS also built housing project in Bossier and perhaps in Haughton....

 

Submitted by LeVerne Langheld Kidd, Class of 1957  (Note: Billy Kidd was in the class of 1954)

 

Highway 80 was known as the Dixie Overland Highway. Some of us
wondered how Dixie Inn got its name and remembered when the
community was called Dixie Heights. The CC camps came to Minden
around 1938. When I asked the Minden Memories group what they
remembered this is what we learned....



THE HISTORY OF DIXIE INN

I don't know the year...but my dad's uncle, Whitford Morgan, was the
founder of Dixie Inn and Restaurant...I was told that only two roads
intersected...the Hwy 80 and the Cotton Valley road.

Whitford Morgan was my paternal grandmother's brother.  My grandmother
was Mary Elizabeth "Morgan" White.  Her husband was Cordie White from Bienville
Parish near Arcadia.  Whitford Morgan and Mary Elizabeth White were the
children of Jim Morgan...Jim and family moved to Minden from South Carolina
many years ago.

Jim Morgan and my paternal grandfather, Cordie White, owned some prime farming
land that the US government took by force to create Caney Lake reservoir.
They moved to Hwy 80 east of Minden upon leaving the Caney creek area.

Whitford Morgan went to the crossroads of Cotton Valley road and Hwy 80
and built the Restaurant and Motel; calling the establishment, Dixie Inn.

Thanks,
Tommy White

 

Wanda Monzingo Ballard's family had to sell their land for twenty-five dollars per acre.

The Monzingo family lived where the Country Kitchen is now located. We learned

Glenbrook school was named for Glen Monzingo. The $25.00 per acre sounds correct. 

Dad told me that the amount they received was $1100.00 total so 40 to 50 acres would be

in that range. They purchased 38 acres on Hwy 80 east for that  amount or less. Dad told me

that he would not cash the check for a long time thinking that he would not have to sell by that

non-action. He later was basically forced off the land. Cordie White and Jim Morgan each had

connecting tracts of land that reached into the creek area or probably what is now the bottom of

Caney Lake.  Dad said it was really good farming property...much better than what they replaced

it with.

Tommy White

                 

                  THE VILLAGE OF DIXIE-INN

 

               

                  Henry Lester, He married Susie Miller (Taken during the war years)

              They still lives in Minden today.                    

                     

                     Residential Section              

                    

                        Children's Park in Dixie-Inn 

                                                            MURDER IN DIXIE INN

            Wingo and Glass killed Mr. & Mrs. Newt Brown on December 25, 1982. 

(Wingo and Glass had just escaped from prison and were "on the run" Law enforcement were looking for them and knew immediately who had killed the Brown's. These escapee's were on the run and and may have needed money.)

"As I recall, the two guys that killed the Browns did a "rush" act.  They found a cinder block, or something like that, in the yard and threw it through a sliding glass door.  Then, they "rushed" down to the bedroom and killed the Brown's before they even had time to react to the breaking glass. Makes one think about home safety and what one could do to deter such tactics".

Nolan Bailey

                                                       CHRISTMAS MORNING 1982

It was Christmas 1982. The Browns were killed in their bedroom, and their children found them on Christmas morning. There had been a roadblock in Dixie Inn on Christmas Eve night, but the law enforcement people did not tell them about two convicts who had escaped. The Browns did not know of the danger -- may have never known what happened to them. He was the brother of the late contractor L. T. Brown. Mrs. Newton Brown may have been named "Earlene," but that has not been verified. We think the convicts were caught around New Years' Day, tried, convicted, and eventually executed, there was no motive established.

Newt was Clyde's brother. Another brother was Edgar Brown, killed himself a year after the murder because he was despondent over the death of Newt.

Wingo and Glass had just escaped from prison and were "on the run" Law enforcement were looking for them and knew immediately who had killed the Brown's. These escapee's were on the run and and may have needed money.  They didn't catch them and Wingo's girlfriend until January 6, 1983.

                                                   JIMMY GLASS AND JIMMY WINGO

Mr. Glass, the dad of Jimmy worked at Arizona Chemical. He was an instrument repairman. The company had a policy of hiring employees children as temporary summer laborers.

Both Jimmy's were in the Minden jail when they escaped.  It seems they escaped and went to a shed of some sort at the Brown's residence. We were told they got into the house while the Brown's were not at home. When the Brown couple came home, they shot them. They both denied doing the shooting and blamed it on each other so they were both executed.

                                             

                                              Murderer of a Couple Executed in Louisiana

Published: June 13, 1987
LEAD: A swaggering inmate who said he would ''rather be fishing'' was executed in the electric chair early today for the shooting deaths of a bound and gagged couple in 1982.

