Former Fort Worth Star-Telegram religion reporter Jim Jones is the subject of a new exhibit at the Fort Worth Central Library.
Titled “Everything Old Is News Again,” the temporary exhibit focuses on Jones’ career as a journalist and documents his transformation from student to columnist to special contributor. Among the items on display in the library’s West Wing are photos, articles, awards and books from Jones’ personal collection.
Jones, who died in 2015, began working at the Star-Telegram in 1957 after graduating from North Texas State College in Denton (now known as the University of North Texas). In 1978, he became the religion beat reporter. For more than 20 years, Jones wrote on a wide variety of faith-related topics and events, including multiple popes, televangelists, the Dalai Lama and the mass shooting at Wedgwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth.
In a Star-Telegram article from 2015, former Star-Telegram metro editor Katie Sherrod discussed Jones’ foresight to capitalize on a topic that at the time few publications treated as newsworthy.
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“The news business was really just beginning to understand what a force religion was, not only in the U.S. but around the world,” Sherrod said. “Jim got that a lot sooner than most of us.”
Linda Barrett, manager of the genealogy, local history and archives unit for the Fort Worth Library, said the idea for the exhibit first came about when Jones’ wife, Carol Savage Jones, contacted the library about donating some of his papers to the archives.
“When I started going through his papers, I began to notice that there were a lot of topics in the headlines from his articles, from throughout his career, that we were seeing in the headlines again today,” Barrett said.
With help from Savage Jones, Barrett said she focused on pulling items for the exhibit that supported the theme of “Everything Old Is News Again,” as well as items that people would not have had the chance to see. These items include Jones’ notepads from when he covered the Wedgwood Baptist Church shooting, as well as his writing assignments from the 8th grade and newspaper articles from high school and college.
“I wanted to help them see more behind the scenes and also how Jim Jones grew as a writer,” Barrett said.
“Everything Old Is News Again” is on display through June 28. The Fort Worth Central Library is at 500 W. Third St. in Fort Worth. Hours vary by day. For more information, visit http://fortworthtexas.gov/library/branches/central.
A life well drawn
Another former Star-Telegram notable is the subject of an exhibit, as well. The University of Texas at Arlington Libraries will host a reception for the new exhibit “Drawn to Politics the Editorial Art of Etta Hulme” from 6 to 8 p.m. at the UTA Central Library (702 Planetarium Place, Arlington) on Jan. 20. The free exhibit highlights the work of former Star-Telegram cartoonist Etta Hulme, who was twice named best editorial cartoonist by the National Cartoonist Society. For more information, visit http://library.uta.edu.
Everything Old Is New Again
- Through June 28
- Fort Worth Central Library
- 500 W. Third St.