Historic Temple


An illustrated history of the city of Temple, Texas, paired with the histories of companies, families and organizations that make the city great.


An Illustrated History

by Patricia K. Benoit


Thank you for your interest in this HPNbooks publication.

For more information about other HPNbooks publications, or information about

producing your own book with us, please visit www.hpnbooks.com.


An Illustrated History

by Patricia K. Benoit

Commissioned by the Temple Chamber of Commerce

Historical Publishing Network

A division of Lammert Incorporated

San Antonio, Texas

A Santa Fe locomotive steams into town from the north west. Woodson Field is to the right.


First Edition

Copyright © 2009 Historical Publishing Network

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, without permission in writing

from the publisher. All inquiries should be addressed to Historical Publishing Network, 11555 Galm Road, Suite 100, San Antonio, Texas, 78254. Phone (800) 749-9790.

ISBN: 9781893619968

Library of Congress Card Catalog Number: 2009922004

Historic Temple: An Illustrated History

author: Patricia K. Benoit

contributing writers for “Sharing the Heritage”: Eric Dabney

Historical Publishing Network

president: Ron Lammert

project manager: Joe Bowman

administration: Donna M. Mata

Melissa Quinn

Evelyn Hart

book sales: Dee Steidle

production: Colin Hart

Craig Mitchell

Charles A. Newton, III,

Joshua Johnston

Roy Arellano

Glenda Tarazon Krouse










Dunbar High School football team poses in the 1930s with their panther mascot. Dunbar fielded its first gridiron team in 1924 under Coach C.C. Sampson. The school colors were

purple and white.


Contents ✦ 3


Writing the history of Temple is like trying to chronicle a beehive—so many different individuals working simultaneously to give

structure and meaning to the whole. Likewise, so many diverse entities worked together and individually for more than 125 years to

create our remarkable city. As residents of Temple, we are all the sum and substance of all those countless persons who have come before

us and who contributed, albeit even in a small way, to our quality of life here. For them, I am truly grateful.

To be sure, Temple’s history has been sometimes triumphant, scandalous, astonishing, messy, glorious, infamous, remarkable and

rowdy—but never boring. This work may add, expand and explain some of what has already been written, but it is certainly not the

final word. The definitive history of Temple has yet to be written.

The photographs come from three sources: the Temple Public Library’s historical files, the archives of the Railroad and Heritage

Museum, and the private collection of Weldon G. Cannon and Patricia K. Benoit.

I am grateful to all those authors whose works were used as background and documentation: Raye Virginia Allen, Bertha Atkinson,

James A. Bethea, Norman D. Brown, Martha Bowmer, Jim Bowmer, Weldon Cannon, Margaret Chapman, Alexander Dienst, Frank

Grimes, George Dolan, H. C. Farrell, Odie and Laura Faulk, Alva Hooker, Alan Jones, Dayton Kelley, Oscar Lewis, E.A. Limmer,

Clinton Machann, Clyde McQueen, J. Bryant Messer, Nick Morris, Connally Neal, Kate Orgain, Robert Ozment, Victor Schulze,

Margaret Mullins, Claire Myers Spotswood, Townsie Thompson, George Tyler, George C. Werner and the Temple Jaycees, plus more

than 12 decades of reporters and editors from the Temple Times, the Temple Daily Telegram, the Galveston Daily News, and the Dallas

Morning News, to name just a few.

Likewise, this project could not have been completed without the support of many, many others: Ken Higdon and the Temple

Chamber of Commerce; Craig Ordner of Temple’s Railroad and Heritage Museum; Temple Mayor Bill Jones; City Secretary Clydette

Entzminger; Judy Duer and Michael Kelsey of the Temple Public Library; Penny Worley and the Scott & White Archives; the generous

members of the Texas Jewish History Society; the Center for American History in Austin; the staff of the Bell County Museum; Visual

Basics, eagle-eyed proof-reader Adrian Walker; supporter and dear friend Pat Ham; David Yeilding, Ph.D., who read the final

manuscript for clarity; and my husband, Weldon G. Cannon, Ph.D., who read and edited every word.

To all, thank you.

Patricia K. Benoit

Square-dancing and other leisure time

activities filled Temple social

calendars in the twentieth century.






The “Queen City of the Prairie” was forged with steel rails and tempered by risk-takers’ sweat.

Born out of the treeless waxy soil, the city of Temple emerged, as an 1895 newspaper reported, “lifted

… from the harum-scarum new town ways into a city that had gained strength in adversity and that

had never ceased to build and grow.” The history of the city that became the hub of Texas is the story

of sinew and spirit—working people hammering out new visions of the future. These pioneers have

been innovative leaders in transportation, agriculture, manufacturing and medicine.

Some pioneers became opportunists, like Otto Karl Burwitz. A native of Germany who immigrated

in 1867, Burwitz juggled various enterprises in rural Bell County. When Temple, Texas, began

in 1881, he earned a peculiar distinction: he opened the first saloon to serve parched customers,

one of the first businesses in the new railroad town called Temple, just two miles away from the

tiny northern Bell County agricultural community of Birdsdale. The year before, he and the other

few Birdsdale residents noticed the activity a couple of miles east on Jonathan E. Moore’s acreage.

Tucked alongside meandering Bird’s Creek, Birdsdale was a loosely organized fusion of farmers

centered around a school, a church, a few general stores and a post office, which had opened in

January 1873.

That was the same year Galveston businessmen, hungry to expand their trade, organized the Gulf,

Colorado & Santa Fe Railway Company. The company’s ambitious plan included bypassing Houston,

a commercial rival to the Gulf port city, to stretch rails northwestward. The projected route would

cross the Brazos River near Columbia and run through Caldwell, Cameron and Belton on its way to

the western boundary of Texas and its terminus at Santa Fe, New Mexico Territory, where builders

planned to connect with the Denver and Rio Grande. Two years later, construction began from

Galveston, and the Santa Fe Railway inched closer and closer to Central Texas every day through the

power of human brawn and sinew. Three large gangs of construction laborers completed a mile every

twenty-four hours.

A bird’s-eye view of Temple shows the

city square at the right, where the

Temple City Hall is now located.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 5

Established in 1850, when it was carved out of

Milam County, Bell County was mostly “a vast

prairie covered with tall waving grasses and

mesquite trees, except for scattered farm homes

here and there, and a number of small villages,

including Belton, Salado, Mount [Vernon],

Oenaville, Pendletonville, Old Howard and

others,” said Lucy McGregor, speaking in October

1921 to the Temple Woman’s Parliament, part of

the Temple Chamber of Commerce.

No doubt, Temple’s founding radically

changed the entire region. According to an 1895

Dallas Morning News article, “Previous to

[Temple’s founding in 1881], Bell County was

virgin to the embraces of the mighty civilizer,

the iron horse, and her fertile black prairies

were only here and there dotted with the

farmers, of adventurous tillers of the soil, who

repudiated tradition and emerged from the

creek bottoms to tickle with the plow the broad

bosom of the grassy prairies.”

In June 1880, railway officials trekked to

Belton, the Bell County seat, to garner financial

assistance to run the line into the city center.

Belton citizens eagerly pledged their support

and raised earnest money to entice the railway

to head westward into town. Belton, after all,

was the kind of established city enterprising

railroad companies liked: nearly 1,800

residents, daily mail and stagecoach service,

three newspapers, an opera house, five schools,

steam grist and flourmills, two hotels, 13

grocery stores and three banks. By July 1880,

the Santa Fe’s tracks intersected with the

International and Great Northern Railway in

Milam County. Belton citizens knew in only a

matter of time steaming trains would be

chugging mightily into town.

However, on August 13, Santa Fe Railway

president George Sealy bought 200 wide-open

acres of Jonathan E. Moore’s farm eight miles

northeast of Belton and just two miles east from

Birdsdale. Surveyors busily began laying out the

town lots, flanking the line’s westward extension

with a new route heading east of Birdsdale.

Belton citizens looked on in disbelief: After the

promises and financial inducements, the railway

was heading up to a treeless prairie, where the

line would branch, west to Santa Fe and north

to Fort Worth. Birdsdale citizens, on the other

hand, smelled opportunity. Burwitz and others

set up temporary businesses along the periphery

of the proposed town to peddle wares to

construction workers. Ever enterprising,

Burwitz opened a saloon in a canvas tent near


Opposite, top: A postcard of

early Temple.


Opposite, middle: The original Temple

High School building, built in the

1880s, housed all upper grades.


Opposite, bottom: Automobiles started

appearing more frequently with the

city’s first street paving endeavor in

1910. These Model A cars are parked

along Main Street.


the railroad tracks. A post office opened near the

railway’s new site in January 1881.

The Santa Fe’s Chief Engineer Bernard Moore

Temple busily supervised construction of 359 miles

of track from Arcola to Fort Worth and Lampasas.

He had first joined the Gulf, Colorado & Santa Fe

Railway Company as surveyor. After his

appointment as chief engineer in 1878, Engineer

Temple built lines to high standards and pushed

construction rapidly. Along the route, the railway

established towns, many named for railroad

officials, stockholders and promoters—Buckholts,

Pettibone, Rogers, Heidenheimer, Killeen,

Goldthwaite, Moody, and McGregor, among others.

Left: Horse-drawn buggies complete

with early autos for parking spaces on

Main Street prior to 1910. The tracks

of the Temple-Belton Interurban run

along the streets.


Below: An advertising brochure

published sometime between 1910

and 1915 touted Temple as “the

Coming Metropolis of Central Texas”

with its expanding population and

importance on the Santa Fe Railway.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 7

Above: A steam locomotive crosses

South Main in the 1890s. In the

background are the Harvey House

and the Santa Fe Depot, before it was

replaced with the present building.


Below: Temple in 1889 was a flat,

treeless plain. Homes were hastily

erected and the Santa Fe Railway

donated land for congregations to

establish churches.



When the line reached the International and

Great Northern Railway, Santa Fe officials

proposed renaming Milano, located twelve miles

southeast of Cameron, in honor of Engineer

Temple, but citizens protested the change and

insisted that the name of their community,

founded in 1874, would remain as it was.

Temple diplomatically demurred. Railroad

officials then decided to name the proposed

railway junction and town north of Belton and

east of Birdsdale in honor of its chief engineer.

The chief engineer consented and kept pushing

the line forward.

Although used as a shipping point, Moore’s

former two-hundred-acre tract by no means

could yet be called a “town.” The railway

company, owner of the acreage, was busily

surveying it into streets, blocks and lots.

Undeterred landowners on the fringes of

the town site began selling lots. Among

them was Moore himself, who parlayed his

former career as farmer into a more lucrative

vocation of developer and real estate agent. By

April 1881, the Galveston Daily News reported

that the new area now called Temple had several

new buildings in its proximity—a dry goods

store, shoemaker shop, beef market, three

schools and six eating-places combined with

boarding houses. “In the eating and drinking

line, Temple is well supplied,” said the

Galveston newspaper.

Everyone—especially Galvestonians—was

optimistic for this fledgling development.

Temple became the second most favored city on

the Santa Fe line, next to Galveston, the

company headquarters. The Galveston Daily


News regularly carried news from Temple. “The

citizens of this place and its vicinity are

thoroughly progressive, and when the town is

laid off and lots sold by the Santa Fe authorities,

the march onward, in the way of building will

be brisk,” the Galveston Daily News reported.

“Not alone is this particular community

desirous of making Temple a place of note, but

the surrounding country generally seems to be

imbued with the same desire. Hence it may be

safe in estimating that we shall ship at least ten

thousand bales of cotton during the ensuing

season.” Two months later, the Galveston Daily

News followed up: “The harvesting season,

which has just passed, having been

uncommonly favorable, the grain is all

harvested, and the yield will be much better

than was expected.”

More important was the buzz across the state

that town lots in this new town would soon be

up for sale. “Parties from various portions of the

state have been prospecting here with a view to

locating, and all go away well pleased, and

predict Temple will be a place of considerable

note in the near future,” reported the Galveston

Daily News in June 1881. Prospective buyers

flocked to town as the locals prepared for the

onslaught. Railway officials even erected a large

pavilion for everyone’s comfort. By the next

week the sale started under the direction of

railroad agent J. H. Wheeler.

The sale managers plied everyone with free

food and drink, just to keep the spirits and

expectations high. A crowd of about three

thousand gathered on June 29—some interested

buyers, others just curious, most just hungry. At

times, the assembly grew raucous, especially as

the summer sun heated up. Nevertheless, those

present deemed the sale a success.

“A hearty appreciation was manifest by a

hungry and thirsty crowd of men who took

positions in the front ranks and held them

during the entire day at the comfortable expense

of an immense crowd more modest,” reported

the Galveston Daily News.

When the Gulf, Colorado & Santa Fe Railway

sold the first town lots on June 29, 1881, J.H.

Butcher of Galveston bought the first lot for

$620. The Santa Fe’s chief engineer Temple, after

whom the town would be named, acquired the

second for $375. A Confederate veteran, Mr.

Temple completed the rail line from Galveston to

Fort Worth and was later the resident engineer

for the Pecos High Bridge, considered the

highest railroad bridge in North America and the

third highest in the world. However, despite the

Above: Houses along South First

Street in 1888 all had plank fences,

mostly to keep livestock from

wandering where they shouldn’t.



Below: The Harvey House, a popular

restaurant and hotel adjacent to the

Santa Fe Depot. Early trains had no

dining cars, so passengers

disembarked for about 20 to 30

minutes to eat. The Harvey House

also became a popular gathering place

for townspeople.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 9

Right: Cotton was king until the

1930s, when cotton blight and

drought devastated the crops.

Beginning in the 1880s, Temple had

several compresses, which processed

and shipped cotton throughout the

United States and Europe.


Below: Temple’s first business was

Otto Burwitz’ saloon. Within a few

weeks, other purveyors of libations

opened their establishments.

Detractors often nicknamed the town

“Tanglefoot,” an apt description for

drunken railroaders who stumbled

through saloon doors. Newspaper

accounts called Temple “hurly-burly,




Opposite, top: The three-story Stegall

Hotel (left) was a downtown

landmark at North Third and West

Central Avenue when it was erected in

the late 1880s. By the early 1900s,

McKnight Grocery opened next to the

hotel at the corner of West Adams

and North Third. Aldrich-Thomas

Real Estate now occupies the

McKnight location.



Opposite, middle: Temple was the

second most favored city on the Santa

Fe Railway line in Texas, next to

Galveston, the company

headquarters. The stately 1910 Santa

Fe Depot (back, left) and the Harvey

House hotel and restaurant were

welcome stops for travelers.


Opposite, bottom: Railroad workers in

the early 1900s take a break in front

of the Santa Fe roundhouse.

honor of having the town named for him,

neither engineer Temple (1843-1901) nor his

family ever lived in the city that bears his name.

In all, 157 business lots and 28 residence lots

sold at an average of $160 each. “This is destined

to be a good town, having every facility to make it

such,” added the Galveston paper. “Notwithstanding

the great crowd, the hot day and a halfdozen

fist fights, everybody left well pleased, and

the Santa Fe has further demonstrated its efficiency

in entertaining multitudes as well as building

railroads.” Sales for the day totaled $28,000.

By the next week, on July 7, a huge building

boom exploded on the once-desolate prairie—


seemingly overnight. Brick, stone and woodframe

structures popped up on the horizon like

shirt buttons. Sales agent Wheeler was pleased

that sales remained brisk and inquiries poured

in from eastern states. “So great is the rush that

several families have moved here and are living

in tents until they can erect dwellings,” reported

the Galveston News. “One thing which is very

much needed is a first-class hotel, and, strange

to say, none has yet been started, but so good an

opportunity cannot long remain open.”

In 1882 the Missouri-Kansas-Texas line,

nicknamed the Katy, was built through Temple

east of downtown, while the Santa Fe Railway

made the town a division point and located

machine shops, division offices and a

roundhouse in the heart of the city. A decade

later, the Santa Fe and the Katy had tremendous

economic impact on the county. The Santa Fe

had more than 55 miles of track in Bell County;

the Katy tallied more than 42 miles, with an

assessed value of $379,193. That meant the

county had nearly 100 miles of steel rails, with a

value approaching $1 million.

Since the town grew from the orderly minds

of railway engineers and cartographers,

Temple’s original street layout was set in

logically ordered blocks in right angles to each

other. Main Street bisected the east and west;

Central, the north and south. Street names were

numbers and letters. In 1895 the streets were

“The City With a Future” ✦ 11

Above: The Missouri-Texas-Kansas

Railway was completed through

Temple in 1882, making Temple an

important junction of two major rail

lines in the state’s center.


Below: The 1905 trolley tracks run

along Avenue A, looking west.


Opposite: Temple’s original street

layout was set in logically ordered

blocks in right angles to each other.

This map shows the city’s street

numbers before 1895, when streets

were renamed and renumbered.


renamed and renumbered. Thus, the streets east

of Main were even-numbered; to the west, oddnumbers.

North of Central, the avenues were

renamed to honor local leaders and listed in

alphabetical order—Adams, Barton, Calhoun,

Downs and French; to the south, the streets

were letters, Avenue A, Avenue B, and so on.

This configuration allowed developers to extend

its numbering and naming system as it pushed

out its city limits.

Because of its central location in the state and

the intersection of two major rail lines, Temple

attracted more people and commerce. Temple

was the hub of “the immense rich territory that

stretched unbroken by towns for a distance of

many miles in the north and south and to the

Brazos River on the east, a body of land that is

unsurpassed in the world for fertility and a

section that has rapidly settled up with the very

best classes of farmers,” according to the Dallas

Morning News.

A new city described as “hurly-burly, wideopen”

was born. It quickly became the preferred

business center in the county, and certainly the

most populous. By 1883, the Temple officials

attempted to move the county seat from Belton,


“The City With a Future” ✦ 13

Right: From its beginning, Temple

streets were crowded with cotton

sellers and buyers on the weekend as

this 1891 photo of the northeast

corner of North Main and Avenue

A shows.



Below: Train wrecks always attracted

a horde of curious gawkers, especially

this spectacular one just south of

downtown Temple in 1909.


Opposite, top: By the 1890s,

downtown Temple, with its multitude

of merchants, attracted shoppers

looking for everything from farm

equipment to high fashions. In this

hand-tinted photo, a woman and her

children try on shoes at Bentley and

Smith Department Store in the

early 1900s.


Opposite, middle: From its beginning,

Temple was nicknamed “Mudville”

and “Tanglefoot,” because of the

muddy streets and raucous behavior

of railroaders imbibing too much. This

scene shows the intersection of North

First Street and Avenue A.


Opposite, bottom: A men’s

haberdasher fits a distinguished

customer at Bentley & Bass

Department Store in the 1890s.

Bentley & Bass proprietors prided

themselves on the latest fashions and

fabrics from New York, which were

shipped by rail.



established in 1850 when the county began. After

a flurry of meetings and debates, the measure

died. This Bell County town almost overnight

became a rough, tough town, hip-high in mud in

rainy seasons and coated with throat-choking

dust in dry seasons. Detractors nicknamed it

“Mud Town” and “Tanglefoot,” an apt description

for drunken railroaders who stumbled through

saloon doors. Despite the buoyant optimism of its

promoters and land agents, Temple, carved out of

farmland by the Gulf, Colorado & Santa Fe

Railway, faced challenges. Problems arrived bag

and baggage with the growing population.

Certainly the town attracted its share of

kooks. The Temple Times reported in December

1881 that “the mantle of the sage of Monticello

has been inherited by a man in Bell County”:

“Last Monday there was an old crank in town

who claimed to be Thomas Jefferson. He said he

was a candidate for the presidency of the United

States, and mounting a goods box, proceeded to

edify the crowd with his wisdom and eloquence.

He was crazy, of course, but he was apparently

as sane as the average politician of the day.”


Early on, the new settlement forged its own

personality, unlike its older neighboring

communities. “Temple has a ‘character,’ an

individuality as set apart as are the character,

force and impetus of a man or a business,”

opined a 1923 Temple Daily Telegram article as

it reflected on those early days. The character,

the article continued, was a mixture of “pioneer

spirit,” as well as “childish ambitions and


eagerness” coupled with sheer progressive

optimism after Texas emerged from a devastating

war and reconstruction of the 1860s and ’70s.

The Dallas Morning News in 1895 was more

specific about the town’s persona: “A godsend to

the town was that it did not immediately attract

capital. Those who came here were poor men

and in order to ‘go’ at all they had to rustle. The

farmer when he came to Temple found a plain

man to sell him goods, and too many anxious

for his trade that they hunted him up, offered

him inducements and in every way paid him the

homage due the tiller of the soil—nature’s king.

The bleaching bones of many business wrecks

mark the path of Temple’s climb, and the fierce

competition swamped the unfit. But ‘it was the

makin’ of the city.’”

Temple also gained a reputation for “cheap

goods, for high prices for cotton, for hospitable

treatment and for natural advantages as

shipping and distributing point all united in

building up a trade,” added the Dallas

newspaper. Thus, the railway city was “lifted …

from the harum-scarum new town ways into a

city that had gained strength in adversity and

that had never ceased to build and grow.”

Helping to build the community and

commerce were frequent fairs and parades,

especially the annual “birthday celebration” in

June, marking the town lot sales in 1881. “Among

“The City With a Future” ✦ 15

Above: North Main Street and Avenue

A was the commercial and shopping

heart of the city. At the left is the First

National Bank building, now the site

of Extraco Banks. The spire in the

background is the former First

Baptist Church.


Below: Memorial Baptist Church,

frequently nicknamed Southside

Baptist Church, began in June 1892 at

Avenue G and South Seventh. The

founder and first pastor was the

Reverend John Hill Luther, retired

president of Baylor Female College,

now the University of Mary Hardin-

Baylor. The church name honored the

preacher’s son, J. H. Luther, Jr., who

died of tuberculosis at age seventeen.


the big attractions and especially grand to the

frontier prairie children who had never been

anywhere, was the music of the brass band,”

according to later newspaper reports. Since brass

bands were scarce, festival organizers recruited an

African-American brass band from Brenham.

Visitors to town “found that the new town, selling

for cash, and eager for trade, made lower prices

than the older credit towns and what was probably

greater weight, the country visitors found here a

hearty personal welcome,” reported the Temple

Daily Telegram about that first celebration in 1882.

As if twice in a row made a tradition, an estimated

sixty-five hundred folks came for the free barbecue

and music, just as they did the previous year when

the town lots were sold. However, this time, they

stayed for the shopping, to the delight of

merchants and purveyors of food and spirits.

Temple’s first anniversary was the beginning of

annual downtown parties and street festivals,

filled with music, parades, food and speeches to

help solidify the new community and assimilate

residents who had moved to Bell County from

somewhere else. Men gathered each Thanksgiving

from 1893 to 1922 for the Temple Stag Party, a

raucous evening of food and foolishness. Later,


annual roasts and homegrown minstrel shows

replaced the Stag Party. Not to be outdone,

women banded together to have their own soiree,

the Every Woman’s Party, perhaps with more

decorum but just as many laughs. The Every

Woman’s Party continued until the early 1960s.

Contemporary accounts report that the

celebrations grew each year. By 1891, when

Temple marked its tenth anniversary, more than

fifty wagons queued up in a grand parade. At

Freeman Heights west of downtown Temple, an

estimated 13,000 ate from a 1,400-foot-long

table. The evening featured fire hose races

between visiting fire departments and baseball

games. The annual celebration, according to

newspaper accounts, grew bigger and better each

June. Over the years, Temple organized flower

expositions, circus days and baby shows. In

1931, when Temple marked its 50th anniversary,

“the people of Temple have voted to take a day

off,” said the Temple Daily Telegram. The paper

added “One whole day [would be devoted] to

having a good time and reconstructing as far as

may be possible the days of ’81.”

To read accounts by land developer Jonathan

E. Moore, Temple in the 1890s was prosperous

and clean, populated by progressive, energetic

citizens who maintained their attractive town

with civic pride. Yet, according to descriptions

by Bell County historian George Tyler, Temple

was a muddy, violent railroad town, where only

the bullets sailing through the town square

outnumbered saloons and gamblers.

Underneath Moore’s hyperbole and gloss was an

underbelly that kept town marshals, the only

law enforcement, busy. Fights, burglaries,

robberies and thefts were commonplace.

Temple also had four-footed problems: Pests

moved in, taking advantage of a growing

population. By 1921, when the city sponsored a

rat “round-up,” an estimated eleven thousand

rodents met their doom. However, they were

not the only pests. Rabbits ran rampant through

the streets in the 1890s and early 1900s. On one

occasion, everyone congregated at the

downtown park and city square (now west of

the present City Hall), but a local band refused

to play until the city cleaned up and eradicated

the rabbits.

Undeterred, capitalists, industrialists and

opportunists soon flocked to this new town, as

did professionals, artisans and drifters. In one

estimate, the Galveston Daily News reported by

1885 that Temple was growing by two hundred

new residents per month. By 1893, Temple’s

doctors outnumbered its lawyers and saloons.

By Land Agent Jonathan Moore’s reckoning, at



The stately First National Bank

building, located at the intersection of

Avenue A and South Main Street, was

later replaced with a contemporary

skyscraper. The bank is now

Extraco Banks.


The Santa Fe’s first commercial railcar pulled into town on September 1,

1881. The engineer was James L. Stanton.

“The City With a Future” ✦ 17





Hillcrest Cemetery, located about a mile north of City Hall, is older than

the city of Temple with marked burials dating back to the 1870s. By the early

1890s, everyone called it “the City Cemetery.” Now comprising 70 acres,

Hillcrest has five state historical markers and approximately 18,000 burials.

least 16 medical doctors had hung up their

shingles, while there were 15 lawyers and 15

saloons. Temple also had three banks, five

weekly newspapers, three cottonseed oil mills, a

plow factory and a foundry.

By the beginning of the twentieth century,

Temple was growing up, according to Fred

Stroop, who arrived in Temple in 1904 to work

as business manager for physicians Arthur Carroll

Scott and Raleigh R. White, Jr., co-founders of

Scott & White Memorial Hospital and Clinic.

Stroop summed up the city in the early 1900s:

“Aside from the occasional mud, Temple was a

healthy, happy and prosperous place to live.

There were not many wealthy people there;

neither were there many uncomfortably poor

people. For the most part, the people were

making money and investing in real estate, and

such investments, both in the city and the

country, were sure of enhancement. The people

were thrifty. There weren’t so many things to buy

then; so the people saved their money, bought

property and prospered.”

By fall 1881, less than six months after the first

lots were sold, citizens unsuccessfully attempted

to incorporate the fledgling town. Undeterred, on

January 18, 1882, Temple’s new citizens

presented to county commissioners a petition

with fifty signatures requesting an election. Only

119 residents cast ballots at the July 8 election.

Although Temple was chockablock with people,

few men were registered voters. Incorporation

passed by three votes, 61 to 58. J. W. Callaway

was elected first mayor in a subsequent election.

As soon as the city government formed, officials

started levying taxes. An occupation tax, an early

hotel/motel tax, was the first to be assessed,

followed soon after by taxes on saloons, gambling

houses (then legal) and what the Temple

newspaper called “other ‘businesses’ of allied or

shifting character.”

Once families settled into town permanently,

two private schools opened, but citizens

demanded public education. On September 24,

1883, Temple residents approved creating a public

school district, 114 to 2. Then, on December 17,

voters approved a bond issue to buy an existing

private school building for $4,392. The Temple

City Council appointed school board members,

and the city council regularly undertook school

business. “Unfortunately, factional controversies

retarded the development of the schools,” reported

First Methodist Church organized in

1882, one year after the city of

Temple was founded. This photo

shows the interior of the original

structure, which burned in 1911.



George Tyler in his History of Bell County, “and the

superintendency changed hands every year until

Mr. W. T. Hamner was elected to that position in

1888.” Shortly after, the school district also

opened a separate school, the “Temple Colored

School,” for African-American children, with

Hattie Bledsoe as its first teacher. By 1900, L. J.

LeQuey was named principal and his wife, E. C. B.

LeQuey, a teacher. The railway also donated land

to churches willing to establish congregations. The

Presbyterians, Episcopalians, Baptists and

Catholics were the first to take advantage of the

free lots.

Temple, sporting a population of about five

thousand in 1888, billed itself as “The Home of

the Prosperous” and “Queen City of the Prairies.”

Land agents’ brochures heavily promoted “a

mammoth free school system; excellent churches;

a three-story opera house, fitting-up grandly; a

two-story railroad passenger depot—the

handsomest in the state; and an improved cotton

compress with an 800 bales per day capacity.”

Centerpiece of downtown was the 1885

Opera House, an imposing three-story multiuse

brick structure. On the first floor at one end

was a meat market; on the other was a large

meeting hall for City Council sessions and civic

groups. Upstairs was a performance hall,

described as “a theater not surpassed in point of

splendor and modern arrangements by any of

the metropolitan theaters in the state.” The City

Hall moved to the Central Fire station when it

opened in 1895, and the Opera House burned

in 1897.

Temple sported a Young Men’s Christian

Association, first established in 1888 as a club in

a former mercantile store. City leaders

convinced the Santa Fe Railway to donate $3 for

every $1 raised from the community to build a

new YMCA building, up to $10,000. The fund

drive was successful, and the new YMCA

building opened in 1899 on railway property

near the depot. The impressive three-story

Temple Y was a stately downtown landmark

with dorms, gymnasium, bowling alley, reading

room and offices. The building was also

nicknamed the “railroad Y” because its dorms

were usually booked solid with railroad

workers. In 1934, fire destroyed the building.

Businesses thrived as population rose.

Among the businesses were a cotton compress,

oil mill, plow company, ice factory, two bottling

works, planing mill, stream wood chopping

Above: Grace Presbyterian, organized

in 1893, held its first service in its

first permanent house of worship on

March 18, 1900.


Below: The rebuilt YMCA building

opened in 1899 near the Santa Fe

Depot. The impressive three-story

Temple Y was a stately downtown

landmark with dorms, gymnasium,

bowling alley, reading room and

offices. It burned in 1934.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 19

factory, gristmill, cigar factory, three cotton gins,

wholesale grocer, telephone and telegraph and

five commercial loan companies.

By 1901, Temple women joined forces to ask

philanthropist Andrew Carnegie for funds to

build a library, insisting they could help the

wealthy industrialist “to die as he wished—a poor

man.” Calling themselves the City Federation of

Women’s Clubs, they formed a successful nucleus

to get the library constructed in 1902. The

impressive Greek revival Carnegie Library opened

on the town square with a spacious auditorium in

its top-floor dome. Then the women’s club

disbanded. By 1915, at the rising fervor of the

women’s suffrage movement, the City Federation

of Women’s Club revived to coordinate the work

of the women’s clubs, especially for education and

civic betterment. Members met in a variety of

locations until a clubhouse was completed in

1948. Over the century, the federation led efforts

to beautify the city with landscaping; worked for

health and safety issues; organized youth

recreational programs; supported educational

reforms and social service programs; and

provided leadership for arts education.