A swaggering inmate who said he would ''rather be fishing'' was executed in the electric chair early today for the shooting deaths of a bound and gagged couple in 1982.

Jimmy Glass, the third Louisiana inmate executed in five days, was pronounced dead at 12:14 A.M., Corrections Commissioner C. Hall Phelps said.

The 25-year-old high school dropout went to his death after the United States Supreme Court rejected an appeal without comment Thursday evening. The High Court also refused to stop Louisiana executions on Sunday and Tuesday.

Mr. Glass grinned as he was strapped into the electric chair. A short time earlier he was asked if he had a final statement and he said, ''Yeah, I think I'd rather be fishing.''

Mr. Glass was condemned for killing Newt and Erlene Brown on Christmas Eve five years ago at their home in Dixie Inn.

He contended that Jimmy Wingo, a cellmate who escaped with him from the Webster Parish jail the night of the murders, had held a shotgun to his head and made him kill the Browns after he called Wingo by name.

Mr. Wingo, 35, is scheduled to die next Tuesday for the killings. He said he had nothing to do with them.

                                                    ESCAPE TO MURDER

Jimmy Wingo is comforted by his mother, Sarah Easley, as he appears before a pardon board at the Louisiana State Prison where he and Jimmy Glass (below) were convicted of killing Newton and Erlene Brown after breaking into the couple's house on Christmas Eve. Both Wingo and Glass got the electric chair.
 
It was Christmas Eve, and Jimmy Wingo was lonely.

Wingo, 30, had once worked as a cop in Oil City, La. But his life had taken a tumble - divorce, booze, unemployment - and he found himself in the county lockup in Minden, La., for house burglaries over the holidays in 1982.

Wingo, who had special trusty status at the jail, was phoning loved ones on Christmas Eve when a deputy left him alone with another trusty, Jimmy Glass, 20, a robbery suspect.

Wingo and Glass decided to take a powder.

They went down the elevator and walked out of jail - free but penniless in their prison scrubs.

Their plan was straight from the clichéd script of half-baked jailbreaks: steal beer, steal clothes, steal money, steal a car and go see their girlfriends.

They hiked 3 miles across fields to the hamlet of Dixie Inn (pop. 350), east of Shreveport.

They were about to break into a darkened house when the owners, Newton and Erlene Brown, arrived home.

Wingo and Glass gave the couple time to go to bed, hiding in the backyard and helping themselves to beer they found in a storage shed.

Tied up - and shot

After an hour or so, the men cut the phone line to the house and broke a patio door to get inside.

The Browns, startled awake, were bound with electrical cord and held in their bedroom. The intruders collected three of Newton Brown's guns - a shotgun, a .30-30 rifle and a .38 revolver - and nearly $2,000 in cash.

On Christmas morning, relatives found the couple slain - both shot in the head.

Wingo and Glass drove the Browns' car 250 miles southeast to the home of Wingo's girlfriend, Gwen Hill, in Livonia, La., near Baton Rouge.

The men were wearing Newton Brown's clothing and carrying his guns, and each had about $900 of his money.

Wingo, Glass and Hill drove back across Louisiana in a stolen pickup truck to Atlanta, Tex., just 50 miles from the scene of the murders.

There they split up.

Wingo and Hill holed up in a motel love nest, while Glass drove on to Little Rock, Ark., where he boarded a bus for California.

But freedom proved fleeting.

Wingo and his girlfriend fled into the woods when they saw his mug shot on TV as a murder suspect.

A citizen tipped police, and hounds tracked them down. Police found Newton Brown's shotgun buried nearby.

Glass, meanwhile, was tracked to San Diego and arrested.

It was the sort of outrageous crime that prompts Americans to cry out for retribution - a double murder committed by escaped felons for no good reason.

The men were charged with capital murder, and the death penalty loomed.

Glass and Wingo blamed one another, although neither account seemed entirely plausible.

Wingo said he waited outside while Glass - 10 years younger and much smaller - went into the house, bound and gagged the couple, stole their guns and money, then shot them.

Glass admitted he fired the shots, but only because Wingo forced him to. Glass said he had carelessly spoken Wingo's name during the robbery, and Wingo decided the Browns had to die because they could identify him.

Glass said Wingo poked the shotgun at his neck and threatened to shoot him unless he killed the couple.

The men had separate trials.

Jimmy Glass, who left fingerprints all over the murder scene, took the witness stand to swear that Jimmy Wingo forced him to kill the couple.

The jury didn't buy it, and Glass was convicted and condemned to die.

At the second trial, Glass refused to testify against his buddy, and Wingo declined to take the stand.

Evidence put Wingo at Glass' side both before and after the murders - from the jailbreak to Livonia to the Texas motel. But Wingo's fingerprints were not found in the Browns' house. The prosecution said he had donned a pair of gardening gloves before going inside.

