Thomas Blackmon, Owner, Blackmon Auctions
Blackmon Auctions, a third generation, family-owned, specialty auction company is celebrating its 80th year in business.
“Auctioning is more than just getting up and calling numbers out. The nature of the auction business puts me in people’s lives when they are going through a major transition,” Thomas Blackmon says. “I wear many different hats being an auctioneer. In the course of an auction, I will be a lawyer, an accountant, a therapist, a salesman, a carnival barker, a bouncer, a preacher, a banker, a debt collector, a mediator and sometimes just a shoulder to cry on. The business is different every day, and that’s what I love about it.”
Eddie Blackmon started the company in 1938. He owned part interest in a cattle barn in Dewitt, Ark., and the auctioneer he had working for him got in trouble running a scam and was run out of town. Eddie did the auction that night, and the rest is history. In 1965, his son, Tom Blackmon, took over the auction business and focused on selling farm equipment. He added construction equipment auctions in 1972 and expanded into the trucking, logging, railroad and manufacturing equipment in the early 1980s. Thomas Blackmon took over the business in 2010 and added real estate auctions. Today, the company has sale yards in Little Rock and Muskogee, Okla., and sells real estate in five surrounding states, conducts about 70 auctions a year, is licensed in 24 states and is one of the oldest auction companies in the nation.
“Coming into a third generation business, my greatest accomplishment has been to keep the company running and growing,” says Thomas Blackmon. “My father and mother were both my heroes and my mentors. When I was young and starting out, I thought that it would be easy to run a business and make the daily decisions. After a few years on the job, I started to see that my parents were business geniuses.”