September 27 – October 20, 2019
This land is our land
Volumes have been written about pioneers who pushed beyond the existing frontier to lay claim to the vast wilderness that was Texas. The Texas Heritage Hall of Honor recognizes men and women who have made significant contributions to the agricultural heritage of Texas. They have made their marks as farmers, ranchers, drovers, inventors, innovators, educators, authors, legislators, and preservationists. Their achievements span 170 years, reaching back to the birth of the Texas Republic and extending out into a limitless future.
The program was established in 1992 as a biennial program. Every two years, nominees both living and deceased are considered for induction.
Perry L. Adkisson
of College Station is Chancellor Emeritus of Texas A&M University. For his work in sustaining crop productivity in an environmentally friendly way in countries around the world, he was the co-recipient of the 1997 World Food Prize, which is the Nobel Prize equivalent in the field of agricultural science. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1998
L.D. "Don" Anderson
of Lubbock organized and found funding for the High Plains Diapause Boll Weevil Control Program, which prevented the boll weevil from establishing itself on the High Plains, thus saving millions of dollars by eliminating costs for control and preventing losses in yield. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1996
of Kenedy County served her community, state and nation as a team with her husband, Tobin Armstrong. Anne was highly respected and served as a counselor to Presidents Nixon and Ford. She was the first woman to serve as U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain and served as a Regent of the Texas A & M University System. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2010
John B. Armstrong
of Kingsville served King Ranch, Inc. in various capacities including corporate president and CEO prior to retirement in 1988. He provided strong leadership for the Texas & Southwest Cattle Raisers Association, Santa Gertrudis Breeders Association and National Cattleman’s Association. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1994
of Kennedy County served his community, state and nation as a team with his wife, Anne Armstrong. They owned and operated the Armstrong Ranch in Kennedy County – a ranch recognized for its production of beef cattle, breeding stock and wildlife. Tobin served the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association for 48 years. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2010
Henry M. Beachell
of Pearland created and introduced nine rice varieties. At one time, his work accounted for more than 90% of U.S. long-grain production. Beachell’s work with high-yielding, short-statured rice varieties helped alleviate human hunger and suffering throughout the world. He received the 1996 World Food Prize – often considered the Nobel Prize in food and agriculture. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2012
Lloyd Millard Bentsen, Sr.
of Mission oversaw the back-breaking work involved to clear away tenacious weeds and turned thousands of acres of Rio Grande Valley brush land into lush citrus orchards. He subdivided the vast holdings into parcels to attract investors, and with money came the development of the Texas citrus industry. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
Othal E. Brand, Sr.
of McAllen provided Texas with a competitive edge in becoming one of the nation’s largest vegetable producers, processors and shippers. Brand flourished at the helm of Griffin & Brand, whose Valley headquarters became a major refrigeration, packing and distribution center. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2004
Dolph Briscoe, Jr.
of Uvalde served two terms as Governor of Texas. Earlier in his career, as a member of the Texas legislature, he helped secure financing and supervised the eradication of screw worms, which threatened the health of the state’s cattle herds. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
of Dallas made his mark as the longtime crusading editor of The Progressive Farmer. He served as an articulate advocate and catalyst for agricultural change during a magazine career that spanned 78 years. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2000
Ogbourne Duke "O.D." Butler, Jr.
of College Station spent 50 years at Texas A&M University during an unprecedented era of growth and accomplishments. In addition to his academic work as head of the department of animal science, he was a successful rancher and served as president of the American Charolais Association. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2008
of Paint Rock is recognized as a visionary in the development of better techniques for growing, preparing and marketing wool and mohair. From 1978-1984, he served as executive director of the Mohair Council of America where he was instrumental in developing international markets. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2006
John S. Cargile
of San Angelo served as president of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association, the Texas Sheep and Goat Raisers Association and the American Sheep Industry Association. He was a strong advocate for the Texas A&M Research and Extension Center now known as Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center. On the civic front, he served as president of the San Angelo Chamber of Commerce. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2012
Ben H. Carpenter, Sr.
of Dallas personified the image of the American West — North Texas-style. He made a name for himself in ranching, real estate and life insurance and promoted Brahman cattle raising programs domestically and abroad. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2002
John W. Carpenter, Sr.
