Hickerson, Mrs Bill P 2000-11-06

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Mrs. Bill Poage Hickerson talks about growing up in Irion County, Texas in the early 1900s.She attended Texas Tech from 1925-1928 as well as North Texas State University.Mrs. Hickerson talks extensively about the early days of Texas Tech.She discusses ranching, sand storms, life in Mertzon, Texas, World War I, and Lubbock in the 1920s.She also lived in El Paso and Big Lake, Texas.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: Mrs. Bill Poage Hickerson

Additional Parties Recorded:

Date: November 6, 2000

Location: College Station, Texas

Interviewer: David Marshall

Length: 1 hour


Tape 1, Side 1: b. in Irion County near Sherwood Texas, Lived 15 miles west of Mertzon Texas, Oldest of 5 children, 25 miles from San Angelo Texas, Father, Rancher, Hereford Cattle, Sheep-herding and Raising, Schneiman and Ferguson – herders, Sheep were in Ozona (Crockett County), Droughts, Cattle, Milking, Family, 1 sister, 3 brothers, She and youngest brother went to college, Brothers, Ropers, Sisters, Did chores, School, Rode horseback 21/2 miles to country school, Weather, Wildlife, Coyotes, Jack rabbits, Rattle snakes, Brother bitten , Doctor treated but had no medicine, Father, Richard Douglas Poage, b. Waco Texas, Family moved from Virginia to Waco during the Civil War , Had a plantation in Virginia, Mother, Meda Lindley, School teacher, Attended college at Sam Houston Normal, Teaching certificate, Influenced Mrs. Hickerson to teach, Encouraged Mrs. Hickerson to go to college, Father’s Family, Left a large plantation in Virginia, Brought 17 barrels of Confederate Money, Grandfather was a Captain, Lost everything after the war – had no money, Very hard on the family, Decision to go to college, School, Attended the country school for 7 years, Moved into Mertzon in the winter to attend high school, Mertzon, 900 people in 1930, Mostly ranchers, Concho River, San Angelo Texas, Hauled supplies from there to the ranch, Flooding, Big Bend, Church, At the schoolhouse, Only every 2 or 3 months, Church of Christ, Christmas, Tree at school, Tree at home, Thanksgiving, Traditional meal, Neighbors, Raising Food, Turkey, Cattle (Beef), Hogs, Gardens, Fruit trees, Preserves, Self-sufficient ranch, Had to buy flour sugar and rice in Mertzon, b. 1906, First Car – Family, Around age 11, Approximately 1915-1916, Transportation of the early 1900s, Buggy – 1 or 2 horse, Hack – had a top and side curtains, Wagon – for the heavy things, Car – enjoyed it a lot, Electricity, Mertzon, Denton, Radio, First time to hear radio was at Texas Tech in 1925, Television, First time to see television was in Bryan, College, North Texas State University, A teacher of hers had gone to CIA (College of Industrial Arts) and recommended, School in Mertzon (again), Spanish heritage (none), Indian relics, Arrowheads, Fossils, World War I, Was 12 when it ended, School got out November 11, College (again), North Texas State University, Stayed for 1 year (1924), Education courses, Entry exams, Went alone on train, Taught school in Mertzon, Parents, 1925 – moved to Reagan County for an oil job , Drought was bad on the ranch, Money, Bought a house in Big Lake Texas, Stayed there until they died, Both died at age 88, Brothers and sisters, 2 still living (oldest and youngest), All were at least 85 when they died, Youngest, Went to A&M, Texas Tech, September 25, 1925 – school started, Read about it in Advertisements, Studied Education, Teaching, Taught elementary school in El Paso, Texas Tech (again), Degree in Education, Later got an elementary certificate from A&M, Teaching in Bryan, Early 1950s, Retired 1970, Golfing, From 1970 until she was 85, Rheumatism stopped her.

Tape 1, Side 2: Lubbock, Went with cousin, Flat land, Sand storms, Worst one was Thanksgiving Day 1926 or 1927, Football game in Plainview (Tech won), Irrigation prevented sand storms on Reagan and Upton counties, El Paso, Weather, Tornadoes in Mertzon but not Lubbock, Wind in Lubbock, Not much ice or snow, Gordon Treadaway, Job in Lubbock, In business office, Mr. Chitwood, Died while she worked there, Mr. Province (?), From Baylor, Worked there the whole time she was at Tech, Pay increases, Started at $40/ month, Ended at $100/month, Work schedules, PBX – Telephone Operator, Telephone , Mertzon, Typing, Night classes to learn, Money, Job paid for everything, No money from home, Mom sent a few dresses, Living arrangements, The Millers, Pauline Miller, 2 brothers, Mr. Miller drove them to and from school, Lived downtown near the courthouse, Broadway St., College Activities, Work, Football games, Clubs, Shirt-tale Parades, Dean of Women, Mrs. Doak, Cheerleading, Student body elections, 3 cheerleaders, 2 boys and 1 girl (her), Dressed in dark skirt/pants and white sweater, Mrs. Doak said it was unladylike and cancelled it for girls, Did the same things as today’s cheerleaders, On sidelines, Approximately 1,030 students, Had about 8 different cheers, 1st cheerleaders at Texas Tech, Texas Tech Faculty, Dean Litey (?), Mr. Stangum (?), Dr. Mickey – Math teacher, Mr. Ease (?), Ike Donnaburg (?), Elizabeth West – Librarian, Layout of the Administration Building, Library, President’s Desk (Dr. Horn), Dean Gordon, Bell Towers, Elizabeth West , Edna Young – student helper, Favorite Faculty, Dr. Mickey – Math , Dr. Ease – History, Texas Tech Campus, Administration Building, Textile Engineering Building, Livestock Pavilion, Yell practice , 1 night a week, No jumping around, Mrs. Chitwood – assistant, Later became Dean of Women, Let girls cheer again, Girls Dormitory, Boys Dormitory, Students rented rooms in town, About $25/month without meals, Eating, At a home 1 block from campus (dinner), Cafeteria (lunch), Wollforth Family, Graduated 1928, Worked in Big Lake, Married and moved to El Paso, Taught school, 6 years, Moved to College Station in 1936, Built a house, Had a daughter and son, Started teaching again around 1950, Taught school 23 years total, Snake Dance (Shirt-tale Parade again).

Range Dates: 1906-2000

Bulk Dates: 1920-1936

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