Jones, Clifford Bartlett

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In this series of tapes, Dr. Clifford Jones reviews his early life, career as manager of the Spur Ranch, tenures as a Regent and later President of Texas Tech, along with his family, prominent friends and associates.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: Clifford Bartlett

Additional Parties Recorded:

Date: February 28, 1968; March 27, 1968; May 15, 1978; June 23, 1968; April 18 1970; July 10, 1970; February 16, 1971

Location: Lubbock, Texas

Interviewer: David B. Gracy II

Length: 8 hours, 30 minutes


Tape 1, Side 1: Ancestry: English-Norman beginnings, Bartletts in America, Dr. Jones’ mother, Meeting of parents, Father’s ancestry, Army background of Jones’ relatives, Eli D. Hoyle, General D. Ramsey, Father’s life as a newspaperman and writer, Newspaper work in Rico, Colorado, Move to Kansas City, Swenson family and interest in Texas, Sulfur business in Freeport Texas, Moves to New York and California, Death in Spur Texas, Letter from Hoyle Jones, Clifford’s brother, Charlie Combs’ remarks about father, Bronze tablet at Jones Stadium in Spur, Texas, Clifford B. Jones’ youth, John Sparks, Governor of Nevada.

Tape 1, Side 2: Cowpuncher on Nevada Ranch, Steel business, Managing Spur Ranch interests, Spur Bank, Work at Jacques Steel Company, Obtaining steel contract for first steel structure in Oklahoma, Drilling for Spur deep boring well, Poison for prairie dogs, Petrified wood, Bone of a camel, Camels in Texas, Growth of mesquite, Hazards of prairie dog holes, Markers on Soldiers’ Mound and Spur Cemetery, Removal of grave from Dockum’s Creek, Volcanic ash on Spur properties, Gun barrel corner, Fort Phantom Hill Jones County, Colonization of Spur area, C. W. Post, Importance of water in colonization, Sale of Spur Ranch properties, Texas A & M experiment station #7, Advertising the lands, Girard Texas, Offer from Texas Highway Commission.

Tape 2, Side 1: Disposition of the Spur lands, Sales and terms, Price of Spur town lots, Majority of buyers were Texans, First lots sold (November 1909), Location of town of Spur by father, Acceptance of town location by Burlington Railroad, Daniel Willard’s comments on location, Problem in naming post office, Early buildings, Mostly frame some stone and brick, First doctor Tom Blackwell, Came from Dickens, Dr. P. C. Coleman of Colorado City was ranch doctor, Pioneer women in early ranching days, Good relations between town and ranch, Telephone service—listening on the party line, Planting grass on the ranch, Importance of and types of windmills, Early water often unfit, Cattle theft—practice of "sleepers", Jim Cunningham, Attorney who defended cattle thieves, Anecdote about Cunningham, Form of cattle theft today, Extinguishing prairie fires, Election as a Burlington Director (May 3 1922), Director of Spur National Bank (1909), Served as band vice president and president, Sale of bank (1962), Service as railroad director, Colonel Frank H. Mayer of Colorado, Civil engineer, Ranch buffalo hunter, Had hunting license from Cheyenne Indian, Author, Temple Houston Morrow grandson of Sam Houston, John Nance Garner, Shows Jones telegram from Interior Secretary Ickes, Jones’ selection as Regional Advisor of Public Works, Administration by Garner, Garner’s use of satchel as pillow on train, E. P. Swenson of New York—banker, Responsible for conviction of murderer of William, Marsh Rice of Rice Institute (now University), Tribute to E. P. Swenson, Swenson uses a cowboy’s toothbrush.

Tape 2, Side 2: Swenson’s visit to the ranch, Governor John Sparks of Nevada, Promoted cattle industry in West, Jones’ cow punching days in Nevada, Running wild horses, C. W. Post, Dynamiting to produce rain, Samuel Burk Burnett of 6666 Ranch, Bought liberty bonds and liquor, Questioned by J. Frank Norris, Jones’ membership in Fort Worth Club, Member of Appellate Draft Board in World War I, Burk Burnett’s summons to Sidney Samuels, Sterling Rolfs, New Mexico rancher and pilot, Knew members of Matador Land and Cattle Co., Frank Hastings of SMS Ranch Stamford Texas, Established mail order calf business, Author, Joe Bridwell rancher, Don Thornton rancher and Governor of Colorado, C. T. McLaughlin, rancher and art collector, George Pattullo, War correspondent for Saturday Evening Post, Lived at Spur Ranch for a year, Miguel Otero, Provisional governor of New Mexico, Helped in organization of Rough Riders, Public Works Administration, Author, Captain Robert G. Carter of 4th U. S. Cavalry, Colonel Homer Garrison of Texas Dept. of Public Safety, Beal Sneed of Post, Killed two men, Pink Higgins, Controlled cattle rustling, Killed rustler named Standefer (1914), Joe Ward, engineer and circus clown, Mrs. Mabel Dodge Luhan, Married Tony Luhan a Taos Indian, Senator Jim Reed of Missouri, Dick Moses, Attorney for Cattle Raisers’ Association, Prosecuted Tom Ross murderer.

