Saturday, January 28, 2023

One Year Ago Today: Oxford’s ‘Elvis’ Remembered

It was a year ago today that William Henry Atkinson, also known as the “Big E,” died at 51 from a critical case of pancreatitis.

An employee at WalMart, Atkinson would frequently sing Elvis tunes and even treat shoppers and employees with an Elvis-styled costume. During his impromptu performance, he’d collect money for LeBonheur Children’s Hospital.

Everyone that knew Big E said he truly talked, walked and sang like “The King” himself.

William Henry Atkinson


Russ Jones is the Editor-In-Chief for He can be reached at

John Cofield is a writer and one of Oxford’s leading folk historians. He is the son of renowned university photographer Jack Cofield. His grandfather, J.R. “Colonel” Cofield, was William Faulkner’s personal photographer and for decades was the Ole Miss yearbook photographer. Cofield attended Ole Miss as well.

Stay tuned for more information on Cofield’s forthcoming book: Oxford, Mississippi ~ The Cofield Collection — a pictorial history book with John’s writing on the history to go along with the photos.

Contact John at

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