Marking the end of its second decade,

Temple still had muddy streets bogging

downtown deliveries and even hearses heading

north up Main Street to the City Cemetery, later

renamed Hillcrest Cemetery. Figuring there was

strength in numbers, businessmen decided to

grapple with problems straight on. The first big

project: Pave the sidewalks and streets. To make

it happen, the businessmen banded together to

form the Temple Commercial Club in April

1907 as an organized effort to improve the

city while boosting their enterprises. Working

with city and county government, the

Commercial Club, later renamed the Temple

Chamber of Commerce, provided leadership for

significant improvements. Cement sidewalks

replaced plank walkways and, by 1912, they

were widened.

By 1910 nearly eleven thousand residents

called Temple their hometown, and it was still

growing. To increase trade and mobility, the

Belton and Temple Interurban, an electric

streetcar line, operated from 1905 to 1925. The

north side neighborhood was home to many of

the town’s physicians, attorneys and politicians,

and North Ninth was called “silk stocking row,”

perhaps a sarcastic pejorative. Trolley cars

zigzagged through the city, connecting

downtown with residential neighborhoods as far


out as French Avenue to the north, Avenue H to

the south, North Ninth to the west and Eighth

Street to the east. By 1925, voters approved a

major bond issue, which allowed the city to

pave streets properly in concrete and later

asphalt. Thus, the trolley clangs fell silent.

Providing water was a tremendous

engineering problem, sometimes with tragic

consequences. A huge standpipe, located at the

present site of the Kyle Hotel, holding 280,000

gallons of water ripped apart about 3 a.m. on

October 24, 1890, causing horrific damage and

killing one person as he slept. Even the New

York Times took notice: “Immense sheets of

boiler steel, hundreds of pieces of scaffoldings,

houses, barns, fences and all the debris of the

surrounding neighborhood went floating and

crashing in all directions,” the paper reported.

“Lying out toward the street were 16 sections of

the pipe, a great hollow cylinder 20 feet in

diameter and other heavy boiler steel. The lower

sections of the pipe were thrown in different

directions. They were torn, twisted and

crumpled. Several nearby barns and sheds

washed away. The fences of the neighborhood

are gone, and over the streets, alley and yards

are scattered the contents of house and barns,

while timbers are lying around in all conceivable

shapes. All the houses around were flooded with

water and several seriously damaged.”

By the early 1890s, a pump station brought

raw Leon River water into the city from an eightinch

cast-iron water main. The city’s population

swelled to more than seven thousand a decade

later, and city leaders considered a city-owned

water company. In 1907, voters passed a

$150,000 bond issue, which put water service

under a city-run board. The first task was

constructing a plant to purify the muddy Leon

River water, laying an 18-inch main, improving

the reservoir and building a city pump station.

In September 1908, the city purchased a block

in Freeman Heights for a filter plant.

Opposite, top: Visitors to the

impressive 1902 Carnegie Library

seemed to be entering a “temple of

learning” with its Greek revival

architecture and artworks.


Opposite, middle: Temple women

joined forces in 1901 to ask Andrew

Carnegie for funds to build a library,

constructed in 1902. The impressive

Greek revival Temple Carnegie

Library opened on the town square

with a spacious auditorium in its topfloor



Opposite, bottom: The dome of the

1902 Carnegie Library was a popular

gathering place for banquets and

parties. It was also the site of the

annual Stag Party, a men-only affair

with music, speeches and skits.


Above: Hitchhiker Grady Barton sent

this picture to a friend in New York

City, saying he is “taking it easy in the

sunny south” in 1907.


Below: Work crews pave the first city

streets in about 1910, at first with

bricks. Concrete and asphalt came in

later years. Paving improved city

traffic, especially during rainy weather.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 21

Top: Temple High School auditorium

in the 1930s seemed large and

spacious at the time. Temple public

schools officially began on June 13,

1883, administered by the city council

until the 1950s.


Middle: Between 1910 and 1917,

Temple’s north side boomed with

elegant showcase mansions such as

the Woodson house (left), completed in

1916, which straddled North Eleventh

and North Thirteenth Streets and the

1913 Winbourne Pierce home on

West Monroe. When they were

completed, the houses were outside of

the city limits.


Bottom: Kindergarten students gather

for a costume party in 1912. The

“witch” in the center is their teacher.




Temperance groups, spurred by churches and women’s organizations, made enthusiastic demonstrations in favor of outlawing

“demon rum” and other alcohol bedeviling society.

When Texas went dry in 1915, Temple citizens staged a victory parade starting at the Santa Fe Depot. First-hand accounts of the

parade were provided by Margaret Chapman and Townsie Thompson in 1975.

Pretty, young women in their finery graced the lavishly decorated buggies and horse-drawn wagons as the procession headed north

up Main Street. As they rolled through the streets, they held up signs and banners: “Old King Alcohol Must Go,” “Mother Expects

Her Son to be a Man,” and “Down with Saloons.”

As they rolled along, the young women sang their “battle hymn,” aptly to the tune of “The Battle Hymn of the Republic”:

When Bell County licked the likker

All the children became safe and sure,

For the booze is supplanted

By water that is pure.

Glory, glory, hallelujah, Bell County’s going dry.

Just as the spectacle advanced to the 100 block of North Main and sidelines were cheering wholeheartedly, the skies opened up

and buckets of rain poured down up the festive group. “They would have continued all the way home, but it took considerable energy

to plow through the wet mud of Temple during and after the rain,” the two authors recalled.

In 1935, when Texas repealed prohibition, Bell County and Temple voted to remain dry.

Temple mothers in 1915 parade

along downtown Temple in

brightly decorated wagons in favor

of prohibition.





Ragtime composer Scott Joplin lived in Temple for an undetermined time from 1895 to 1896 and published his three early

pieces—“The Great Crush Collision March,” “Harmony Club Waltz” and “Combination March.” The Crush collision was fashioned

after a staged disastrous train collision on M-K-T tracks on September 15, 1896. Rail agents John R. Fuller and Robert Smith were

his publishers, but Joplin reportedly disputed the copyright royalties. By 1896, he relocated to Sedalia, Missouri, where he negotiated

a more favorable contract with another publisher.

“The City With a Future” ✦ 23


Temple’s early city council, attempting to maintain peace and decorum, passed several ordinances. The measures give insight

into problems some citizens were trying to solve. Early records, however, do not indicate how many were enforced.

Among the most unusual was one ordinance aimed directly at the president of the United States: All presidential trains were

required to stop in Temple. This ordinance, passed in 1904, specifically targeted President Theodore Roosevelt who was on a

whistle-stop tour intended to pass through the city. Council members passed the emergency measure, and Roosevelt’s train did

make an unscheduled stop, where he spoke for five minutes.

The Lone Star state must have impressed the president, because he later told local historian Alexander Dienst that he wanted to

write a history of Texas when he retired from politics.

Among other unusual measures the city tried to enforce:

• Women were forbidden to wear long, loose-fitting dresses called “Mother Hubbards,” although “saloon girls” were allowed to

wear revealing slit-skirts.

• Dogs had to be muzzled in July and August.

• Only taxi drivers could talk to prostitutes on the streets.

• Citizens had the right to demand that trains move if they blocked street crossings for more than five minutes.

• Merchants were forbidden to erect barbed wire to prevent cattle from trampling their businesses. Sometimes in the 1890s, errant

cattle managed to venture on the city streets. The city tried to pass an ordinance prohibiting livestock from running loose

downtown, but the measure failed.

• Whistles—train and otherwise—could blow for no more than five continuous seconds.

• All male residents between ages 21 and 45 were required to pay $3 or work three days annually on city streets and building repairs.

Wooden planks were the first rudimentary sidewalks across the muddy downtown streets, as this 1890s-era photo shows. Twenty years after its beginning, Temple still had

muddy streets Businessmen formed the Temple Commercial Club in April 1907 as an organized effort to improve the city while boosting their enterprises. Working with city

and county government, the Commercial Club, later renamed the Temple Chamber of Commerce, provided leadership for significant improvements. Cement sidewalks

replaced plank walkways and, by 1912, they were widened.



Top: The shelves of Black Brothers

Grocery, shown here in the late 1880s,

stocked staples such as vegetable

seeds, flour and salt as well as upscale

food items, such as olives, molasses,

spices and tinned meats.



Middle: The Temple Book Concern, 20

South Main, was chockablock with

books, newspapers and magazines.

Reading was a favorite leisure activity

for many Temple residents.


Bottom: The Belton and Temple

Interurban, an electric streetcar line

operating from 1905 to 1925, was the

primary public transportation

between Temple and Belton, especially

when the muddy roads hindered

motorized vehicles.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 25

Above: The Santa Fe Hospital served

all Santa Fe Railway workers along

the line from Galveston to all points

northward. Founded in 1891, the

hospital soon grew and the railway

built a new red-brick building in 1908.

Wings were added in subsequent

decades. Despite a shaky start, the

hospital soon gained an outstanding

reputation, thanks to its two chief

surgeons, Arthur Carroll Scott, M.D.,

and Raleigh R. White, Jr., M.D.


Below: Begun in 1891 as a hospital

solely for Santa Fe Railway works,

the Santa Fe Hospital touted its fireproof

construction and advanced

medical care when its new building

opened in 1907.


Opposite, top: Reynolds Drug Store,

11 North Main, featured a soda

fountain, notions, beauty supplies as

well as medications.


Opposite, middle: King’s Daughters

Hospital, founded in 1896 in rented

quarters, evolved into a community

hospital on South Twenty-second

Street. Patients mailed picture

postcards to friends and family

describing their operations. On this

one, someone drew an arrow to the

surgical floor and wrote,” Eldor was

operated in 1916 on appendicitis.”


Voters approved another $75,000 bond issue in

1913 to purchase a sewerage system. The

following years, the water board concentrated on

increasing supply as the city grew with water and

sewer demands. Water treatment improved as state

health regulations enforced more purification.

Another bond election in 1938 added a new

filtration plant about a mile east of downtown.

By the end of the twentieth century, the former

city water department had been transformed into

the Department of Public Works, responsible for a

complex system of water distribution, water

treatment, wastewater/sewer collection, and

drainage. Public Works also became responsible

for street services, traffic signal repair, engineering,

inspections, solid waste service, fleet maintenance

and administration of wastewater treatment.

For the first forty years as the city grew, the

elected city officials also served as

administrators. However, by 1920, Temple had

more than eleven thousand citizens. Voters

approved a home rule form of city government

in 1922, creating commissioners, one of whom

would be mayor, and a professional city

manager, the first being H. J. Graeser.



Aware that Temple occupied a central location

in the state and was the juncture of two major rail

lines, local business leaders began as early as 1888

to petition the Santa Fe Railway to relocate its railroad

hospital from Galveston to Temple. Railroad

Opposite, bottom: The 200 block of

North Ninth shows the stately homes

located just a few blocks from the

city’s main business and commercial

area prior to 1910.



injuries accounted for the most industrial accidents

in the U.S., and providing medical care to sick and

injured workers was essential to the railway’s maintaining

friendly relationships with labor unions.

The Santa Fe Hospital opened in 1891 in Temple,

staffed and administered by Sisters of Charity of the

Incarnate Word, a congregation of Roman Catholic

nuns. The nuns worked as railroad employees,

many eventually earning railroad pensions for their

long-time service.

The Santa Fe Hospital served all railroad

workers up and down the line from Galveston,

east to Louisiana, west to New Mexico and north

to Oklahoma. Despite a shaky start, the hospital

soon gained an outstanding reputation among

railroaders, thanks to its two chief surgeons,

Arthur Carroll Scott, M.D., and Raleigh R. White,

Jr., M.D. The only hospital in town, the Santa Fe

was available to railroad personnel solely, not

their families and certainly not to anyone else in

town. Temple had no general hospital.

In 1896, however, an interfaith Protestant

group opened a rudimentary hospital in a small

house on West Elm Street. The Whatsoever

Circle of the International Order of the King’s

Daughters and Sons was part of a national

missionary and Christian service group that cut

across denominational lines to serve the poor

and disenfranchised. Presbyterians, Baptists,

Episcopalians, Methodists, Lutherans and

Disciples of Christ—all banded together to

operate the hospital for people who could not

afford medical care. Spurred by the missionary

“The City With a Future” ✦ 27

Above: Arthur Carroll Scott, M.D.,

and Raleigh R. White, Jr., M.D., in

1904 established their own hospital,

first called Temple Sanitarium.


Below: George Valter Brindley, Sr.,

M.D., (right) examines a patient at

Scott & White in the 1940s.

Originally called Temple Sanitarium

when it opened in 1904, Scott &

White quickly garnered a respected

reputation as an outstanding surgical

center, thanks to the skill of its

founders, Arthur Carroll Scott, Sr.,

M.D., and Raleigh R. White, Jr., M.D.

Dr. Brindley joined the group practice

in 1911.


zeal a group of women, eight physicians—

including Dr. Scott and Dr. White—were

instrumental in opening Temple’s first

community facility, King’s Daughters Hospital.

As it built an outstanding reputation as a not-forprofit

community hospital, John S. McCelvey,

M.D., and George S. McReynolds, M.D.,

provided visionary leadership during its

formative years and for several decades. The

Roman Catholics also briefly operated a hospital,

St. Mary’s Sanitarium, but it closed by 1899.

After forming their medical partnership in

1897, Dr. Scott and Dr. White opened their own

hospital in 1904, which eventually evolved into

Scott & White Memorial Hospital and Clinic,

the state’s largest group medical practice.

Building on its close ties to the Santa Fe

Hospital, Scott & White quickly gained a

regional reputation as a surgical center. By

1933, Scott & White was the first Texas hospital

accredited by the American College of Surgeons

for cancer surgery. When a medical group

convened its state meeting in Temple in 1924,

Temple was nicknamed “the hospital center of

the southwest,” based on the reputation of its

three hospitals—King’s Daughters, Scott &

White and the Santa Fe. Later, as Dr. Scott

formed close friendships with Mayo Clinic in

Minnesota, Temple was also nicknamed “the

Mayo of the Southwest.” In 1955, Scott & White

began the state’s first cancer registry program to

track all cancer patients after treatment.

Dr. C.H. Graves, respected African-American

physician, opened the Temple Negro Hospital,

also called the Graves Hospital, at South 20th

and Avenue D. African-Americans had limited

access to medical care because of statemandated

segregation. Physicians from the three

other hospitals in town often donated

equipment and supplies. By 1932, the hospital

had reorganized as the privately owned

Memorial Colored Hospital, 918 East Avenue D,

with three trained nurses and 21 beds.


When the U.S. Army opened McCloskey

General Hospital in 1942 for the war wounded,

Temple gained an added national and

international reputation for advanced medicine.

Threatened with closure after World War II, the

Veterans’ Administration officially took over

McCloskey Army General Hospital in April 1946,

and it became a permanent medical facility. The

two main hospital buildings were modernized

and dedicated in 1967. In 1979 it was renamed

in honor of a veteran who had been treated there,

Congressman Olin E. “Tiger” Teague. In the early

1990s, the center was affiliated with Texas A&M

University System Health Science Center College

of Medicine and provided clinical training for

students in medicine, nursing, and allied health.

As Temple mushroomed after World War II,

medical services expanded, largely because of

baby booms and the trend to more specialized

medicine. Scott & White and King’s Daughters

each offered board-certified specialists.

By the early 1950s, the Temple Negro

Hospital had closed, but African-American

citizens still needed a quality facility during the

painful era of segregation. In February 1952,

Senator Lyndon Johnson met with a group of

Temple African-American leaders who wanted

to open another hospital. By the end of the

year, Scott & White teamed with African-

American civic leaders, particularly Cora

Anderson, to open a new hospital. An

anonymous out-of-state donor gave $20,000,

and Mrs. Anderson contributed the seed funds

for the facility, named in her honor. The Cora

Anderson Negro Hospital, managed by Scott &

White, was dedicated in May 1953. Cora

Left: Murray L. Chapman, M.D., was

the first radiologist in Temple. He

learned X-ray technology soon after it

arrived in 1896 in Galveston, when

he was a student at the University of

Texas Medical Branch. By 1900,

Temple was one of the few cities in

Texas with X-ray technology. This

1913 photo shows him taking a

patient’s X-ray.


Below: The retreat parade was a daily

observance at McCloskey General

Hospital, which opened in 1942 for

the for the war wounded.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 29

Top: The aerial view of McCloskey

Army General Hospital shows the

wide expanse of the hospital grounds

with the semi-circular parade grounds

in the center.


Middle: Patients and personnel from

McCloskey Army General Hospital

inspect a proposed site for a memorial

to their fallen comrades.


Bottom: McCloskey Army General

Hospital with fifteen hundred beds

soon grew to become one of the army's

largest general hospitals, developing

as an outstanding center for

orthopedic cases, amputations and

neurosurgery. This photo is taken in a

surgical suite.



Top: Cora Anderson (center)

contributed the seed funds the Cora

Anderson Negro Hospital, managed

by Scott & White. Mrs. Anderson is

escorted through the new facility at its

dedication in May 1953.


Middle: Among the staff at Cora

Anderson Hospital in the early 1950s

were (back, from left) Marie

Radakovich, J.A. Henderson, M.D.,

Will Oliver Hodge, Lorenzo Person,

Allen Brown, Daniel O. Brown and

Freddie Lee King; (front) Gertrude M.

Shelby, Pauline Finley, Minnie Lee

Hubbard, L. V. McGarity, Dorothy

Jean Jones, Deloris Brown, Willie

Marion Granville, Helen Franklin,

Dorothy Boozer, and Mildred Holmes.


Bottom: When Scott & White

relocated to its present site on South

Thirty-first Street in late 1963, the

centerpiece of the new hospital was its

twin circular towers. In its former

Avenue G location, the hospital

occupied 31 different buildings spread

over several blocks.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 31

Ling’s Restaurant was among the most

popular restaurants in downtown in

the early 1900s. Y.P. Ling (pictured

far right) was a Chinese immigrant

who arrived with Santa Fe

construction crews in the late 1870s

and stayed in Temple after the

town began.



Anderson Hospital closed in December 1963,

when Scott & White moved to its new site on

South Thirty-first Street and admitted all

patients regardless of race.

The Santa Fe Hospital became a general

community hospital in 1966 and eventually

merged with Scott & White in 1983 to become

the Scott & White Santa Fe Center. Thanks to a

community coalition of physicians, business

leaders and government leaders, Scott &White

and the Olin E. Teague Veterans’ Center in 1979,

became the teaching hospitals for Texas A&M

University System Health Science College of

Medicine. In the beginning, students completed

two years of clinical study in Temple, and the

entire Scott and White professional staff were

college’s faculty members. Since 2007, medical

students spend all four years in Temple.

Scott & White also operates a health

maintenance organization called the Scott &

White Health Plan, established in 1981. By the



The first physician to hang out his shingle in 1881 was Mabry Tucker Cox,

M.D., who lived south of downtown on land coincidently now encompassed

by Scott & White.

early 1990s, medicine and medical-related

services were among the Bell County’s largest

employers, second only to the federal

government. Scott & White remains the city’s

largest employer with about 7,000 employees.



From its very beginning, Temple was a

veritable stewpot of cultures and languages.

Each group maintained its own ethnic

identity through dozens of social clubs and

churches, but these ethnic groups provided a

richness and variety to the city that few other

Central Texas towns enjoyed. Along the way,

each nationality left indelible impressions on the

city. For example, Y. P. Ling, a Chinese

immigrant who had arrived with Santa Fe

construction crews, opened one of the most

popular restaurants in downtown. He married

the daughter of a Temple minister, and they

reared eight daughters, all of whom worked in

the family restaurant.

By 1882 one of the first churches to form was

the German-speaking Evangelical Church, a

congregation of mostly immigrants. The

German Hall, a downtown club, was the social

center for German-speaking residents. Italian


immigrants opened grocery and produce

businesses. Jewish merchants opened shops and

professional offices, such as attorney Augustus

Lewy, Temple’s third mayor.

Among the entrepreneurs who launched

successful businesses was Robert Wells, among

the earliest African-American contractors who

built many downtown buildings. Wells, a

respected church and community leader, helped

raise funds to build the Wayman Chapel African

Methodist Episcopal Church. He proudly drove

his family in their brightly decorated carriage

during the annual Juneteenth parade

downtown, celebrating the day Texas slaves

learned of the Emancipation Proclamation. In

1911, Wells keynoted the twelfth annual

National Negro Business League meeting in

Little Rock, Arkansas, and headed by Booker T.

Washington. Then, the following year,

Washington returned the favor, coming to

Temple to speak at the Carnegie Library.

Czech immigrants, seeking to escape political

and religious oppression and military

conscription in the Austrian Empire, were lured

to Texas beginning in the 1850s. They found

fertile, relatively inexpensive farmland in Central

Texas, and encouraged other families to migrate.

Texas Czechs survived the harsh Blackland

Prairie frontier by cherishing their close-knit

families and maintaining a spirit of cooperation

with their self-sufficient and economical farms.

Begun in 1897, SPJST provides social,

cultural and financial support to Texans of

Czech heritage. Originally chartered as the

Slovanska Podporujici Jednota Statu Texas

(Slavonic Benevolent Order of the State of

Texas), the SPJST offers insurance, annuity and

mortgage loans to its members. Temple became

a Czech cultural center, with the relocation of

SPJST headquarters to Temple in 1953, and the

opening of a library, museum and archives in

1967. In January 1971, SPJST opened a new

headquarters in downtown Temple and

renamed its collection of memorabilia and

permanent historical displays the Czech

Heritage Museum.

Likewise, Spanish-speaking immigrants

made a permanent impact into the city’s

melding personality. Hispanics populated

Temple from its very beginning, building

Above: A birds’-eye view of Temple’s

south side in the early 1900s shows

several churches clustered along

Avenues G and H.


Below: Jeff Hamilton was born a slave

in 1840 was purchased as a young

boy by U.S. Senator Sam Houston.

Hamilton became Houston’s personal

bodyguard and valet, forming a close

relationship with the family. Hamilton

later was a driver for Houston during

his two campaigns for governor. When

Houston was elected governor of

Texas in 1859, he appointed Hamilton

as his “office boy.” Married to the

former Sarah Maxey, he was the

father of 11. Hamilton eventually

moved to Bell County and worked at

Mary Hardin-Baylor College, where

he was a much-admired custodial

employee. Hamilton lived his later

years in Temple. This photo shows

him celebrating his ninety-ninth

birthday. He died in 1941 at the

age of 101.



“The City With a Future” ✦ 33

Right: Czech immigrants, seeking to

escape political and religious

oppression and military conscription in

the Austrian Empire, started arriving

in Texas beginning in the 1850s, with

the heaviest influx between the 1880s

and 1920s. They found fertile,

relatively inexpensive farmland in

Central Texas, and encouraged other

families to migrate. This photo shows

leaders of an Evangelical Czech

Moravian brotherhood, headquartered

in Temple in 1928.


Below: Men who worked the steel lines

between Rogers, Temple and Belton in

the 1940s and 1950s were (front, from

left) Ramon Quintero, Antonio

Matamoros, Merced Lopez, Richard

Lopez, Alfonso Martinez and Rafael

Esparza; (back) Jose Matamoros and

Foreman London.



Opposite, top: A worker hauls a tree

into town to plant somewhere on the

bald Blackland Prairie. Hackberry and

other fast-growing trees were harvested

from riverbanks and transported into

town. In 1899, Temple banker W.

Goodrich Jones led the statewide effort

to observe Arbor Day.


railroads and vital infrastructure to the town as

carpenters, laborers and manual workers.

During the agricultural revolution of the late

19th and the early 20th centuries, many worked

as farm hands. Between 1910 and 1929, spurred

by the 1915 Mexican Revolution, migrant

workers began what became a yearly swing into

the county’s fertile farms. Many chose to stay

when they could find stable work, mostly in

railroads and factories. Like so many other

Opposite, middle and bottom: By the

late 1890s, citizens wanted to improve

the scraggly city square. Temple

banker W. Goodrich Jones led the effort

to plant trees and erect a fountain.

Frank M. Ball of Galveston, owner of

Temple National Bank, donated a

statue and watering trough for horses.

The statue of two children remained at

the site until 1928, when it was moved

to Hillcrest Cemetery. The statue

finally disappeared in the 1970s. In the

lower photo, Terry Sloan poses next to

the statue and trough in 1899.




immigrants to Temple, Spanish-speaking

entrepreneurs opened their own stores,

botanicas, barbershops and restaurants.

Outstanding successes sometimes grew from

modest beginnings. For example, Jose Maria

DeLeon Hernandez, the son of Salvador “La

Cotorra” Hernandez and Amelia DeLeon

Hernandez, was born in a dirt-floor garage in

Temple on a stormy night in October 1940. The

baby was the seventh of 13 children. The young

boy showed early musical promise, and by 1955,

when he was fifteen years old, he played his first

professional music gig—a high school sock hop

for which he earned $5. Going by his nickname,

“Little Joe,” he enlisted his other musical friends

and relatives. That was the beginning of a

remarkable musical career with his extended

family, Little Joe y La Familia. Also called the

“King of the Brown Sound,” Hernandez has also

helped pioneer Tejano music, a mix of traditional

norteño music and country, blues, big band and

rock styles. By 2008, Little Joe’s band garnered its

third Grammy and international respect as a

groundbreaking artist.



No one shaped the early course of Temple

economically and culturally more than banker

William Goodrich Jones (1860-1950), recognized

as the “father of Texas forestry.” Jones was not a

wilderness advocate but rather a supporter of

conservation for prudent use of Texas forests. He

also knew that his program of sustained-yield

forestry and reforestation would be successful

only if he could convince landowners that good

forestry was also good business.

He promoted the multiple-use concept of the

forests in Texas and was interested in conserving

the soil, grasses and wildlife, as well as the trees.

He also constantly urged the establishment of

parks. To make every town a “green town” would,

he believed, improve the lives of Texas citizens.

A native of New York, son of a merchant,

watchmaker and jeweler, Jones received his

pivotal education in Europe, where his mother’s

brother was French composer Jacques

Offenbach. There the younger Jones gained a

deep appreciation of the beauty and commercial

advantages of well-managed forests. His abiding

“The City With a Future” ✦ 35

Above: The home of Jim and Miriam

Ferguson on North Seventh is the

home of two Texas governors, both

controversial. When she was elected,

Ku Klux Klansmen rode horseback up

the street and lobbed bricks and rocks

though the Fergusons’ windows while

Mrs. Ferguson and her daughters

calmly ate supper.


Below: The Hammersmith Building,

erected in the 1890s, remained a

downtown Temple landmark until the

late 1960s.


principle was simple: When one cuts a tree from

the forest, he must plant another in its place.

By 1888, he became president of a new bank

in Temple, where he quickly established himself

as a civic and business leader. Disheartened at

the flat, treeless terrain of the Blackland Prairie,

he urged townspeople to plant trees. Soon

Temple looked like “a green oasis in a sea of

black plowed land,” he said. To promote tree

planting statewide, Jones advocated the

adoption of an official Arbor Day, which first

began in Temple. Encouraged by President

Theodore Roosevelt, Jones helped to organize a

conservation agency for Texas. In 1914 he

gathered key lumbermen, conservationists, and

public officials together for a meeting in Temple

to found the Texas Forestry Association. With

assistance from the United States Forest Service,

this group drafted legislation to establish a state

department of forestry and lobbied for its

enactment. Later the state authorized a system

of Texas state forests, one named in his honor.

Probably no Temple citizens were as

controversial or as polarizing as James Edward

“Jim” Ferguson and his wife, Miriam Amanda

Wallace Ferguson. The locals were split in their

loyalties: The Fergusons were generous to their

friends with state contracts and kickbacks.

While their favoritism helped lift some Bell

County citizens out of the Great Depression,

others were embarrassed by their cronyism and

political scandals that many believed reflected

negatively on Temple in general. A Belton

attorney, Jim Ferguson moved to Temple with

his wife, the former Miriam Amanda Wallace,

and their two daughters in 1907 into a spacious

three-story house at 518 North Seventh Street.

Although he had never held local political

posts, he was elected governor in 1914. His

electrifying speeches in support of farmers and

his captivating personality appealed to voters.

Ferguson has a “corn-pone, country-boy” style,

backslapping farmers and deftly buttonholing

constituents. He kept his promises to help the

disenfranchised by enacting state aid to rural

schools, mandating compulsory school

attendance, generous state assistance to fund



The city that had built its reputation on railroads almost became an important aviation center. As early as 1910, Temple citizens

heard strange buzzing skyward as birds scattered. Cutting through the clouds were Temple-manufactured airplanes, products of the

first aircraft factory in Texas. Engineering genius George W. collaborated with his newspaperman brother, E.K. Williams, to launch

rudimentary aircraft as early as 1908. Other partners were George Carroll and Roy Sanderford.

By 1910 they had successfully taken flight over Temple. Their factory, located at the former Woodlawn airport in what is now near

the intersection of Interstate 35 and Loop 363 in southwest Temple. Their landing strip became a popular halfway stop for pilots

flying between San Antonio and Dallas-Fort Worth. The Temple Daily Telegram regularly reported the comings and goings of such

aviation luminaries as Charles Lindbergh, Wiley Post and Amelia Earhart as they soared through Texas.

The entrepreneurs parlayed easily maneuverable craft into Texas Aero Corporation to become leaders in airmail and newspaper

carriers by air. Lauded as one of the safest air mail carriers in the nation, Texas Aero was significant because it was equipped for night

flight—an innovation in that era. Despite successes, the plant closed after the 1929 Wall Street crash and George Williams’ death in

August 1930 in a student training disaster.

At the same time, a young boy, Vincent Justus Burnelli born in Temple in 1895, grew up seeing the Williams brothers and their

incredible flying machines. An aeronautics engineer instrumental in furthering the flying wing concept, Burnelli went on to earn

degrees at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He pioneered the world's first air freighter that could carry large, heavy loads.

Temple resident Retha McCulloch Crittenden in 1929 was a charter member of the “Ninety-Nines,” the first women to become

licensed airplane pilots. Another charter member was Amelia Earhart.

The dedication of Draughon-Miller

Airport in 1941, located on seven

hundred acres off Highway 36 West,

was considered essential to the city’s

civil defense during World War II.

However, Temple was the location of

early aviation pioneers, E. K. and

George Williams.


university building programs and providing

funding for schools for the mentally retarded.

Ferguson was narrowly reelected in 1916, but

rumors of his questionable policies and his

staunch anti-prohibition position created unrest

among voters and fellow politicians.