Tape 3, Side 1: Judge T. Whitfield Davidson Dallas, Judge Jo A. P. Dickson, Seymour, Cullen Higgins District Judge, Killed in Clairemont, Fined his father for jangling spurs.

Tape 3, Side 2: Blank

Tape 4, Side 1: Manny Gault—law enforcement activities, Killing of Clyde Barrow and Bonnie Parker (1934), Tech chemistry facilities used to check gun in murder case, George M. Williams surveyor, George Pattullo war correspondent, Other surveyors, W. D. Twitchell, Col. Raleigh P. Smythe, Named Tulia by accident, Texas Tech presidents and personnel, Dr. Paul Horn first president, Split of Tech board over selection of first president, Dr. W. B. Bizzell of University of Oklahoma offered Tech presidency, Dr. Bradford Knapp second president, Hiring of teachers, Dr. W. C. Holden, Campaign for Legislature, Charles A. Guy, J. D. Hamlin, Manager of XIT properties, Association with Haley-Farwell suit, Meaning of XIT, Tribute to J. Evetts Haley, His contribution to education, Sidney Samuels attorney, Centennial Celebration of Texas Supreme Court.

Tape 4, Side 2: Locating Board of Texas Tech, Chambers an Australian presents Jones the official seal of the Republic of Swaziland, General Lahm and the locating of Reese Air Force Base, John Sherry citrus farming, Funds for Tech dormitories, Ike Ashburn, Governors of Texas, Jim Ferguson, Dan Moody, Roads and highways, Public Works Administration.

Tape 5, Side 1: Reese Air Force Base, Commanders and dates of service listed, Commanders’ rapport with Lubbock, Establishment of Reese Air Force Base, Naming, Chamber of Commerce Committee, Charlie Guy, A. B. Davis and Clifford Jones, Reese relationship with Texas Tech, A. B. Davis, Years of service with Lubbock Chamber of Commerce, Railroad men, Ralph Budd, president of Burlington Lines, R. Wright Armstrong vice president of Fort Worth and Denver Railway, Jones’ association with railroad, Amon G. Carter, Relationship with Texas Tech, Contributes to establishing Trophy Room at Tech, Visit to England carrying six-shooter, Donated Will Rogers’ statue to Tech, Friend of Will Rogers, Rogers’ comment on eating lunch in Dallas, Ranch owners and lands, Claude Jeffers best bronc rider, Tom Merriman and Jack Morris of Spur Ranch, Best calf ropers, Joe Erickson of Spur Ranch, best cowman, "Scandalous" John Selmon good rancher, With SMS Ranch at Stamford, How he got his name, Judge Hunter—elk hunting, List of other large ranch owners, Dan Casement—interested in Angus, William E. (Bill) Halsell of Mashed O Ranch, College presidents and administrators, Dr. W. B. Bizzell, Homer Rainey, Dr. Bradford Knapp second president of Texas Tech, John A. Lomax, Visited Spur Ranch.

Tape 5, Side 2: Jones’ personal recreation, Hunting, Fishing sites, Golf, Weather in West Texas, Storm (January 1918), Direction of storms, Drought (1917-18), Feed for stock, Water supply.

Tape 6, Side 1: Proletarian Party of America at Texas Tech, Application for membership circulated (1932), Professor’s contract not renewed, George Pattullo, Anecdote about short story opening, Julian Bassett, Tom Gaston, Jones’ father, good businessman, Freeport Sulfur Company court case, Elihu Root was lawyer, Jones and his parents—church membership, Jones’ first job, Jones’ brother, Tom and Paul Braniff, Jones’ family, Close family relationship, Sports Jones played.

Tape 6, Side 2: Jones’ interests, Interest in art, Peter Hurd, Jones’ singing as a boy, Jones’ reading and writing interests, Political involvement, No party affiliation, Decision not to run for Congress, Reasons for his success, Attitude toward pioneers and the past, Importance of friends, Jones’ health and diet, Diet on the ranch, Jones goes into ranching business, Swenson family and ranches.

