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The Minutes of the Houston Oil Company of Texas

The Minutes of the Houston Oil Company of Texas are a gift of Amanda and Ken Kellar '65.

The Houston Oil Company of Texas was founded by John Henry Kirby in 1901, simultaneously Kirby and his investors founded the Kirby Lumber Company. These two companies allowed for dual use of land in East Texas, which was rich in both forest and oil. For many years, the Houston Oil Company of Texas developed into the largest corporation in Texas, a distinction it retained for many years.

This minute book - one volume, 299 pages - encompasses the first eight years of the corporation’s business. Beginning with the first meeting in July 1901 when the company was incorporated, established its charter, and elected its first board, and the Minutes document the growth of the company through May 1908, including the issuing of timber land certificates, stock redemption, and land acquisition.

John Henry Kirby died on November 9, 1940, however the Houston Oil Company outlasted its founder and played a major role in Texas corporate history until the liquidation of the company in 1956.