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Pate and Martindale family photos

2017 July 8
by Jan Wilkinson

My husband’s maternal grandmother was Laura Forrest Harryman, in 1921 married to George H. Bradford; her mother was Margaret Isabelle “Maggie Belle” Pate wife of William “Willie” Albert Harryman (she is a sister of Martha Jane Pate) and their mother was Theresa (Allen/Evans) Pate, wife of Harmon Pate.

We have a shoe box of photos from my husband’s Great Aunt Nora Harryman Scruggs’s house. I have been fortunate to have discovered cousins on Ancestry that helped me put names and faces with photos in my husband’s family.

Some of these cousins have their thoughts on the attached tintype photo, but I believe it was taken at the wedding of William H. H. Martindale and Martha Jane Pate on 20 August 1879 in Victoria, Texas.

William Henry Hubbard Martindale married the younger sister of his first wife, Martha Jane Pate. Mary Ann Pate Martindale died at age 30 in 1877. She is buried in Monkstown Cemetery, Monkstown, Fannin County, Texas. (1847-1877). Her son, Harmon Bea Martindale was 2-1/2 when his mother died.

Pate Lively Martindale edited 13 Feb 04 from Angie Smith

back row l to r: William Fletcher Pate (1863-1948), groom Wm. H. H. Martindale (1846-1900), bride Martha Jane Pate Martindale (1851-1950) and Margaret Isabelle “Maggie Belle” Pate (my husband’s ggrandmother) (1860-1955).

front row l to r: Elijah Columbus ‘Lige’ Lively (1852-1937), James Louis ‘Jim’ Pate (1869-1957), father of the bride-Harmon Pate (1826-1889), mother of the bride-Theresa (?Allen/Evans) Pate (1826-1913) holding grandson, Harmon Bea Martindale (born 1874 son of Wm H.H. and Mary Ann Pate Martindale), and, Sally Pate Lively holding her daughter, Lula D. Lively (1879-____).

Pate-Lively-Martindale Family.JPG

Another one shared on ancestry. So glad to have the tintype of this family.

Pate family tintype enlarged.png

How lucky to finally know all these folk names with their faces.

Merry Christmas with Coca-Cola Santa by Haddon Sundblom

2016 December 19

How many of us have memories of the sounds and smells of Christmas and what we think about Santa Claus and the holidays.  I have always loved Santa especially the way he is drawn by Mr. Sundblom.  These pictures evoke memories of my childhood and make me happy.  Just think the image and colors we use today for Santa all came from the art of Haddon Sundblom and advertising by Coca-Cola.  Enjoy the ones I have found, and of course, Merry Christmas!!

Great history is found at the coca-cola company website, excerpt:

“In 1931, Coca-Cola commissioned Michigan-born illustrator Haddon Sundblom to develop advertising images using Santa Claus showing Santa himself, not a man dressed as Santa.

Sundblom’s Santa debuted in 1931 in Coke ads in The Saturday Evening Post and appeared regularly in that magazine, as well as in Ladies Home Journal, National Geographic, The New Yorker and others.

In the beginning, Sundblom painted the image of Santa using a live model his friend Lou Prentiss, a retired salesman. When Prentiss passed away Sundblom used himself as a model, painting while looking into a mirror. Finally, he began relying on photographs to create the image of St. Nick.

People loved the Coca-Cola Santa images and paid such close attention to them that when anything changed, they sent letters to The Coca-Cola Company. One year, Santa’s large belt was backwards (perhaps because Sundblom was painting via a mirror). Another year, Santa Claus appeared without a wedding ring, causing fans to write asking what happened to Mrs. Claus.

The children who appear with Santa in Sundblom’s paintings were based on Sundblom’s neighbors two little girls. So he changed one to a boy in his paintings.

The dog in Sundblom’s 1964 Santa Claus painting was actually a gray poodle belonging to the neighborhood florist. But Sundblom wanted the dog to stand out in the holiday scene, so he painted the animal with “black fur.”