Tape 7, Side 1: Colonization procedures of ranches, Work and interest in highway associations Early maps, Activities of highway associations, West Texas Chamber of Commerce work, Legislation establishing Texas Tech, Interest in Trinity River Improvement Association, Duties on the Texas Centennial Commission, Northwest Texas Fair Association at Spur, Airplane pilot recalled, Jones’ first airplane ride, Dallas Scarborough recalled, Jones becomes president of West Texas Chamber of Commerce, Arthur P. Duggan recalled, West Texas Chamber of Commerce and Texas Tech.

Tape 7, Side 2: Blank

Tape 8, Side 1: Highway Bond issues in Dickens County area (1917), Locating and naming of Spur Texas, Mail service to Spur, From Colorado City, From Dickens Texas, Spur’s attempts to become county seat, Cost of early building construction at Texas Tech Spur Railroads, Attempted connection with Crosbyton-South Plains Railroad (1914), Stamford and Northwestern Railroad, Discusses Spur’s attempts to gain county seat (1921), Discussion of personal information book, Elevation figures and their utilization, Freight shipment records (1929), Miles of fencing, Insurance key rates of 53 cents (1930), Swenson Ranch figures, Difference between Swenson Brothers and Swenson and Sons operations, Names and locations of ranch mills, Notes on appraisal of Swenson estate, Sales records, Tank locations, Widths of streets in Spur, County seat information, Water Works bonds.

Tape 8, Side 2: Comments about weather, Snowstorm (January 11, 1918), Founding of Texas Tech, Belief in education, Realization of need, Governor Neff’s veto of first bill and reaction thereto, Recalls Mortimer Chitwood and Curry Holden’s relationship, Initiator of movement to establish college, Jones as President of West Texas Chamber of Commerce, Homer Wade, Prospect of location site at Spur, Personal work with legislature, Work in establishing college, Member of Board of Directors, Priorities considered in starting of school, Selection of President.

Tape 9, Side 1: Architect and style selection, Cornerstone laying ceremony, Regents’ visit to eastern schools (January 1924), Early emphasis on agriculture, Influence of Seamen A. Knapp, President Horn’s conception of Tech, Tech has fulfilled its purpose, Discussion of current turmoil on campuses, Changes in boards of directors, Qualities of members, Effect of politics, Modern problems of schools different, Greek-letter fraternities, Area resentful toward, Jones in favor as matter of prestige, Stamp-out duplication campaign during Depression, Jealousy factor, Early provisions for supervision of student life, Dean Doak’s influence, Dean Allen, Housing, Working with President Knapp, Knapp’s broad conception, Jones’ selection as President, No campaign attempts, Political back-biting at Tech, Texas Technological College Foundation established (1939), Late establishment, Good start, Organization of Faculty-Advisory Committee, Effectiveness, Aiding World War II effort, Student enlistment, Effect on college, Japanese language instruction, Board resolution (1942), Attainment of 309th training detachment, Other aids to effort, Presentation of first library books, Jones gave one of first agriculture scholarships, Jones Stadium, Chairman of Financing Committee, $100,000 gift, Tom Gaston’s influence, Jones’ connections with Tech after retirement, His philanthropy.

Tape 9, Side 2: Blank

Tape 10, Side 1: [William Sidney Porter’s (O. Henry) map of Kent and Garza County, Use of map in Spur Ranch suit against Matador Land and Cattle Company (1917) Result of suit], [Note: This section was erased by error, July 24, 1971], Colonel Howell M. Estes, Jr., Reese Air Force Base Commander (June 28, 1944- November 15, 1945), W. M. (Bill) Massie, Vice president of Fort Worth National Bank, President of Texas Bankers’ Association, Jones’ association with Pittsburgh-Des Moines Steel Company, Work in getting contract for Oklahoma City building, First steel structure in Oklahoma, Work with Jacques Steel Company, Joe Ward of Wichita Falls, Engineer whose hobby was to dress as a clown, Ed Clapp, financial advisor to William Randolph Hearst, Killed himself, The boll weevil menace, Problems in control of boll weevil, E. P. Swenson, Early stockholder in Spur National Bank, Other stockholders mentioned, S. A. Swenson, E. P. Ripley, B. F. Yoakum, Frank Stillman, Swenson’s supervision of Spur Ranch land sales, Swensons divide ranch acreage, Disposal of Spur Lands, Jones’ appointment to West Point, Takes physical at Fort Leavenworth and was rejected, Doctors discuss heart murmur.

Tape 10, Side 2: Blank

Range Dates: 1880s-1971

Bulk Dates: 1909-1945

Access Information

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