Charles Jessup was married to a 15 year old girl while still married to his third wife. Rev. Jessup was a border radio fixture for years, sharing time on a mega-powerful station operating just across the Rio Grande (and outside of U. S. regulations) at the same time as Wolfman Jack. Robert Duvall cited him as an influence on his film The Apostle, and others have compared him to Elvis, but then Elvis was never convicted of mail fraud and using ill-gotten contributions from loyal listeners for cock-fighting.
Jessup barnstormed God's airways with mountain music, a squeaky voice and an insatiable sexual appetite. Taking in ten million dollars, he claimed was to help the Mexican people, he instead "llenarse los bolsillos" which is Spanish for "line your own pockets." And there are folks who worry about Mexicans coming here? Cars, Seaplanes, real estate...whatever supposed pleasures awaited his followers in the afterlife, he was taking full advantage of in the present.
Not to be outdone by his own brother's double-neck guitar, shown in a photo here...he ordered a custom made THREE neck guitar from the Mosrite Factory which surfaced a few years ago. I am not sure what he used to play it with, but perhaps his young wife can tell us. Amazingly, he continued to appear on other evangelist's programs after serving his sentence (at least one of which still operates in my home state) and they welcomed him as an inspiration! I include here several photos of Jessup and his posse with a scan of their 78 rpm record (which unfortunately I have not heard as God has not yet provided me with a working turntable, but he will, I believe)
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A double blog post here and on "old time religion"
Photo excerpts from "Heaven and Hell" "My Life's Story" "A Stirring Message on Death" all circa 1945-1950 by J. Charles Jessup, and "Preach the Word/I'll Meet you in the Morning" by Jessup Brothers on Jessup Brothers records, 78 rpm. All Collection Jim Linderman