Haddon Hubbard “Sunny” Sundblom (June 22, 1899 – March 10, 1976)

1930c Santa on round rug with Rudolph at door


1931 Santa from flickr1931 Santa in chairwith elves dressing him blog

1931 Santa with elves helping him dress and a band

1931 – My Hat’s Off to the Pause that Refreshes The magical transformation of the Coca-Cola Santa happened in 1931.  Archie Lee, the ad agency creative director for the Coca-Cola account, was inspired to show a wholesome, kind Santa.  He turned to artist Haddon Sundblom to create the image.

1932 Dear Santa Please Pause here JImmy

1932 – Sundblom’s second painting features a note in which a child, Jimmy leaves a Coke for Santa instead of cookies.

1934 holding glass with whip and gloves in belt


1935 Coca-Cola Santa It will refresh you too sundbloom flickr

1935 – This ad shows that if drinking Coca-Cola is good enough to refresh Santa, it is good enough to refresh everyone else.

1936 Santa Coca Cola No. 2

1936: “Me too!“ In this painting Santa enjoys himself in the midst of his bounty of toys and a Coca-Cola.

1937 Give and Take Say I from coca-colacompanydotcom1937 Give and take-say I flickr

1937: “Give and take, say I”

1938 Thanks for the pause that refreshes flickr

1938 – a child first showed up in a family living room

1939 Coca-Cola And the same to you Sundblom flickr


1941 Thirst asks nothing more1941 Thirst asks nothing more flickr

1941 –Santa relaxes next to a cooler of Coca-Colas.  Used in calendars, cut outs and in print ads.  In 1941 trademarked the name Coca-Cola.

1942 Santa with snow on boots on porch


1943 December or how Americans spread the holiday spirit overseas flickr1943 wherever I go


1944 Merry Christmas to you

1944 – Santa and Sprint boy saluting the troops.

1945 greetings

1945 they knew what I wanted

1945 – at the end of the Second World War.

1946 Santa with note For Me oil on canvas flickr


1947 things go better with Coke illustrated by Haddon Sundblom flickr

1947 busy mans pause

1947 Coca-Cola Santa Hospitality in your refregerator Sundblom flickr

Santa Coca Cola sign from FB Le'Junque & Co.


1948 Santa with stool


1949 Travel refreshed with Sprite boy flickr good housekeeping ad

1949 – Sprite boy and eight reindeer referencing the Twas the Night Before Christmas poems of Clement Clarke Moore

1950 Santa with frig and boy and girl


1951 Santa by desk and globe

1951 – “Now It’s My Time” using his own model from self-portraits from photographs according to his wife Betty.

1952 Santa with coke and boy and girl with gifts

1952 – next door neighbor in Tucson Arizona, Lani & Nancy Nason sisters, but Sundblom changed one to a boy to balance the scene. Also appeared in 1952 and 1953 works.

1953 Santa and workship filled with toys flckr


1954 Santa leaning on wall with coke and boot crossed


1955 Santa with twin girls and a shopping cart Look magazine flickr


1956 Santa with elf painting sign for sparkling holidays

1956 – artwork is a cleaned-up version of the 1953 painting.  Work bench and helper removed. Produced by a new advertising agency for Coca-Cola McCann-Erickson

1959 Refreshing Surprise calendar flickr

1959- shows a departure for Sundblom, from this year forward Santa plays an important role but elves, children, pets and toys also play significant roles.

1962 Santa with train and helicopter

1962 – Season’s Greetings impish child-like personality, as in the 1936 with a train also a helicopter something that didn’t exist until 1940.

1963 Dear Santa ...Jimmy flickr

1963 – Dear Santa, Please Pause Here, Jimmy” is at it again.  First in 1932 then again in 1945, Jimmy leaves a note for Santa and a Coke.  In the 2001 ad this 1963 Santa comes to life in an animated holiday commercial created by Academy Award-winning animated Alexandre Petrov.

1964 Santa sister and brother with black poodle

1964 – “Things Go Better with Coke” The last year that a tradition, original Sundblom Santa was used in the advertising for Coca-Cola.  Two children and black poodle.

1966 Boy's Life ad with desk and chair and deer on rug


1956 June American Artist magazine photo of Haddon Sundblom flickr

Haddon Sundblom in 1956

Thank you for reading my blog and hope you enjoyed the amazing artistic abilities of Haddon Sundblom.  His career covered other illustrations and can be found doing a search.  I am providing this for research purposes only.





