Texas Almanac, 1952-1953 Page: 53
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ernor Ireland. The legislation was the culmi-
nation of a wave of agitation that had its
beginning before the War Between the States
and had been fostered especially by the rise
of the People's (Populist) party, which was a
factor in Texas elections from 1878 until the
end of the century. Although the Populist
party never gained control of the administra-
tion of Texas, many reforms it agitated were
subsequently picked up by the Demociatic
party and put into effect.
Governor Ross effected a betterment in the
state eleemosynary institutions and reduced
taxes, the latter reform being due primarily
to receipt from the Federal Government of
$1,000,000 to reimburse the state for its ex-
penditures for border protection. The admin-
istration is also remembered for the great
drouth of 1887. and the dedication in May,
1888, of the present State Capitol.
The reform trend evidenced in the admin-
istration of Governor Ross continued with
increased force during the administration of
James Stephen Hogg (Jan. 20, 1891, to Jan.
15, 1895). Hogg had been elected on a plat-
form demanding regulation of railroads.
which had become a public issue, and curb-
ing of monopolies. Hogg was the first native
Texan elected Governor.
Railroad Commission Established.
The present Railroad Commission of Texas
was established in 1891. Other legislation in-
cluded that providing for "Jim Crow" coaches
on railroads, reduction of legal maximum
rate of interest, the alien land law forbidding
ownership of land by aliens with certain ex-
ceptions, a law regulating the issuance of
stocks and bonds and protecting investors,
and an act establishing the Board of Pardon
Advisers. Hogg's vigorous policies aroused
stiff opposition, and the Hogg-Clark Cam-
paign of 1892 involving a split in the' ranks
of the Democratic party was one of the bit-
terest in the history of the state Hogg was
re-elected over George W. Clark by a vote of
190,846 to 133,395.
In the elections of 1894 Charles A. Culber-
son (Dem.) defeated T. L. Nugent (People's
party), after a stirring campaign, by a vote
of 207,167 to 152,731. Although the People's
party had polled a sizable vote in 1892, this
was the first year in which there was doubt
of the outcome of the election. Culberson's
administration (Jan. 15, 1895, to Jan. 17.,
1899) was characterized by strengthening of
the antitrust laws, collection of delinquent
taxes, enactment of a law for arbitration of
employer-employee disputes and reduction
of excessive fees to public officials. In 1895,
Culberson called a special session of Legis-
lature and there was enacted a law to pre-
vent prize fights, its immediate purpose being
the prevention of a scheduled'bout in Dallas
between James J. Corbett and Robert R.
Fitzsimmons. Culberson was re-elected in
1896, winning by a vote of 298,528 to 238,692
over J. C.' Kearby of the People's party. This
represented the peak of the Populist move-
ment in Texas, although their nominees ap-
peared regularly on the ticket through the
election of 1904. The last year of the Culber-
son administration, and the first year of the
following Sayers administration, witnessed
the stirring events of the Spanish-American
War. Texas sent about 10,000 soldiers to the
front. The famous Rough Riders, commanded
by Col. Leonard Wood and Lieut. Col. Theo-
dore Roosevelt, were organized at San An-
During the administration of Governor Cul-
berson the first of the famous ouster suits
against the Waters-Pierce Oil Company was
brought by Attorney General M. M. Crane.
The suit was brought on the grounds that
the Waters-Pierce Oil Company had obtained
practically a monopoly on the oil market in
RY OF TEXAS 53
Texas. The state won the suit to bar the com-
pany from operation in Texas, though the
case was carried by the company to the
United States Supreme Court.
A suit was brought against a reorganized
Waters-Pierce Oil Company during the Lan-
ham administration in 1906 by Attorney Gen-
eral R. V. Davidson, ending also in success
for the state and assessment of a fine of
BEGINNINGS OF THE INDUSTRIALIZA-
TION OF TEXAS
At the end of the century Texas had at-
tained a population of 3,048,719. an increase
of 273 per cent over that In 1870. This repre-
sented an increase in density from 3.1 to 11.6
per square mile. In the same period length
of main-line railway track increased from
711 miles to 9,867 miles.
By the end of the century, Texas had at
least passed through those crude stages of
economic development that at first whitened
the prairies with the bones of animals killed.
for their hides and that later forced millions
of cattle on foot over the long trails to the
markets of the North. There had come into
Texas at least sufficient population to ab-
sorb into private ownership all except the
marginal lands of the great free ranges. By
the end of the century, the wilderness was
conquered. There was sufficient substance in
humanity and human activity in the great
expanse of Texas to form the basis for the
beginning of industrial and commercial devel-
opment as well as the continued development
of natural resources.
It was by coincidence that the stepping
across of the threshold of a new calendar
century by Texas marked also the transition
into a new economic and social era.
There is no date at which it can be said
that the industrialization of Texas began.
Manufacturing began with the coming of the
first white settlers. Mills were built for
grinding wheat and corn, and the manufac-
ture of lumber began at an early date. The
building of a connected system of railroads
opened the way for industrial development.
It was about the beginning of the present
century, however, that manufacturing industry
became a really prominent part of Texas
First Great Oil Field
It was in 1901 that Spindletop oil field, near
Beaumont, startled the world with its mag-
nificent gushers, giving Texas its first really
great oil production. The bringing in of this
field and the succession of discoveries of oil
and gas fields has done more than any other
single factor to hurry Texas along the path
of industrial progress. Oil has given Texas its
greatest single industry, refining, and togeth-
er with gas, has assured industry a fuel sup-
ply that had been sadly lacking. Notably, oil
and especially gas have contributed to the
upbuilding of the great chemical industries.
Furthermore, petroleum has contributed
more than any other resource to the liquid
capital of Texas available for investment in
industrial and commercial enterprise. The
discovery of oil and the wealth that accumu-
lated from its production have largely re-
lieved Texas of its former dependence on
outside capital for new industrial develop-
It was also in the year 1901 that the first
two large meat-packing plants were built at
Fort Worth. There had been a number of
small packing plants in the state, but it was
not until these two industries were established
that Texas was fairly launched into the
processing of one of its most abundantly pro-
duced raw materials. The manufacture of cot-
ton goods, cottonseed products and flour also
received impetus at the opening of the
It was the administration of Gov. Joseph D.
Sayers (Jan. 17, 1899, to Jan. 20, 1903) that
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Texas Almanac, 1952-1953, book, 1951; Dallas, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117137/m1/55/: accessed August 17, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.