In his second term, he created the State

Highway Department, now the Texas

Department of Transportation, and expanded

the state prison system. However, amid his

progressive changes, ad valorem taxes more

than doubled. In July 1917, a Travis County

“The City With a Future” ✦ 37

Above: As Temple grew, more

groceries popped up in surrounding

neighborhoods. The Brady Grocery,

pictured in the early 1920s, remained

a popular downtown market, with

heavily stocked shelves.



Below: The J. C. Dallas home, 417

North Ninth, is typical of Temple’s

north side homes, an eclectic mix of

Victorian, craftsman and post-World

War II structures.


grand jury indicted him on charges of

misapplication of public funds, embezzlement

and diversion of special funds. He impeached

on ten charges and permanently barred from

holding public office. His successor was

Lieutenant Governor William A. Hobby, married

to the former Oveta Culp, a Killeen native who

grew up in Temple.

The disgraced Ferguson ran his wife’s

campaign for the governorship in 1924 against a

candidate endorsed by the Ku Klux Klan.

Klansmen rode horseback up North Seventh and

lobbed bricks and rocks though the Fergusons’

windows while Mrs. Ferguson and her daughters

calmly ate supper. Because Jim was often called

“Pa” and because of Mrs. Ferguson’s first and

middle initials, she was frequently referred to as

“Ma” Ferguson, although she did not like the

nickname. She assured Texans that, once in office,

she would follow the advice of her husband and

that Texas thus would gain “two governors for the

price of one.” The irony in her successful

campaign is that Mrs. Ferguson had opposed

women’s suffrage a decade earlier, believing “a

woman’s place was in the home.” Nevertheless,

women’s votes were partially responsible for

returning her to the Governor’s Mansion in 1924.

However, controversy followed her,

especially criticism on her granting pardons and

paroles, and in the letting of state road

contracts. She pardoned an average of 100

convicts a month. Detractors accused them of

accepting bribes and granting road contracts—

including several in Bell County—to cronies in

return for lucrative kickbacks. She lost her reelection

bid in 1926.

After a few failed attempts to reenter politics,

Mrs. Ferguson ran successfully in 1932 for

another term as governor. She opened her

Temple home on North Seventh Street to a

community reception to celebrate her return to

the State Capitol. Texas was hard-hit by the

Great Depression, and she promised to lower

taxes and cut state spending. President Franklin

Roosevelt’s recovery measures overshadowed

her first few attempts at stabilizing the economy.

However, capitalizing on New Deal largesse, she

and her husband appointed friends to

commissions and boards controlling lucrative

federal monies.

During her second term, Mrs. Ferguson fired

Texas Rangers who had supported her political

opponent. She then replaced them with new

Rangers who, in the words of one historian, “were

a contemptible lot.” Crime, corruption and

political patronage were rampant, and the Rangers

were disgraced. For example, the outlaws Clyde

Barrow and Bonnie Parker and their gang swerved

through Bell and Milam counties on a robbing

spree, killing a Temple man on Christmas Day

1932 in front of his house.

Miriam chose to retire from office in 1934,

rather than to run again, and the couple moved

permanently to Austin. However, at her husband’s

insistence in 1940, the sixty-five-year-old former

governor announced her candidacy one more

time, but voters thought otherwise. The Ferguson

era—the good, bad and ugly—was over.




When the United States entered World War I

in April 1917, eager young men signed up for

military service. Young women, too, were

recruited for service in the Army Nurse Corps

and Red Cross. Temple citizens rallied to

support the troops by knitting socks and scarves

and staging tobacco drives to collect cigarettes

to send overseas. The Temple Daily Telegram ran

regular front-page updates on “Send Sammie a

Smoke” collections. “You ask me what we need

to win this war? I answer tobacco as much as

bullets,” said General John “Black Jack”

Pershing, commander of U.S. troops in Europe.

Temple did not just boom into the 1920s; it

roared and whistled through the decade like a

redballing freight train speeding through the

countryside. Temple residents enjoyed a diverse

economy—balanced with jobs from rails,

manufacturing and agriculture. An expansive

bond issue fueled the paving of streets, laying of

sidewalks and creation of more schools. Banker

Charles Campbell organized the Temple County

Club in 1920, two miles west of Temple, along

the Santa Fe-created Lake Polk (later renamed

Lake Jim Thornton). Golf, tennis, fishing and

duck hunting were the favorite activities. In the

late 1980s, the County Club, deeded to the city

from the Santa Fe Railway, was renovated and

renamed the Sammons Community Center.

By the 1920s, the city with its impressive

growth, now reaching 15,333 inhabitants, was

the youngest city in the state of its size and

importance. Another successful bond issue

meant that additional street paving and water

and sewer improvements could be completed by

1927. Some authorities estimate that by the late

1920s, the Missouri-Kansas-Texas and the Gulf,

Colorado & Santa Fe railways provided jobs for

twenty percent of residents.

The Blackland Experiment Station opened in

1913 as the fifth substation of the Texas

Agricultural Experiment Station and is now one

of 12 regional stations. The 547-acre station

operates cooperatively with the Research

Division of the U.S. Soil Conservation Service

and has done major research on soil erosion,

terracing, and contour farming, as well as

Blackland soils chemistry and physical structure.

All this added to Temple’s reputation for

outstanding hospitals. Gone was its unseemly

nineteenth-century moniker of “Mudtown”;

In 1920, a group of Temple High

School boys formed the “Fifteen Jolly

Good Fellows,” a social club

proclaiming “One for All and All for

One.” They rented second-floor rooms

of a downtown business at Avenue A

and 2nd Street, which plenty of room

for a pool table, lounge and dance

floor. The early members included

Harvey Smith, Maxwell Campbell,

Lee Quillen, John Perry, Theodore

Floca, Charles Cox, Barton Cox, Ben

Adrian, Gator Johnson, Willie Casey,

Jack Jones and Clifford Jones. By

1926, when this photo was taken, the

membership had grown. They are

wearing a distinctive skull-andcrossbones

vests with the club’s initials

FJGF. In the photo are (seated, from

left) Jack Childress, Olin Sullivan,

Roland Fuller, Ollie Foreman, Henry

Easterling, Paul Echols, Ike

Alexander, John Lowrey, Lynn

Gardenhire, Dick Watts, Frank

Horton, E. C. Johnson, Charles Cox,

Gator Johnson, Theodore Floca, Lynn

Zarr, Bernard Barrett, John Hopkins,

and A. S. Fouts. Standing (from left to

right): George Wisennand, Edward

Jarrell, Boots Temple, Son Childress,

Budgie Denison, Nelson Russell, Lee

Thomas, Cap McElroy, Robert

McBurney, Glenn McKenzie, Pig

Grimes, Jim Ed Russell, Philip

Griffith, G. F. Peck, Morton Goldburg,

Bob Gresham, Buster Brown, and

Hayward Shull.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 39


Newspapers were abuzz in 1906 with the latest epidemic—baseball. As the Galveston Daily News reported, “Temple is a ball

town.” Temple’s Woodson Field became the center of pop flies and roaring crowds. Baseball came to town in 1905 with a

professional ball club, the Temple Boll Weevils (1905-1907), part of the Texas League. Despite a rough start, semi-pro ball became

a regular feature in town.

The Texas Gum Company of Temple produced sets of full-color baseball cards inserted in gum and distributed them throughout

the state. The city planned a new park in 1933 on school district land on what was nicknamed the “Cotton Yards,” East Adams

Avenue acreage near the Santa Fe tracks. The Temple Lions Club sold shares in a private corporation to pay for the construction.

Local contractor Guy Baker donated most of his time and expertise to the park, which was later named “Baker Field.” The new park

became the home field to the Temple Surgeons.

For six decades, Temple had other professional ball clubs, including the Governors, the Tigers and the Surgeons before the Texas

League folded just before World War II. Neighbors flocked to the bleachers to see the action, or merely listened to the crowds'

roars from their opened windows at home. After the war, baseball hit another homer. In 1947, Temple became Eagles territory

with the relocation of Texas-based franchise of Class B Big State League.

A band of Temple citizens bought fifty-one percent of the team. Although it finished in the cellar in that initial 1949 season,

the partners purchased the remaining forty-nine percent. Gradually improving, the Eagles won the Big State Championship in

1952. In 1957 the Redlegs, another Big State team, arrived in town. The Big State League finally closed that same year, and Temple’s

baseball fields held only fond memories of pro ball.

However, that did not mean baseball fever had been quelled. Temple businessman Drayton McLane bought the Houston Astros

ball club in 1993, further encouraging the dreams of fields and fly balls. With McLane piloting the Astros, the team racked up the

fourth best Major League record. McLane also has an interest in Nolan Ryan’s minor league team, the Round Rock Express, an

Astros minor league affiliate, first in the AA Texas League and eventually in the AAA Pacific Coast League.

Both teams come to Temple regularly to pump up community enthusiasm and to visit fans in local hospitals.

Temple was a “ball town,” with a pro

team as early as 1905. “Diamond

fever” even spilled over to Temple

High School, where the baseball

team in 1910-1911 enjoyed a

successful season.



Top: Brady and Black Hardware in the

early 1920s touted the latest in farm

equipment and horseless carriages.



The Temple Daily Telegram,

established in 1907, opened on the

site of the Opera House, which burned

down. In the background is the

Temple Central Fire Station, which

housed city offices.


Bottom: The “Rotary Anns,” the

women’s auxiliary of the Rotary Club,

held a district convention in Temple

in March 1930. Members gathered

for a lavish garden party on the

grounds of the North Eleventh Street

home of Dr. and Mrs. J. M. Woodson,

nicknamed the “Chinese Mansion,”

completed with music

and lavish tableau.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 41

Above: Beginning with Temple’s first

birthday in June 1882, the city held

annual flower parades and

celebrations. The downtown parades

featured elaborately decorated

wagons, buggies and carriages,

marching bands and “most beautiful

baby contests.” Highlight of the 1897

procession were Mrs. W.E. Hall (front)

and (back) Mrs. George Pendleton

and her daughter, Mrs. N.A. Sayer.


Below: The first Temple public school

contained all grades. In September

1883, Temple residents approved

creating a public school district. In

December, voters approved a bond

issue to buy an existing private school

building for $4,392. The Temple City

Council appointed school board

members, and the city council

regularly undertook school business.


Temple now appreciated a more dignified

slogan: “Hospital Center of the South,” so

nicknamed after a large medical convention,

and “Progressive Temple.” Temple’s three

hospitals—Temple Sanitarium (renamed Scott

& White), King’s Daughters and the Santa Fe

Employees hospitals had all expanded their

facilities and staff during the 1920s.

Temple in four decades seemed to have it all:

four movie houses, five bakeries, eight hotels

and 22 churches. The city even boasted a

championship professional baseball club, aptly

named “The Temple Surgeons.” Confidence

reigned. In October 1929, new owners, Ward

Mayborn and his sons Frank, Don and Ted, took

over the Temple Daily Telegram, begun in 1907.

“It’s not the hospitals or the railroads or the new

hotels which make for this town an impression

which sticks,” announced the new editor. “It’s

the people who welcome you and immediately

become your friends and neighbors. As long as

that spirit prevails in Temple, the town will grow

and prosper.”

Even the weather cooperated. The Chamber

of Commerce touted the area’s mild climate as a

draw for newcomers. Refreshing Gulf breezes

prevailed throughout the year, except during

summer’s peak. The winters were mild and “cold

enough to add zest and pep to life,” said the

Chamber’s promotional material. Pure water,

geographically central location, two large

railway trunk lines—Temple seemed blessed.

Temple citizens during the 1920s continually

looked for new community enhancements. A

Lutheran church delegation visited Temple in

1924, investigating future sites for a college. To

lure the college to Temple, citizens pledged to

raise $20,000 and donate 20 acres. The fund

drive foundered, and the Lutherans opened

Concordia College in Austin in 1926. Still

hopeful they could get a college in Temple,

business and community leaders—spurred by

John S. McCelvey, M.D., and sparked by Temple

Independent School District superintendent L.

C. Procter—pledged to continue their efforts.

Temple College, then called Temple Junior

College, opened in the fall 1926, thanks to

cooperative efforts from the Temple Chamber of

Commerce with the assistance of the University


of Texas and the board of trustees of Temple

Public Schools. The college used Temple public

school buildings rent-free. The next year, the

State Department of Education and the

Association of Texas Colleges recognized the

Temple campus as a first-class junior college.

Voters turned down a bond proposal in 1928

to construct facilities separate from the public

schools. Forced with closure, the college

consolidated with the Temple Public Schools. The

public schools shared their administration and

faculty, and the consolidation ensured the survival

of the college. Thus, the school superintendent

also served as the college president.

For some, agriculture held fewer promises

than manufacturing. For example, A. P. Brashear,

Sr., left farming and ranching to set up a business

reselling school furniture under the name “the

Texas School Supply Company.” In 1927, he

began manufacturing his own merchandise.

Renamed American Desk, the company found a

lucrative niche in the post-World War II babyboom

years. Eventually American Desk became

among the state’s largest industries and a major

supplier of classroom seating products. Seven

decades later, Artco-Bell acquired American

Desk. Brashear and his company lured Ralph

Wilson and his laminate manufacturing company

from California to Temple.

Another distinctive homegrown industry also

became a successful Temple industry. The Floca

family began in the grocery business, but in

1924 son Theodore Floca, Sr., bought a bottling

company, which eventually became the popular

Temple Bottling Company, producing Dr Pepper

and many other varieties of bottled drinks. By

the opening of the twenty-first century, Temple

Bottling remained a major Texas bottler.

Temple was in a record building boom in late

1929. St. Mary’s Catholic Church opened its new

school, rectory, convent and church. A new

Municipal Building was dedicated, and its block

was renamed “The City Square.” Building

Left: The Roman Catholics established

a mission in Temple soon after the

town began in 1881. St. Mary’s

Catholic Church building was

completed in 1895, a year after the

rectory was finished. The property

was sold to Scott & White, and the

church relocated to its present site on

South Ninth Street.


Bottom, left: Shortly after its founding

in 1881, Temple became a popular

shipping point for cotton and other

agricultural products. In the

foreground are pedestrians’

stepping stones used before the

wooden planks and eventually

sidewalks were installed.


Below: Beginning in 1924, Temple

Bottling Company manufactured Dr

Pepper and other bottled drinks.



“The City With a Future” ✦ 43

Right: The Kyle Hotel was the city’s

tallest building when it opened in

1929. This 1930s photo shows the

1911 Post Office and First Methodist

Church, completed in 1913.


Below: When it opened in 1928,

the Doering Hotel, later renamed the

Hawn, featured rooms for $1.50

and “the best food” and “service with

a smile.”


permits for the city were more than $1.4 million.

In 1929, about 1,000 railway employees worked

in the 30-stall roundhouse, yards, shops,

warehouses, repair gangs, road crews and

business offices. Newcomers to downtown

Temple were awed by the city’s skyscrapers: the

Doering Hotel, opening in 1928, and the Kyle

Hotel, welcoming guests the next year because

Temple was the “tallest city” between Waco and

Austin. Earlier multi-story structures were the

Temple National Bank and the Professional

Building. The 1929 City Directory described

Temple as “a truly American City” with 62

industrial plants, five hospitals, burgeoning

railroads as well as cotton, poultry and livestock

production. “Temple can really be termed a wellbalanced

city,” reported the directory.

However, as high as business and industry

surged, it thundered to a smashing collapse. The

stock market crash of October 1929 at first

seemed not to affect most livelihoods. Gradually

economic hard times crept into town like a catfooted

burglar. By September 1930, cotton

prices plummeted to pennies per pounds and

land sold for as little as $25 per acre. Troubles

deepened with a drought and cotton disease.


Left: This block with the Elks building

and Temple Trust Company now is

the site of the Temple Federal Building

on Avenue A.


Below: The 1930s economic

depression created hardships

throughout the city and the county.

Three of the town’s four movie houses

closed. Despite the tight money,

citizens created plenty of

entertainment. Temple High School

band played at the 1931 movie

opening at the Arcadia Theater. The

movie, “Skippy,” starring Jackie

Cooper, garnered an Oscar for its

young star and hundreds of

enthusiastic ticket-buyers, even during

the Depression.



The miserable harvest created shock waves that

jarred all facets of Temple’s economic health.

Businesses failed and incomes plunged.

To make matters worse, four of Temple’s five

banks closed between 1931 and 1933, railroads

cut salaries drastically and laid off workers, and

farmers faced rock-bottom crop prices. Although

King’s Daughters and Scott & White each had

nurse training schools, neither school admitted

classes for 1933 because of financial difficulties.

The Santa Fe Hospital, the railroaders’ hospital,

laid off workers and closed one wing. Physicians

were frequently “paid” with live chickens,

slaughtered pigs, home-canned foods and fresh

produce. Bell County lost about ten percent of its

population between 1930 and 1940. Temple,

which had enjoyed double-digit growth since its

beginning, remained stagnant. The city’s

“The City With a Future” ✦ 45

Right: Temple citizens were

imaginative in their entertainment,

including this 1890s costume party.


Below: The Knob Creek Masonic

Lodge conducted a foundation-laying

ceremony at the new Post Office

building in 1910. The Post Office,

located at North Main and Adams,

served the city until the 1960s, when

a new Main Post Office was

constructed. The distinctive building

became the Temple Public Library

and is now part of Temple College’s

Downtown Center.



population declined by only one resident—from

15,345 to 15,344.

Three of the town’s four movie houses closed.

No matter, because few could spare the dimes

for tickets. Despite the financial hardships,

Temple residents attempted to create their

entertainment. The Temple Civic Orchestra gave

its first concert at First Baptist church in March

1930. The Temple Little Theater also organized

at the same time. Social and civic clubs staged

their annual productions featuring comedy skits

and music. Despite the hard times, Temple High

basketball coach George W. “Red” Forehand led

the Wildcats to a state title in 1932. The

stunning wins of the varsity basketball, baseball

and football teams buoyed spirits and helped

reinforce community pride.

Temple merchants attempted to increase

trade, often by unusual means. To encourage

more shoppers downtown, the city started

enforcing one-hour parking in 1931. Besides

lowering prices and issuing chits, coins and

coupons for goods, they installed slot machines

and sold liquor “under the table.” The

Temple Daily Telegram in 1932 launched its

annual Pioneer Day festivities to honor

longtime settlers.

The myriad efforts eventually yielded

success. By 1936 business profits rose 40 to

50 percent, equaling 1928’s profits. Public

works projects got under way including

water system improvements, a $67,000

gymnasium and vocational agricultural

building for Temple schools. However, the

increased trade brought another peril. By 1938,

traffic accidents and fatalities increased in

record numbers.

Some Temple citizens tried to perk up the

local economy with creative ventures. The 1936

Texas Centennial provided an opportunity to

welcome more visitors in conjunction with the

annual Central Texas Pecan Show. The Dienst

Museum opened on June 8, 1936, at 804

North Third Street, the first such museum in

Temple. Local dentist-turned-respectedhistorian

Alexander Dienst worked with the

Temple Chamber of Commerce, City Federation

of Women’s Clubs, Arno Art League, Temple

Board of Development and the city government

to create it. On display were Dienst’s collection

of five thousand Native American arrowheads,

fossils, guns, pipes and other artifacts. In

its first two weeks, more than 2,500 visitors from

25 states walked through the museum.

Temple staunchly supported troops

during World War II as this early

1940s military parade shows. With

the creation of Camp Hood in Killeen

and the opening of McCloskey Army

General Hospital, citizens opened

their hearts, their homes and their

wallets to support the war effort.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 47



The first Temple High School graduates in 1890 were Katharine Sloan, Ray

Wilcox and Alice Robbins.

Learning tough lessons from the drought and

dust bowl of the 1930s, the Texas legislature

created the State Soil and Water Conservation

Board in 1939 to enforce state conservation laws

and organize soil conservation districts. Temple

was selected as the state headquarters. By 1949

the agency oversaw sixteen soil-conservation

districts, and in 1965, the agency’s name changed

to State Soil and Water Conservation Board.


Other men’s passions across vast oceans

fueled tremendous transformations in Temple

and Bell County for the next half century.

Between 1940 and December 7, 1941, Temple

and Bell County experienced a great

transformation. Army green rapidly took over

the dusty gray countryside as construction

crews started building Camp Hood in west Bell

County. The Army installation would eventually

straddle 218,000 acres of western Bell and

Coryell counties. In all, three hundred farming

and ranching families gave up their land for the

camp. The first major military unit arrived at the

new installation in April 1942, but the camp

officially opened in September 1942.

This area was not the Army’s first choice.

Military planners preferred nearby sites about 50

miles away in McLennan and Bosque counties, but

Temple Daily Telegram editor and publisher Frank

W. Mayborn, heading the Temple Chamber of

Commerce’s Industrial Development Committee,

vigorously urged Washington politicians and the

Department of the Army to consider Bell County.

In a dramatic, 11th-hour switch in plans, the

Eighth Corps Area in January 1942 announced

that the anti-tank training camp would be located

within mortar shot of Killeen and Copperas Cove.

Bell County would never be the same again.

Meanwhile, Templeites of all ages pitched in

for the war effort. Scrap metal drives promoted

by American Desk Manufacturing collected

nearly 68,000 pounds in 90 days, while Temple

schoolchildren brought nearly 2,000 pounds to

the Temple police department for the city drive.

Temple voters in 1941 approved a $50,000

bond issue for the city’s first civil defense

project, a $350,000 airport, now called

Draughon-Miller Airport, located on 700 acres

off Highway 36 West.

Lieutenant Colonel Andrew Davis Bruce, Tank

Destroyer Training and Firing Center, moved to

Temple in January 1942 and set up his command

post in rented offices in the First National Bank

The Gothic revival Christ Episcopal

Church building was completed in

1905. The congregation, founded in

1883, was among the first in the city.



uilding, 18 South Main Street. His family moved

into a north Temple home. The next month he

wore the star of a brigadier general.

As Camp Hood started to swell with soldiers,

Temple prepared for the onslaught of visitors as

Temple became the city of choice on soldiers’

paydays. By February 1942, about thirty officers

and civilian employees staffed temporary

headquarters of the Tank Destroyer Training and

Firing Center in Temple. The Temple Chamber of

Commerce served as a clearinghouse for property

owners and prospective military tenants. All those

new people strained the city’s infrastructure—

water, sewage, schools, stores and recreational

facilities. The Temple USO, opened in 1943, was a

favorite way station near the downtown Santa Fe

Depot. The only USO in Texas with a swimming

pool, it also featured a bowling alley, billiards,

badminton court and snack hall. Many businesses

chartered buses between Camp Hood and

downtown Temple to shuttle soldiers to the stores.

With Camp Hood thirty miles away, the

Army activated McCloskey General Hospital in

June 1942 in an open field along South First

Street. The hospital was named for Major James

A. McCloskey, who was killed on Bataan on

March 26, 1942, the first regular Army doctor to

lose his life in World War II. Selected to head

the hospital was General James A. Bethea, M.D.,

a career Army physician who first served during

World War I. The chief of Surgical Service at

Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, he was at the

top of his career and approaching retirement.

However, Pearl Harbor changed his plans.

His experience in Temple was among his

best. “It is certainly not right to say that you

enjoyed your war service. There is nothing

about war that is enjoyable. However, at

McCloskey, I had a sense of satisfaction in

knowing that I was doing more for suffering

humanity than I had ever done before.”

When Bethea arrived in Temple, he was the

only person assigned to the hospital, still under

construction. “I didn’t even have a postage

stamp, much less an office or typewriters, or a

nickel to spend,” he recalled. Under his expert

guidance, however, McCloskey, with fifteen

hundred beds, soon grew to become one of the

army’s largest general hospitals, developing as

an outstanding center for orthopedic cases,

amputations and neurosurgery. It provided

expert care and treatment for all military

personnel and had many medical specialists on

its staff. The reconditioning of sick and injured

soldiers who did not need further hospital care

was carried on at the hospital annex in Waco,

about thirty-five miles away. As patients poured



The telephone center at McCloskey

General Army Hospital was one of

the busiest and most popular desks for

patients and families.


The Texas Telephone Company stretched the first phone lines in 1886 to

serve twelve customers.

“The City With a Future” ✦ 49

Right: Temple High School study hall

was a spacious auditorium. To ensure

stability in its new town, the Santa Fe

Railway in 1881 quickly dedicated

town lots for schools and churches.


Below: Temple College, formerly

Temple Junior College, relocated from

the Temple Independent School

buildings to a new campus in 1957.


into the hospital, construction crews continued

working around them. Work began immediately

on another fifteen hundred beds. McCloskey

was, according to Bethea, “the biggest business

[in Temple]. Our payroll at McCloskey was over

a million dollars a month at its height.” The

bruising economic depression of the 1930s was

officially over.

McCloskey patients were gratified especially

by the generosity of Texans, particularly Temple

citizens, who donated time and millions of

dollars in money, equipment and services to help

the soldiers’ recovery. For example, Fort Worth

schoolchildren raised $10,000 to buy an

adjoining tract for a lake and park, named

Tarrant Park in their honor. Numerous celebrities

and movie stars came to visit and entertain.

Joining the list of esteemed visitors were senators,

future presidents, European royalty, governors

and even author Helen Keller. Local musicians


and music teachers volunteered to play and teach

hospitalized patients, considered the first formal

use of music therapy in rehabilitation. However,

McCloskey’s staff measured true success in

transforming shattered soldiers’ lives.

Across South First Street from the hospital was

a World War II prisoner-of-war camp, located on

what is now the Temple College campus. Each

morning, prisoners wearing dark blue fatigues

and large white letters “POW” were marched to

McCloskey, where they worked on the grounds

under guards. The exact number of prisoners is

unknown, although some estimates say up to 250

men. During the years of their incarceration, the

prisoners constructed a nine-hole golf course and

planted 30,000 permanent shrubs and 1,000

trees on hospital grounds. For their labor, the

prisoners got three meals daily, medical care and

rigid supervision. As they worked, American

wounded arrived by trains, carried on stretchers

or wheeled in chairs. The contrast was stark:

German POWs were robust and tanned; the

wounded soldiers, often thin and gaunt from

their combat experiences. By 1946, the prisonerof-war

camp with its tar-papered wood-frame

buildings closed. Its 32 acres of land, valued at

$18,742, was sold to the City of Temple.

After the war, the former POW grounds found

a new life as the permanent home of Temple Junior

College. In fall 1953, the city government and the

public school system, including Temple Junior

College, formally separated. Temple Junior College

officially separated itself from the Temple

Independent School District two years later. The

former prisoner-of-war grounds and buildings

were deeded to Temple Junior College. When the

Downtown Temple in the 1950s was

the business and shopping center of

the city.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 51


Law enforcement was an issue in Temple from day one. “It was at a time when the town was as much of a night operation as

of day,” reported the Temple Daily Telegram in 1923, “when the gambling houses, the saloon and the accompanying auxiliaries of

these were in the saddle; when the railroad construction forces still came back to Temple to blow in their money and when men

quick on the trigger made this their stamping ground.”

The first murder was a transient painter named McDonald, who was shot in Bigham’s Saloon. Someone else murdered another

man by hanging him on the Eighth Street Bridge over Knob Creek in 1884. His death remains unsolved.

Unfortunately, passing trains and vulnerable passengers were easy prey for outlaws. Robberies and hold-ups were frequent,

especially in the outlying rural areas. The Temple Times reported that Angus McKenzie, a night-train engineer, thwarted a holdup

as the train speeded at full-steam. McKenzie opened the firebox as the gunman approached, and the firebox flames blasted the

crook’s face. Then McKenzie pushed him off the train at full throttle. For his bravery, the railroad company awarded the engineer

a gold watch for risking his life to save the train.

Taming a city took peace officers with a rare combination of tact and force. As city marshal from 1885 to 1897, Marshal

William Taylor was credited with piloting Temple during its transition from “wild and wooly” to “a semblance of control by the

elements which frowned on the wide-open features of the town,” according to the Daily Telegram.

During Taylor’s twelve years, bandits twice attempted rob the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railway passenger train within the city

limits. In the 1880s up until the 1920s, marshals dealt with fugitive monkeys, dancing bears, escaped circus animals, and the

usual bunch of hooligans—pickpockets, gamblers, streetwalkers, and over-imbibing revelers. To solve his problem, Taylor put

many tramps on boxcars headed to Galveston, but the port city’s chief of police later wrote and asked the city to cease and desist.

Early in his career, Taylor and his deputies nabbed a gang of Temple-based train robbers who had plagued several M-K-T trains,

randomly shooting victims as they looted passengers and cargos. The Temple Times reported the desperados “had been promiscuous

in their shooting.” After a six-month investigation, Taylor arrested five suspects, and one of them, “Dead-Eye” Buckhanan,

turned state’s evidence against his cronies.

At first, town marshals handled police duties. Revenues from fines covered their salaries. Training was almost non-existent.

Crimes and misdemeanors kept marshals busy. In 1891 alone, deputies investigated 793 complaints and only 13 scofflaws

escaped before they could be prosecuted.

Taylor had had a varied, adventuresome career, which probably gave him skills to deal with undesirable characters. Before he

took the marshal’s job, he worked as a cowboy and a butcher. After he left law enforcement, he spent two years gold prospecting

in Klondike, Alaska. Returning home, he operated a funeral home, which was probably a good career choice, considering the lawlessness

of the early days.

A steam locomotive pulls into the

former Santa Fe Depot, which was

torn down to make way for the

present depot, constructed in 1910.

The back of this postcard reads: “This

is the 438 that killed Jim Sealy.” 438

refers to the locomotive.



Enforcement was a continuous challenge. For example, everyone considered City Marshal Sherman B. Williams a “quietly efficient”

law-and-order man who tried to quell the raucous citizenry. On June 2, 1899, after public pressure, he closed all gambling

houses. However, when he left on vacation two weeks later, the cards, dice and wagering returned with full vigor. Deputy Tom

Hart tried to enforce Williams’ edict. Hart told the Temple Times: “Just say that they may stay open, but they won’t find it very

profitable. I cannot compel a man to close his house, but I can compel them not to carry on games in that house. I’ll prosecute

anyone who does.” In the 1930s, Temple’s first “motorcycle cop” was Nimrod “Beans” Ham, who chased down speeders at 30 to

35 mph.

The Temple Police Department organized into a professional force in 1922. Wiley Fisher, the last man to serve as marshal,

became the first police chief. The department came under State Civil Service in 1949. One of the earliest comprehensive police

schools opened in Temple in January 1950. Sponsored by the FBI, the Texas Department of Public Safety and others, the school

covered almost every phase of law enforcement.

W. I. McMahon was the first city marshall in 1881. Other marshals serving prior to 1922 were Green Pattison, Sam Walker,

William Taylor, Cap Lightfoot, Sherman B. Williams, Dave Osburn, George Gamble, Pat Hunt, John L. Irvin, and Wiley Fisher.

