RobinsoNovember: E. E. “Ned” Beaumont

e-e-beaumontOnce Mayor J. V. Satterfield was ready to appoint a new Auditorium Commission, he chose longtime banker E. E. “Ned” Beaumont to lead it.

After graduating from Little Rock High School in 1910, Beaumont entered the banking world. His first stop was with State National Bank. In 1914, he moved to Exchange National Bank.  Four years later, he was hired by Bankers Trust Company. After sixteen years there, he joined Commercial National Bank.  He would be with them from 1934 until his death in 1968.

In January 1940, Mayor Satterfield appointed him to be chairman of the reconstituted Auditorium Commission.  As such, he took a leadership role as a spokesman for the facility during its opening in February 1940.  Beaumont served as chairman of the Commission from January 1940 until his death in July 1968.  During his tenure the building saw the touring industry change.  With the rise of Las Vegas and Miami and longterm performance destinations, fewer top name singers were touring by the mid-1950s.  The music scene also changed in content as it went from Big Band to rock and roll.  (No word on his thoughts of Elvis Presley.)

On August 19, 1968, the City Board of Directors adopted a resolution memorializing Beaumont’s contributions to Little Rock civic life.  In addition to his long service on the Auditorium Commission, he had also served as treasurer of the Little Rock School District and of the Pulaski County School District.