The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 77, July 1973 - April, 1974 Page: 396
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
and Archives Commission. Three years earlier he had been named Austin's
Most Worthy Citizen. He had been president of the Texas Fine Arts Asso-
ciation, treasurer of the Presbyterian Theological Seminary, and just about
every kind of officer in the various Chamber of Commerce associations.
All this emerged from a boy who chopped cotton in the sandy soil around
Ladonia, took his education from a McGuffey Reader, worked his way
through Austin College, and spent a good 75 of his 87 years in useful, crea-
tive, and enthusiastic work.
As he became something of an elderly sage around Austin, Long received
compliments everytime he ventured downtown. The result was almost em-
barrassing to him, although I'm sure it pleased him. To hide his embarrass-
ment, he started carrying a packet of new pennies. Whenever anyone would
say something nice, he would quickly thrust in his pocket, and slap a penny
in the surprised person's hand.
"At my age I'm willing to pay for compliments," he'd say, and move on.
If the praise really glowed, Long would then hand the man two pennies.
I have several "best" memories of Walter Long. I was with a knot of
men one time when one of them said, "Long, I saw you driving that pick-
up the other day. That thing must be a million years old!"
Long explained: "The University gates are harder to get past than Jesus'
camel through the eye of a needle, but I frequently have to visit the cam-
pus. I used to get tired of explaining my mission to that St. Peter at the
University gate, and so I got out my old left-over pick-up from the 1930s,
paint long-gone and fenders half-rusted away, motor shaking as if its sup-
ports are about to give way (and the valves quit long ago), and then I
headed for the University campus. I put on a jacket straight from the cow
lot, plus a moth-eaten, grease-stained old western hat, and was waved right
past St. Peter's gate. The attendant thought I was some kind of workman,
too far down the scale to stop. Since then, I've always parked my pick-up
in any forbidden area that happens to be empty, knowing full well that the
campus police won't tag it, because it looks like it's there for a job.
"As long as I have business with the University of Texas," Long con-
tinued, "I will wear those clothes, and I will drive that pick-up." He did,
and he made most of us think he might be the shrewdest man around. I
need hardly add that invariably under that stained jacket was a white shirt
and tie, and on the seat beside him was a dignified jacket suitable for call-
ing on college presidents and regents.
The second memory goes back to that October 25, I966, dedication of
Austin's Driskill Hotel as an official historic site of Texas, which I have
quoted at length in concluding my recent book on the Driskill. Governor
Here’s what’s next.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 77, July 1973 - April, 1974, periodical, 1973/1974; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117148/m1/446/: accessed October 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.