A list of Temple police chiefs:

Wiley Fisher, 1922-1926

Lee Saulsbury, 1926-1930

Sam Hall, 1930-1934

B. G. Duncan, 1934-1936

Will I. Cooper, 1937

Frank Bouldin, 1937-1947

W. M. McDonald, 1947-1956

A. C. Berry, 1956-1957

T. R. B. Ellis, 1957-1958

A. C. Berry, 1959-1971

Leonard M. Hancock, 1971-1983

Thomas Vannoy, 1983-1995

Ralph M. Evangelous, 1995-2004

Gary O. Smith, 2004-Present

college moved from TISD buildings, a new campus

opened up on these grounds in 1957. In 1996,

officials dropped the “Junior” from the college’s

name to reflect its role as a comprehensive college,

offering transfer programs, technical education,

continuing education, career and workforce

training and cultural activities.



After World War II, the military installation

in Killeen and military hospital in Temple had

proved to be an economic blessing to the

county. Newspaper publisher Frank W.

Mayborn, banker Guy Draper, attorney Byron

Skelton and other civic leaders teamed up as

Temple’s War Projects Committee to make

sure these remained in the county with their

fullest resources. Their goal was to make Camp

Hood a permanent military installation. That

occurred in 1950, further solidifying and

diversifying Temple’s economy. Camp Hood,

renamed Fort Hood, grew to become the

county’s largest employer.

Between 1940 and 1960, Temple again

boomed, with its population nearly doubling,

rising from 15,344 to 30,419 within two

decades. The Temple area became a convenient

place for military personnel to settle after

discharge. Temple was poised to redefine and

reestablish itself for the second half of the

twentieth century. For example, the community

boldly anticipated growth by building three new

public schools in 1950.

Perhaps no two men had impact that is more

lasting on the last half of the twentieth century

than Frank W. Mayborn and Judge Byron Skelton.

Mayborn was editor and publisher of the Temple

Daily Telegram and Killeen Daily Herald and owner

of KCEN-TV; Skelton was a Temple attorney who

later became U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judge

and the only federal judge from Bell County.

Keenly attuned to the vicissitudes of the

economy and politics, Mayborn foresaw the next

opportunities for growth, all the while staunchly

boosting Temple and Bell County through his

newspaper and later his radio and television

stations. Skelton was a Democratic Party leader in

Texas, often considered by his more conservative

“The City With a Future” ✦ 53

Right: After World War II, Temple

citizens returned to business as usual,

which included celebrations and

parades now that the conflict

was over.


Below: The Temple Book Concern sold

books, newspapers and musical

instruments. The store was located

just south of Temple National Bank on

South Main Street. The block was

cleared in the 1970s to erect the

Temple Federal Building.


colleagues as a “liberal.” Nevertheless, with his

remarkable legal mind and solid friendships with

President Lyndon B. Johnson and Speaker of the

House Sam Rayburn, Skelton skillfully provided

the legal expertise for many of the advancements

Temple and Bell County experienced. The two

served on several taskforces and committees over

the next forty years that would hammer out the

city’s new directions.

After World War II, Scott & White was

rapidly expanding, thanks to the expansion of

medical sub-specialties and rapidly advancing

technology. The hospital buildings, many of

which had been constructed in the late

nineteenth century, were antiquated and

facilities were cramped. Since the physicians’

partnership began in 1897, Scott & White had

been privately owned by a few physicians. in

1949, they called on Skelton’s legal expertise to

help draft a new charter, in light of the changing

non-profit tax laws. Skelton completed the legal

footwork in 1950 required to reorganize Scott &

White as a non-profit benevolent, educational

and research facility to allow donors to make taxdeductible


In addition, by the late 1940s, a taskforce

composed of Mayborn, Draper, Skelton, U.S.

Rep. Bob Poage, Scott & White surgeon A. C.

Scott Jr., M.D., and businessman Roy Sanderford

spearheaded a drive to convince Congress to

appropriate funds for a Leon River dam that

would provide enough water resources for the

growth expected in Temple and Bell County.

Some Washington lawmakers and local

politicians disapproved of their plan, but the

taskforce endured criticism. Their intense

lobbying paid off when formal groundbreaking

ceremonies were held on December 10, 1948,

for Belton Dam and Lake Belton. The Daily

Telegram headlined Temple as “The City with a

Future.” The new dam was only half of the

committee’s vision. After disastrous 1957 floods,

the Temple delegation renewed its push to create

Stillhouse Hollow Lake, which opened in 1968.


Essential to the campaign was the city of

Temple’s insistence that it would have access to

as much water as it needed at anytime. Skelton

as city attorney carefully negotiated the legal

and financial discussions with the Brazos River

Authority, while Mayborn published supportive

articles and Poage handled the political

negotiations with the State Water Board.

Working with another committee, Mayborn

and Skelton again joined forces to enhance

Temple’s well-established reputation as “the

medical center of the southwest.” Temple was the

home to Scott & White, a renowned surgical and

diagnostic medical center begun in 1904; King’s

Daughters Hospital, founded in 1896 and among

the first hospitals in Texas; and the Veterans’

Administration Hospital, formerly McCloskey

Army General Hospital opening in 1942.

Building on the strength of Temple’s excellent

medical institutions, Skelton made presentations

to the University of Texas regents in July 1949,

attempting to persuade regents to locate a medical

school in Temple. However, Dallas won the

medical school. In 1972, after decades of dreams

and discussions, Texas A&M University agreed to

open its newly created medical school to Temple.

The Temple Daily Telegram at the time of

Skelton’s 1966 federal judicial appointment paid

tribute as he left for Washington, D.C.,

commending him “for his contributions to water

projects, to the development of industry and other

facets of our economy, to the many other activities

which have made Central Texas prosperous and

growing, have been outstanding.” He retired from

active practice in 1977 and returned to Temple.

He still maintained his law office and was

available to anyone seeking is advice. He died in

2004 at age ninety-eight.

Likewise, Mayborn’s influence is still felt more

than two decades after his death, particularly in

Above:Downtown Temple stores in the

1950s attracted shoppers from

throughout Bell County and the

surrounding counties. This picture

shows Main Street looking south to

Avenue A.


Below: Temple Daily Telegram editor

Frank W. Mayborn (left) welcomes

Lieutenant General Ralph E. Haines,

Jr., to a Military Appreciation

Luncheon sponsored by the Temple

Chamber of Commerce. Haines was

Fort Hood commander from March

1965 to April 1967.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 55

Temple, with its railroad roundhouse

and shops, grew to be the second

most-favored city on the Santa Fe

Railway, next to Galveston, the

company’s headquarters.


economic development, education and links

with the military and medical institutions. Even

two decades after his death in 1987 at age

eighty-three, he continues to be “the man who

made a difference” in his community.



By the close of the century and with many of

the early leaders passing on, a younger

generation took hold with fresh ideas and

courage to expand on its foundations. Although

the railways’ influence declined over the century,

Temple could still capitalize on its central

location and the completion of the interstate

highway system. Thanks to the innovative

leadership of a group of local business leaders in

the 1950s, Temple’s economy strengthened.

With the completion of Interstate 35, nicknamed

“the spine of Texas,” Temple emerged as a major

transportation center.

Business leaders pushed a grassroots privatesector

effort, later formally chartered as the

Temple Industrial Foundation, to attract new

businesses that would diversify the local economy.

The foundation helped the development of an

industrial park, now more than three thousand


acres with easy access to Interstate 35 and Santa

Fe rail spurs.

The Industrial Park was an attractive lure for

new companies. Wilson Plastics (now Wilsonart

International) relocated to Temple from California,

among the first to move into town. Once

transplanted to Temple, Wilsonart’s founder Ralph

Wilson, Sr., and later his son, Ralph Jr., became

community leaders and noted for their charitable

works and leadership in building community

services such as the Ralph Wilson Youth Clubs.

Wilson Plastics supplied laminated desktops to

the former American Desk Company (now owned

by Artco-Bell), a company that started up in

Temple in the 1920s. Over the years, Wilsonart,

now the nation’s largest laminate manufacturer,

expanded eventually to four major sites in the

industrial park. McLane Company moved to the

park in 1966 and quickly expanded. McLane, a

subsidiary of Wal-Mart Stores after 1990 but now

a part of Berkshire Hathaway since 2002, is a

nationwide wholesaler to convenience stores,

mass merchants, quick-service restaurants and

movie theaters. It also has international

operations. Another transportation corporation,

Materials Transportation Company moved from

Chicago to Temple in 1977. MTC, the world’s

largest manufacturer of industrial battery

changing equipment, also makes food-processing

equipment. Also capitalizing on the city’s prime

location, Wal-Mart in 1993 opened a major

distribution center.

Temple’s industrial park has more than 70

companies representing major distributions

operations and manufacturing as well as service

businesses, such as the 108,000-square-foot

Sprint/Nextel Call Center that opened in 2001.

The Southeast Industrial Park, a 400-acre site

on the east Loop 363, opened with its first

occupant, Best Rite Manufacturing, in 2000.

As the railroads’ influence waned, other economic

sectors boomed. By the 1970s, Temple

manufacturers included furniture, shoes, insulation,

cottonseed products, electronic products,

plastics, clothing, optical supplies, woodwork, and

livestock and poultry feed. In addition, Temple

had a substation of the agricultural experiment station

system and was the site for the state offices of

the U.S. Soil Conservation Service.

By the late 1970s, Texas Instruments located a

massive 500,000-square-foot facility on 500 acres,

just southwest of the main industrial park area. TI

eventually sold the computer division to Acer in

1997. The city bought the TI building in January

2002, and Scott & White purchased the site in

January 2005.

Besides housing Scott & White’s medical

services and research center, the site is now the

heart of the Temple Bioscience District. By the

beginning of the twenty-first century, Temple

Above: King’s Daughters Hospital

moved from South 22nd Street to its

new location on Loop 363 in the

mid-1970s. King’s Daughters,

founded in 1896, is the city’s oldest

community hospital.


Below: South Main and Avenue A was

the heart of Temple’s downtown

shopping and business center up until

the 1970s. The skyscraper (left) was

First National Bank, renamed Extraco

Banks. At the right was the former

Temple National Bank. This block was

later cleared to build the Temple

Federal Building.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 57

With the completion of the interstate

highway system, Temple could still

capitalize on its central location to

emerge as a major trucking and

transportation center. This photo

shows Interstate 35 in the late 1960s

approaching from the north.


capitalized on its solid reputation for medicine,

medical education and agricultural research. With

the authorization of the state legislature in 2003,

Temple voters created the Temple Health and

Bioscience District. The first such district

established in Texas, the district is devoted to the

development and creation of health and

bioscience/biotechnology opportunities by

forming partnerships with government and

private-sector researchers. The net result has been

a dramatic increase in research funds flowing to

the city and creation of an attractive area to draw

biomedical researchers to Central Texas.

Population trends reflected the city’s prosperity.

The city’s population had risen to 42,483 by 1980

and to 49,851 by 1990, then to 54,514 by 2000.

The Killeen-Temple metropolitan statistical area

reported a population of 255,301 in 1990. That

figure had grown to 312,952 by 2000.

By September 2000, Temple shared the

fourth lowest unemployment rate of 3.3 percent

with the Dallas area, behind Bryan-College

Station, Austin and Lubbock. Just as geography



Raleigh R. White, Jr., M.D., co-founder of Scott & White, bought the first

automobile, a 1906 Cadillac, so he could make faster house calls. However,

since Temple’s first streets were rough, muddy thoroughfares until they were

paved in 1910, the car often stood idle waiting for the streets to be drivable.

played a major role in the city’s early

development in the 1880s, the city has again

benefited from its central location in the state.

The opening of the twenty-first century opened

new opportunities for Temple from the south.

Austin, Texas, the state capital 70 miles away,

was white-hot with growth spurred by high-tech

companies. More than 80 percent of the state’s

population lives within 200 miles of Temple.

Temple has benefited from Austin’s overflow. City

leaders launched a campaign to sell Temple’s

location, low cost of living and small-town charms.

Originally called “the Wildflower Capital of Texas”

since the early 1980s, Temple looked back to its

historical roots—literally and figuratively—

acquired a new designation in early 2000s, “Tree

City U.S.A.” W. Goodrich Jones, father of Arbor

Day, would be pleased that his nineteenth-century

vision has endured.

Enduring, too, is Temple’s ability to change and

grow over the decades, despite internal and

external challenges. Temple was born at the

dawning period of remarkable optimism, when

Texans sensed they had a destiny to fill. In the

midst of Reconstruction after the War Between the

States, John Milton McCoy, a young Indianan who

had settled in Dallas and who later became a

prominent civic leader, wrote home: “My idea is

that the time will come when Texas society will be

the most refined of any in America. It will be

simply the polished steel. It is now steel in the rust

and rough. Send on your teachers, your preachers,



Partners J. S. Thompson and W. D. Cox arrived in town with “a shirt tail full of type” to begin publishing the Weekly Times in

November 21, 1881.

The editors kept the copy newsy, oftentimes criticizing the newly organized city commission for inaction, such as failing to

meet for three months as the city fell deeply into debt. Thompson and Cox also lambasted the younger generation—“going to the

dogs” they called it—because they frequented pool halls. The advertisers in the Times’ first edition showed that Temple, barely

six months old, had attracted a variety of businesses and professionals.

Included in the first issue were ads by the following:

T. P. Early, M. D.

Mabry T. Cox, M. D. (One mile out)

Wm. Fallahaye, barber

J. S. Wheeler, agent town lots

E. H. Kamien & Co., restaurant

Nichols Gidley, meat market

H. J. Murphy, restaurant

Charles Corbe, meat market

J. E. Moore, grain and land

Sam Joiner, painter

George Lovick, blacksmith

R. S. Brown, jeweler

P. J. Bowers, M. D.

Gates & Garrison, livery

D. C. Hamrick, meat market

J. E. Penry, insurance

A. Jahnke, groceries

J. T. Cook, drugs

Wright & Moore, livery

L. R. Wade & Co., general merchandise

R. B. Godley, lumber

S. Doche, city hotel

Otto K. Burwitz, saloon

Gray & Black, groceries and post office

W. Fuller, general merchandise

J. Levine & Co., general merchandise

Wallace & Northrup, saloon

J. Simon, saloon

John LaPrelle, (H. L. Sherrill, manager) dry goods

and groceries

J. M. Ashley, furniture

James & McLean, drugs

Wallace & Northrup, general merchandise

J. Allard, saddlery

R. Gerber, saloon

P. J. Bowers, M. D.

R. T. Hawthorne, drugs (Purchased by T. E. Smith &

Bro. in December)

W. R. Branch (Located before sale of lots),

general merchandise

John D. Brannon, general merchandise

J. W. Pistole, groceries

C. T. Simpson, M. D.

J. R. Irvin, confectioneries

W. M. Branch, school supplies

Stansell & Griffith, dentists

Isaac Jalonick, insurance

Henry Clegg, groceries

your churches and schools along with your

railroads and the great Lone Star State will be the

particular bright evening star of the first

magnitude in the western horizon of that galaxy of

stars known and read of by all men in the United

States. But there is work to be done.”

His words seem almost prophetic because

Temple became a bright star in the center of that

galaxy. From the early 1880s, when bullets and

bordellos were more popular than Bibles, through

to the 1930s, when Temple foundered under the

weight of a devastating depression, Temple

citizens have managed to overcome and conquer.

The 1895 Dallas Morning News was indeed

prophetic: Temple has been “lifted…from the

harum-scarum new town ways into a city that had

gained strength in adversity and that had never

ceased to build and grow.”

Temple is sort of this gem in the rough,” former

City Councilwoman Sally Myers, co-owner of a

downtown business, told the Dallas Morning News

in November 2000. “A lot of people don’t know that

Temple even exists. They just know what they see

driving on I-35. If a [person’s] looking for a place to

put down roots and raise their children and have a

good quality of life, this is that kind of community.”

“The City With a Future” ✦ 59


Early Temple mayors were a motley crew, coming from all backgrounds and interests.

The first mayor, J.W. Callaway showed his gratitude to voters who put him in office by donating a city block for the town’s first

park—the downtown area west of the current city hall now used as the Temple Visitors’ Center and city parking lot. He is credited

with planting the city’s first tree, a fast-growing catalpa with broad, shading leaves, in front of his house on Central Avenue.

When Augustus Lewy assumed the mayor’s chair in October 1886, he inherited a boisterous young city with deep financial problems.

An attorney, Lewy was a Montgomery, Alabama, native whose parents were prominent merchants in the Jewish community.

He apparently found a new home in Temple, because when his third daughter was born in 1886, he named her “Amy Temple Lewy.”

Once in office, Lewy moved quickly to establish economic stability. However, he was no fool. The mayor liked to play poker

all day every Sunday and, as a court magistrate, tried other poker players during the week. On one occasion, a man charged with

gambling came before Lewy and pleaded "not guilty." Lewy called him a liar, saying that he had played with him the day before.

The mayor fined the defendant $16.70.

In 1888, he ran for state representative but was defeated when his opponent maintained that voters did not want to elect “a

Hebrew.” Disappointed, he moved to San Antonio in 1889, where he maintained a prominent law practice and served as San

Antonio’s city attorney and a city councilman.

Lewy’s influence and managerial skills had long-term benefits, especially his efforts to dig the city out of a financial crisis. By

March 1892, the city’s financial worries had eased. Mayor William Carton detailed the progress in his annual report: “…Only a

short time ago the financial condition of the city was most deplorable … Our treasury warrants were floating around promiscuously

and we had no money in the treasury with which to take them up. This condition of affairs, I am proud to say to you, owing

to your prudent and judicious management, does not now exist.”

Administering an upstart railroad town was challenging. The City Council minutes reveal how sordid some businesses could

be. In February 1892, the Temple City Commission authorized the town marshal to close down gambling houses and brothels.

Temple’s growing pains also created tensions around the council table. During the 1890s, Mayor L. R. Wade was so prone to pick fights

at city council meetings that both Marshal William Taylor and Deputy Gene Dice had to stand between him and council members.

Some mayors found themselves thrust into national and international headlines. When Temple resident and cotton trader

Thomas J. Silva died in the sinking of the Lusitania on May 7, 1915, by a German submarine, the entire city waited for weeks as

teams recovered the 1,198 passengers lost. But Silva was not among those identified.

Mayor J.B. Watters personally appealed to fellow Templeite Governor James Ferguson to help. “All telegrams and cablegrams

from [Mr. Silva’s] firm, friends and family have brought no information as to his safety or loss. Cablegrams to Cunard Steamship

Company, Liverpool and Queenstown, are unanswered,” Watters wrote. “Mr. Silva’s wife, children and friends are deeply grieved

and I appeal to you as our chief executive to confer with Secretary William J. Bryan and ask him to demand all information possible

be furnished without delay. Answer.”

Silva’s family learned on June 28 that he was lost at sea. The entire city went into mourning.

Lake Polk, created by the Santa Fe

Railway shortly after the city was

founded, was a popular recreation

area with parks, golf and picnic areas.

The gazebo and falls were popular for

young courting couples.



The complete list of Temple mayors:

J. W. Callaway, July 1882-1884

W. H. Craine, 1884-1886

J. W. Callaway, April 1886-October 1886

J. W. Smith (acting), October 1886

Augustus Lewy, October 1886-August 1889

William Carton, August 1889-April 1894

L. R. Wade, 1894-1896

Wade Marshall Taylor, 1896-1897

J. H. Dougherty, 1897-1898

J. B. Watters, 1898-1904

F. B. Hamill, 1904-1908

William Ginnuth, 1908-1910

Fred P. Hammil, 1910-1912

J. B. Watters, 1912-1916

J. K. Campbell, April 1916-July 1922

C. L. Walker, 1922-April 1926

Fred P. Stroop, 1926-1928

Lem Burr, 1928-1930

W. W. Sellers, 1930-1934

W. S. Sealy, 1934-1938

Martin Sullivan, 1938-1940

H. B. Mason, 1940-1944

Guy Draper, 1944-1948

Dan Perry, 1948-1950

C. L. Walker, Jr., 1950-1952

Roy Strasburger, 1952-1956

Charles Wheeler, Jr., 1956-1960

Henry Taylor, Jr., 1960-1964

Wilford B. Pitts, 1964-1965

Truett Tomlinson, 1965-1968

Henry Taylor, Jr., 1968-1970

Jamie Clements, 1970-1974

D. M. Bandy, 1974-1976

William R. Courtney, 1976-1980

John F. Sammons, Jr., 1980-1988

W. A. “Buck” Prewitt III, 1988-1990

Dennis D. Hobbs, 1990-1992

J. W. Perry, 1992-1998

Keifer Marshall, Jr., 1998-2002

William A. Jones, III, 2002-present

Weddings were important social

events, as this 1910 wedding portrait

shows, with 17 attendants and four

flower girls.


“The City With a Future” ✦ 61




Historic profiles of businesses,

organizations, and families that have

contributed to the development and

DanHil Containers II, Ltd.

economic base of Temple

Gidden Distributing, Inc.


Aldrich-Thomas Group, Realtors .......................................................64

Strasburger Enterprises, Inc. ............................................................68

Scott & White Memorial Hospital ......................................................72

Wilsonart International, Inc. ............................................................76

McLane Group, L.P..........................................................................80

Wendland’s Farm Products and the Wendland Family ............................84

Cultural Activities Center ................................................................88

Temple Chamber of Commerce...........................................................89

Aladdin Car Wash...........................................................................90

SPJST ...........................................................................................92

University of Mary Hardin-Baylor .....................................................94

Johnnie’s Office Systems, Inc. ...........................................................96

Central Texas Housing Consortium ....................................................98

In the Mood Ballroom ....................................................................100

King’s Daughters Hospital and King’s Daughters Clinic .......................102

Ralph Wilson Youth Clubs of Temple, Inc. .........................................104

Blackland and Grassland Research ...................................................106

Sunbelt Transformer, Ltd. ...............................................................108

Temple Machine Shop ....................................................................110

Drews Hunt Builders .....................................................................112

City of Temple..............................................................................113

iZone ..........................................................................................114

Temple Iron & Metal .....................................................................115

Jack Hilliard Distributing Company, Inc. ..........................................116

Holy Trinity Catholic High School/St. Mary’s School ...........................117

Temple Civic Theatre, Inc...............................................................118

Scott & White Health Plan .............................................................119

Immanuel Lutheran Church.............................................................120

Precious Memories Florist & Gift Shop .............................................121

Temple Independent School District..................................................122

Grace Presbyterian Church .............................................................123

Temple Economic Development Corporation .......................................124

Temple College .............................................................................125

RVOS Farm Mutual Insurance .........................................................126

First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) ......................................127



Jancer Group

Materials Transportation


Sharing the Heritage ✦ 63





Above: The Hudson Building.

Below: Bird Creek Crossing.

Completed in 2008, it is a forty-six

acre retail development with Target,

Home Depot, Best Buy, and Bank of

America as its major tenants,

assembled from eight properties by

Aldrich-Thomas Group for Primus

Real Estate Services. Aldrich-Thomas

Group also negotiated with Temple

Economic Development Corporation

and the city of Temple for the

economic incentives package and

with the Texas Department of

Transportation for the rights of

ingress and egress and exit and

entrance ramps.

In 1923, Elbert Aldrich was

born in the small farming

community of Rosebud, Texas.

He attended school in Temple

during the Depression and

graduated from Rosebud High,

just as World War II was

beginning. A year following Pearl

Harbor, nineteen year old Aldrich

enlisted in the United States

Navy. After taking part in nearly

ninety-five combat missions,

Aldrich returned home with a

Distinguished Flying Cross and

other decorations for valor.

Upon his return home, Aldrich formed a

partnership with his father as owners of the

Hudson automotive dealership in Temple, Texas.

Later, they operated an automotive repair business,

M. C. Aldrich and Son, for nineteen years.

In 1965, Aldrich entered the real estate

business with his father-in-law, P. R. Cox, who

was in the process of founding the town of

Harker Heights. A couple of years later, Aldrich

set up office in Temple with his wife, Dorothy

Ann Cox Aldrich, incorporating the business in

1976 as Elbert Aldrich Realtors, Inc. Dorothy

Ann played a key role in growing the business

and still does today. She ran the office

operations of the business, including the

commercial property management, accounting,

and, even answering the phones. Their

daughters, Ann and Amy, also worked at the

office when not attending school. They were

taught to answer the phone, make bank

deposits, make copies, read abstracts, and get

contracts signed.

In 1972, Aldrich made his first industrial sale

of land on the west side of Interstate 35 and the

Burlington, Northern and Santa Fe Railroad to

Western Auto. Soon after, he began his long

association with the Temple Industrial

Foundation by assembling tracts of land,

including the Easterwood Tract that is now

home to McLane Company Southwest, for

development as part of the Temple Industrial

Park in the northern part of Temple.

In 1976, at the request of Dr. Ralph Wilson of

the Ralph Wilson Plastics Company, later

renamed Wilsonart International, to create

housing close to the Temple Industrial Park for

industrial workers, Aldrich formed Milestone

Corporation with several other community

leaders and began developing a residential and

commercial subdivision on the north side of

State Highway 36 known as Northwest Hills.

Also in 1976, Aldrich assembled the Bassell

and Greenway farms, along with several out

parcels, located on the western edge of Temple

for Texas Instruments. The signing of the

contracts by Texas Instruments occurred on the

morning of the day his younger daughter, Amy,

married Aaron Lloyd Thomas. The ultimate

closing of the sale entrenched Aldrich as one of

Texas Instruments’ primary industrial brokers.

For over two decades, the Aldrich company,

acquired and disposed of properties for Texas

Instruments, including sites in College Station,


Lubbock, and Waco, Texas; Raleigh and Ashville,

North Carolina; and Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Aldrich incorporated his business in 1976 as

Elbert Aldrich Realtors, Inc., later changing the

name to Elbert Aldrich, Inc., REALTORS. In

1977, daughter Amy’s husband Lloyd joined

the firm.

In 1978, Elbert Aldrich, Inc., began working

in partnership with the Mélange Corporation,

the family corporation of W. Glenn Morgan, Jr.,

the president of First Federal Savings and Loan,

in the assemblage of land on the west side of

South Thirty-first Street and north side of

Glendale Lane, now part of Loop 363, for the

Glendale Park and Temple Commercial Park

developments. Over the next few years,

Aldrich’s company located numerous businesses

within the development, including RVOS

Farmers Mutual, Mazzio’s Pizza, Applebee’s

Neighborhood Bar and Grill, and Olive Garden.

During the early 1980s, in

an effort to spur the retail

development along the then new

Loop 363, Elbert Aldrich, Inc.,

acquired land, named Loop 363

Commercial, located west of the

Glendale Park development and

extended streets and utilities

and built numerous retail and

office buildings within the

acquired property.

While pursuing its own

development projects of residential,

retail, commercial and

industrial, Elbert Aldrich, Inc.

began acquiring land along

Interstate 35 for Frank Mayborn

and developing it for retail use,

forming a close bond with Frank

Mayborn and his company, Frank

Mayborn Enterprises, Inc., which

still exists today. Nearly all of

the retail businesses situated

along Interstate 35, such as

La Quinta Inn, Wendy’s, Long

John Silvers, Johnson Brothers

Ford, Best Western, Temple

Lincoln-Mercury-Jeep Chrysler,

and Texas Road House, are a

result of the close relationship of

Elbert Aldrich, Inc., and Frank

Mayborn Enterprises.

In 1985 the city of Temple leadership came

to Aldrich and his company seeking a new

location for the Temple Country Club, so that

the existing club property could be turned into

a municipal golf course. The Aldrich company

had the right property for the request, selling to

Robert Dedman’s Club Corporation of America

the land for a new golf course, clubhouse and

residential and office development. This

transaction required the negotiation of new

district boundary lines between the Belton and

Temple Independent School Districts, placing

the residential lots and office land in Temple ISD

and placing the golf course and clubhouse in

Belton ISD.

In the mid-1980s, Elbert Aldrich, Inc.,

obtained the listing of the A. J. Hall Estate

properties in Killeen, Texas, which were being

handled by the trust department of Interfirst

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 65

Wal-Mart Distribution Center.

Aldrich-Thomas Group negotiated the

sale purchase of 211 acres of land by

McLane Company and Wal-Mart as

part of the merger of McLane

Company and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.

Bank, N.A. This land stretched along both sides

of Central Texas Expressway from east of W. S.

Young to west of Trimmier Road. Much of the

land was rough and in the hundred-year flood

plain, so over the course of a year and a half, the

Aldrich company worked with the trust

department and a local engineer to overcome the

problem and was successful in having FEMA

accept the reshaping and regrading of the

property to allow for its development. This land

is now the site of numerous retail businesses,

such as Toys-R-Us, Circuit City, Lowe’s, Wal-

Mart Super Center, Country Dodge, Holiday Inn

Express, Red Lobster, Ryan’s Family Steakhouse,

Days Inn, and H-E-B. This retail expansion in

Killeen helped spur the more recent

developments of Trammell Crow Company and

others, bringing to the area Hollywood Theaters,

Home Depot and a host of new restaurants.

It was also during this time that the company

assisted Drayton McLane, Jr., in the expansion of

his family’s business by handling the site selection

of the majority of McLane Company’s distribution

centers across the country, including those in

Temple and Lubbock, Texas; Goodyear, Arizona;

Longmont, Colorado; and Kissimmee, Florida.

The Aldrich company was instrumental in

assembling the more than 450 acres in Temple for

the headquarters of McLane Company and, in

1990, sold 211 acres to McLane Company at the

time of its merger with Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. This

tract of land in the northwest section of Temple is

now home to a large Wal-Mart Distribution Center.

For over fifteen years, Elbert Aldrich, Inc., has

handled the clinic and hospital site selections for

Scott & White Memorial Hospital, including

those in the Waco and College Station areas.

In 2000, Elbert Aldrich, Inc., assembled for

redevelopment of much of the Loop 363

Commercial subdivision for Temple Towne

Center, a Seitz Group retail development

consisting of Staples, Ross, Marshall’s, Hobby

Lobby, Bed, Bath and Beyond, Fazoli’s,

McAlister’s Deli, and Chase Bank.

In 2003, Elbert Aldrich, Inc., working with

Jon Spelman in Waco and Robert McCollum in

Dallas, brokered the 210-acre multi-use

development know as Central Marketplace

located at the northwest corner of Loop 340 and

Interstate 35 in Waco. Elbert Aldrich, Inc.,

represented Scott & White Hospital and

retained for Scott & White thirty acres fully

developed for a future hospital site.