of Dallas became president of Texas Power and Light in 1927. He understood that farmers and ranchers had to have electrical power in the modern world, and he provided the necessary blueprints and experienced engineers to achieve this goal. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
of San Antonio was the first woman elected to the position of Texas Agriculture Commissioner in 1998. Combs reduced the Texas Department of Agriculture’s budget by 18 percent while igniting economic growth, promoting Texas products, and launching one of the strongest school nutrition policies in the nation. She has a ranching operation in Brewster County on the same ranch owned by her great-grandfather more than a century ago. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2010
Roy B. Davis
of Lubbock envisioned the Southern Plains as the cotton capital of the world. Beginning with his years as a county agent and cooperative banker to his nearly 30-year role as CEO of the world’s largest cotton oil mill, Davis advocated farm laws, farm credit and rural youth programs. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2002
Eligio "Kika" De La Garza
of McAllen served as the U.S. Representative from Texas’ 15th District from 1964 until his retirement in 1998. He chaired the House Committee on Agriculture from 1981-1994. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2002
Isaac Leonard Ellwood
of Colorado City and Lubbock worked on barbed wire patents with Joseph F. Glidden and established Superior Barbed Wire Co. in DeKalb, Illinois, in 1881. He later moved to Texas, where he developed the Renderbrook Ranch near Colorado City and the Spade Ranch northwest of Lubbock. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1994
Dr. Edward B. Evans, Sr.
of Prairie View was the first licensed black veterinarian in Texas, and after a distinguished career in agricultural education, he served as president of Prairie View A & M College from 1946 to 1967. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
of Clarendon is best known today for his legendary cattle drive that provided the model for Larry McMurtry’s best-seller, “Lonesome Dove.” He established the JA Ranch in the Texas Panhandle, which by 1888, covered 600,000 acres and ran 63,000 head of cattle. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
J. Evetts Haley
of Midland called on his personal experience as a cowboy, ranch manager and ranch owner to write books about the cattle industry including The XIT Ranch of Texas and Charles Goodnight: Cowman and Plainsman. He collected thousands of books and articles about ranching. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1994
J. Walter Hammond
was known as the “Father of the Texas Farm Bureau” serving as president for 18 years. He invented and performed the first scientific terracing of land in Taylor County and is credited with revolutionizing the method of building stock tanks to alleviate siltation. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2008
Cornelius Taylor Herring
of Amarillo was a native Texan and pioneer cattleman. He was actively involved in the first gas well in the Texas panhandle. Herring was the first president of the Tri-State Fair and West Texas Chamber of Commerce and built Amarillo’s Herring Hotel. He was an active member of the Texas Southwest Cattle Raisers Association, Inc. for 40 years. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2012
William S. Ikard
of Henrietta trailed his herds north, and on one of these drives he passed through the Wichita Falls area where he would eventually build his range to 187,000 acres. Ikard is credited with bringing the first Hereford to Texas in 1876. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2004
left his home in Wales and sought his fortune in railroad construction. He sailed to the United States in 1866 and was hired by the Union Pacific Railroad as foreman of a construction crew. His expertise in rapid construction became legendary. Jones is considered a local hero in Fort Worth for completing the Texas and Pacific line to the city of 1,600 residents. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2010
John S. Justin, Jr.
of Fort Worth served as president of the Justin Boot Company from 1952-1968, during which time he instituted major changes in policies, product line and marketing to build the company founded by his grandfather into a national firm. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1994
of San Angelo is an acclaimed and prolific writer of western fiction. He chronicled the great West Texas Drought of the 1950s as a reporter and later wrote The Time It Never Rained, described as one of the best western novels of all time. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2000
John H. Kirby
of Houston was known as the “Prince of the Pines.” He founded the Kirby Lumber Company in 1901 and served as president of what became one of the largest manufacturers of southern pine in the United States. Kirby served two terms in the Texas legislature. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2008
Robert Justice Kleberg Jr.
of Kingsville took over the management of the massive King Ranch in 1932. During his 56 years at the helm, the King Ranch expanded globally creating a cattle empire that encompassed 13,000,000 acres. He developed the first truly American breed of beef cattle, the Santa Gertrudis. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
Herbert L. Kokernot, Sr.
of Fort Davis took over his father’s holdings in the Davis Mountain country of far West Texas in 1897 and invested in land until the O6 Ranch sprawled over 300,000 acres. Kokernot was a staunch supporter of Sul Ross State University in Alpine. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1996
Herbert L. Kokernot, Jr.
