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Pepper Hawthorne
WLS National Barn Dance

About The Artist

Pepper Hawthorne came to WLS in 1941. And they called her Little Pepper for good reason. She was all of four feet 11 and a half inches tall, or as they described her, only about as big as a pint of cider. She played the violin and guitar.

She got her real name of Evangeline because her parents the heroine of Longfellow's poem. She was born in Ramsey, Illinois and brought up by Mr. and Mrs. Will Harris on their farm, near Macon, Illinois.

Though she was only 18 at the time of coming to WLS, she inspired others through her perserverance to overcome infantile paralysis at the age of three, at age 12, she was walking on crutches with her right leg in a brace. After five operations and months in a hospital, well, there she was on WLS.

Pepper got her radio start on WSOY in Decatur, later moving to WDZ in Tuscola.

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