In 2006, Elbert Aldrich, Inc., completed the

assemblage and sale of eight parcels of land

totaling approximately forty-six acres to Primus

Real Estate Services for the Bird Creek Crossing

retail development at the north corner of Loop

363 and Interstate 35 in Temple, which will be

the home to Target, Home Depot, Best Buy, and

Bank of America. This development is changing

the appearance of the city of Temple along

the Interstate for the better by demolishing

worn-out buildings and cleaning up several

unsightly properties at the major retail hub of

Temple. The transaction took the company

considerable time in negotiating an economic

incentives package with the city of Temple and

rights-of-way issues with the Texas Department

of Transportation.

With the passing of Elbert Aldrich in May

2005, the company experienced a generational

change of operation and Amy and Lloyd

Thomas are positioning the company to

maximize the strategic opportunities that lay

ahead. Now that the transitioning stage is

underway, the company has changed its name to

Aldrich-Thomas Group, Realtors ® .

Lloyd is the current president of the company.

His extensive work in commercial real estate has

earned him much recognition as an expert in the

field. Thomas’ professional designations include

the Accredited Land Consultant (ALC) of the

Realtors ® Land Institute, Certified Commercial


Investment Member (CCIM) of the CCIM

Institute, and the Specialist, Industrial and

Office Realtor ® (SIOR) of the Society of

Industrial and Office Realtors.

Dorothy Ann and Elbert Aldrich’s younger of

their two daughters, Amy Thomas, has become

a vital part of the organization and is now in

charge of the office management. She is

currently Secretary/Treasurer of the corporation.

Their older daughter, Ann Barkemeyer, is a

residential appraiser and operates her separate

business out of the same office. Amy and Lloyd’s

two daughters, Lauren Maggard and Meg

Thomas, have been brought in as directors of

the company. They maintain a close relationship

with the operations of the company and its

affiliated investment entities, which are

currently adding to their portfolio of properties.

Currently, the Thomas family and Aldrich-

Thomas Group are working on three new

retail development transactions and developing

several Alzheimer’s patient assisted care

living centers.

In response to client demand, Aldrich-Thomas

Group has systematically extended both its range

of services and its geographic reach, now serving

clients throughout Texas. To enhance the

company’s services and assure its continued

expansion, Aldrich-Thomas Group’s agents are

encouraged to pursue prestigious professional

designations, such as the SIOR, CCIM, and ALC,

memberships in the organizations that support

these designations provide a nationwide network

of key industry contacts.

Combining expert service with an

unwavering commitment to integrity and vision,

Aldrich-Thomas Group’s professional staff

enjoys the respect of Temple’s commercial,

industrial and financial communities, as well as

that of both the Temple Economic Development

Corporation and the Economic Development

Corporation of Belton.

Below: Aldrich-Thomas Group

negotiated the sale of 40.35 acres for

the Super Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club,

in two phases, south of the Temple

Mall and near the northeast corner of

South Thirty-first Street and

Marlandwood Road in Temple, as well

as the development and sale of the

surrounding area, including the site

for Academy Sports at the southwest

corner of Marlandwood Road and

Raleigh Drive.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 67




Above: Henry Strasburger in the

early 1900s.

Below: Strasburger Meat Market

in 1926.

For more than 125 years, four generations of

the Strasburger family have started businesses,

adapted them to changing market conditions,

and carefully nurtured their growth. From a

nineteenth century saloon in early Temple, to a

dynamic international conglomerate of retailrelated

services, the Strasburger retail legend

continues to unfold.

The Strasburger business empire began in the

late 1800s when Henry Strasburger arrived in

Temple from the Württemberg region of

Germany by way of Galveston and Waco.

Within just a few years, Henry managed to have

an ownership interest in several bars and at least

one grocery store. He and a partner opened the

Moss Rose Saloon at the intersection of what is

now South Main Street and Avenue A in the

new, booming railroad town of Temple that was

sometimes disparagingly referred to as

Tanglefoot or Mudville.

The precursor publication to Dun & Bradstreet,

the Bradstreet Business Directory, listed Henry’s

grocery store in its 1884 edition, thus making the

current Strasburger conglomerate the longestrunning

family-owned business in Temple.

The saloon operated successfully until local

temperance forces eventually led Henry to adapt

the gentleman’s bar to a cafe that was “suitable

for ladies.” He managed to keep a saloon in the

back of the cafe until Prohibition forced him to

close it almost ten years later. In the best

traditions of great entrepreneurs, Henry had

morphed his bar (“a first-class orderly house”

according to the Temple newspaper) into a cafe

with a saloon “in the back” into a cafe that sold

everything from Sunday dinner to medicines to

groceries. Undaunted by Prohibition, he simply

substituted meat for spirits, and continued to

operate the meat market in the same location.

Henry’s son, Roy Strasburger, born in 1900,

eventually converted the market into the

Strasburger Grocery Store, and grew the new

grocery store business to five stores in Temple

by the time that “the noble experiment” known

as Prohibition ended in 1933—the same year

that H. T. “Tommy” Strasburger was born. Like

his father, Roy adapted the stores and their

product offers to changing tastes and times.

As the third generation of Strasburgers grew,

the children worked the stores and learned the

business from the ground up. Of Roy’s three

children, only Tommy would eventually become

a merchant, following in the footsteps of his

father and grandfather. Tommy graduated from

Baylor University in 1954, having distinguished

himself as a star basketball player. While at

Baylor, Tommy did an internship with one of

“the big eight” accounting firms. After service in

military intelligence, the entrepreneur in his

DNA took over. With the discipline of an

accountant and the innovative spirit of his

grandfather and father, the son was almost

destined to stand out in the world of retail. He

bought the chain of grocery stores from his

father in 1958 and became a father, himself, for

the first time that same year. Tommy and his

wife, the former Shirley Myers, opened a dozen


supermarkets between Dallas and Austin over

the next ten years. They also made sure that a

fourth generation of Strasburgers would have an

opportunity to step into the family business.

Roy, Gregg, Sharon and Susan were all born to

Tommy and Shirley over an eight-year period.

Other businesses evolved at this time to support

the supermarkets: The Dough Shop, Big Tex

Stamp Company, Bell Produce, Employee

Consultant Company and EconODose Systems

were all started within an amazingly short

period of time.

The mid- to late sixties was a seminal period

for the clan. Tommy correctly anticipated the

synergy between food and fuel sales that a new

retail format—the convenience store—would

afford. He bought his first chain of the smallerthan-supermarket

stores in 1967. He soon

added the Milky Way chain of stores in Waco to

that Minit Mart group in Austin. By the end of

the 1970s, Strasburger renamed and reimaged

all the retail sites he had bought or built. Zippy

Food Stores and Pay-Less Gas locations dotted

the landscape along Interstate 35 between San

Antonio and Dallas. His operations ranked him

as one of the leaders in the convenience store

industry in Texas and the nation, and he served

on the Board of Directors of the National

Association of Convenience Stores.

Strasburger Enterprises, Inc., the parent

company, was formed in 1979. While it has

always been referred to as SEI throughout the

industry, in Temple, the company would always

be known simply as Strasburger.

The company’s growth was breathtaking in

the late ’70s and early ’80s. The concept of

vertical integration was taken to its limits by

Tommy and his team of SEI executives. Because

so many stores were being built, Southwest

Construction Company was formed. With fuel

playing such an important role in the

profitability of the stores, Fuel Distributors,

Inc., was formed to ensure a high level of

professionalism. The new company represented

a number of major oil brands, including Citgo,

Diamond Shamrock, Shell, Mobil, and Chevron.

Like his grandfather and father before him,

Tommy was just adding a product line that fit

well with the existing offer and made life a little

more convenient for the customer.

When national and state regulations called

for more environmental awareness on the part

of fuel handlers, a new company, PetroTech, was

formed to provide construction, maintenance,

repair, sales and service for fuel related

equipment such as pumps, dispensers, tanks,

and canopies.

Fidelity Bank of Texas became a Strasburger

entity when Robinson State Bank, based in

Robinson, Texas, was bought. A second Waco,

Texas, bank named Waco State Bank was

developed. When banking regulations allowed,

the two were merged as Fidelity Bank of Texas.

This led company executives to develop the

concept of the “insert bank,” an additional profit

center for the convenience store, once again

expanding the offer to the convenience store

consumer. Typically occupying anywhere from

150 to 500 square feet, an insert bank in a

supermarket or convenience store will often

generate as many loans and accounts as a fullsize

branch bank and the operating costs

are lower.

As the Strasburger real estate portfolio grew

with more and more store locations, and as the

Strasburger payroll grew commensurately,

Tommy decided that the expenses associated

with insurance and benefits could be kept “inhouse”

and an offshore captive insurance

company and local insurance agencies were

Roy Strasburger during his tenure

as mayor.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 69

Thomas Strasburger in 2008.

started or purchased. Vertical integration was

being taken to a whole new level.

While spending time in the Caribbean

because of the insurance company’s business,

Tommy realized that this world-renowned

paradise for divers and snorkelers was

underdeveloped and offered great opportunity.

A hotel was built in the Turks and Caicos

Islands. An airline company was started and

began regularly scheduled flights to the islands.

Strasburger even operated the duty-free shop at

the airport.

With so many company executives traveling

extensively, the next logical business venture

was a travel agency. Megatravel, a full service

travel agency, joined the growing list of

Strasburger companies. Today, Megatravel

serves Central Texas travelers, specializing in

group sales and corporate accounts.

Following a tradition dating all the way back

to Henry and his saloons, Tommy listened

closely to his customers—and he always

responded to their needs. When travelers who

visited the islands wished out loud that they had

the diving skills needed to truly appreciate

the experience, Tom’s Dive and Ski Shops

were born.

By 1990, you could book a trip with

Strasburger’s travel agency to an island in the

Caribbean, then sign up for diving lessons and

buy all your gear at Strasburger’s shop. After

flying to your destination on Strasburger’s

airliner, you could check into a hotel built by

Strasburger and eat in a restaurant designed by

Strasburger. Upon leaving the island, you could

stock up on duty-free goods at Strasburger’s

shop at the airport. And, of course, you could

pay for all this with a check written on your

account at Strasburger’s bank.

It was vertical integration that was nothing

short of dizzying. And it was almost completely

unrelated to the family’s core business—the

convenience stores.

By the mid-1980s, it was clear to Tommy and

his team that the United States convenience

store industry was becoming saturated and that

most other countries had yet to experience true

convenience stores. Thus, in 1986, a

Strasburger subsidiary opened its first

convenience store in Australia to rave reviews

and instant success. A new concept for that

country, this quintessentially American retail

format quickly grew into Australia’s chain of

Express Food and Motor Marts, which was later

rebranded to Quix Food Stores.

Recognizing the chain’s success with the

convenience store format and appreciating the

company’s expertise in day-to-day management,

a subsidiary of Mobil Oil Australia entered

into a joint venture with Strasburger, buying

half the Quix chain. A team of retail experts on

the ground in Australia—all Strasburger

employees—moved expeditiously to convert

existing Mobil gas stations to true convenience

stores, applying the Quix name and business

system quickly and flawlessly. Within just a few

years, the new venture was named one of the

fastest growing companies in Australia.

Quix Systems, Inc., another subsidiary of SEI,

was then formed to enter into long-term

convenience store licensing programs and

consulting engagements outside the United States.

Shell UK Oil approached Strasburger to help

them with their large network of gas stations in

the United Kingdom. A licensing agreement led

to a Strasburger team rapidly converting some

eight hundred Shell petrol stations in England,

Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to

convenience stores—at a rate of one per

business day. A Strasburger executive also

managed the marketing function for Shell’s retail

network of over sixteen hundred sites; yet


another Strasburger team developed the

prototype store design for Shell that was

eventually adopted for worldwide use.

Other multinational oil companies sought

Strasburger’s services, and the company

expanded its scope, eventually doing work

in Europe, Asia, the Caribbean, Africa, and

Latin America.

Due to the high demand for ongoing

consulting services, a consulting and research

subsidiary, Cambridge-Myers, conducts market

studies, business analysis, and evaluation of real

estate, management information systems and

distribution logistics. The group also conducts

feasibility studies, customer behavior research,

network planning services, infrastructure

analysis, consumer surveys, efficiency studies

and food service set up. Many of the world’s

largest retail companies in more than fifty

countries have taken advantage of the expertise

offered by Cambridge-Myers.

During the century and a quarter that

the family has started and operated one

successful and highly visible business after

another, Strasburger Farms has almost gone

unnoticed to the general public. The family

business, covering some six thousand acres of

Blackland Prairie, has included farming,

ranching, and grain distribution during its fourgeneration


As the company enters the new millennium,

the fourth generation of the Strasburger family

plays a vital role in setting strategy and directing

day-to-day company operations. The sons, Roy

and Gregg, head up various divisions within the

family’s diverse enterprise, while daughters

Sharon and Susan are active and vocal directors

of SEI. Shirley has provided over a half-century

of guidance to the family and has been an active

player in the development of many of the

subsidiary and affiliated companies that have

made it all so exciting and successful.

The ability to attract the very best talent in

the convenience store industry, retention of top

employees, and Tommy’s vision and

management style have contributed to the

company’s success. The Strasburger legend is

well known in the convenience store industry.

As a result, many talented professionals

representing diverse fields such as distribution,

advertising, broadcasting, manufacturing, real

estate, finance, information services, and

academia have joined the company’s upper

management team.

For over a hundred years, the patriarchal

vision of Henry, Roy and Tommy have turned

the dreams of a young German immigrant into

one of the most successful and respected

companies in Central Texas. As the world

changed, each successive generation changed

the family’s business to adapt to it. When the

world appeared settled and staid, each of them

looked past the sure and the certain and

developed new businesses that answered

needs that were not yet clear to even the

most insightful.

Reinventing the company, charting new

frontiers and defining best practices for

established industries domestically and

internationally have been Strasburger hallmarks.

The early twenty-first century looks remarkably

similar, in that respect, to the early twentieth

century, when it all began.

The new generation of Strasburger

entrepreneurs continues to develop better systems

within the realm of their mature businesses while

envisioning new business models and growth

opportunities on a global scale.

Quix Store.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 71





Above: The Scott & White Operating

Room, c. the 1960s.

On December 29, 1897, Drs. Arthur C.

Scott, Sr., and Raleigh White, Jr., established

a medical partnership that would

become the Scott & White Clinic, and one

of the early models for multi-specialty

group practices in the United States.

Just five years earlier, in 1892, Dr.

Scott had come to Temple, Texas, as the

twenty-seven year old chief surgeon of

the Santa Fe Hospital, which served the

Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway

organization. Dr. White arrived in

Temple five years later to become the

Santa Fe House Surgeon.

The two railroad surgeons opened

their own hospital in 1904 by converting

a convent into a permanent hospital. The

hospital became the nucleus of a clinic

complex that would eventually consist of

thirty-one buildings scattered over five

city blocks. Following the untimely death of Dr.

White, the hospital was named Scott & White

Memorial Hospital in 1922.

Over the years that followed, specialties and

departments have been added. Included in the

long list of physicians at Scott & White is Dr.

Claudia Potter. Hired in 1906, Dr. Potter would

become the first female anesthesiologist in both

Texas and the United States.

In 1933 the American College of Surgeons

approved the institution as the first cancer

diagnostic and treatment center in Texas.

Known across the region simply as Scott &

White, the physician group practice grew and took

form, and the operation of the hospital evolved. In

1950 the name changed for a third time to the

Scott & White Memorial Hospital and Scott,

Sherwood and Brindley Foundation and the Scott

& White Clinic. In 1963 the clinic and hospital

moved to its current location in Temple.

Scott & White collaborated with the Temple

Veterans’ Administration Center in 1977 to

become the clinical training location for the

recently created Texas A&M College of


Medicine. Additional research and education

facilities were completed in 2000 and 2002,

establishing Temple and Scott & White as an

academic medical center. In 2007 this Temple

partnership became a full four-year campus for

the medical school.

In 1978 the first of a regional network

of primary care clinics was

established. Also that year, a health

maintenance organization was created.

The health plan now has more

than 220,000 members.

In 2005 the Scott & White

Cancer Research Institute was

established with internationally

recognized physician-scientist Dr.

Arthur Frankel as the director. Dr.

Frankel’s research and development

work features genetically altered

toxins such as anthrax and

diphtheria, changed into cancer

cell-targeted therapeutics.

With the opening in 2007 of an acute care

hospital just north of Austin in Round Rock,

Texas, and a long-term acute care hospital in

Temple, Scott & White has evolved into a ninehospital


Above: Scott & White Memorial

Hospital, c. 1963.

Left: The Scott & White Operating

Room, c. the 1950s.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 73

Top, right: Individual care is given to

each patient, c. the 1950s.

Below: The Hightower staff.

Scott & White Memorial Hospital is located

at 2401 South Thirty-First Street and offers a

variety of clinics and specialty clinics.

Scott & White Continuing Care Hospital

located at 546 North Kegley Road, is a

continuing care facility and not a nursing home

or facility. Scott & White Continuing Care

Hospital offers long-term acute care and nonchronic

care, with an average stay of twenty-five


days. Patients cared for are critically ill with

complex conditions and depend on the

expertise of specially trained personnel for their

recovery time.

The Scott & White Clinic system includes

thirty regional primary care clinics, and another

twenty regional specialty and urgent care

clinics. Using a team approach, healthcare is

provided in more than fifty specialties and

subspecialties. More than seven hundred

physicians and researchers are now part of this

group practice.

For directions, location, hours, primary care

and specialty clinics contact information or to

just review all that is offered by Scott & White,

please visit www.sw.org.

Above: Scott & White Memorial

Hospital. c. 1967.

Bottom, right: Surgical room.

Bottom, left: A rendering of Scott &

White's expansion, c. 1969.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 75




Above: Sedona Spirit Wilsonart ®


Below: Wilsonart ® Solid Surface.

The founding of Wilsonart actually began in

the 1950s when a Los Angeles laminate company

executive, Ralph Wilson, had a heart attack. His

doctors and family members encouraged him to

retire. But like many retirees, he just did not

know what to do with himself. At a friend’s

encouragement, Wilson moved to Texas and

began looking for a place to settle down.

Arthur P. Brashear, Sr., the owner of

American Desk, joined other business associates

in suggesting to Ralph that he open a small

laminate company right next to their school

desk factory in Temple, Texas. In 1956, “Mr.

Ralph” (as he would be known to employees)

founded Ralph Wilson Plastics Company.

In 1956 there were no less than sixteen

manufacturers of decorative plastic laminate

and Ralph Wilson Plastics (the early name for

Wilsonart International) was the last to enter the

market. Immediately, Mr. Ralph set out to find

new uses and new customers for his product,

which he brand-named “Wilsonart.” Mr.

Ralph was resourceful, and above all, he

believed in relationships. These factors

contributed to a strategy that would make Ralph

Wilson Plastics, later Wilsonart International, a

leader in the industry.

Above all, Mr. Ralph believed in customer

service. The company was determined to deliver

the product to customers in the shortest time,

and they promised “10-day delivery anywhere

in the country”—unheard of in those days. They

developed the special-sized sheets and special

grades that the market wanted. They also sought

to match the breadth and range of the

competitor lines, this being no small task for a

small company. These innovations would

separate Ralph Wilson Plastics quickly from

the competition.

As Ralph Wilson Plastics became more

successful, it also began to attract attention from

investors. In 1966, Wilson and the company

leadership agreed to join the Dart Industries

group (formerly Rexall). Dart let the founding

ideals of the company continue, while giving

Ralph Wilson Plastics a solid source of growth

capital. A leased truck fleet was purchased

shortly thereafter, along with fifty-eight

thousand square feet of building space and a

fourth laminate press in Temple, while

distribution centers were added.

Through four decades, the parent company,

Dart, merged with Kraft to become Dart &

Kraft, then later spun off to form Premark

International. In 1999, Premark was acquired

by Illinois Tool Works, Inc. (ITW). Today, the

Wilsonart business is one of over seven hundred

companies in the ITW portfolio. These key

business operating units comprise the

Wilsonart/ITW family: Wilsonart ® Laminate,

Wilsonart ® Adhesives, Wilsonart ® Solid Surface,

Wilsonart ® Flooring, and Wilsonart ® Sinks.

The hallmark of Wilsonart has always been

efficient distribution of its product. A

warehouse distribution system, now totaling

twenty-three facilities in North America, was

developed to maintain a vast inventory of

products near customers throughout the U.S. To

this day, this business practice serves as the

company’s foundation and is also carried out by


the one-hundred-plus distributors throughout

North America.

Ralph Wilson Plastics opened its first

metropolitan distribution center (Metro) in

Atlanta in 1970 to better serve fabricators and

installers in one of the fastest growing markets

in the country. Others subsequently opened in

Dallas, Houston, Miami, Phoenix, Toronto, and

Minneapolis. A number of Metros were acquired

and several more were greenfielded from 2000

to 2006. There are currently nineteen markets

with company-owned distribution.

A key component to making the ten day

delivery promise a reality was fleet ownership.

Ralph Wilson Plastics was the first in the

industry to take this financially daunting step.

The trailers today grace the freeway as rolling

billboards with inviting product photography

and brand name graphics. There are forty-six

trucks based in Temple and another sixteen

trucks based in Fletcher, North Carolina,

logging over fourteen million miles a year with

one of the country’s most outstanding safety

records. Wilsonart drivers act as the company’s

goodwill ambassadors on the road.

Ralph Wilson, Sr., was a classic entrepreneur,

talented in organizing and running businesses

and surrounding himself with talented people.

He had a strong, can-do attitude that both

inspired and challenged his team. A legendary

motivator, Wilson empowered his people to

“make it happen,” and expected them to do so.

And they did. By weaving the threads of

uncompromising customer service into the

fabric of his newly founded company, Wilson set

it apart from competitors.

Having been well-schooled in the

management style of Mr. Ralph, Dr. Ralph

Wilson, Jr., his son, was a natural successor to

the family business. After Mr. Ralph’s heart

attack in 1960, Dr. Ralph gave up his dental

practice to join his father’s new company in

Texas. After four years of “boot camp”—

absorbing all there was to know about the

business—Dr. Ralph, along with another future

leader George Hester, was assigned the

monumental task of developing a synchronized

order system.

It was Hester who made a now infamous

laminate delivery to customers in the back seat

of a 1953 Buick. This was out in California

where he led the sales effort through the

company’s first regional warehouse. In addition

to the synchronized order system he developed

with Dr. Ralph, Hester was also instrumental in

development of the Fletcher and Temple North

plants. He served as vice president of

production from 1966 until 1977 when he

became vice president of facilities planning.

A Southwest Conference All-American and

All-Pro four consecutive years with the Green

Bay Packers, Bobby Dillon was naturally

competitive. He helped build the sales

department and later broadened it into a total

sales and marketing operation. Under the

direction of Dillon, Ralph Wilson Plastics

Above: Nouveau Walnut Wilsonart ®


Below: Ralph Wilson, Sr., 1960.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 77

Above: Ingalls ® Hospital.

Below: Wilsonart’s ® first trade

show booth.

became firmly established as the laminate

market leader in North America. The time was

right for new product lines and Dillon oversaw

the launch of Wilsonart Solid Surface, Custom

Edge, and Custom Laminates.

Bill Reeb, who served as president of the

company from 1995 to 2005, had a natural skill

for understanding markets, channels, customers

and human nature. With his tremendous

strategic planning capabilities and deft

implementation skills, he made Wilsonart a

recognizable and marketable brand. Reeb’s first

major initiative as president came in 1995 with

Vision 2000. The company doubled its size and

sales in terms of revenues and increased units to

a billion square feet by the year 2000. An

implementer at heart, he put the right people in

the right places to “get things done,” gave his

management team flexibility, and encouraged

them to think differently and work together. He

also formalized the mission of the company and

put it into simple terms that everyone could

embrace—”Serve the Customer. Serve the

Enterprise. Serve the People.”

The company’s current president, Bill

DiGaetano, is a twenty-six year veteran of

Wilsonart, and began his career in Pennsauken,

New Jersey as a sales representative. He has

served as sales manager in Chicago, regional

manager in Detroit, director of sales and vice


president of sales and marketing. Truly a

company legacy, DiGaetano leads the company

into the new century with the enthusiasm and

fortitude of his predecessors.

Perhaps the most common thread running

throughout the history of Wilsonart

International, Inc., is people and processes on

the cutting edge of industry. Whether it be in

the manufacturing of the product, the design

and development of new products, the approach

to sales, marketing, and international

operations, Wilsonart International, Inc., is

focused on leadership in the area of laminate,

solid surface, flooring, and adhesives.

Perhaps Mr. Ralph’s most enduring

contribution to design was his own home. His

private residence from 1959 until his death in

1972 served as the model home for his laminate

company and as a location where he could

personally test the quality and durability of the

products his company manufactured. Called the

Wilson House, Mr. Ralph’s home was purchased

by the company and restored in 1997. The

house is recognized by the National Trust for its

extraordinary interior design and the

employment of cutting-edge laminate

technology. In 1998 the Wilson House was

awarded National Landmark status by the Texas

Historical Commission and is listed on the

National Register of Historic Places as a

significant architectural structure. The Wilson

House is the first twentieth-century vernacular

structure less than fifty years old to have ever

been nominated.

Mr. Ralph was not just committed to his

company; he was committed to his company

becoming part of the community. Both Mr.

Ralph and Dr. Ralph personally helped many a

young person get the college education that he

or she deserved. The Ralph Wilson Scholarship

Foundation continues to provide scholarship

awards to the children of employees.

The Ralph Wilson Youth Clubs evolved

from the Temple Boys Club, which was

organized through the effort of several Temple

citizens in 1965. The current boys club building

was built and donated by Ralph Wilson, Sr.,

in 1970. The girls club building was added

in 1977 and the organization became the

Ralph Wilson Youth Clubs of Temple, Inc. The

Wilson Family and Wilsonart remain strong

supporters of the Youth Clubs along with other

community programs.

Wilsonart is also active in the local

school system, giving to school programs,

sports programs, the fine arts and other

extracurricular activities. Wilsonart employees

are outstanding supporters of the United Way

and Wilsonart holds memberships in local

chambers of commerce and many other

worthwhile organizations.

For more information about Wilsonart

International, Inc. please visit www.wilsonart.com.

Above: Dr. Ralph Wilson, Jr.

Below: The application of adhesive.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 79



Right: Drayton McLane, Sr., with his

children JoAnn, Drayton, Jr., and Kate

in Cameron, Texas, c. 1937.

Below: The McLane family at their

home in Temple, 1993.

A great historian once said that history is not

about places and events; it is about people…real

people with dreams, courage, and vision. It is

about people who can look back over their lives,

know that they have made a difference and

value the experiences along the way. It is about

the heart of the McLane Group and its chairman,

Drayton McLane, Jr., and the companies of

people who are proud of their roots and grateful

for their successes.

The McLane Group is the holding company

for nearly a dozen businesses based in the

United States and around the world. The majority

of the companies are involved in the logistics

and food industry, providing services for retail

markets, fast food restaurants and convenience

stores. The two exceptions are McLane

Advanced Technologies (MAT) and the Houston

Astros. MAT was founded in December 2003,

and utilizes its logistics experience and modern

commercial Information Technology to support

our troops all over the world. They also provide

technical support, network installation and

maintenance, Web design and application

development, and software design and development

to the commercial industry. MAT is based

in Temple and has approximately 300 employees.

The Houston Astros baseball club was purchased

in November 1992, and adds some extra

excitement to the mix. In the last fourteen years

with Drayton at the helm as Chairman, the

Astros have achieved the fourth best record in

Major League Baseball. Another company headquartered

in Temple is Leading Edge Brands, a

beverage company that markets and distributes

all the flavors of Frostie and Kist brands.

The foundation to all this was the McLane

Company, which was started by Drayton’s

grandfather Robert McLane in 1894. The

success of the company is an inspiring

testament to free enterprise in America and

visionary leadership. Drayton McLane, Sr., and

his wife, Gladys, raised their family and

continued to grow the business in the small

community of Cameron. Drayton and his two

sisters, Kate McLane Dimmitt and Jo Ann

McLane McClaren were blessed with two strong

Christian parents who taught their children the

importance of integrity, ethics, responsibility,

and hard work. After completing undergraduate

school at Baylor University and then graduate

school at Michigan State University, Drayton

came home in 1959 to join the family business.

After six years in college his father put him on

third shift loading trucks. Learning the business


from the ground up, Drayton soon realized that

the company would need a more modern

facility and systems to make the leap to the

next level.

One day he approached his father and

suggested they move the business to Austin,

Waco, or Temple. Moving the company to a

larger city would not only make it a more

financially sound investment, it would also allow

the company to be closer to the interstate system

and provide a larger and more diverse workforce.

Although his father was not thrilled with the

prospect of relocating the largest employer in

Cameron, he ultimately agreed with his son. One

of the main reasons for choosing Temple was its

close proximity to Cameron. At the age of sixtyfive,

Drayton, Sr., began driving from Cameron to

Temple, every day, six days a week, allowing the

family to keep their home in Cameron.

In 1965 construction on a new McLane

Company distribution center began on Center

Street in Temple. Less than a year later, in March

1966, McLane Company was seen as a bold

venture and opened as one of the first

businesses in the Temple’s Industrial Park. The

move was obviously a good decision since the

company has grown thirty percent or more each

year for the last thirty-two years. They started

with one distribution center in Temple and have

grown to eighteen throughout the country,

providing weekly grocery distribution services

to over seventy thousand supermarkets,

convenience stores, and fast food restaurants in

the United States. Because of its success in

grocery distribution, McLane Company merged

with Wal-Mart in December 1990 and the

expansion continued. Wal-Mart ultimately sold

the company to Berkshire Hathaway, whose

chairman and CEO is Warren Buffett.

The move to Temple allowed Drayton a front

row seat to watch the community grow and

develop. When he moved here, Temple had

about 27,000 people; today the city has grown

Above: Drayton McLane, Jr., with

several players from the Houston

Astros. Shown are (left to right) Jeff

Kent, Jeff Bagwell, McLane, Craig

Biggio, and Lance Berkman.

Bottom, left: Drayton McLane, Jr., at

Minute Maid Park, home of the

Houston Astros.

Bottom, right: Drayton McLane, Jr.,

speaks at the dedication of the Texas

A&M Medical Research Building on

the Scott & White campus in Temple,

March 24, 2000.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 81

Right: Drayton McLane, Jr., speaks at

the McLane Advanced Technologies’

building dedication.

Below: Three generations of McLanes

have been active supporters of Boy

Scouts of America with both Drayton

III and Denton achieving the rank of

Eagle Scout.

to nearly 60,000. As one of the town’s biggest

fans, he says, “The people, quality of life, the

school system, and overall economy are second

to none. Institutions such as Temple College,

Scott & White as well as a number of other very

successful industries in town have attracted very

talented and able people. We have also seen the

retail, restaurant, and entertainment markets

flourish. Temple is a great place to live and

work. We’ve got it all without some of the

challenges that you might find in a larger city.”