of Fort Davis managed the 06 Ranch, long recognized as one of the finest and most unique operations in the country, for 50 years. Cattle on the 06 are worked in the traditional way on an open range. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1996
of Falfurrias developed the Beefmaster breed of cattle, a cross of superior Shorthorn, Hereford and Brahman bloodlines. He advocated a practical approach to cattle selection and beef production and was widely recognized for his ecologically sound range and wildlife management practices. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2004
George Washington Littlefield
of Austin was a successful frontier merchant, planter, banker, pioneer cattleman and philanthropist. His extensive West Texas holdings included the LIT in Oldham Co. and LFD (Yellowhouse) in Lamb Co. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1994
Watkins Reynolds Matthews
of Albany was a widely recognized conservationist of land, wildlife, historic structures and western values. He devoted his life to caring for Lambshead, his ranch in West Texas, and preserving the cowboy’s way of life. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
John Louis Merrill
of Crowley is a fourth-generation Texas rancher who served more than 30 years as the director of the ranch management program and also held the Burnett Ranches professorship at Texas Christian University. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1998
Robert Lee "Bob" Miers
of Del Rio devoted 90 years of his life to the Texas sheep industry. He was one of first ranchers in Val Verde County to depend totally on sheep and was instrumental in developing the Del Rio Wool and Mohair Company. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1994
Thomas Volney Munson
of Denison was one of the greatest viticulturists the world has ever known. A successful commercial nurseryman and the acknowledged authority on native wild grapes, he was awarded membership in the French Legion of Honor for producing resistant stocks to restore the infested vineyards of France. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor –1996
Wade Lewis Pennington
of Grapeland began a 70 year career in farming and ranching after serving in the U.S. Army. He is legendary in East Texas for growing a small watermelon patch into a nationwide business. He was an award winning peanut farmer and cattle rancher. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2010
Abel Head "Shanghai" Pierce
of Wharton County was a pioneer cattleman who determined that ticks were the cause of Texas Fever. He imported tick-resistant Indian Brahman cattle to Texas, which furnished the base stock for today’s Brahman and Brahman Cross herds. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2000
Lonnie A. "Bo" Pilgrim
of Pittsburg is co-founder and chairman of the board of Pilgrim’s Pride Corp, the second-largest poultry producer in the United States, the largest in Puerto Rico and the second-largest in Mexico. The company processes approximately six billion pounds of poultry and 40 million dozen table eggs each year. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2006
Dr. Alfred Nelson Poindexter
of Prairie View was a professor of veterinary medicine at the Prairie View A&M University in a teaching career that spanned six decades. In 1992, the Texas Commissioner of Agriculture named him one of four Outstanding Black Agriculturalists in the state. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1996
James L. Powell
of Ft. McKavett is a rancher and banker. He is a former president of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association, the Texas Sheep & Goat Raisers Association and the National Wool Growers Association. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2008
of Midland formed a cattle-buying partnership that led to purchasing 10,000-15,000 head of cattle annually for shipment to Nebraska following WWI. He later bought ranches in Arizona and New Mexico and a large part of the famed XIT Ranch in the Texas Panhandle. He was an early Brangus breeder. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2006
of Tyler worked as an East Texas country extension agent for more than 40 years assisting agricultural producers, especially limited resource farmers and ranchers. His innovative fisheries programs include catfish stocking techniques which are now used in farm ponds throughout the southern United States. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2000
Col. Ike T. Pryor
of San Antonio drove thousands of head of cattle up the Chisholm Trail, and with the money earned from these drives invested in the cattle business. He developed 100,000 acres into the famed 77 Ranch on the Nueces River in Zavala County. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2006
J. Roy Quinby
of Chillicothe was affectionately known as “Mr. Sorghum.” He developed a system to produce hybrid sorghum seed, and the results were pivotal: U.S. yield tripled, Texas emerged as a major feed grain-producing state and a commercial seed industry evolved. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2004
Clarence Scharbauer, Sr.
