The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 45, July 1941 - April, 1942 Page: 37
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The Life of Colonel R. T. Milner
foundly, he cast his vote for Judge Alton B. Parker as the
Democratic nominee for president. Then quietly he slipped back
into the daily routine of a small-town editor.
RE-ENTRANCE INTO PUBLIC LIFE
The gubernatorial race of 1906 drew Colonel Milner back, at
least partially, into politics. The major candidates for the gov-
ernor's office that year were four: Thomas M. Campbell,
Charles K. Bell, M. M. Brooks, and 0. B. Colquitt. In Rusk
County the choice lay between Campbell and Colquitt, but
Campbell had the advantage. He could claim East Texas as
his "stamping grounds," Rusk as his birthplace, and both Jack-
sonville and Longview as former homes. From early man-
hood he and Bob Milner had been personal friends; therefore
it was natural that Milner should campaign vigorously for
his election. Although Campbell was a prohibitionist, his in-
terest in the farming problem, his opposition to corporate
activity in politics, and his friendliness toward labor had served
to keep the two men closely allied politically as well as per-
sonally. In the November contest, Milner's candidate was
When the governor-elect made public his list of appointments,
the name of Robert Teague Milner appeared opposite the office
of Commissioner of Agriculture, Insurance, Statistics, and
History. The Henderson editor now had a hard decision to
make, for he realized that it would be impossible to run his
newspaper efficiently if he accepted the political office. Politics
won, and in late December, 1906, he sold the Henderson Times
to D. R. Harris, editor of the Rusk County News.150
At the time the office of Commissioner of Agriculture, In-
surance, Statistics, and History was assumed by Milner, the
Department of Agriculture was hardly more than a phrase in
the commissioner's title. It is interesting to note in connec-
tion with this inactive branch of Milner's duties that provision
for it had been made during his first year of active participa-
tion in state politics. In that year, 1887, an act was passed
by the legislature stating that
isoWhen Mr. D. R. Harris was asked if he knew any special reason why
Mr. Campbell chose Colonel Milner for this particular position, he an-
swered: "Because he knew Bob Milner was the best man for the office"-
interview, April 24, 1940.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 45, July 1941 - April, 1942, periodical, 1942; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146053/m1/43/: accessed August 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.