Wingo's lawyer presented no evidence - a not-uncommon tactic when the defense believes the prosecution has failed to make its case. The lawyer argued for acquittal since no evidence proved Wingo had been inside the house.

But the jurors did not follow his advice.

They convicted Wingo, and he joined Glass on Death Row at Louisiana's Angola State Prison.

The appeals process expired relatively quickly for both men.

On June 17, 1987, Jimmy Glass took a seat in the lap of Gruesome Gertie, as the Louisiana electric chair was known.

A prison official asked whether he had a final statement, and he replied with a bumper-sticker quip that has gone down in last-words lore.

"Yeah," Glass said. "I think I'd rather be fishing."

A reasonable doubt?

Before his own scheduled date with Gertie, Wingo caught the attention of James McCloskey, founder of Centurion Ministries, the Princeton, N.J.-based group that advocates on behalf of wrongfully convicted prisoners.

McCloskey became convinced that Wingo was innocent of murder. He said he videotaped two prosecution witnesses who recanted their testimony, and he put together a dossier alleging that Wingo had had an incompetent lawyer.

McCloskey pressed the materials on Louisiana Gov. Edwin Edwards just before Wingo's execution date.

The governor apparently was unmoved, and the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an eleventh hour appeal.

Wingo's last words, spoken four days after Glass', were more poignant than his crime partner's.

"I am an innocent man," he said. "You are murdering me this day."

Nearly 20 years later, McCloskey and his organization have labeled Wingo "innocent but executed."

Yet the Louisiana Supreme Court had rejected Wingo's appeal, saying, "A rational juror ... could have concluded beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant actively participated in the killing of the victims."

Did he participate in the murders?

A jury said he did.

But only four people know for certain: Jimmy Wingo, Jimmy Glass, and Newton and Erlene Brown. And none of them are likely to talk.

Many thanks to Pat Palmer for the newspaper articles.

Question: If Wingo was innocent, why was he robbing the Brown home? I would have voted guilty by association.

 

                                                  Gardens of Memory Cemetery

Garden of The Lord's Supper Section 1; Row 1, Lt 2

Sp1           and          Sp 2

                  BROWN

Newt                         Erlene

22 Aug 1927           22 Sep 1931

25 Dec 1982           25 Dec 1982

Newt & Erlene Brown's children are Dennis & Gary Brown and Linda Brown Tate


The above Information was furnished by Herbert Browning,  Billy Hathorn ,

 Ann Mays Harlan, & Earlene Mendenhall Lyle

Minden Press-Herald, Monday, December 27, 1982
 
Newton Brown
Erlene N. Brown
 
Services for Newton Brown, 55, and his wife, Mrs. Erlene Nealy
Brown, 51, both of Minden, will be held at 1 p.m. Tuesday,
December 28, 1982, at the Rose-Neath Funeral Home Chapel
with Rev. Tommy Freeman, pastor of the Antioch Baptist
Church officiating.  Interment will follow in Gardens of Memory.
 
Mr. Brown, a native of Sarepta, resided in Minden most of his
life where he and his wife were owners of Newt Brown Contractors,
Inc.  He was a member of the Antioch Baptist Church, a Veteran
of World War II and served in the European Theater.
 
Mrs. Brown, a native of Shongaloo, was a resident of Minden most
of her life where she was a member of the Antioch Baptist Church.
 
The Browns were engaged in the Contracting business in
northwest Louisiana since 1969.
 
Survivors include two sons, Dennis and Gary Brown, both of Minden;
a daughter, Linda Tate of Haughton; three grandchildren, Kimberly
Ann Brown, Lorrie Michelle Tate and Sheri Lynn Tate.
 
Mr. Brown had five brothers, Edgar Brown, Carl "Pat" Brown, L. T.
"Buddy" Brown, Clyde Brown and Connon Brown, all of Minden.
 
Mrs. Brown had four sisters, Charlene O'Daniels of Shreveport,
Gladys Teutsch of Shongaloo, Vertie Williams and Lucille Morgan,
both of Cullen; three brothers, Drew Nealy of Texas City, TX,
Chester Nealy of DeQueen, Ark. and Hershel Nealy of Winnona, TX.
 
Pallbearers will be Ken Auey, Charlie Benton, Ronnie Brown,
Steve Brown, Robert Hunter, Loyd Brown, Smitty Brown, Pete
Simolke, Jack Simolke, Randy Jennings and Jim Reynolds



 

                     If you have any Dixie Inn Memories, Stories or photo's e-mail to:

 MindenMemories@AOL.Com or snail mail to Sherry Gresham Gritzbaugh, 4507 Verone  Street, Bellaire, Texas7740

They will be returned to you promptly. Be sure to include your return address.