Drayton’s love for the community is evident

in his civic and philanthropic activities in

Central Texas. He has been the President and

Chairman of the United Way program locally

and his involvement with the Astros helped

Houston’s United Way program raise over $70

million per year, making it one of the largest

donations in the nation. He has also been

involved with the Children’s Miracle Network

(CMN) since his friend and mentor Sam Walton

encouraged him to look into it in the 1980s.

Drayton has also been Chairman of Temple

Chamber of Commerce, serves on Temple’s

Industrial Foundation, and has been active in

Scouting since he was a Cub Scout, currently

serving on the Executive Council with the

National Boy Scouts of America.

When asked about his favorite things,

Drayton lists faith and family at the top of his

priorities. Drayton met his wife, Elizabeth, in

the fall of 1966. Elizabeth was raised outside of

Temple on land now covered by Lake Belton.

Her family sold the land in the 1950s to make

way for the lake and they moved to a farm in

Salado where Elizabeth graduated from high

school. When construction of I-35 eventually

worked its way across their farm, the family

moved to Belton.

Elizabeth and Drayton were married in 1973

and built a house on Dakota Street where they

lived for seventeen years before moving to their

current home in 1990. They have two sons,

Drayton III and Denton, both of whom

graduated from Temple High School and then

Baylor University and have joined their father in


different businesses within the McLane Group.

Drayton III lives in Salado with his wife, Amy,

and their two sons, Drayton IV and Brooks.

Denton and his wife, Amy, live in Birmingham,

Alabama, and also have two sons, Jeff and Jake.

Just like the generations before them, Drayton’s

family remains very close.

Drayton and Elizabeth have been members of

the First Baptist Church since moving to Temple

and stay active there. Drayton has been a deacon

for almost thirty years and also served as

Chairman of the Board of Deacons.

Drayton best sums up the legacy of his family

and his exciting and always changing life in

Central Texas in these words: “Faith, family,

leadership, friendship, and teamwork; I still

enjoy the thrill of seeing people succeed and

grow in both their personal and professional

lives. McLane Company now has 16,000

employees and many of them are the same

people that I hired thirty plus years ago. Just as

my parents taught me, I believe that you should

always surround yourself with good people that

you can count on. That’s why the McLane Group

of companies has forward-thinking leaders and

employees who are committed to providing the

best service and quality products to their

customers and friends. Whatever we do, where

ever we go, with integrity and dedication, the

people that follow us will keep charging!”

Above: McLane Company

Distribution Center employees: (left

to right) R.C. Franklin, Laurie

Wilson, Lee Hirsch. Drayton McLane,

Jr., Thomas Kristinek and Ray

Mercado as pictured on the cover of

Convenience Store People in 1992.

Left: Drayton Sr. and Drayton Jr.,

1966 at McLane Company on

Industrial Boulevard, after moving

from Cameron to Temple.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 83






Above: Mattie and Herman Wendland

with their children (clockwise from

left) Cloetide, Georgia, Herman, Jr.,

Jessie, Sadie, Willie (later Bill), and

Marguerite, c. 1898. Robert (Bob)

would be born in 1900.

Below: Robert and Will Wendland,

c. 1916.

Throughout the years in which agriculture

was the dominant industry in central Texas,

Wendland’s Farm Products served farmers and

ranchers across the state and beyond. As the

company grew from a small family produce

store into an extensive feed manufacturing and

grain handling facility, the Wendland family also

laid the foundations for a strong ethic of service

to the entire Temple community.

The company was founded by Herman

Wendland, who had emigrated from

Germany with his family as a child.

After moving from Arkansas to Texas in

the 1890s with his wife Mattie and their

growing family, Herman eventually saved

enough to open a tin shop in Killeen, Texas,

using the craft he had learned from his father,

Ernst Wendland.

By 1896 the business included a produce

store, the first in the area to pay cash for goods

such as milk, eggs, cream, and chickens. Cash

earnings gave farmers the freedom not just to

trade in barter but to buy at other stores, thus

supporting the local economy.

After Herman’s death in 1914 and Mattie’s in

1915, their unmarried children continued the

business under the name Wendland Produce

Co. Teenagers Will (Bill) and Robert (Bob), the

youngest of the eight, worked in the store in

Killeen all day. They also sold and delivered

water in barrels, charging fifteen cents or two

for a quarter. At night they hauled produce in an

old Ford Model T to Temple buyers.

When the boys served in the army late in

World War I, siblings Cloetide and Sadie

Wendland, and Molton and Jessie Wendland

Allen carried on the business. After the war, they

bought grain from farmers and shipped it by rail

to Fort Worth, then the largest grain market in

Texas. They installed the area’s first mechanical

corn sheller in the family barn and began selling

feed at the store.

In 1924, Bob married Nora Lee Mayhew, a

Methodist minister’s daughter who was working

as a schoolteacher in Killeen. In Temple the

Wendland brothers and their elder sister

Cloetide bought the Childress Grain Company,

a small grain elevator at South Fourth and

Avenue D, renaming it Wendland Grain

Company. In 1928, Bob and Nora Lee moved to

Temple with their young daughter, Bobbye Lee,

to enter the grain business.

Although the produce store in Killeen

remained, managed by Cloetide, emphasis

gradually shifted to the grain company. In the

1930s, Bill, Bob, and Cloetide bought the J. C.

Crouch Grain Company elevator at South

Second and Avenue D, enabling Bill to move to

Temple with his wife Kathaleen and children

Weldon and Bonnie.

The Killeen business declined with the

advent of World War II, when much local farm

and ranch land was appropriated to form what

is now Fort Hood. But the grain business

flourished, with “Miss Cloetide” remaining a

financial partner and eventually moving to

Temple. By 1940 the company boasted two


traveling salesmen, several area dealers, its

first semi-trailer truck, and new feed and

pellet mills.

During World War II, public service came to

the fore. Bob traveled to Washington to serve on

the three-man national agricultural board of the

Office of Price Administration (OPA). Through

the American Legion, where he eventually

became a post and division commander, Bill

worked to secure better treatment of wounded

soldiers at McCloskey General Hospital (now

the Temple VA Hospital).

At the same hospital, Nora Lee, a classically

trained violinist and violin teacher, volunteered

as a Gray Lady, playing for shell-shocked

veterans in locked wards and helping pioneer

music therapy for mental illness. Bob, Nora Lee,

Bobbye Lee and Erroll also entertained many

soldiers at their house, providing a touch of

family life far from home.

Ever since Herman Wendland’s children

invited friends to sing with mandolins and

guitars, the Wendlands have promoted not just

family but community music-making. In the

1930s, Nora Lee conceived and led a campaign

to establish a string-instrument program in

Temple schools. At the time, Dallas was the only

other school district in Texas with an orchestral

music program. In 1958, with Raye Virginia

Allen, Nora Lee was a co-founder of the Cultural

Activities Center (CAC) in Temple, which

grew to sponsor community orchestras and

choruses as well as concerts by nationally

known visiting artists.

On the business side, after a fire destroyed

the old wooden mill, the Wendlands opened a

new concrete-and-steel feed plant in 1946,

increasing production to three shifts in busy

winter months. In the 1950s, warehouses were

added for commercial grain storage, making the

company the first in Bell County to issue

bonded receipts, which enabled farmers to

participate in government loan programs.

Bob’s son, Erroll, joined the business in

1951 after earning an MBA from SMU.

He served in the Air Force as a supply

officer during the Korean conflict and returned

in 1954 to oversee production and feed

nutrition formulation. In 1959, he married

Barbara Jean Cook of Houston, a college

friend of his cousin Bonnie’s. She had studied

math at SMU and had worked as a

mathematician for Humble Oil programming

early mainframe computers, then an unusual

path for a woman.

The company incorporated in 1957 as

Wendland’s Farm Products, Inc., with Bob

as president, Bill as vice president, and Erroll

as secretary/treasurer. By 1959, the firm had

250 dealers in 75 Texas counties, served by

a fleet of 14 trucks and selling over 200

different feeds.

A new office building was constructed in 1964

at 405 South Second followed by a new feed mill

in 1966-67. By the time Bill, who had managed

the seed trade, died in 1967, seed distribution

had declined and feed manufacturing was

expanding, due to technological advances and

new trade patterns.

Above: Guest artist Zino Francescatti

(front right) delights his hosts with

an impromptu home concert in the

mid-1940s. Also shown in this

photograph are (clockwise from top,

left) Bobbye Lee, Cloetide, Bob, and

Nora Lee Wendland.

Below: Foreground (from left to right):

Bill, Cloetide, and Bob Wendland at a

groundbreaking in 1955. The new

grain elevator would offer the first

commercial grain storage in Bell

County. Erroll Wendland is second

from right in the back.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 85

Above: Larry Alley.

Below: Glenn Cathey, Erroll

Wendland, and Richard Schneider

with patented One ‘N Only TM

horse feed.

From the 1960s onward, the plant was

modernized and expanded by new feed lines,

automatic bagging, increased ingredient storage,

larger pellet mills, a feed block press, and

computer-controlled manufacturing. By the

mid-1980s, capacity had reached 250 tons per

shift, with dealers throughout central and south

Texas and Louisiana.

W. Larnce (Larry) Alley joined the company

as vice president in 1973, moving to Temple

with his wife Thelma, and bringing over forty

years’ experience in the grain and feed industry.

He became the first non-family stockholder and

eventually general manager.

Over the years, company leaders showed

strong commitment to civic service through

membership in professional organizations. Bill

served on the board of the Southern Seedsmen’s

Association. Bob and Erroll Wendland and Larry

Alley all three served at various times as president

of the Texas Grain and Feed Association and were

active participants and officers in several regional

and national associations, an unusual level of

industry-wide commitment from a single

relatively small company.

After the death of Bob in 1981, Erroll became

president of the company. A new grain elevator

was added after a 1984 fire. Continuing

innovations in production techniques included

new machinery to meet the growing demand for

pet and fish food.

In 1990, thanks to groundbreaking research

by company nutritionists under the leadership

of Larry Alley, the company patented its new

high-fiber horse feed One ’N Only, a

complete self-fed diet that can be put out in a

trough, relieving the burden of twice-daily

feedings especially for recreational horse owners

and those in cold climates. The new feed was

tested at the company’s research farm north of

Temple under the supervision of farm manager

Glenn Cathey. It found buyers in places where

roughage for horses had previously been

shipped in long-distance, such as Hawaii,

Guam, and a naval base in Norfolk, Virginia, for

onward shipment to Guantánamo.

As the company’s management began to

reach retirement age, Erroll, Larry, and family

stockholders considered offers from

multinational agribusiness corporations, but

chose to pass the company on to another familyowned

business, with the aim of ensuring that

the long tradition of quality local service would

continue unbroken. Wendland’s Farm Products,

with its popular trademark Wendland’s Feeds,

was sold in 1995 to Dennis Jupe, becoming

a division of Jupe Feeds. The Jupe family

now manages the Temple plant as well as the

original Jupe feed mill in San Antonio, formerly

Louis Feed.

Dennis and Rose Jupe moved to Temple with

their son Darren and his wife Claudia, and both

Rose and Claudia worked in the business for

several years. Dennis and Darren have

continued their membership in the Chamber of

Commerce and remain committed to local

ownership and operation. Civic service has also

continued, with longtime accounting manager

Richard Schneider serving as president of the

Temple Civic Theatre.

The company still manufactures Wendland’s

Feeds and has added Jupe Feeds to its list of

available livestock, pet, and poultry foods, with

customers remaining loyal to both labels for

generations. Central Texas farmers, ranchers,

and pet and livestock owners still benefit from

the company’s traditional values of personal

integrity, fair dealing, freshly manufactured

feeds, and local involvement.

The Wendland commitment to serving the

community has remained strong for decades.

Bob and Erroll Wendland and Larry Alley all

served as president of the Temple Rotary Club;

Erroll also served as Rotary district governor

and led scholarship campaigns. Under Bill’s


leadership, the company supported groups such

as 4-H and FFA through the annual Bell County

Junior Fair and Livestock Show.

Family members have also donated time and

money to many other causes. The entire

Wendland family have been active volunteers,

leaders, and supporters of the Cultural Activities

Center and of First United Methodist Church.

Erroll has also served on the boards of other

nonprofits including the Temple United Fund,

Chamber of Commerce, Hillcrest Cemetery

Association, Cen-Tex Alcohol Rehabilitation

Center, Temple Community Concert

Association, Central Texas Orchestral Society,

and the foundation of the national United

Methodist Reporter.

In retirement, Erroll’s volunteer work has

focused especially on education and healthcare.

In 1996 he was honored by the Temple

Daily Telegram with the Mayborn Humanitarian

Award in recognition of his fundraising

work that enabled the Temple Public Library to

move to a new location. In 2008 he is

still active on the boards of King’s Daughter’s

Hospital, the Temple College foundation,

and the Wesleyan Homes, a

Methodist-affiliated retirement center

in Georgetown, Texas.

Erroll’s wife, Barbara, has been

an active community volunteer,

including serving as the president of

the CAC. She is also a lay theologian

who has served in many volunteer

capacities at all levels of the United

Methodist Church, from teaching

Sunday school to serving on the

executive board of Perkins School of

Theology at SMU and as a delegate to

the quadrennial General Conference,

the church’s worldwide governing

body. In 2007 she received the

Seals national laity award from

Perkins for outstanding church and

community service. She has coauthored

two books and since 1992

has written a monthly newsletter on

church change and growth, Connections

(www.connectionsonline.org). Her

third book is scheduled for 2009.

Erroll and Barbara have supported

Temple institutions including Temple

College and Scott and White and King’s

Daughters hospitals. In 2007, they endowed a

chair for constructive theology at Perkins at

SMU, as a further effort to serve the broader

community and the world.

Above: New feed mill in the traditional

Wendland's green and white.

Below: Barbara Cook Wendland and

Erroll Wendland.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 87




Above: Raye Virginia Allen and Nora

Lee Wendland.

Below: Children at Hands On.

The Cultural Activities Center (CAC) was the

brainchild of two women who dreamed that

Temple could be an exemplary home for

community-based performing and visual arts.

After Nora Lee Wendland served as president

of the City Federation of Women’s Clubs in

1957, she and 1958 arts festival committee

chair Raye Virginia Allen were determined to

build on the resounding success of the

Federation’s three-day city arts festivals.

They consulted national arts associations,

hoping not only to create a center for

local artists and performers but also to

attract examples of the highest professional

standard nationwide.

The CAC was incorporated in 1958,

becoming the first multidisciplinary arts council

in the U.S. to be combined with a center for the

performing and visual arts. In the early years,

art, drama, music, and literature groups met in

borrowed spaces. Azalee Marshall, the CAC’s

first paid director, planned concerts and art

classes, washed windows, and served tea. Her

husband, Keifer, chauffeured guests, hung

exhibits, and repaired leaks.

In 1962, Azalee’s friend George R. Brown

made the CAC a $15,000 gift from the Brown

Foundation. Matching funds raised in a drive

led by H. K. Allen enabled the CAC to buy and

convert a church building on Avenue G. Yet as

the center came to include a boys’ choir, piano

ensemble, orchestra, chorus, ethnic-culture

groups, and more, space was still tight.

Brown offered to help match funds for a

completely new building, “if you people are

really serious.” On Christmas Day 1970, Azalee

died unexpectedly. Brown gave nearly half a

million dollars, asking only that the facility be

named for his late friend.

In 1978 the new Azalee Marshall Building

opened at the CAC’s present location on North

Third near I-35, on land donated to the city by

Frank Mayborn. It featured a 489-seat concert

hall, a wood-floored rehearsal hall with mirrors

and barres for ballet, and a semicircular glasswalled

studio wing. Later phases added the

striking winged sculpture in the front courtyard,

Orpheus by African-American sculptor Richard

Hunt, as well as another art gallery and an

elegant large-capacity room with professional

kitchen that makes the CAC an ideal venue for

receptions and meetings.

Today, the CAC’s galleries host visiting art

exhibits, its art studios offer classes and

workshops, and fifteen affiliate and member

groups meet regularly. Touring artists lead

master classes; ongoing programs range from

family activities to yoga, ballet, Broadway and

ballroom dance. More than fourteen thousand

area students take part in CAC arts-in-education

programs such as Hands On, which involves

third- and fourth-graders in art, movement,

and drama, focusing each year on a different

world culture.

The CAC women’s support group, the

Contemporaries, was organized in 1969 with

Mary Steele as the first president. Members have

donated countless hours of volunteer service.

Founding member Lajuana Carabasi still helps

with everything from planning to craft projects.

An annual gala has raised millions in CAC

operating funds, helping ensure that the arts

will continue to thrive in Temple at a level more

often found in larger metropolitan areas.


Throughout its one-hundred-year

existence, the Temple Chamber of

Commerce has worked on thousands of

projects and programs that have made a

positive impact on the community. Many

of these programs are still part of the

everyday operation of the Chamber.

Organized in 1907, the Chamber

operated under the name Temple

Commercial Club until 1912, when the

charter was amended and it was renamed

Temple Chamber of Commerce. On

September 22, 1936, it was renamed Temple

Chamber of Commerce and Board of

Development. On February 2, 1940, the name was

once again changed to Temple Chamber of

Commerce and has remained that way ever since.

Many of the Chamber’s successes have

had long-lasting benefits to our community.

Among them:

• In 1926 the Chamber Education Committee

formed a corporation that founded Temple

Junior College.

• The Brazos River Committee was the leader

in the development of Lake Belton and

Stillhouse Hollow Lake.

• Chamber leadership directed the

establishment of the Blackland Research


• The Chamber has played a role in the

expansion of medical services and facilities in

the community.

• Economic development has been integral to

the Chamber’s mission and message, including

securing Fort Hood as a permanent

military installation, establishment of

McCloskey Army General Hospital, which

evolved into the Central Texas Veteran Health

Care System to Temple and the expansions

and building programs of Scott & White and

King’s Daughters Hospitals.

• Interstate 35 was originally projected to be

built away from Temple until the Chamber

Highway Committee arranged land donations

for its construction through Temple.

• The Temple Downtown Commercial Historic

District was established to preserve our

important business and commerce heritage.

• The Temple Business Incubator was

developed and implemented to encourage

new business.

• Keep Temple Beautiful, an independent

organization designed to beautify the Temple

area, was developed.

Today, the Chamber consists of nine officers,

six directors, eight staff and about 1,230

members. Committees within the Chamber focus

on five sectors of the community: business growth

and development, community development,

government affairs, member services, and

workforce development. The Chamber is much

more than committees, projects and programs.

The office receives thousands of calls each year

from visitors and locals looking for a specific

business, a place to stay and eat, a telephone

number, directions, or simply to reminisce.

Information available at the Chamber includes,

upcoming events, visitor information, relocation

information, community information membership,

employment, health services, economic

development, and a searchable business directory,

which is also available online at www.templetx.org.

With continued support from our members

and volunteers, the Chamber looks forward to

positively impacting the community for another

hundred years.




Sharing the Heritage ✦ 89



Above: Dr. William B. Long and his

son Dr. William F. Long, 1994.

Below: Riad Chtay, 1996.

Early in 1983, Kamal Chtay and his uncle,

Frank Chtay, bought the Aladdin Car Wash.

Kamal and Frank already owned Zip Car Wash

in Killeen, Texas, so the decision was made for

Kamal to operate the Aladdin Car Wash while

Frank operated Zip Car Wash.

The Aladdin actually originated with Dr.

William F. Long, a doctor specializing in allergy

and immunology at Kings Daughters Clinic in

Temple, who consulted with his father, Dr.

William B. Long, about the possibility of building

a full-service car wash in Temple. After scouting

several locations, Dr. William F. Long worked with

Elbert Aldrich to purchase the property at 1616

South Fifty-Seventh Street and, with financing

from Peoples National Bank Belton, the Aladdin

Car Wash opened in 1979.

A partnership was created of W. B. Long, W. F.

Long, and Charley Haferkamp, who worked at

the Genie Car Wash in Waco, called Longkamp,

Inc. After Dr. W. F. Long went on active duty with

the Army Medical Corps in San Antonio, it fell to

Dr. W. B. Long to serve as sole senior manager

while Charley worked as the on-site manager.

The Aladdin operated in this manner for

nearly two years until Charley decided to leave

the business. Another on-site manager was

hired, and the Aladdin was eventually sold to

Kamal and his uncle Frank.

Kamal and his family moved to Temple to be

closer to the car wash because he was dedicated

in his efforts to make the Aladdin a first-class

operation. Kamal nearly ran the business on his

own with the professional help of a business

manager, Mike El Sedek, a young man who gave

devotion and hard work to the Aladdin for six

years. Mike left the Aladdin to pursue a degree

in banking in the United Arab Emirates, where

he is now the president of a prestigious bank in

the region.

In 1991, Kamal’s cousin Riad Chtay, who had

managed Zip Car Wash for their uncle, Frank

Chtay, from 1987 to 1991, became manager of the

Aladdin. Riad stayed with the Aladdin for four

years. It was during that time that Kamal was in

his homeland of Syria. In 1995, Kamal returned to

the Aladdin to take over complete operation of the

business, and Riad moved to Killeen to take over

management of Zip Car Wash.

After Kamal became ill in 1997, his son

Sammer and son-in-law Alex Jarbough began

helping him with the business. Kamal then sold

the business to Riad Chtay early in 2002, before

he passed away.

Riad immediately began a renovation of the

entire business and the building itself, with the help

of his brother and manager Ammar Chtay; Larry

Harris, a former and present-day manager with Zip

Car Wash; and his best friend, Greg Payne. Greg

has been a friend of the family and a key component

in the car wash business with Riad, Greg, his

Uncle Frank, and cousin Kamal since 1979.

Riad, Greg, Larry, and Ammar spent nearly a

year and countless hours reshaping the Aladdin

Car Wash into a much better, clean, and


prosperous business. When Kamal became ill, the

car wash had taken a back seat to his health and

several areas were not as strong as they once were.

It was Riad’s vision to continue the historic

tradition of great service at a great price just as

Kamal had always done. He also wanted to offer

a much better automotive detail service because

he believed that the city of Temple did not have

such a service in the area.

In January 2005, Riad began working on

converting a section of the car wash business

into a lube center and fulfill his ultimate dream

of making the Aladdin a “full-service auto

center.” Riad invested the money, and the time,

and Aladdin Oil and Lube was born.

Today, Aladdin Car Wash offers quality

auto service with the old fashioned hands-on

approach that Riad, his cousin Kamal, and

Uncle Frank always envisioned for the

business—a place of unbeatable prices and

the feeling that your friends are always taken

care of.

Above: Kamal and Frank

Chtay, 1996.

Below: Riad Chtay and the Aladdin

Car Wash Staff in June 2008.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 91


2007-2008 SPJST State King Colby

Havemann and Macy Narro of Lodge

17, New Tabor, lend their fraternal

support at a Join Hands Day

activity. Observed on the first

Saturday in May, Join Hands Day

brings together people of all ages for

the sake of "doing good" for their

local communities.

Fraternalism and fraternal life insurance are

founded upon the principle that every

individual is his “brother’s keeper.” It was this

idea of “doing good for each other” that inspired

the idea of the earliest fraternal societies.

The SPJST was founded in this spirit by

Czech pioneers in Texas in 1897. Throughout

its existence, the SPJST has fulfilled its financial

obligations to its members and kept pace with

the life insurance industry. Further, the SPJST

was organized for installing fraternalism and

patriotism into the hearts of its members.

The SPJST’s mottoes are Benevolence,

Humanity and Brotherhood. It was always an

American institution from its inception. It was

founded in the Czech language because its

founders knew that language best. The Society

continues to emphasize the importance of the

Czech heritage and culture.

Throughout its history, SPJST lodges and

members have worked hard to establish the

Society’s reputation as a proactive, nonsectarian

fraternal organization. Local lodges sponsor a

wide range of family-oriented activities,

including community service projects, dances,

picnics, choral and dance groups. The SPJST’s

youth program provides boys and girls with a

wealth of opportunities to achieve personal

growth, fun and scholarships.

None of this “just happened.” Between 1834

and 1900, approximately two hundred thousand

people of Czech descent immigrated to America.

Many of them settled in Texas. The Texas Czechs

settled in approximately 250 communities dotting

the Blackland Prairie and Texas Coastal Plains.

The Czech immigrants and their families

stayed close. During the 1880s and 1890s,

many of them joined a nationwide fraternal

organization called the C.S.P.S.—the Cesko-

Slovanska Podporujici Spolecnost. In spite of

the rapid growth of the C.S.P.S. in Texas, there

was discontent among the members from Texas

and the Midwest. Their concern was that

C.S.P.S. life insurance premium guidelines

favored the industrial workers in the eastern

part of the United States.

After the 1896 C.S.P.S. convention, Texas

Czechs met in La Grange, Texas to organize a

new fraternal organization. In March of 1897, a

constitution was submitted to the Texas C.S.P.S.

lodges for their consideration and subsequent

approval. The SPJST—Slovanska Podporujici

Jednota Statu Texas—started operations on July

1, 1897, with 866 members and twenty-five

charter lodges.

Home base for the SPJST was Fayetteville,

Texas. The central figure in administering the

affairs of the Society, Secretary J.R. Kubena,

operated his business located in Fayetteville.

Until his death in 1938, Kubena administered

the affairs of the SPJST out of a single room in

his general store.

From the outset, SPJST made a positive

difference in the lives of its members, providing

them with the security of fraternal life

insurance, mortgage loans and the value-added

benefit of belonging to a progressive social

organization. During the SPJST’s first half

century, American society and lifestyles changed

dramatically. The United States became more

industrialized and sons and daughters of firstgeneration

SPJST members moved into the

towns and cities. It was during this period that

many of SPJST’s urban lodges were chartered. It

was also during this time, in 1953, that the

SPJST moved its home office to Temple.

During the latter half of the twentieth

century, the SPJST continued to provide

its members with the security of fraternal

life insurance and to reinforce a sense of

Czech cultural identity. Further, SPJST

lodges established the Society’s reputation

as a proactive fraternal organization, sponsoring


a wide range of family-oriented activities,

including sports teams, dances, picnics, plays,

orchestras, choral and dance groups.

In 2008 there are more than 50,000 SPJST

members in 117 lodges throughout Texas. They

are taking the best that the SPJST has to

offer, a tradition of helping people to care for

their families, and are extending these

values to their communities. SPJST’s fraternal

venue has expanded to include a range of

adult- and youth-oriented activities as well as

opportunities for community service. Numerous

SPJST projects and members have been

recognized statewide by the Texas Fraternal

Congress and nationwide by the National

Fraternal Congress of America (NFCA). NFCA

unites seventy-four not-for-profit fraternal

benefit societies operating in all fifty states, the

District of Columbia and Canada. The

association represents almost 10 million people

in 37,000 local lodges, making it one of

America’s largest member networks.

Above: Located at 520 North Main

Street, the SPJST Home Office was

dedicated on January 31, 1971. The

south wing addition was dedicated on

June 8, 2008, in conjunction with the

Society's 30th quadrennial convention.

Below: The SPJST's youth program

offers a well-rounded mix of

educational, patriotic and social

activities. Summer camp is provided

on the basis of active participation. In

addition, the SPJST strongly

encourages its outstanding young

members to continue their educational

development. Since its inception, the

SPJST Scholarship Program has

awarded more than $1 million to

deserving, college-bound youth.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 93




University of Mary Hardin-Baylor

students gather on the steps of Luther

Memorial, a landmark at the

university. The memorial, dedicated

in May 1955, incorporates the

original limestone blocks and arches

of Luther Hall. Since its dedication,

Luther Memorial has served as an

important reminder of the

university’s rich traditions and its

historic commitment to quality

Christian education.

The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in

Belton traces its history to the days before Texas

adopted statehood, when Baptist missionary

work was just beginning. In 1839

representatives of churches in Washington

County issued an appeal to inaugurate a

missionary movement in Texas, and Reverend

James Huckins, Reverend William M. Tryon,

and Judge R. E. B. Baylor responded to the call.

These leaders inspired desire for Christian

education. In 1841 they recommended forming

an education society. War prevented action until

1843, when the Texas Baptist Education Society

was organized. On February 1, 1845, the longawaited

Baptist University became a reality.

The school initially included coeducational

classes for students. However, in 1851 a Female

Department and a Male Department were

created, ending coeducation. In 1866 the

Female Department obtained a separate charter

and its own board of trustees and became Baylor

Female College.

In 1886, due to changing economics, it was

necessary to move both schools. The Male


Department consolidated with Waco University

in Waco, Texas, retaining the name Baylor

University. The Female Department, Baylor

Female College, moved to Belton, Texas.

Since moving to Belton, the school has

undergone several name changes: in 1925, Baylor

College for Women; in 1934, Mary Hardin-Baylor

College (named in honor of a benefactor); and in

1978, University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. In 1971,

the college became coeducational.

UMHB’s history includes notable milestones

such as starting the first work-study program for

women in a college west of the Mississippi

(1893); serving as the campus model for the

Baptist Student Union (1920); establishing the

first school of journalism in a college for

women in America and being the second

institution in Texas to offer a degree in

journalism (1921); and being recognized as the

first Texas Baptist college accepted into full

membership in the Southern Association of

Colleges and Schools (1926).

Today, UMHB continues to make history in

the fields of education, business, nursing, and

church leadership; in athletics through

conference and national championships; and in

other areas of campus life. Presently, UMHB

enjoys an enrollment of 2,700 students and

employs more than 320 full-time faculty and

staff committed to Christian higher education.

University of Mary Hardin-Baylor is located

at 900 College Street in Belton, Texas, and

at www.umhb.edu.

Left: University of Mary Hardin-

Baylor art students designing and

painting the mural on the Belton Dam

in 1978 as commissioned by the

Corps of Engineers. The Belton Dam

is considered the largest outdoor

mural in the state of Texas.

Below: When Crusader football began

its first season in 1998 at UMHB, the

Couch Cru immediately formed as a

student-led spirit group. Whether the

game is at home or away, UMHB

students set up couches and noise

makers in the end zone to cheer for

the team.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 95




Johnnie’s Office Systems was awarded

the Toshiba copier dealership for Bell

and McLellan Counties in 1993.

As one of the oldest office technology

companies in Central Texas, Johnnie’s

Office Systems offers over fifty years of

experience in the office technology

business. The company is locally owned

and managed and is operated under the

guidance of its premier goal—satisfying

each and every customer every time.

The company was founded in

November 3, 1958, after John Guillen,

an Army veteran of the Korean War,

purchased Townsend’s Office Machines,

where he was working as a salesman at

the time. It was his twenty-ninth birthday and

the company was renamed Johnnie’s Office

Machines. His wife of two years, Linda, was

eight months pregnant with their first child.

Soon after the baby was born, Linda joined John

in the business.