was manager of the Scharbauer Cattle Company at the age of 22. He was the founder and director of the First National Bank of Midland and served as president of the local and West Texas Chambers of Commerce. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2002
Charles Armand Schreiner
of Kerrville was a rancher, Texas Ranger, merchant, banker, civic leader and philanthropist. Schreiner was known as the “Father of the Hill Country,” and he helped establish the agricultural loan process through his bank. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1998
Charles G. Scruggs
of Dallas joined the staff of The Progressive Farmer in 1947. He went on to become editor-in-chief. During his long tenure with the popular publication, he authored more than 500 articles and used his vast knowledge of agricultural production, policy and leadership to educate his readers. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2006
William M. (Bill) Sims
from Paint Rock was chosen to receive the Texas A&M Distinguished Texan in Agriculture Award. Through his association with the Texas Sheep and Goat Raisers Association, he has had great influence on the Texas and US sheep, goat and ranching industries. He served as a Texas Senator for 14 years and successfully secured a grant to bring animal fiber research capabilities from California to Texas. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2012
Christopher Columbus Slaughter
of Dallas, known as the “Cattle King of Texas,” at one time controlled over 1,000,000 acres of ranch land and held more than 40,000 head of cattle. He founded the Texas & Southwest Cattle Raisers Association and co-founded Baylor Hospital. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1994
John B. Slaughter
of Sabine County started out with 30 or 40 head given to him by his father and spent a lifetime becoming one of the best known and respected cattleman in the state. He moved his brand, the “U Lazy S,” to Garza County in 1901 and, in 1907, sold 50,000 acres to C.W. Post, cereal magnate and town developer for the town of Post to be built. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2010
Wenzel Louis Stangel
helped establish an agricultural school at Lubbock’s newly-chartered Texas Technological College in the early 1920s. He headed the animal husbandry department, and from 1945-1958, served as dean of the school of agriculture. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2004
Charles W. Stenholm
of Abilene was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives for 13 consecutive terms (1979-2005) where he was a ranking member of the House Agriculture Committee. He served in leadership roles with the Texas Farm Bureau, American Farm Bureau Federation, Plains Cotton Growers and national Cotton Council. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2008
Hallie Crawford Stillwell
of Alpine was a rancher, writer and West Texas legend. Mrs. Stillwell managed to hang onto the family ranch through tragedies and hard times by working as a journalist, justice of the peace, storekeeper and operator of an RV park. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1998
Svante Magnus (S.M.) Swenson
from Sweden immigrated to the US in 1836. In 1854, he purchased large land tracts in the rolling plains of West Texas. He later leased the southern lands to his sons to begin a ranching operation. Swenson Bros. partnership was formed in 1882. The Swenson family efforts through the years spurred economic development in the once unsettled territory and resulted in the establishment of the town of Stamford in 1900. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2012
Ann Burnett Tandy
of Fort Worth was the granddaughter of Samuel Burk Burnett, founder of the famed 6666 Ranch. After her father died, she ran four huge ranches in Texas and Oklahoma and began a new program of breeding quarter horses for racing. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
T.L.L. "Tom" Temple
of Diboll purchased 7,000 acres of virgin timber in 1893 and organized the Southern Pine Lumber Company, the forerunner of Temple Industries. The pioneer lumberman’s goal was to establish a permanent operation that depended on a sustained yield forest policy. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1998
S.M. True, Jr.
of Plainview was elected president of the Texas Farm Bureau for ten consecutive terms. He served on committees tackling issues ranging from cotton, the beef industry, farmworkers’ insurance, immigration and agricultural development and the U.S.-Mexico Free Trade Agreement. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 2002
of Vernon established near Decatur what eventually would become one of the greatest cattle ranches and the greatest oil fields in Texas. At the time of his death in 1902, “D. Waggoner and Son” owned 80,000 cattle and 525,000 acres. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
W.T. "Tom" Waggoner
of Vernon grew up in the world of cattle ranching. In 1923, he formed what is now the W.T. Waggoner Estate, still owned and operated today by family members. He pushed for the legalization of paramutual racing and built Arlington Downs Race Track in 1934. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
W.R. "Billy Bob" Watt
of Fort Worth was named to the board of the Fort Worth Stock Show (now the Southwestern Exposition and Livestock Show) in 1945. He was elected president the following year and added the role of manager in 1950, presiding over an era of unparalleled growth in programming and facilities. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1996
W.R. "Bob" Watt, Jr.
of Fort Worth assumed the title of president of the Southwestern Exposition and Livestock Show upon his father’s death in 1977. During his tenure, show entries increased to more than 18,000 head, and the rodeo became one of the premier stops on the circuit. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1996
Mary Nan West
of San Antonio was the first woman to serve as president and chairman of the board of the San Antonio Livestock Exposition. She was instrumental in creating the Exposition Scholarship Fund for students pursuing agricultural education. Texas Heritage Hall of Honor – 1992
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