Menard County Texas Flood Photos

2016 April 25

Here are flood photos of the San Saba River that happened in Menard, Menard County, Texas. I have shared to a Facebook group page; Menard County, Texas ~ History and Genealogy. Please join the group to read and share information. It is a good reference and resource.
Photos of the July 23, 1938 San Saba River flood in Menard, from the Don Wilkinson collection.

Looking West on Bevans Street toward the Bevans Bank building. Old Catholic Church on the ditch on the left of photo.

Looking North on Bevans Street toward the old Paddy Mires Courthouse and old Luckenbach store. Bevans Bank building on left and Mission Theatre on right.

Looking West down East San Saba Avenue. Old courthouse and Luckenbach building on your right.

Looking West toward the Bevans Bank on East San Saba Avenue.

Looking East from in front of Bevans Hotel down East San Saba Avenue.

This is the old Methodist Church looking north with the Bevans Hotel on the left at the top of the block.

This is a page from the album of Don Wilkinson, and as you can see, I scanned each one individually to share.


Aunt Kate Bradford Recalls Menard “Back When”

2016 March 2

Menard News article published May 16, 1963, interview of Kate Glasscock Bradford at the age of 90.

When Catherine Ann Glasscock was born on May 7, 1873, in Burnet, Texas, her father, Joseph Glasscock, was 37 and her mother, Eliza Ruth Bowmer, was 34. She married James Carberry Bradford (1863-1943) on July 7, 1887, in Menard, Texas. They had six children in 19 years. She died on September 15, 1967, in Menard, Texas, at the age of 94.

Wonderful memories of our little San Saba river valley town.

1906 Menardville Texas killing of Tom Turner, hotel man

2016 February 29
by Jan Wilkinson

After a decade long search for information on my husband’s great-grandfather Thomas Augustus “Tom” Turner; father of Mayme Louise Turner Wilkinson, wife of Wilson Lamar Wilkinson, I have finally found enough information to write a blog post. I found some distant cousins on the Internet that helped with some of the search.

T. A. “Tom” Turner was shot and killed by William Bevans, Sr. on Monday, August 6, 1906, inside the Cottonwood Saloon downtown Menardville, Texas, at 4 o’clock.  The only reason known was, “after an argument earlier that morning.”  Many different stories are rumored as to the true reason of the shooting.  Ruling was accidental even though he was shot by Bevans with a Colt 45 that had to have the hammer  pulled back in order to fire…accidental!


The Houston Post, 8 Aug 1906


Galveston Daily News 8 Aug 1906


Fort Worth Star-Telegram 10 Aug 1906

I have a copy of Cause No. 727, State of Texas vs. Wm. Bevans, In the District Court of Menard County, Texas, November Term, A. D., 1906, of the Habeas Corpus trial on the 15th November, 1906, filed November 19, 1906. It does not contain any reference to findings of the court, but Mr. Bevans was not punished in any way.


The Menardville Banker Found Not Guilty

Hon. C. H. Jenkins returned last night from Menardville, where he has been for the past week as counsel for the defense in the case of the State vs. Billy Bevans, charged with the murder of a man named Turner at Menardville more than a year ago.  The case was concluded Friday at 3 o’clock and the jury was out only a short while and returned a verdict of not guilty.  The case has attracted unusual attention on account of the prominence of the defendant, Billy Bevans, who is one of the most prominent bankers and cattlemen of the Southwest.  The testimony in the case showed that trouble came up between Bevans and Turner on the day of the big overflow of the San Saba river at that place.  There was much drinking in the town that day and several quarrels.  Bevans had been instrumental in keeping down trouble several times. Turner passed Bevans, who was standing in front of his bank, and made some kind of an insulting remark, being at the time under the influence of liquor.  Words passed between the two men and finally Bevans struck Turner.  Officers interfered and the trouble was averted for the time.  The two men met again and a knife and a gun were drawn. Bevans struck Turner over the head with the gun and in a manner thought to have been accidental, the weapon was discharged and Turner was killed.  Mr. Bevans is a highly respected citizen of the Menardville country and Mr. Turner was an agreeable man when not under the influence of liquor “Brownwood Bulletin.”