Johnnie’s Office Systems actually began its

operations behind a print shop in John’s

hometown of Corsicana, Texas, before it was

moved to Temple. The company soon began

to flourish and John would make sales calls

by day and repair office equipment at night

while Linda ran the office. The Vietnam War

propelled Johnnie’s into new growth with

several contracts that were awarded by Fort

Hood, and John and his brothers were

delivering large supplies of manual typewriters

to be shipped to Vietnam.

Truly a family business, John’s brother

Chancy joined the company in 1959 after

completing IBM school and continued to work

until his retirement in 2003. John’s brother Fred

also worked with John throughout the 1970s

and ’80s.

John’s son Adam joined the company in 1986

and his daughter Carrie joined in 1994 after

both graduated from college. John, Adam, and

John’s brothers were always the sales people for

Johnnies until Adam decided in the late 1980s

that the company needed to hire a larger sales

force to have better growth. Adam began

training his first sales person and, after many

weeks of training, the eager new employee set

off to make his first sale.

Adam told him if he closed the deal to

remember that this customer’s old machine used

liquid toner and that he must be careful to not

pick it up until a technician arrived. The excited

sales person successfully closed the deal and

decided to remove the copier himself…and

liquid purple toner ended up all over his brand

new suit. Adam knew then that training

salespeople would always be a challenge and

one that continues even today.

Hard work and a strong dedication to

customer service began to payoff as John was

awarded the Remington, Olympia, and RC Allen

typewriter and adding machine dealerships. In

1993, John was awarded the Toshiba copier

dealership for Bell and McLennan Counties.

At one time just limited to Temple, Killeen

and small surrounding towns, Johnnie’s Office

Systems now covers Temple, Killeen, Waco,

Bryan, Austin, and most proudly in John’s

hometown of Corsicana.

Today, Johnnie’s Office Systems has grown in

to one of the premiere Toshiba document

solutions dealerships in the country, providing

leading edge hardware and software solutions


tailor made for any size business. The company

also provides Toshiba, Kyocera Mita, and

Docuware document management solutions.

Adam and Carrie have had the privilege of

witnessing the office industry change from

yesteryear, but more importantly have watched

the hard work and great dedication of their

parents. They will continue to operate Johnnie’s

with that same gusto and that same integrity in

honor of their father’s legacy of adapting and

evolving the company into an historic

community staple.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 97





Above: The Kyle, an historic building

in downtown Temple built in 1928 as

a luxury hotel; converted to

apartments for elderly and disabled

residents in 1991.

Below: Kaleidoscope, an early

childhood discovery center. It has been

accredited through the National

Association for the Education of Young

Children since 2003.

Among the city of Temple’s outstanding

government agencies is the Central Texas

Housing Consortium, which includes Temple

Housing Authority (THA) and Belton Housing

Authority (BHA). In 2002 a management

agreement between the THA and BHA was

approved by both Boards of Commissioners.

Three years later on January 1, 2005, the

authorities agreed to create the Central Texas

Housing Consortium and soon after the BHA

board voted to become dormant. Today, the

Consortium has eighty-one employees, manages

nearly $72 million in assets, has an annual

budget of approximately $8 million and

serves more than 2,000 residents who reside in

1,165 units.

Temple Housing Authority, the seventh Texas

Authority, was created January 25, 1938. The

City Commission named E. E. Nettles as the first

board chairman, and R. O. Culp, Frank

Mayborn, H. F. Blum, and R. M. Newton served

as board members. The Board was not active

until 1944 when they began planning seventyfive

units of war housing. In 1952 the first 126

public housing units were constructed. From

1963 through 1979, an additional 200 public

housing units were constructed as well as a 100-

unit Section 8 high rise.

Under the leadership of Executive Director

Hal Rose (1985-2005), THA dramatically

expanded the quantity and quality of its

apartments and services. Beginning in 1985 a

replacement program was initiated for the war

housing units and construction/renovation was

completed by late 1999. The first scattered

site unit was purchased October 9, 1990

at 1602 South Third Street and twenty-nine

more scattered site units have been purchased

or built.

Between October 1993 and September 1994,

two open market complexes with 320 units,

Raintree Apartments and Adams Bend

Apartments, were acquired. Construction of the

twenty-six unit Temple College Apartments

complex was completed in December 1998. In

February 2000 the Temple Housing Authority

purchased the twenty-two unit Chateau


On November 13, 2000, the Kaleidoscope

Early Childhood Discovery Center renovation

was completed. Full enrollment of 130 children

was achieved within five weeks. The center

earned accreditation from the National

Association for the Education of Young Children

in January 2003 and has maintained this status.

It is the only accredited center in Temple.

The Friendship House, an eastside

resident/community center, was remodeled and

an addition was finished in November of 2001

and purchase and renovation of a second

resident center near downtown, Rose Hall, was

completed in November of 2007. An award

winning Homeownership Program to build new

single family homes for low-income families

started in July 1997. To date, more than 365


families have become homeowners. The Kyle,

an historic property converted from a hotel into

sixty-four residential units, was purchased in

January 2006 and updates/renovations are ongoing

that will improve unit quality and the

community space areas of the building.

The Belton Housing Authority Board’s

organizational meeting was held June 12, 1962,

and its first Executive Director, George B.

Dulany was appointed. The first public housing

complex was constructed in 1963. Between

1980 and 1982 more complexes were built for a

total of 196 public housing units. In 1986 a

forty unit Rural Development Housing complex

was constructed. This complex had a

community center that was completely

renovated in 2004 and renamed Belton Housing

Authority Resident Center. In 2006 a pavilion

was added to the facility as part of an Eagle

Scout project.

For most of their histories, both Authorities

focused on providing safe, sanitary, decent,

affordable housing to low-income families

until August 1990 when THA’s Social Service

Department was established. Today, both

Authorities also provide services to residents

such as employment skills training, computer

classes, youth leadership development

activities, and others that are designed to

promote educational attainment and economic


Numerous awards for program innovation

and best practices, two of which were at the

national level, have been received as a result of

provision of resident services. Other

achievements include:

• Awards of more than $17 million in grants

since 1990;

• THA has earned HUD High Performer status

for the past eight consecutive years;

• BHA earned HUD High Performer status for

the past three consecutive years; and

• Four homeownership program awards.

Temple Housing Authority is located at 700

West Calhoun in Temple. For more information,

please visit www.centexhousing.org.

Above: Temple Public Housing.

Jonathan Moore Homes, a family

housing complex, was built in 1952

and named after Jonathan E. Moore,

an early pioneer, landowner and

businessman who was instrumental in

establishing Temple.

Below: Belton Housing Units. The

duplex pictured is part of the rural

development complex built in 1986.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 99



Above: This historic photo of

downtown Temple shows the building

that would become In the Mood

Ballroom, indicated by the arrow.

In The Mood Ballroom was introduced to the

city of Temple by Rudy and Karen Gonzales in

1999. Nearly a decade later, it is the place for

individuals, couples and groups to come

together to experience the world of the dance.

The vision for such a ballroom actually

began in 1996 when Rudy was attending a

dance in Austin at the Senior Activity Center

with one of his students. Karen was also at the

dance with her mother asking her, “Is that

dance teacher guy is here tonight? I want to

dance with him.”

So Karen’s mother asked Rudy if he would

dance with her daughter…and he did!

Serendipity also ensured that the song that was

playing was an old Glenn Miller favorite—”In

The Mood.” And that was the beginning of

dream that is alive and well today in the heart

of Temple.

Rudy has been teaching dance for thirty plus

years. He returned to Austin in 1992 to teach

and expanded into the Copperas Cove and

Temple area in 1996. The couple decided to

research prospects for a building to rent in

Temple in order to have a dance once a month

just as they were doing in Austin.

As Rudy and Karen walked around

downtown Temple they found one building

with a “For Sale by Owner” sign in the window.

Intrigued, they walked in to have a look and

were thrilled when they realized it included

sixty-six hundred square feet of open space!

They were told the floor, hidden under

avocado green shag carpet, was all hardwood.

After touring the second floor, which included

another sixty-six hundred square feet, it was

quickly decided that this would make a great


allroom on the first floor and living quarters at

the second…and the building was theirs.

After all the paperwork was completed, the

hard work of renovating the space began in

April 1999.

Historic research on the building itself revealed

that in 1885 it was a one story wooden structure

only half as large as the structure today. However,

by 1888 it was a two story all brick building

occupying both 11 and 13 South Main Street.

McLellans occupied one side of the building

from 1927 and then expanded into the other

side in the mid-1940s and closed in the early

1970s. Through the years a variety of businesses

have occupied the building such as: a General

Mercantile, a Fair & Racket Store, Perry

Brothers, shoe stores, a pharmacy and a tin

shop, in the back of the building, around 1905.

Upstairs there have been offices of doctors,

dentists, lawyers, photographers and more.

Rudy and Karen have found many items from

McLellans, including perfumes, a wooden top,

toy boats, jacks, marbles and more. They

even stumbled upon a treasure trove of old

bottles while they were adding plumbing under

the building.

Working seven days a week for seven months

straight, the Gonzales opened their dream, In

the Mood Ballroom, on November 20, 1999.

Today, In the Mood Ballroom continues to

provide guests a one-of-a-kind dance experience

in a beautiful setting.

Bottom, left: Rudy and

Karen Gonzales.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 101







King’s Daughters Hospital was

founded in March of 1896 when

one kind individual, Annie

Sullivan, a devout Presbyterian

woman and a member of the nondenominational

International Order

of the Whatsoever Circle of the

King’s Daughters and Sons,

provided a clean, warm room and a

doctor for a sick man who could

not afford medical care.

This was consistent with the

motto of the King’s Daughters and

Sons, “Look up and not down, Look

forward and not back, Look out and

not in, and lend a hand,” and word soon spread

that the King’s Daughters and Sons were caring

for the sick at their own expense. Soon after a

few prominent Temple businessmen offered to

pay for the care of a paralyzed man if the

Whatsoever Circle would care for him and, with

just three patients, “King’s Daughters Hospital”

was formed.

The first site of the hospital was located

at North Ninth Street between Elm and

French Avenues. In 1897 the Circle paid $10 a

month rent and moved the hospital to the

former St. Mary’s Catholic Church, located

on Avenue F between South Third and South

Fifth Streets.

In 1900 the growing hospital relocated to the

Walker Home on Bentley Hill on the east side of

Temple, where Avenue C and South Twenty-

Second crossed at the corner of the acreage of the

home. The hospital flourished with five major

building programs in its first three decades.

There were two pivotal events by the fall of

1898. The drawing up of a hospital charter in

September of 1898 was the first. An official

association was organized and the first board of

trustees was elected: President George E.

Wilcox, W. E. Hall, J. T. Smither, Cornelia

Parsons, Maud Sherwood Scott, and Carrie

Reid. The second pivotal event was the appeal to

the International Order of the King’s Daughters

and Sons for financial support, which gave

stability to the hospital’s efforts.

In March 1928, King’s Daughters Clinic was

officially organized as a medical partnership of

physicians. Located on the third floor of the

north wing of the former hospital on Bentley

Hill, the clinic and hospital worked closely

together. In 1973 the Clinic purchased 4.7 acres

of land from the hospital and began its present

day building, located at 1905 Southwest H. K.

Dodgen Loop. A Nursing School was also

opened in 1902.

Key individuals in the hospital’s early days

included Carrie Reid, president of the Whatsoever

Circle, and the first staff physicians: Dr. Robert

Wilson Barton, Dr. John S. McCelvey, Dr. Robert

W. Noble, Dr. John Morris McCutchan, Dr. Arthur

C. Scott, Dr. Raleigh E. White, Jr., and Dr. Joel

Mathis Gooch. Joining them was an eye, ear, nose

and throat specialist, Dr. James Madison

Woodson, and Dr. Tyler, a dentist.


Richard Epperson served as the hospital’s

administrator from 1959 to 1987, while Tucker

Bonner has served as president and CEO

since 1987.

Today, King’s Daughters Hospital is a

full-service hospital with approximately

375 employees providing 24-hour emergency

care, inpatient and outpatient surgical

services, sleep lab, reference lab serving twentysix

counties, The Dr. Ralph Wilson, Jr., Heart and

Vascular Center, MRI, CT scan, The Imaging

Center, cardiac rehab, physical therapy,

respiratory therapy, The Center for Women’s

Health (obstetrics and gynecology care), and

Volunteer program. King’s Daughters Clinic

employs 275 and is a multi-specialty medical

clinic furnishing medical services in internal

medicine, surgery, obstetrics and gynecology,

orthopedics, family practice, pediatrics,

pathology, radiology, urology, gastroenterology,

otolaryngology, physical therapy, neurology,

allergy and asthma, rheumatology, anesthesiology,

podiatry, and First Med Urgent Care.

Future plans include the addition of an

Ambulatory Surgery Center and a Wound

Healing Center in 2008-2009. More than $4

million are spent annually on charity care and

community benefit.

More information about the historic legacy of

King’s Daughters Hospital and Clinic can be

found in the book To Lend a Hand: The History

of King’s Daughters Hospital by Patricia Benoit

and Weldon Cannon, or by visiting the hospital

online at www.kdhosp.org.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 103






The Ralph Wilson Youth Clubs of Temple,

Inc., (RWYC) is a home owned, independent

boys and girls club catering to children ages five

through fourteen, made up of three programs—

an after school program, summer program, and

basketball program. Its primary mission is to

provide an organized and supervised

environment, which offers boys and girls of

Temple and the surrounding areas the

opportunity to share social, educational, and

recreational experiences regardless of race,

color, or creed as they develop their capacity to

be self-sufficient and responsible members of

the community.

The original Board of Directors applied to

the State of Texas for a corporation charter

for the Temple Boys Club, and received the

charter on February 9, 1965. The one year

birthday party was held in 1966 and Ralph

Wilson, Sr., and A. P. Brasher, Jr., were honored

for their support of the club. In 1967, A. P.

Brasher, Jr., offered a resolution to change the

name of the club to honor Ralph Wilson, Sr.,

because of his “advice, counsel, and moral and

financial support.” The motion passed and the

Temple Boys Club became the Ralph Wilson

Boys Club.

In the early days of the Temple Boys Club,

maintenance of the aged buildings was a

perpetual nuisance and this lead to a move in

November 1970. A new structure was built

specifically for the Boys Club. At a cost of

$250,000, the building and most of its

furnishings were donated by the Wilson Family.

Ralph was known to gather up a pocket full of

dimes and come to the Club and buy everyone

a Coke, and sit and talk with the kids. Ralph

died in 1972 at the age of seventy, but before

his death he planted a seed—the need for a

girls club.

Ralph had spoken to Betty Mundell Prescott

shortly before he died about his dream for a

Girls Club for the girls of the Temple area. In

1977 that dream became a reality with the help

of Betty Mundell Prescott, Faye Brinker, Eva

Johnston, Sunny Wilson, and Jean Wilson. The

Girls Club opened March 15, 1977, with a small

ceremony involving Dr. Ralph Wilson, Jr., From

that point on, Dr. Wilson took up where his dad

left off.

With the help of Frank and Sue Mayborn, a

pavilion was erected in 1984 for the clubs. The

pavilion helped handle the increase of members

by providing a place out of the sun for outdoor

games and also a place in the summer for the

children to have their lunch. In 1993 the

pavilion was enlarged with a donation from

Sue Mayborn.

In the late 1980s, Dr. Wilson (aka “Doc”)

purchased three new buses for the youth clubs’

after school program. The children named the


uses “Doc,” “Happy Days,” and “Good Times,”

and because of the generosity of the Wilson

Family there were many “happy days” and

“good times.” These buses were retired in 2006

and three new ones were added to the RWYC

fleet thanks to the generosity of Dr. Ralph and

Sharon Wilson, Sue Mayborn, and Drayton and

Elizabeth McLane.

Dr. Ralph (“Doc”) and Sharon Wilson and

the Wilson Family—Janice Wilson, Jim and

Maria Wilson, and Terri Wilson, along with

Bill Reeb, helped provide funding for allnew

game room equipment in 2006. Doc

was excited to have his children involved with

this undertaking.

Dr. Wilson was proud of the Ralph Wilson

Youth Club community partners—Wilsonart

International/ITW Foundation, the Ralph

Wilson Public Trust, United Way of Central

Texas, Temple College, and Temple

Independent School District to name a few,

along with hundreds of financial supporters

from the Temple area. Though Dr. Wilson

passed away in December of 2007, his memory

and his legacy will carry on through the Ralph

Wilson Youth Clubs of Temple, Inc.

For more information, please visit the web at


This page made possible by Charlie and

Kathy Kimmey.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 105





Texas AgriLife Research-Blackland

Research and Extension Center, 2000

to present.

Created in 1909, Blackland Research &

Extension Center is a part of Texas AgriLife

Research (formerly Texas Agricultural

Experiment Station), a state agricultural

research agency affiliated with the Texas A&M

System. Originally located between Temple and

Belton, the center was moved to its present

location two miles south of Temple in 1928. The

property is one of thirteen off-campus research

and extension centers that, along with faculty

from Texas A&M University, perform research

and deliver education programs for the citizens

of Texas to ensure a safe and affordable food

supply, save and restore the environment, and

strengthen the economy.

At the heart of the program are a group of

scientists working to improve the region’s water

and soil quality by conducting research and

developing new technologies facilitating farmers

and ranchers to make improved decisions

regarding land and water management

practices. Scientists today use state-of-the art

computer simulation models, remote sensing

and satellite information to solve the complex

water, environmental, natural resource issues in

Texas and our nation.

Blackland Research & Extension Center

shares research facilities with the Grassland,

Soil, and Water Research Laboratory of the

USDA/Agricultural Research Service. Texas

AgriLife Research and Agricultural Research

Service scientists have worked cooperatively at

Temple for over eighty years, and also work

with scientists from the National Resources

Conservation Service and the U.S.

Environmental Protection Agency, who are

co-located at the lab. The synergism between

Blackland and Grassland scientists is a

principal reason for the success of the Temple

laboratory. Research programs from both

agencies are closely linked and scientists

are able to capitalize on the strengths of each

other. Resources (i.e. equipment, personnel,

financial) are shared and joint research is

planned and conducted.

People learn by seeing and the great number

of visitors, often a couple of hundred in a single

day, is evidence of an interest in the work being

done at Blackland/Grassland Research &

Extension Center. Many of the visitors go back

to their individual communities as missionaries

of better farming as a result of what they learn.


Grassland, Soil and Water Research

Laboratory (GSWRL) is located near the center

of the 12.5 million acre Texas Blackland Prairie.

GSWRL was established by the USDA

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) after it

began conducting agricultural research in the

Temple area in 1927.

The prairie’s clay soils have possessed unique

crop production and hydrologic characteristics

that have informed research regarding soil

erosion, soil and crop management, fertility and

plant nutrient management, hydrology and

water management, water quality, rangeland

brush and weed control, rangeland revegetation,

and agricultural systems analysis and modeling.

Nearly a century of research has now been

conducted in partnership with the TexasAgriLife

Research, Blackland Research and Extension

Center (BREC). The USDA Natural Resources

Conservation Service (NRSC) has assigned

personnel to the GSWRL to integrate research

findings of the BRC and GSWRL into practice

for conserving and managing the nation’s

natural resources.

The mission of the GSWRL is to develop new

technology for maximizing forage and crop

production; reducing uncertainty regarding the

effects of global change on agriculture,

controlling invasive brush and weeds on

rangelands; and solving problems related to

efficient use of soil and water, crop production,

soil fertility, erosion, hydrology, and water quality.

The mission is achieved through laboratory

and field experimental research and simulation

modeling by a multidisciplinary staff of scientists,

engineers, and technical support personnel.

GSWRL research is organized into two

units—the Natural Resources System Research

Unit (NRSRU) and the Grassland Protection

Research Unit (GPRU).

The group’s research is conducted on a 550-

acre tract of land in southeast Temple and

includes a 25,000-square-foot office/laboratory

building and other research support buildings.

The land also includes facilities for conducting a

variety of field experiments. An additional 840

acres of land near Riesel, Texas, is used for a

watershed research program.

USDA, Agricultural Research Service

Grassland, Soil and Water Research

Laboratory, 1975 to present.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 107




The Temple location of Sunbelt

Transformer, Ltd.

Sunbelt Transformer, Ltd., strives to be

its customer’s “1st Choice" for all transformer

needs worldwide. With a ready-to-ship

inventory available to view online, the customer

can create real-time quotes and retrieve

complete information, drawings, and test

results of Sunbelt Transformer, Ltd.’s stock

of thousands of new and reconditioned

padmount, substation, dry-type, and cast

coil transformers.

Sunbelt Transformer, Ltd., was originally

founded in Temple in late 1981. The company

started at a green field site with four employees.

Randall Maddox, Dave Sorge, Gary Lockhart,

Robert Collins, and Paul Maddox were the

original founders. Sunbelt brought in revenues

of over $490,000 its first year in business.

A combination of factors is responsible for

the success of Sunbelt Transformer, Ltd. The

downturn of the oil business in the 1980s left

Sunbelt to expand its geographic market.

Sunbelt also discovered it could buy surplus

transformers, remanufacture them, and sell

them at lower prices with quicker delivery than

the competitors. In 1986, after five years of

hyper-growth, Sunbelt was named to Inc.

magazine’s “500 Fastest Growing Company” list

and honored at the annual conference in

Cleveland, Ohio.

As time passed, Sunbelt Transformer, Ltd.,

grew to be known as a high-quality provider of

remanufactured transformers and transformer

repair services. In addition, the company also

earned a reputation for fast delivery, valueadded

services, and the handling of emergency

situations. Always realizing customer need was

the driving force.

Business grew steadily through the 1980s

and 1990s, while Sunbelt continued to

provide additional services such as adding a

mobile substation and a mobile GSU to the

rental line, transformer components,

switchgear, unit substations, and rental, repair,

and testing of transformers.

Today, Sunbelt Transformer, Ltd. is led by

Kyle McQueen, Jim Landino, and Randall


Maddox. Beverly Sawyer, a local resident of

Temple and a previous owner retired from

Sunbelt in February 2008. The company and its

leaders are also dedicated to community service

and charitable involvement. President and CEO

McQueen is a past board member of the Temple

Chamber of Commerce and the Temple

Economic Development Corporation, and is

currently a member of the Temple Airport

Advisory Board and serves on the Board of

Directors of King’s Daughter Hospital. Maddox

has served as the president of the Temple

Chamber of Commerce. Sawyer was a member

of the Reinvestment Zone, Temple Economic

Development Corporation, Brazos River

Authority, Bell County Tax Appraisal District

Board, the Planning and Zoning Commission,

Temple Chamber of Commerce Board, Keep

Temple Beautiful Board, and is a graduate of

Leadership Temple.

With locations in Temple, Texas; Bakersfield,

California; Sharon, Pennsylvania; Simpsonville,

South Carolina; and Springfield, Illinois;

Sunbelt Transformer, Ltd. offers the fastest

cycle-time on product delivery in the world, as

well as twenty-four hour, seven-day-a-week

emergency availability, and is focused on

“Transforming the World” by establishing its

position as the single source for all transformer

needs worldwide.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 109




Manufacturing precision hydraulic cylinders,

accumulators, hydraulic manifolds, valve

blocks, and hydraulic components for two

decades, Temple Machine Shop, Inc., and TMS

Hydraulics have long been in the business of

providing world-class products at competitive

prices with world-class customer service.

In the 1950s the family of Manzie Sawberger

founded Temple Machine Shop at 507 South

Fourth Street. Sawberger operated the shop and

established it as the place to take any style gun

in need of repairing or refurbishing. He also

completed machine shop/job shop projects for

local companies and farmers.

In 1979, two friends, Caswell Forest and Art

Tice, the brother of local golf pro Carly Tice,

bought the shop. In February of the following year,

Stewart Fettig became its general manager and, by

August, the three men signed an agreement to sell

the stock and business to Stewart.

At the time of the agreement in 1980, TMS was

located on South Fourth Street and consisted of a

forty-eight-hundred-square-foot building with a

dirt floor, a few lathes, milling machines—many

of which were manufactured pre-World War II—

and presses. One milling machine was actually

hand built using a Ford Model “A” differential as

a gear box. These antiquated machines made it

very challenging to make precision parts.

Local farmers, contractors and small factories

had always made up the shop’s strong customer

base, and by 1980 the oil drilling business was

still booming so TMS began working for local

companies to make “pump jack parts” for the oil

field industry.

Many times during this era there was work

brought in that most would say could not be

done, however, because of the strong

convictions and “can-do” attitude of Stewart,

work was accomplished and done well. This

type of positive attitude continues today in the

day-to-day operations at TMS.

When the oil field industry began to suffer,

work was geared toward anything to make a

dollar. Local industries often needed repair work

completed on their equipment, so everything

from welding, machining, repairing beauty salon

chairs, working on car doors, building go-cart

frames, and even working on a local funeral

home’s cadaver table kept the shop going.

By 1986 the plant had doubled in size as a

result of over five hundred percent growth in

sales. The business continued to grow and in

1993 a twenty-eight-thousand-square-foot plant


was purchased and the business moved to 1401

North Fourteenth Street in Temple. This

existing building had been operated under the

name of Hoover Brothers, and later became The

Teachers Store. Prior to TMS buying the

building, it was owned by a computer company,

Vestra Sub-Company. In 2000, additional space

was added to bring the plant size to forty-six

thousand square feet.

Today, the company includes 90 employees,

$10 million in revenue, and is directed by the

Fettig Family—Stewart, Lester, and Michelle.

TMS earnings are continuously reinvested in

state-of-the-art machinery and equipment to

improve manufacturing capacity, while at the

same time improving pay, benefits and working

conditions in order to attract and retain skilled

and dedicated people.

The company continues to develop

its successful customer base and capacity

for continued growth and prosperity. Its

precision hydraulic cylinders are marketed

by national distributors to major corporations

throughout the United States and international


Temple Machine Shop is located at 1401

North Fourteenth Street. For more information,

please visit www.tmshydraulics.com.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 111



Above: The HomePlace is a settlement

of historic cottages created to reflect

the village lifestyle of Salado.

Below: Derrick Hunt with Sherry and

Gerald Drews at the office of Drews

Hunt Builders.

Drews Hunt Builders started as the

father and son partnership of Martin M.

Drews and Gerald W. Drews in July

1973. The seeds were planted when

A.O. Drews, a Marlin contractor, taught

his sons Martin, Sam and Ben the

carpentry trade upon their return from

World War II.

By the time Martin and Gerald

founded the company called Drews

Construction Company, the pair

combined over forty years of construction

experience between them. While in

high school, Gerald learned the carpentry

trade from his dad and worked in the

construction field through college. After

graduation, he became an estimator for a large

commercial contractor in Houston. Two years

later, Sherry and Gerald moved to Temple to form

the company.

The first office was a home office and the

first company truck was a short bed 1957

Chevy. As the business grew, key employees

and subcontractors contributed to its success.

Many of their clients became some of their

closest friends. Although the company has

been blessed with many good people over

the years, three key employees, Tommy

Millender, Joe Millender, and Roy Schlickeisen

are still associated and are approaching thirty

years of dedication.

The name changed to Drews Custom Homes

because that was the focus. The company built

mid size homes in the 1970s and 1980s. From

the 1990s until the present the company

focused on upscale luxury custom homes

ranging up to $1 million. In 1998, Derrick Hunt

moved his family from Redding, California, to

become a partner and add remodeling and

expansion capabilities to the company. With the

expanded capabilities came a new name, Drews

Hunt Builders.

First National Bank, now Extraco, has been

the company’s bank for the duration. Those

familiar to Texas real estate in the 1980s know

how important it was to have bankers like Dale

Yates and Mac Burrough.

Drews Construction Company was an early

founding member of the Temple Area Builders

Association, and participated in over thirty-five

Parades of Homes. In January 1992, BUILDER,

the magazine of the National Association of

Home Builders, recognized Drews Custom

Homes in its Builder Spotlight Award as “one of

the top twelve best builders in the nation.”

One of the company’s most unique

projects was a small residential development

in historic Salado, Texas. Today, the

HomePlace is a small lane with individual

homes built on pier and beam foundation

to replicate homes built in the late 1800s.

These homes feature antiques, reproductions,

and reclaimed materials.

From 1977 to 2005, Drews Custom Homes

was located at 1113 South Thirty-Third Street.

In the year 2006 the company relocated to 1023

Canyon Creek Drive and changed its name to

Drews Hunt Builders. For more information,

please visit www.drewshuntbuilders.com.




The city of Temple began as a railroad town

on June 29, 1881, when Temple Junction was

created as the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe

Railway pushed north from Galveston. On this

day, trains brought prospective buyers from five

cities in for a party, barbecue, and the auction of

town lots. Twenty-eight residential lots and 157

business lots were sold and the railroad even

refunded passenger ticket prices for those who

bought land. The new settlement was named in

honor of Bernard Moore Temple, the Santa Fe’s

chief engineer.

Today, the city of Temple remains proud of its

historic legacy in Texas history and continues to

serve as a major connection among the

international markets of Mexico via Laredo and

three of the largest metro areas in Texas: San

Antonio, Austin, Dallas and Fort Worth. It is

also one of the leading medical centers in the

Southwest and includes Scott & White Hospital

and Clinic, King’s Daughters Hospital, and the

Olin E. Teague Veterans Center.

The city of Temple is governed under the

council-manager form of local government.The

mayor is elected at large, while the four-member

council is elected by district. The Council is

tasked with formulating public policy to meet

community needs. The city manager is the chief

executive officer for the city and is charged with

directing the day-to-day operations of the city.

The city is home to numerous manufacturing,

technology, and bioscience companies, as well as

several distribution service firms. Also within the

city are five award-winning school districts,

historic museums, the Azalee Marshall Cultural

Activities Center, Temple Symphony Orchestra,

Temple Civic Theatre, and the Frank W.

Mayborn Civic and Convention Center.

Temple’s historic district is located north of

the downtown district, and offers residents and

visitors alike a unique collection of fine, historic

mansions and middle class bungalows.

Throughout its history, the city of Temple has

grown steadily because of its diverse economy—

agriculture, transportation, manufacturing, and

medicine—and continues to shine as one of

Texas’ brightest stars.

For more information, visit the city of

Temple website at www.ci.temple.tx.us. For

visitor information on Temple, please visit


Above: A bird’s-eye view of downtown

Temple looking north. This mid-

1950's photograph shows a

progressive Temple looking much like

downtown Temple of today.

Below: Today, even with the passage

of a half-century, the Municipal

Building remains the hub of activity in

the downtown area.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 113


Above: Railroad and Heritage

Museum, Temple, Texas. The steam

locomotive (shown at left in the

display) served the central Texas line

through Temple until 1952. She was

kept at the ready for several years

just in case the newfangled diesel

engine (right) was not up to the job.

