Francis Jackson Craig was born in Dickson, Tennessee, on September 10, 1900, the ninth of ten children of a Methodist minister. Craig entered Vanderbilt University in January 1919 after a brief stint in the Army between his eighteenth birthday and the signing of the armistice that ended World War I. A talented pianist, he formed a dance band in 1920 to help pay his college expenses. After graduating in 1922, he continued his music career. In 1946, Craig decided to give up performing and took a position as a disc jockey at WSM. His farewell recording, however, became a hit and led to two more years of touring and personal appearances. After touring in 1947 and 1948, Craig returned to Nashville to work for the radio station. He died on November 20, 1966.
The Francis Craig Collection contains material ranging in date from 1919 to 1990 and make up 1.88 linear feet. The papers include personal and biographical information, correspondence, memorabilia, and photographs. The major portion of the collection, however, dates from the 1930’s and 1940’s and consists of clippings, sheet music, and recordings.