The Abilene Daily, Reporter, Thursday, April 25, 1907

I understand from rumors that the day William Bevans Sr. was on his deathbed August 19, 1937, he was still being haunted by the ghost of Tom Turner; Bevans kept yelling at the foot of his bed; “Make Tom Turner go away!”

Turner Hotel Boarding House photo from The Portal of Texas

Family History:

Thomas Augustus Turner was born in Panola, Texas May 1844 (unknown date) and was the youngest of eight children of John Henry Turner and wife Mary Elizabeth Alexander. His family came to Texas from Alabama where all his siblings were born. His father, John Henry was a farmer and age 56 in the 1850 census in Panola Texas with his wife, Elizabeth age 49 with son Allen G, Delaney age 19 and Elijah P. age 16 then Thomas age 6.

John Henry married Elizabeth Alexander on 12th June 1818 in Madison county, Alabama, per the Orphan’s Court.  It also shows her name to be Elizabeth D. on the record.  I am unaware why this is the name of the court.


From an Internet Cousin: Five Turner brothers all served in the military. The Turner Brothers

Brother 1: Richard H. Turner living in Llano, TX. I am told he enlisted with his brothers and died after having his leg amputated. But have found nothing else on him.

Brother 2: Allen George Turner b. 1829 Turner, Allen G. Pvt. Comm. Off. Mabry, Seth Capt. Co. E, Llano Co., Allen’s Regt. TVI, 31st Brig, CSA. Ap. 1-62 in Llano Co., Mus. in Ap. 4-62 at Camp Terry, 4th Military sub-division, Age 33, R and F; En. Off. Capt. Mabry; Mus. Off. Col. R. T. P. Allen: Elec. certif. with roll; 2MR, 1 dtd. Je. 7-62 and 1 undtd.

Allen George died from the measles outbreak and his family is listed on the indigent list of Llano Co.

Brother 3: Delaney Washington Turner

Turner, Delaney W., Pvt, Mabry, Seth, Capt., Co. E, Llano Co., Allen’s Regt. TVI, 31st Brig., CSA; Ap 1-62 in Llano Col; mus. in Ap. 4-62 in Llano Co., at Camp Terry, Age 31; R and F 86; En. Off. Capt. Mabry; Mus. Off. Col. R. T. P. Allen; elec. certif. with roll; 2 MR, 1 dtd. Je. 7-62 and 1 undtd. Name not on undtd. roll.

Delaney W. Turner died November 9, 1862 at Camp Nelson, Ark. of the measles outbreak. His family is also listed on the indigents list of Llano Co., TX.

Fourth Brother: Elizah Portor Turner

Turner, E. P. Pvt. Barton, Decator, 1st Lieut. Co. No. 1, Prec. No. 1, McCulloch Co., 31st Bvg, 2nd Frontl Dist. TST, Roll dated Ma. 12-64, Age 27; R and F; Rifle and Six-shooter.

Fifth Brother: Thomas Augustus Turner

Tom Turner was a member of the Company E, Frontier Regiment of the Texas State Troops under Captain N. D. McMillin. On April 2, 1862, Company E had a fight with Indians. On April 2, Thomas was slightly wounded with an arrow across the shoulders with the Indians.

Elijah Porter Turner (1836-1904) and wife Nancy Rebecca Preslar (1843-1924) and their youngest Ava Ophelia, Marshall Lee and Myrtle c1894.

Here is the only photo of Thomas Augustus “Tom” Turner with his hand on his hip, standing in front of the Benchoff Building in Menardville, Texas prior to August 1906.

Thomas Augustus Turner was born in May 1844 in Fort Worth, Texas, his father, John, was 50 and his mother, Elizabeth, was 43. He married Mary Elizabeth Betty (Bettie) Watson in 1867. He was a member of Texas State Troops (TST) and was wounded by an Indian arrow in 1862. He and Bettie had seven children in 24 years and was in the 1900 census in Menardville. (Only 5 lived to adulthood). He was shot and killed on August 6, 1906, in Menardville, Menard County, Texas, at the age of 62 by William Peter Bevans, Sr. (1860-1937), trail driver, pioneer stockman, Banker-President of First State Bank of Menard which became Bevans State Bank.