Design: iZone

Below: Falkirk Wheel, Scotland.

The panel series explains, along with

the history of the canals, that 330

tons of water and boat can be raised

from one canal to the other in less

than fifteen minutes, using only

enough electricity to power two

steam kettles.

Design: Arron Lawton Associates,

Pitlochery, Scotland.

iZone was founded by the late Scott

McCallum and Mike MacEachern, who

began in the late 1990s in Montreal,

Quebec, with a predecessor to iZone,

producing digital graphics embedded in

High Pressure Laminate. In 1999,

Wilsonart International acquired their

embryonic business and both relocated

to Temple in July of that year.

Scott and Mike, joined by Scott's wife

Terri, worked around the clock to

develop the new business. Scott

attended tradeshows and called on

everyone he knew in the graphics

industry. Mike managed artwork and

project management until all hours of

the night. By 2001, iZone had grown to

five employees and had recovered their

startup budget.

In 2002, Scott and Mike approached

Wilsonart with a plan to buy the

company back. Negotiations went on

until September 2003 when iZone

became independent, but still located

in the Wilsonart R&D building. They

began to invest in technology with a

CNC router and state-of-the-art, wide-format

digital printers.

The big move to iZone’s own facility came in

May 2005 along with the installation of a used

two-hundred-ton laminate press acquired from

Wilsonart’s Temple South Plant. Movement of

the press and its installation took months to

accomplish, and the first products were

produced at Christmastime, 2005.

In 2006 the company produced an

industry first: consolidated, double-sided

panels with registered, back-to-back graphics

and no seams.

In 2007, iZone began fabricating entire

graphic installations, beginning with a large

amusement park attraction for a well-known

international client.

This innovative company's commitment

to research and development of imaging

technology and graphics fabrication

assure products that exceed the highest

quality standards. In addition to producing

interpretive panels for national and state

parks, zoos, aquariums and amusement

parks, iZone also manufactures architectural

signage as well as products for industrial

applications, all using their Digital High

Pressure Laminate (DHPL), entirely produced in

Temple, Texas.

For more information about iZone, please visit

www.izoneimaging.com or call 254-778-0722.




Temple Iron & Metal was founded in

1934 by the Neman family, who owned

and operated the business before Billy and

Jessica Bachmayer purchased the company in

January 2003.

Temple Iron & Metal is a family-owned

business with a strong Christian influence,

striving to serve God and the community. The

Bachmayer family remains a strong supporter of

local schools and is part of the adopt-a-school

program in Belton. They are also active

supporters of the FFA and 4-H clubs of Bell

County through the purchase of several items at

the Bell County Livestock show each year.

Temple Iron & Metal buys all kinds of

recyclables, including aluminum cans, white

office paper, computer paper, newsprint, mixed

paper, plastic, cardboard, ferrous metals—short

iron, long iron, tin, tin white goods; non-ferrous

metals—aluminum, brass, copper, stainless; car

batteries, automobiles, refrigerators, and air

conditioning units.

For more information about Temple Iron &

Metal, please visit www.templeiron.com.

Temple Iron & Metal, then and now!

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 115




Above: With offices located in

Temple, Texas; Jack P., Sr., and Jack P.

Hilliard, Jr., have worked side by side

to build the company into a great

success story.

Below: Beginning with determination

and a pickup truck, Jack P. Hilliard,

Sr., set a record in January 1949,

selling 348 cases of Budweiser from

the back of his truck. Jack P. Hilliard,

Jr., sits atop the cases waiting to help

deliver the product.

In 1948, Jack Hilliard, Sr., began working

Temple and Bell County under the

distributorship of Turner Coffield, located in

Waco. Hilliard was required to furnish all his

own equipment and warehousing. In 1958, he

was appointed the distributorship for Bell and

Milam Counties and in 1971 purchased the

distributorship in Bryan-College Station.

In the early days, Anheuser-Busch products

were shipped by rail and all beer came out of St.

Louis, Missouri. The company owned its own

rail cars, which were solid white with SLRX

printed on the sides of the cars. That made it

easy to spot a shipment of Budweiser going

down the track.

Budweiser was not as popular during this

period of time due to the cost. A bottle of

Budweiser, considered a premium beer, cost

$.25 where the other beers, considered popular

beers, were 2 for $.25. In 1966, Anheuser-Busch

put a brewery in Houston, Texas, and this

helped the price of Budweiser because the

freight cost was much lower and the time of

shipment was faster. In the later years the

growth of Fort Hood made a tremendous

difference in sales and growth for Jack Hilliard

Distributing Company, Inc.

Hilliard’s first warehouse was 25 by 50

square feet. In 1952 the company moved to

one section of the Old Katy Depot and by 1964

the company was renting the entire freight

depot, which was fifty feet wide and a block

long. In 1969 the company moved again to the

old Gulf Coast Paper Company, Inc., building

on Twelfth Street. In 1977 the company built

the complex they inhabit currently at 217 North

Twelfth Street. In 1987 the old Gulf Coast

Building was demolished and the company

added on to their existing building, with one

final addition made in 2006.


Holy Trinity Catholic High School,

www.holytrinitychs.org, is a private collegepreparatory

school devoted to the fulfillment of

the educational ministry of the Catholic Church.

In 1995 a steadfast group of individuals

dedicated themselves to the idea of forming a

Catholic high school for the young adults of the

area. Key individuals included Bishop Emeritus

John McCarthy, Father Charles Davis, Pete Gaa,

Donna Reilly, Bruce and Geri Koehler, Kim Iglesia,

Jim Lindley, Guy Shields, Moni Bittenbinder, Al

Castillo, and Sam and Patti Snyder.

The school opened its doors in the fall of

1997 at St. Luke Catholic Church’s Education

Building and later settled at its current location

at 418 North 11th in 2002.

There were four principals in three years

before Susan Terry came to bring stability to the

school, attracting excellent teachers and

building an outstanding academic curriculum.

Today, the school includes 103 students

and a staff and faculty of thirty. In 2007

alone, students performed over twenty-six

hundred hours of community service in an

effort to extend the mission of the school

outward. The 2007-2008 school year included

four National Merit Commended Students and

recognition by the College Board’s

National Hispanic Program.

St. Mary’s School, www.stmarystemple.org,

was founded in 1897 by

Father P.A. Heckmann, then pastor of

St. Mary’s Church. Under his

direction, with the active support of a

dedicated group of parishioners,

Divine Providence Sisters guided the

pupils until 1912. In 1919, Sisters of

the Congregation of the Incarnate

Word and Blessed Sacrament from

Houston, Texas, began their mission

at St. Mary’s School and continued

until 1995. Lay principals and faculty

have continued to guide students in

achieving outstanding academic goals.

The Diocese of Austin purchased

the former TISD Reagan Elementary

School, and, after considerable

remodeling and landscaping, St.

Mary’s School opened classes in that

building in the fall of 2002.

The current enrollment is 265

students in pre-kindergarten and third

through eighth grades. Challenging curriculum,

a fine arts program, professional certified

teachers, small class sizes and an affordable

tuition places St. Mary’s Catholic School as

one of the best in Central Texas. St. Mary’s

Catholic School students participate in

PSIA (Private School Interscholastic

Association) and MathCounts each year and a

competitive sports program is offered to

students in junior high.






Above: St. Mary’s Catholic School.

Below: Seniors at Holy Trinity

celebrate the groundbreaking of the

school’s new campus at FM 2305 west

of Temple in 2007. The successful

capital campaign—Faith and

Dreams—was launched in 2007 in

preparation for this exciting new era

in the life of Holy Trinity.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 117



Above: The Music Man.

Below: On Golden Pond.

Temple Civic Theatre, Inc., a 501(c) (3)

nonprofit corporation, was formed by a group of

interested citizens in 1965. An earlier group,

called Old Central Players, had become inactive,

so a new name was chosen. The first play

produced was You Can’t Take It With You.

Temple Civic Theatre, operating with its own

board of governors and incorporated as a

nonprofit arts organization in November 1968,

worked under the Cultural Activities Center as a

member organization. In 1974, because of its

growth and success, the group had to “leave

home and find a place of its own.” Today, the

theatre and the Cultural Activities Center

operate cooperatively from separate spaces,

both built in 1977.

The building is an 11,000-square-foot plant

containing a 228-seat thrust stage auditorium,

two large dressing rooms, offices, classrooms, a

kitchen, restrooms, a large scene shop, and a

costume shop. It was surrounded in 1989 by

paved, curbed, lighted parking, with landscaping

and improved signage. The facility, valued at over

$400,000, was paid for completely through local

donations in support of the theatre.

In 1992, additional renovation work was

performed to help bring the building into

compliance with the Americans with Disabilities

Act (ADA).

The average number of season ticket holders

is 1,300, with over 300 volunteers working

regularly each season. Operations are

coordinated through the managing director with

a twelve-member Board of Governors and

volunteer committee chairmen.

Main-series shows are cast from open

auditions with a loosely-held goal of fifty

percent experienced actors and fifty percent

new participants, in an effort to stabilize quality

while encouraging growth.

Today, six shows are performed on the main

series, which features musicals, classics, and

recently-released titles. Special productions are

designed for smaller interest groups in shorter

run than the more commercial main series. They

include original plays, one-man shows, concerts

by local musicians, and plays of a more serious

or intellectual theme.

Children’s activities have always been of

prime importance, with the theatre’s philosophy

on youth participation being the integration of

children and young people into the overall

program. Formal classes in creative drama, two

youth theatre productions, and a youth

workshop in the summer have been included in

recent years.


A unique and very special idea was born over

twenty-five years ago to combine a respected

Central Texas healthcare institution with a

practical, efficient system of prepaid healthcare.

From this vision came Scott & White Health

Plan, a health-maintenance organization

delivering comprehensive healthcare at a

predictable cost. In return for a monthly fee,

Scott & White Health Plan’s members can visit a

doctor, have lab tests, be hospitalized and incur

other medical expenses and know they are

covered, with nominal co-payments.

First called the Centroplex Health Plan and

centralized in Bell and Coryell Counties, the

Scott & White Health Plan would evolve over

time into a vast healthcare network, which

today encompasses over thirty-four counties in

the Central Texas Area.

The idea first took shape after Temple was

founded by the Santa Fe Railway in 1881.

Throughout the decade, the Railway, working

through the Santa Fe Employment Association,

offered a system wide prepaid hospitalization

and pension plan. Spurred by the Railway’s

proposal, workers voluntarily contributed to the

association’s health plan every month. These

employees lived with the assurance that, if they

became sick or injured, they would receive the

best in medical care at no additional cost.

The Santa Fe Railway hired its own medical

staff and founded its own hospital in 1891,

Temple’s Santa Fe Hospital. Dr. Arthur Carroll

Scott and Dr. Raleigh R. White, Jr., came to

Temple in the late 1890s to work as chief

surgeons for the hospital before forming a

partnership in 1897 independent from their

railroad service. Over the years, other

physicians from a wide variety of medical

specialties joined Dr. Scott and Dr. White in

their private practice, and this partnership

eventually evolved into Scott & White Memorial

Hospital and Clinic.

Changes in the healthcare horizon in the

1970s caused resurgence in the interest of prepaid

health plans, now termed health

maintenance organizations (HMO). By October

1981, the State Board of Insurance granted a

certificate of authority and the Health Plan

officially began on January 1, 1982. Within the

first year, more than 10,000 workers in Bell and

Coryell Counties were members of Centroplex

and the number has continued to grow steadily

to well over 200,000 members today.

Scott & White Health Plan now has Regional

Offices in Temple, Georgetown, Waco, and

Bryan-College Station, Texas. The Health Plan

has garnered many national awards including

the top statewide ranking by U.S. News and

World Report, excellent accreditation from the

National Committee for Quality Assurance, and

the highest rating of any Central Texas HMO by

the Office of Public Insurance Council (2007).

Today, Scott & White Health Plan continues

to introduce new insurance plans to meet the

needs of individual members and employers,

including a child-only plan (Young Texan), a

statewide self-insured plan, a Medicare

enhancement plan (SeniorCare) and Medicare

prescription drug plans (Texas Rx), and has

received numerous awards for its financial

strength and quality of service.

Additional information is available at






Sharing the Heritage ✦ 119




The arrival of several resident families to the

Temple area prompted Pastor Frederick W.

Behrmann, of the Grove Lutheran Church to

suggest conducting services in a home. Services

began in the home of Mr. and Mrs. C. H. Falke

on August 20, 1924. Faithful study of the Word

of God allowed this tiny group to grow and

organize Immanuel Lutheran Church on March

24, 1926.

Upon signing the Charter, members began to

meet in the old YMCA. On March 4, 1927, a

resolution was passed to build a chapel and

parsonage on the corner of Twenty-fifth Street

and Avenue M. The dedication took place on

May 20, 1928. Although the congregation had

stated in Article VI of its first constitution, “We

obligate ourselves at all times to the maintenance

and furtherance of a Christian Day School” it was

not until 1946 that concrete preparations were

made for the opening of such a school.

In December 1949 the congregation

purchased a new site at West Avenue H between

Forty-first and Forty-third Streets. A new tworoom

school unit was dedicated to the Glory of

God on November 12, 1950.

The groundbreaking of the current building

took place on February 26, 1956, with the

cornerstone being laid in place on October 21,

1956, and the dedication occurring on

November 25, 1956. With continuing expansion

of membership the need to increase the space

prompted the building of a new education

building which was dedicated June 9, 1974.

With membership increasing, Immanuel

undertook the building of additional

educational facilities, including Sunday School

and Day School rooms, a gymnasium, cafeteria

and kitchen. The dedication to the Glory of God

was on June 28, 1987.

As community leaders, Immanuel members

are participating through many ministry

opportunities, such as operating a food pantry

serving needy members of the community;

Project “We Care” providing relief, support, and

supplies to a community ravaged by Hurricane

Andrew; Habitat for Humanity building homes

along with other Lutheran churches in the area;

Family Promise, as well as operating a large

print center which produces easy to read bound

books of the Bible in large print format. These

books are shared with the visually impaired.

By the Grace of God both locally and beyond,

members seek to bring “Christ Alive in Every

Heart.” From the earliest age, Immanuel’s

Sunday School and week day Early Childhood

Center serve area preschoolers and Kindergarten

age children and their families. This concept

builds through active youth programs and

blossoms into various dynamic youth and adult

mission opportunities.

More information about Immanuel Lutheran

Church is available at www.ilctemple.org.






Precious Memories Florist & Gift Shop

celebrates nearly thirty years of service across

the Central Texas area offering in excess of

147 years of design experience to its customers.

The shop’s original owners Malissa and

Rex Baugh began Precious Memories as a

home-based business before moving to locations

on Fifty-Seventh Street, Avenue M and Thirty-

First Street.

Temple native Seleese Thompson purchased

the business from the Baughs in 2003

and, although she had never assembled a

bouquet, her experience in sales and

management with Texas Instruments served

her well as she watched the success of her

company bloom.

Enlisting the help of longtime floral artist

and design-room manager Norman Northen

to handle the florals, Thompson focused

on expanding her new shop’s services and

sales. Just four and a half years later she

has picked up a thing or two in the realm

of floral knowledge and the shop has continued

to thrive, and, as of 2006, had been voted

Temple’s best florist for five consecutive years,

starting one year prior to its sale to Thompson.

This accomplishment got her noticed and

named as the 2007 National Retail Florist by

Florist Review Magazine. Precious Memories is

the first florist in Texas and the first singlelocation

florist to be honored with the

prestigious award.

In May 2006, Precious Memories relocated to

the historic Beimers Fine Jewelry location at

1404 South Thirty-First Street, remodeling the

building to showcase a broad line of gift

merchandise and featuring the talented

designers in view of browsing customers.

Thompson is the proud mother of two and

an active volunteer for several service and

community organizations, including the

Chamber of Commerce. She knows that being

involved in the growth of the Temple

community is critical to the success of its

children and businesses.

For more information, please visit Precious

Memories at www.preciousmemoriesflorist.com.

Above: Vibrant scarlet red is a

signature hue at Precious Memories

Florist & Gift Shop, as is

demonstrated in the shop's red-clad

exterior. Gorgeous eye catching

window displays create vignettes of

color and theme for the interest of the

passing community.

Below: Seleese Thompson with

daughter Faith, a junior at Temple

High School, and son Grant, a

sixth-grader attending Bonham

Middle School.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 121





Above: Temple High School as it

appears today.

Celebrating 125 years of outstanding

academic progress, Temple Independent School

District is unwaveringly committed to helping

students achieve their highest potential and

become meaningful contributors to their

community and society.

Led by a talented and dedicated staff that

today includes over thirteen hundred employees

across the District, Temple Public Schools was

originally established on June 13, 1883, when a

stock company was organized to construct

Temple Academy. At the same time, a strong

movement was under way to create a public

school system. By the end of the year, the city

voted to form an independent school district

and take over the Academy.

In 1889 the original frame building of the

former Academy became too small and a twostory

wing was added before the Third Ward

school building was finally completed in 1890.

That same year, Temple congratulated its first

three school graduates—Alice Robbins, Kate

Sloan, and Ray Wilcox.

As Temple grew and the city welcomed new

homes and businesses to the area, Temple ISD

and citizens rallied together to create an

outstanding educational outlet for the

community through large bond issues and

expansive construction. By the mid-1930s, a

number of structures were being added along

with a new cafeteria and a large gymnasium.

Temple High School was rebuilt at a cost of

nearly $3 million in 1965 and more classrooms

were added throughout the 1970s. In April

1996, voters approved a $38 million bond for

renovations across the District.

Today, Temple Independent School District

is the city’s fourth largest employer and is a

5A district with one early childhood center,

nine elementary schools, three middle

schools, and one high school, serving over

8,000 students.

Early childhood and elementary schools in

the district include Bethune Early Childhood

Center, Cater Elementary, Hector P. Garcia

Elementary, Jefferson Elementary, Kennedy-

Powell Elementary, Meridith-Dunbar

Elementary, Raye-Allen Elementary, Scott

Elementary, Thornton Elementary, and Western

Hills Elementary. Middle Schools include

Bonham, Lamar and Travis, while historic

Temple High School has remained the only high

school in the community since 1968.

For more information about Temple

Independent School District, visit www.tisd.org.

Right: Old Temple High

School, 1923.





Grace Presbyterian Church is a church whose

mission statement declares our intention of

continuing to serve God and humankind. The

church was born as Cumberland Presbyterian

Church on December 17, 1893, by the efforts of

J. J. Grant and Dr. A. C. Scott of Scott & White.

Dr. Scott was the only clerk of the session until

his death in 1940. After a denominational merger

in 1906 and another in 1983, Grace became a

member of The Presbyterian Church (USA).

The church met in Wagner Hall at First Street

and Avenue A for the first seven years of its life.

They used a tabernacle at Eighth Street and

Avenue A during the summer. A new church

was built on the corner of Barton and Third, and

was occupied on March 18, 1900. In the 1920s,

Grace Presbyterian had the first Vacation Bible

School in Temple. It was citywide, lasting three

weeks, and had 160 enrollees. In 1942 a Sunday

School room was designated as a writing room

for soldiers at Camp Hood.

The church moved to its present location at

Avenue Z and Fifty-Seventh Street in 1965. The

fellowship hall and classrooms were enlarged in

1991. In 2007 the sanctuary was modified to

make it possible to magnify the Lord with a

variety of worship styles.

An outdoor pavilion and recreation area

was built on the south end of the property in

1998. In 2001 the house on Avenue Z was

purchased and remodeled to accommodate

meetings and classrooms.

Grace Presbyterian Church continues the

tradition of making disciples and meeting human

need within and outside the congregation with a

variety of community programs like a

community-wide basketball camp each summer;

LOGOS, a four-part children's ministry where

Christian relationships are modeled and

practiced; Meals on Wheels, a program to prepare

and deliver meals to the homebound; and Prime

Time Ministry, a program providing worship

service to nursing home and assisted-living

residents. In addition, we contribute time and

money to Churches Touching Lives for Christ,

and to other local programs.

Grace Presbyterian Church is located at

2401 South Fifty-Seventh Street in Temple.

An event calendar, worship service times and a

host of information is available to you at


By the grace of God in Jesus Christ,

the Spirit is upon us to: Magnify the

Lord, make disciples and meet human

need. May you find here a place to

worship God.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 123





Founded for the sole

purpose of providing effective,

dynamic leadership to

accomplish comprehensive

economic growth for

the Temple community

resulting in superior

quality of life, Temple

Economic Development

Corporation has become a

landmark among the city’s

business, growth, and economic

development since

its inception.

It began in the mid-

1950s when a group of

Temple business leaders

started the Temple

Industrial Foundation to attract new business to

the area. They bought land in northwest Temple

and offered a legendary vision for the city’s

future—make the land available to prospective

new companies.

Companies from across the United States

began to take notice and Temple was soon

welcoming such groups as Wilsonart

International, Artco-Bell, McLane Company and

Texas Instruments.

In 1988 the Temple Economic Development

Corporation was formed to carry out the

mission of the Temple Industrial Foundation.

The founding Board of Directors included W. A.

Prewitt, III, Wendell C. Williams, Paul Kerr,

Mac Longoria, John “Mac” Burrough, Alan

Johnson, Gerald W. Drews, Glenn Richards, and

Dennis Hobbs.

Today, Temple EDC is directed by an

outstanding leadership team that recognizes

and appreciates the time-sensitive and

confidential nature of business attraction

projects and is responsive to the site

selection team’s needs. Staff members serve as

business ombudsmen to all clients and facilitate

the communication and development of

new projects.

Temple EDC also assists with business

attraction projects in many ways including a

comprehensive database of information on

available sites and buildings, demographic

data, labor market information, and wage

data; workforce training resources involving

employers, public schools and community

college; assistance in site selection, expansion

needs, financial resources and other

services throughout the planning and

development process; marketing presentations

and area tours; and trained and skilled

economic development professionals to assist

with business needs.

Temple EDC continues today as a

unique mixture of public and private

support for the economic growth of Temple,

making a difference that will last for generations

to come.

Temple Economic Development Corporation is

located at One South First Street. For more

information, please visit www.choosetemple.com.


Temple College is recognized at the state and

national levels as one of the most progressive

two-year institutions in Texas. A dynamic

educational, cultural, and economic resource for

the Central Texas region, TC has received state

and national recognition for programs ranging

from the visual and performing arts to

competitive athletics, and has become one of the

premier institutions in the state for the

education and training of healthcare providers.

Founded in 1926 as Temple Junior College,

the college has traditionally offered academic

courses for transfer to a four-year university.

Through the years, the scope and mission of the

college expanded and in 1996, the name was

changed to Temple College to reflect its role as a

comprehensive college, offering academic transfer

programs, technical and health profession

education, community education, career and

workforce training, and cultural activities.

TC is now recognized as a leader in higher

education with innovative model programs such

as the Clinical Simulation Center, Texas

Bioscience Institute, and Middle College and

Early College High School programs for high

school students.

The Clinical Simulation Center, a partnership

with Scott & White, Texas A&M University

College of Medicine and Laerdal Medical, was a

2005 Bellwether Award Finalist and continues

to attract national and international attention as

a regional center for the integrated education of

healthcare professionals at all levels.

Development of the Texas Bioscience

Institute through multiple partnerships and a

new curriculum in biotechnology are critical in

the community’s emergence as a center for

medical research. The TBI and the Middle

College Program have received numerous

state and national accolades, including the

2007 Bellwether Award and the 2007 Texas

Economic Development Council Workforce Best

Practices Award.

The main campus is located in south Temple.

In addition, TC also operates the Downtown

Center, Temple Business Training Center and

Temple Business Incubator in downtown Temple

and the Texas Bioscience Institute in West

Temple. TC also has expanded service to the

communities within the three-county service

area. Educational centers were established in

Taylor and Cameron, and TC is the lead

institution for the East Williamson County

Higher Education Center, a new multiinstitutional

teaching center in Taylor.

Additional information on Temple College is

available at www.templejc.edu.



The Mary Alice Marshall Performing

Arts Center at Temple College is home

to a nationally recognized performing

arts education program as well as the

Temple Symphony Orchestra, Temple

Jazz Festival, and Temple Jazz

Orchestra, and is widely used for

community events.

Sharing the Heritage ✦ 125




Above: The original nine founding

officers and directors from 1901.

Below: Current officers and directors.

Founded over a century ago with the goal of

providing peace of mind to Texas farmers and

ranchers, RVOS Farm Mutual Insurance

Company is proud to offer quality property

insurance to its membership through

outstanding products in an exceptional

environment. It all started when a small group

of local Czech immigrant farmers pooled their

resources to start a basic fire insurance

protection program. They saw the great wisdom

in sharing the burdens that often accompanied

the tragedies so common in that day and age.

Since its founding, RVOS has grown from a

single company offering a basic fire insurance

policy to a group of companies uniquely

positioned to expediently address our everchanging

market conditions. The subsidiary

companies include Priority One Insurance and

New Century Insurance—each offering

innovative and competitively priced insurance

products to meet the needs of property owners

across the state.

Being a Farm Mutual, the company’s focus to

provide insurance products to homeowners,

farmers and ranchers in Texas has given them a

unique ability to adapt quickly to new

circumstances, while offering a variety of

insurance products that can meet various needs

and budgets. Being owned by their

policyholders, commonly known as members,

affords RVOS the ability to provide the best

insurance products at the best value rather than

having to focus on sending profits to a publicly

held parent corporation. The company’s profits

are held in surplus to pay future claims and help

offset future premium increases.

Today, RVOS continues to provide peace of

mind to homeowners, farmers and ranchers

across the state. The rock solid company

includes more than 68,000 members and over

$12 billion of insurance in force and is rated “A

EXCELLENT” by A.M. Best for its stable

outlook. It ranks among the top farm mutuals in

the state of Texas.

The company has weathered economic

downturns, wars and numerous catastrophic

storm events, yet remained strong and true to

the principles upon which it was founded—a

visionary plan of providing security and peace

of mind to policyholders.


In 1888, Reverend W. S. Lockhart was

invited to Temple to hold a tent revival. At the

end of the meetings, a building committee

located the site to become First Christian

Church and a frame structure was erected at No.

8 North Fourth Street between Central and

Avenue A.

The congregation welcomed its first pastor,

Reverend C. W. Strawn, in 1889. He organized

the church board, women’s organization and

Sunday School. In 1893 his successor organized

a youth work and the church soon outgrew

its building.

In 1901 a lot on the corner of Third Street

and Adams Avenue was purchased and

construction soon began on a red brick veneer

building with white stone trimming.

When Reverend F.W. O’Malley became pastor

in 1908, he discovered that the church was

delinquent in its mortgage payments. Reverend

O’Malley rallied the congregation and the

church contributed to pay the entire note.

First Christian Church has been blessed by

many outstanding leaders in its history. They

include John Wright Holsapple, who arrived in

1921. He took a special interest in the Men’s

Bible Class and was a gentle and loving pastor to

the members of the congregation.

In 1943, in the midst of World War II and the

building of Fort Hood, Dr. Noel Keith became

pastor. He immediately went to work helping

thousands of servicemen and women. Before his

departure in 1946, Dr. Keith led the church in

purchasing property at the corner of Fifth Street

and Calhoun Avenue.

In 1947, Dr. Bill Daugherty became the

church’s pastor. He was followed in 1951 by Dr.

Harrell Rea, who built an active youth program

and led a remodeling of the sanctuary and

increased involvement in the community.

In 1963, Reverend Clyde Nichols began

his ministry in Temple. Before retiring in

1986, he was well-known for his weekly

column in the Temple Daily Telegram entitled

“Lift Up Thine Eyes.”

Reverend David Fischer became pastor in

1987. During this time, average attendance

reached more than three hundred in worship

and a family center was completed.

Reverend Phil Hills arrived as pastor in 2001.

His ministry was marked by growth among

young adults and serious consideration of the

long-range goals of the congregation.

In 2003, Reverend Hills was succeeded

by his associate, Reverend Deborah Jones.

Under her leadership, the church worked

through a spiritual life emphasis that built

communication and cooperation among

church members.

Today, First Christian Church continues its

historic legacy of ministry and service to the

community, offering an after-school program

and on-site preschool program for children ages

eighteen months to kindergarten with a current

enrollment of seventy students.

For additional information about First

Christian Church’s programs and services,

please visit www.firstchristiantemple.org.



Sharing the Heritage ✦ 127


Aladdin Car Wash ........................................................................................................................................................................90

Aldrich-Thomas Group, Realtors ..................................................................................................................................................64

Blackland and Grassland Research..............................................................................................................................................106

Central Texas Housing Consortium ..............................................................................................................................................98

City of Temple............................................................................................................................................................................113

Cultural Activities Center .............................................................................................................................................................88

DanHil Containers II, Ltd.............................................................................................................................................................62

Drews Hunt Builders ..................................................................................................................................................................112

First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)................................................................................................................................127

Gidden Distributing, Inc. .............................................................................................................................................................62

Grace Presbyterian Church .........................................................................................................................................................123

Holy Trinity Catholic High School/St. Mary’s School...................................................................................................................117

Immanuel Lutheran Church .......................................................................................................................................................120

In the Mood Ballroom ................................................................................................................................................................100


Jack Hilliard Distributing Company, Inc. ....................................................................................................................................116

Jancer Group................................................................................................................................................................................63

Johnnie’s Office Systems, Inc. .......................................................................................................................................................96

King’s Daughters Hospital and King’s Daughters Clinic ...............................................................................................................102

Materials Transportation Company ...............................................................................................................................................63

McLane Group, L.P. ......................................................................................................................................................................80

Precious Memories Florist & Gift Shop.......................................................................................................................................121

Ralph Wilson Youth Clubs of Temple, Inc. .................................................................................................................................104

RVOS Farm Mutual Insurance ....................................................................................................................................................126

Scott & White Health Plan .........................................................................................................................................................119

Scott & White Memorial Hospital.................................................................................................................................................72

SPJST ...........................................................................................................................................................................................92

Strasburger Enterprises, Inc..........................................................................................................................................................68

Sunbelt Transformer, Ltd. ...........................................................................................................................................................108

Temple Chamber of Commerce ....................................................................................................................................................89

Temple Civic Theatre, Inc...........................................................................................................................................................118

Temple College...........................................................................................................................................................................125

Temple Economic Development Corporation..............................................................................................................................124

Temple Independent School District...........................................................................................................................................122

Temple Iron & Metal ..................................................................................................................................................................115

Temple Machine Shop ................................................................................................................................................................110

University of Mary Hardin-Baylor.................................................................................................................................................94

Wendland’s Farm Products and the Wendland Family ..................................................................................................................84

Wilsonart International, Inc..........................................................................................................................................................76







ISBN: 9781893619968

More magazines by this user