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June 2011 NEWSLETTER

 

TRIVIA OF THE DAY:

Which Sugar Land football star once held the national high school record for rushing yards ?

(answer can be found at the bottom of the page)

In This Issue
Recent Events
Curator's Corner
Who's Who in History

Quick Links

 

Volunteer Opportunities 

 

SLHF is looking for volunteers to assist with the following projects:

 

  •   serve as docents for our upcoming walking tours and special events this Fall 
  •   assist with cataloging items in our collection and with entering information into our computer database

Please contact Eleanor Barton at ebarton@slheritage.org or call

281-494-0261 to sign up.


 

  

 

 

 

 

Don't Forget About Dad!

 

Father's Day is June 19th, and we have the perfect gift idea

for you...

 

 
 

Images of America: Sugar Land traces the city's evolution from a small company-owned town into the thriving community it is today.  The book features more than 200 rarely seen historic images of Sugar Land.

 

This would make a perfect Father's Day gift for those dads who are especially hard to shop for!

 

Books are $25 each.  All proceeds benefit our non-profit organization.  Check or cash payment is accepted.

 

To place an order, please contact Eleanor Barton at ebarton@slheritage.org or

at 281-433-4922.

 

Summer 2011
Volunteer Work Days  
 
Thank you to all volunteers who braved the heat and participated in our June 4th Work Day!  We were able to salvage some fantastic historic bricks from the 1925 Char House. 
  
  
We also held our first walking tour docent training program which was a great success.
  
Don't forget that our next Work Day and Docent Training is scheduled for Saturday, July 16th.  We hope to see you there!
Curator's Corner:
Vintage Advertisement for 
Sealy Mattress Company
  
 

 

Most people don't know that Sugar Land was producing more than just sugar during the early 20th century.  The well-known Sealy Mattress Company opened a mattress factory here in 1911.  Sugarland Industries remained the first Sealy Mattress trademark owner until it was sold to E.E. Edwards in 1925.  Edwards, the advertising executive who coined the phrase "sleeping on a Sealy is like sleeping on a cloud" lived in a house in Sugar Land from 1922 to 1925.

 

(Image Courtesy of Bruce Kelly) 
  
Who's Who in History...
W.T. Eldridge
 William Thomas Eldridge, co-founder of the Imperial Sugar Company, is one of the most colorful characters from Sugar Land's past
 

 

Born near Independence, Texas in 1862, W.T. Eldridge ran away from home at age 12 to escape his stepfather and never returned.  A resourceful young man, Eldridge got a job as a cotton picker in Granbury.  From there, he moved about the state doing odd jobs before opening his first business as a fruit peddler.

 

Eldridge went on to become a progressive businessman, farmer, and landowner of the time.  Twice he was tried for murder--one victim was his  former business partner--but both times he was acquitted after pleading self-defense.

 

Eldridge lived in the old Ellis plantation home (pictured below), which he had moved to the refinery site from its original location about a mile west of town.  A very hands-on manager, he installed Sugar Land's first telephone line from the house to the refinery, so that he could maintain contact with supervisors at all times. 

 

  

 

 He later built this sprawling Spanish-style stucco mansion on Lakeview Drive near  Eldridge Road which still stands today (and is currently up for sale).

 

 

Although Eldridge made headlines for killing two men during his lifetime, his true legacy is the creation and development of the successful company town of Sugar Land. 

 

 

(Images Courtesy of Bettye Anhaiser and the T.C. Rozelle Collection)  

 

Trivia Answer:

 

 Ken Hall is Sugar Land's most celebrated running back.  Many of Hall's high school records (1950-1953) are unsurpassed to this day.  He ran 11,232 yards and averaged 32.9 points per game. 

 

  Hall went on to play college football for Texas A&M and was inducted into the National High School Football Hall of Fame in 1983.

 

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