Unfortunately, I still have many historical details unknown; no death certificate, where is Tom buried; where is his wife Bettie buried?

Would love to hear from anyone with additional information about this part of Menard history.



Obituary of W. J. Wilkinson of Menard County, Texas

2016 January 24
by Jan Wilkinson

When I begin to write a historical blog post I always hope that I have everything but this one had many conflicts. This history of William Jackson Montgomery Wilkinson, son of Daniel King Wilkinson and Elizabeth Osborn Braden in Union Church, Jefferson, Mississippi is as close as I can get with supported facts.

I was able to get a scan on Saturday from the museum in Menard of the framed copy of the Menard Messenger newspaper’s front page dated Thursday, May 29, 1919. It contained the obituary of William Jackson Montgomery Wilkinson’s written by Hon. James Callan. It states that W. J. died on Thursday, May 15th, 1919 at his home at his ranch at Clear Creek, Menard County, Texas.  Below is a photo from the museum of “Uncle Jack” sitting outside of his home at Clear Creek Ranch undated and not part of the obituary.


W. J. Wilkinson at Clear Creek, Menard County, Texas.

W. J. Wilkinson at Clear Creek, Menard County, Texas.



W. J. is my husband’s great grandfather who came to Menard County and was buried on the day he died at the Pioneer Rest Cemetery. There are different dates for his birth; one shows 1833; the CSA gravestone marker shows 1835-1919 and the family headstone shows 1828. Nancy was the informant on the death certificate and said his birthday is November 29, 1828.  Below is W. J.’s CSA service record with enlistment date of November 9, 1863 at Camp Colorado and age 28, (this was considered in Callahan County.) That is where they got the 1835 on the marker.

The full Indian story can be read at my blog post about the Col. W J Wilkinsons Indian Experience.

This obituary was written by long-time family friend J. J. Callan’s son James Callan and not by J. J. as I originally was told.  But, W.J. and J. J. first met in Coleman County (was Brown County at the time) back in 1860’s.

James Joseph Callan, born May 6, 1833 in Dundalk, Ireland and died in Menard October 4, 1917.  He reached Camp Colorado on Christmas Day, 1857, and married Margaret Jane Sheen on March 13, 1859.  Prior to the Civil War he served in the Texas Rangers, then in March 1862, he joined the Confederacy and was a Captain in Co. I of McCord’s Frontier Reg., Texas Cavalry.  In 1864, J. J. was elected to the office of Chief Justice of Coleman County, so he tendered his resignation as Captain in the Confederate Army, November 1, 1864.  J. J. and Margaret Jane had 14 children (2 girls stillborn were not named).

A few more of my blog posts on this family:

Texas State Champs – Dan Auld c1918

2015 September 17

Alex “Dan” Auld bottom row fifth from left

West Texas Military Academy, San Antonio, Texas, photo taken sometime before 1918, when Alexander Daniel “Dan” Auld left for war in May.  Founded as West Texas School for Boys and popularly nicknamed ‘West Point on the Rio Grande’ and in 1926 became Texas Military Institute.

Alex D. Auld in his football uniform


Cadet Alex D. Auld at West Texas Military Academy

The San Antonio Light newspaper published on October 19, 1915 has the results of the West Texas defeats High Team 19 to 6.  This game was a hard fought game on both sides of the ball and listed the players for the teams.  Cadet Alex D. Auld was named as left guard.  


Alexander Daniel Auld Sr WTMA football SA Light Oct. 19, 1915

The most amazing part of this newspaper article is the Referee, Lieutenant D. D. Eisenhower.  My grandfather, Alex D. Auld was a Marine in World War I and became a successful husband, father and independent oil man and sheep, goat and cattle rancher in Texas.  And to think, Lieutenant Eisenhower became a five-star general and our 34th United States President. 

Mamie Eisenhower, with her husband, Dwight, on the steps of St. Mary’s College, San Antonio, Texas, in 1916. They married July 1, 1916 in Denver, Colorado.

David Dwight Eisenhower and bride Mamie Doud in San Antonio, Texas.



Photos from the Wilkinson Ranch collection



Milroy Powell – 35 years as San Antonio Horse Show Superintendent 1950-1985

2015 June 21
by Jan Wilkinson

The San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo was such a big part of my growing up since my daddy, Milroy Powell first started in 1950 as the Horse Show Superintendent and his career ended the spring of 1985. Every year he spent a big part working on the preparation and coordination of the annual event which was held two weeks every February. He loved the people, the events and the horses, which were a part of life. He was so hurt and devastated when Mary Nan West decided to “let him go” after 35 years of dedication and love of his job. The importance of his knowledge and abilities to run the show were ignored! This certainly was not how he envisioned his retirement. I am so proud of him and his work and miss him every day. Guy Milroy Powell went to heaven while waiting for a heart transplant on Easter weekend April 7, 1991. We lost him too young!!

This is the San Antonio Light article from December 15, 1985.

San Antonio Light
December 15, 1985


Anne Miller

’86 Rodeo to Double Funds for Scholars

Officers of the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo hope to double scholarship money for young prize winners at the 1986 show by cutting back on paid employees and using more volunteers to staff the annual event.

The 37th Stock Show & Rodeo is scheduled to open Feb 7 at Freeman Coliseum.

The purpose of the event, said Mary Nan West, president and chairman of the board of the San Antonio Livestock Exposition Inc., is “to help youth in agricultural education. That’s why we’re here.”

Even though the livestock show is the part of the event that is of greatest importance to people involved in agriculture, it doesn’t make enough money to support itself, West said. So the rodeo and entertainment part of the show supports the livestock part and even allows the exposition to show a profit, she said. “The rodeo we have is merely to raise funds, to make money to operate.” West said.

A great deal of the money collected through donations, fundraisers, souvenir sales, commercial exhibits and other means goes into a scholarship fund for FFA and 4-H students deserving of financial assistance in the academic study of agriculture. In 1984, 15 scholarships of $6,000 each were awarded and 30 were awarded in 1985. West hopes to double that figure in 1986.

The primary way West plans to get the stock show lean enough to be able to double the scholarships is through the use of a nearly all-volunteer staff. Of the hundreds of workers contributing to the Stock Show & rodeo, only six are full-time, year-round staff, she said. When the show actually begins, other full-timers will be taken on just for the term of the ten-day show.

“The volunteers make this show,” West said. “Without the volunteers we couldn’t afford to run this show. We’ve got some really hard-working people here.”

The Livestock Exposition is adding two new events to its horse show program: the Arabian horse show and the Donkey & Mule Show. While putting on the added events, the exposition is “doing something this year we’ve never done before. It was always handled by a paid employee,” West said. But “the officials decided that we had some very talented volunteers who could put on the horse show at not cost to the show.”

Longtime Horse Show Superintendent Milroy Powell, with the Stock Show since its inception in 1950, is the “paid employee” who lost his job when the payroll was thinned down.

“I did 35 of ’em,” Powell, 58, reminisced, speaking of his role as assistant superintendent and, later, superintendent of the horse show. “We built it up too, if not the best, one of the best.”

He said he’s been told several times over the years by rodeo contestants that the San Antonio show was “the best calf-roping in the world. You get a fair shake.”

“I’ve made a lot of friends out there,” said Powell, who worked for several exposition administrators. “Mr. Joe Freeman was chairman of the board forever until he died, and then Mr. Harry (Freeman), his brother, took over.” Powell worked under West from the time she took over in mid-1984 until the spring of 1985.

Powell has observed that trends in the Stock Show parallel trends in the marketplace. He says both are going towards animals with “rail-thin carcasses,” although Powell himself prefers a little fat on his animals.

The land the coliseum is on was deeded by the city of San Antonio to Bexar County in 1948 with the restriction that it be used for agricultural expositions. Shortly thereafter, a group of local businessmen including Joe and Harry Freeman, Perry Shankle, Fred Shield and Perry Kallison decided to build a coliseum, Powell recalled. The first Stock Show was held in 1950.


