The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952 Page: 442
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Jim Hogg's political career saw only one defeat, in 1876 when
he was an unsuccessful candidate for the Texas Legislature. In
1878, he was elected county attorney of Wood County and two
years later became district attorney of the Seventh Judicial
District of Texas, where he earned the reputation of a vigorous
prosecutor. After four years service as district attorney, he retired
to the private practice of the law in Tyler. In 1886, he was made
the Democratic nominee for attorney general. His speech of
acceptance before the Democratic Convention at Galveston is
remarkable for its candor and brevity. Among other things, he
My nomination is a compliment, coming as it does from the greatest
political organization in Texas. I have sought, obtained, and now
accept with thanks the high trust.
Jim Hogg was an aggressive and diligent attorney general,
devoted and active in his efforts to see that the people's rights
were fully protected. At that time Texas was almost wholly
dependent upon the railroads for transportation. The railroads
exercised a tremendous influence on the political life of the state,
but Jim Hogg fought them fearlessly when he was convinced
that they were not complying with the law. He was successful in
breaking up the Texas Traffic Association, which was designed to
pool traffic and to eliminate competition in rates and otherwise
between different lines. He enforced laws requiring railroads and
other corporations to dispose of their lands within statutory time
limits. In this way he aided in bringing about a wide distribution
of land ownership. He prosecuted suits which caused "wild-cat"
insurance companies to leave the state and other suits which led
to the recovery of over one and one-half million acres of land
for the state. In his every action he displayed courage and
integrity, fearlessly discharging his duty regardless of political
While he was serving as attorney general, it became apparent
to Jim Hogg that it would be a hopeless task to attempt to
regulate the railroads through only legislative action and the
bringing of lawsuits and that it would be necessary to create a
railroad commission that could exercise a continuous power
of supervision, with members and a staff who through a full-time
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952, periodical, 1952; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101139/m1/542/: accessed May 25, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.