Lucious Alexander Wilson was the editor and general manager of the Tri-State Defender, an African-American newspaper published in Memphis, Tennessee. He gained national prominence when television images of him being beaten when the Little Rock Nine finally entered Little Rock Central High School September 23, 1957. Wilson, a highly visible presence at 6’3″, followed the students to the school building until members of the racist white mob began beating and kicking him from behind. One man jumped on his back and choked him; another beat him with a brick. Wilson walked on as unperturbed as he could, stooping down to pick up his hat. While the students entered the school building, Wilson was hit over the head with a brick, and then was beaten more as he walked to his car.
One of the people he hired at the Tri-State Defender was Dorothy Butler Gilliam. After the events in Little Rock Wilson became editor of The Chicago Defender, but he died young, in 1960 (at the age of 51), possibly from the effects of the beatings he endured.