Beauty in the Texas Hill Country

2015 April 21

We are so very blessed living in the Texas Hill Country on the Edwards Plateau!! The beauty is a daily reminder of the gifts we receive from our maker.

On Sunday, April 19 this tiny little male Vermilion Flycatcher landed outside my window. I was so thrilled to get his picture!!

On April 15, 2015, this was our lovely evening sunset. You could almost hear a hiss when the sun finally set.

Our pastures in Menard/Kimble Counties and Real County have been so striking with the Claret cup cactus. The color is so beautiful!

We came across this sweet unusual white Mountain Laurel bush in Real County. The blooms are so fragrant and sweet it is overwhelming!

And we are so proud to be growing the food that you eat, too!!

I am so grateful you read my post and hope you enjoyed the beauty!!

Milroy Powell won the first calf scramble at the Houston Rodeo in 1942

2015 March 6
by Jan Wilkinson

My Daddy, Milroy Powell won the first calf scramble at the Houston Rodeo in 1942. In 1931, the Houston Fat Stock Show and Livestock Exposition was founded and the first show was held at the Sam Houston Hall. In 1938, the show was moved to Sam Houston Coliseum. In 1942, the first star entertainer was Gene Autry, “the Singing Cowboy”; and the calf scramble event was added to the Show’s rodeo and is still a popular event nightly between major events in the rodeo.

Facts about the Rodeo: When the calf scramble was added to the rodeo in 1942, each student who caught a calf received a purchase certificate or hard-luck award for $55. Today, the certificates are worth $1,000 donated by an individual or company to buy a heifer. More than $7 million has been awarded since the calf scramble first began.

This is a photo from the website and could possibly be Milroy Powell in 1942.  (See below; we now know it is not Milroy because he had brand new tennis shoes!)

I just think it is amazing!! Seventy three years ago, my Daddy would have been 15 years old and was chasing a calf and won the Houston Show!!

(UPDATE)  Here is what my brother Mark Powell wrote about our Daddy.

I want to share with you a story about my dad, Guy Milroy Powell. He went by the name of Milroy Powell. His calf scramble story was told to me a number of times over the years. He caught the first calf in the first calf scramble held at the Houston Fat Livestock Show and Rodeo. He was very proud of this and told the story with pride.

The first calf scramble at the Houston Fat Livestock Show and Rodeo was held at the Sam Houston Coliseum. In 1966, after many years in the Coliseum, the show was moved to the Astrodome. I was lucky enough to be at the Houston Show in 1974, showing sheep. Some of my classmates and I bought tickets and attending the Rodeo, one night. We were really enjoying the Rodeo in this giant venue of the Astrodome. Much to my surprise, I heard the announcer say that he wanted to welcome into the arena, Milroy Powell! He was being recognized as having caught the first calf, ever, in the Houston Rodeo Calf Scramble in 1942. I had no idea he was there or this was going to happen, but was amazed and proud to witness his recognition. The best part of this story is you get to read it in my Daddy’s own words from a letter that he wrote to the General Manger of the Houston Show in 1965. This is his story as transcribed as part of that letter.

“l didn’t find out until the last minute that l could be in that first calf scramble. It came as quite a surprise. As we were at the Houston show showing our livestock (we stayed in a pen in the barn) I didn’t have any foot wear except rubber boots (used for washing hogs and cattle) and a pair of high top work shoes. A breeder of Karakul sheep (I think his name was Moore but I’m not sure), across the aisle from us found out that I had the opportunity to be in that scramble but didn’t have any tennis shoes so he told me he would buy me a pair if I’d participate and promise to catch a calf. So thirty minutes before the show I ran all the way up town to a shoe shop, bought my tennis shoes and ran back just in time to enter the arena. I had a pulled tendon in my right arm and was unable to straighten it out and had the arm in a sling for two or three weeks. But I took it out of the sling, determined not to let my Dad (Guy Powell who was Breeding Sheep and Goat Superintendent of your show for a number of years) and this Karakul Breeder down. Besides that, I wanted that calf to feed.”

Dad is in the lower right hand picture of this newspaper article. Look at those new tennis shoes!