Bank of Worth County, 1915, Sylvester

sylvester ga bank of worth county building photograph copyright brian brown vanishing south georgia usa 2010

Art Sutton writes about the history of this building long after it served as a bank: After the Bank of Worth County moved to their new location, two of the major stockholders of the bank, Dr. J.M. Sutton and James Rouse formed Worth County Broadcasters, Inc. and started Worth County’s first radio station, WOGA, “WOrth county GA”. The station’s studios and offices were located in this building. The station’s 185 ft tower was located on Highway 256 (Scooterville Highway) at the city of limits of Sylvester. The station began operations in December 1963 at 1540 on the AM dial. It was a daytimer, only authorized by the Federal Communications Commission to operate from sunrise to sunset with 1,000 watts. The station had a variety music format and was very popular with local citizens but the station had limited financial success. In 1975, an Albany minister purchased the station and changed its format to religious then in 1979, Irv Feldman of Booneville, Mississippi relocated to Sylvester and returned local programming to the station. The call sign was changed from WOGA to WRSG for “Radio Sylvester Georgia” While Feldman likely built the station’s advertising revenues to their highest level ever, FM radio stations outside of Worth County were deeply eroding the audience levels of WRSG and other South Georgia AM stations. The station was sold once more before it left the airwaves and the license was cancelled by the FCC. I began my career in radio broadcasting at WOGA in 1977 at the age of 15. Now, 34 years later, I remain in the business and own a Toccoa, GA based group of radio stations operating in northeast Georgia, western North Carolina and upstate South Carolina.

Sylvester Commercial Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

7 Comments

Filed under --WORTH COUNTY GA--, Sylvester GA

7 responses to “Bank of Worth County, 1915, Sylvester

  1. Mary King Givens

    Built in 1913 as the First National Bank of Sylvester and closed in Jan. 1925

  2. bob scott

    great memories irv

  3. After the Bank of Worth County moved to their new location, two of the major stockholders of the bank, Dr. J.M. Sutton and James Rouse formed Worth County Broadcasters, Inc. and started Worth County’s first radio station, WOGA, “WOrth county GA”. The station’s studios and offices were located in this building. The station’s 185 ft tower was located on Highway 256 (Scooterville Highway) at the city of limits of Sylvester. The station began operations in December 1963 at 1540 on the AM dial. It was a daytimer, only authorized by the Federal Communicatioins Commission to operate from sunrise to sunset with 1,000 watts. The station had a variety music format and was very popular with local citizens but the station had limited financial success. In 1975, an Albany minister purchased the station and changed its format to religious then in 1979, Irv Feldman of Booneville, Mississippi relocated to Sylvester and returned local programming to the station. The call sign was changed from WOGA to WRSG for “Radio Sylvester Georgia” While Feldman likely built the station’s advertising revenues to their highest level ever, FM radio stations outside of Worth County were deeply eroding the audience levels of WRSG and other South Georgia AM stations. The station was sold once more before it left the airwaves and the license was cancelled by the FCC. I began my career in radio broadcasting at WOGA in 1977 at the age of 15. Now, 34 years later, I remain in the business and own a Toccoa, GA based group of radio stations operating in northeast Georgia, western North Carolina and upstate South Carolina.

  4. Ocilla has a building almost identical to that – at the corner of 4th and Cherry – if I remember my street names correctly.

  5. Terry James

    Great shot–Sylvester has beautiful old buildings.

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