A Guide to the Grange In Texas Collection, [ca. 1873-1938]
The Patrons of Husbandry, or the Grange as they were more widely known, was a national agricultural, fraternal, and co-operative organization founded in 1867 to improve the economic and social situation of the United States’ farm population. Grange membership grew rapidly following the Panic of 1873, turning the Grange into a political power. The organization opened schools, organized social meetings, and became a powerful political group, lobbying for free trade, better education, railroad regulation, and homestead protection.
R. A. Baird organized the first Grange in Texas at Salado in the summer of 1873. In October 1873, Archibald Johnson Rose helped arrange the first state Grange in Dallas, drafting its constitution and by-laws. Rose became master of the Texas Grange in 1880 and presided over a time when the Grange was one of the most powerful political forces in the state, despite its steadily decreasing membership. During this time the Grange created a variety of subordinate associations providing services to its members such as the Texas Farmer Publishing Association, which published the Texas Farmer; the Texas State Grange Fair, which operated an experimental farm and exhibit hall; the Texas Mutual Fire Insurance Association, which provided affordable fire insurance; and the Texas Co-operative Association, which stocked their wholesale stores and sold farm commodities. The Texas Grange’s political influence began to decline at the turn of the 20th century and by 1950 had little power in the state.
Smith, Ralph A. "Grange." Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed December 16, 2010.
Smith, Ralph A. "Rose, Archibald Johnson." Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed December 16, 2010.
The National Grange of the Order of Patrons of Husbandry. "History." The National Grange of the Order of Patrons of Husbandry. (accessed July 28, 2010)
Notes and a scrapbook comprise the Grange in Texas Collection, [ca. 1873-1938], which documents the history of the organization. The notes include information on the Grange’s national and Texas beginnings; influence in local, state, and national politics; its work with farm families; and its decline to 1938. The scrapbook contains a printed pamphlet for Grange stores, an index to a report of the 1879 Texas State Grange Annual Meeting, and clippings on the 1930 National Grange Annual Meeting.
This collection is open for research use.
Grange in Texas Collection, [ca. 1873-1938], Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s "History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light" project, 2009-2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers