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Production, Gins, Scales and Cotton-Related Articles

About Cotton - Featured Articles

Vintage Postcards

Cotton bale medallion in Fort Worth

cotton scenes
Vintage postcards William Beauchamp Collection:
Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Seven
Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Six
Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Five
Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Four
Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Three
Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Two
Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series One
Houston Cotton Scenes
cotton gins
Vintage postcards William Beauchamp Collection:
Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Eight 8-15-17
Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Seven 1-13-16
Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Six
Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Five
Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Four
Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Three
Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Two
Cotton Gins in Texas: Series One

Long before oil, cattle, and timber, cotton was the Texas economy. Only ten years after Moses Austin received his first grant of land, cotton made up $353,000 of the $500,000 of exports that year.

When Southerners moved to Texas, they planted what they knew - cotton. During the Civil War it was Texas cotton moved to Mexico down the "cotton road" that provided the only lifeline to the Confederacy. After the civil war former slaves became free sharecroppers - but the crop still remained cotton.

From .31 per pound in 1865 to only .05 per pound in 1898, cotton prices ruled the Texas economy.

By 1910 half of everything planted in Texas was cotton. By 1928 they had figured out how to irrigate the Panhandle and 17,000,000 more acres were planted.

Here are personal stories of cotton picking and images of artifacts of the cotton industry in Texas. Cotton Gins, harvesters, scales, boll burners, and warehouses. Cotton festivals, "first bale" celebrations and cotton "as art" in murals and architectural details.

© John Troesser

Featured Cotton Articles

Burton Gin
  • Burton - Texas Cotton Gin Museum
    A National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark
  • The Boll Weevil by Archie P. McDonald
    Tex Ritter sang this lament decades ago:
    “Oh, the boll weevil is a little black bug, come from Mexico they say, come all the way to Texas, just looking for a place to stay, just looking for a home, just looking for a home.” And the weevil, actually a beetle, found it, much to the chagrin of East Texas cotton growers.

  • Cotton Picking by Mike Cox

  • Rafting Cotton from Bastrop to Matagorda by Mike Cox

  • Women Bandits Hijack Cotton in Civil War Texas by Mike Cox

  • The Cotton Pickin’ Theater by Bob Bowman
    At Point, a small town of some 700 souls in northern Rains county..., a sturdy old gin has found a new life as an entertainment venue that draws crowds from all over East Texas and performers like Mark Chestnut, Pee Wee Walker, and Gary Busey...

  • A cotton gin gets a new life by Bob Bowman
    Thanks to the Depot Museum at Henderson, a cotton gin has now taken its place among other relics of the past

  • Baled in a Bale by Mike Cox
    No ginning story can top the occasional tale of a body in a bale.

  • Bagdad by Mike Cox
    Cotton, the economic life blood of Texas and the Confederacy, soon made its way to Bagdad by riverboat, ship or ox-drawn wagons. From the Mexican port, it could be shipped to Britain and other European markets.

  • Napoleon Bonaparte Wiess by W. T. Block
    Steamboat Captain and Confederate Soldier.
    The epics of William and Napoleon Wiess, which contributed to the cotton steamboat history of East Texas.

  • Cotton Farming in Verhalen, Texas

  • Waxahachie: Where Cotton Reigned King
    Book review

  • Our Buick Pickup Truck by George Lester
    We had cotton plants growing on either side of the Buick

  • Cotton Days in Flomot
    Rockdale Texas Post Office Mural Industry in Rockdale by Maxwell Starr
    Rockdale Post Office Mural
    TE photo, May 2008

    Cotton Gins

  • Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Seven 1-13-16
  • Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Six
  • Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Five
  • Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Four
  • Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Three
  • Cotton Gins in Texas: Series Two
  • Cotton Gins in Texas: Series One
  • Afton
  • Amherst Closed Gin, Scale House, Burner & Mural
  • Ammannsville old cotton gin
  • Bagby Gin and Crew, 1912
  • Beattie 9-6-17
  • Belmont Gin
  • Bledsoe
  • Burton - Texas Cotton Gin Museum 10-18-17
  • Carmine 1-2-17
  • Coble Switch - Gin Skeleton & Scale House
  • Cofferville Cotton Gin & Scale House
  • Denver City
  • Dime Box old cotton gin
  • Draw
  • Earth Cotton Gins
  • Easter
  • Echo
  • El Oso Old Cotton Gin
  • Elm Mott Gin 10-29-17
  • Emhouse
  • Enloe - Round Bale Gin
  • Estacado
  • Fieldton
  • Finney
  • Friendship Gin
  • Fulbright 1-12-17
  • Funston Cotton Gin
  • Gainesville Cotton Gin
  • Gillett
  • Goodlett
  • Goree
  • Grassland
  • Hamilton Old Cotton Gin
  • Higginbotham
  • Inadale Gin
  • Ira's Gin
  • Jonesville - Murray Gin
  • Knott
  • Levelland Old Cotton Gin
  • Lorenzo
  • Lubbock
  • Luckenbach old cotton gin
  • Luther Cotton Gin
  • Maple
  • Matador
  • Nada 10-1-15
  • Needmore
  • Nolan
  • Noodle Old Gin
  • Oaks
  • Odds - What is left of the cotton gin
  • Olton
  • O'Quinn
  • Otto
  • Patricia 3-27-17
  • Pearsall 1-23-17
  • Pettit
  • Point (no photo)
  • Posey
  • Princeton
  • Rabbs Prairie
  • Ralls Cotton Gin
  • Robstown
  • Roundup 1-25-17
  • Rosebud cotton gin
  • Santa Rosa
  • Shiro old cotton gin
  • Sodville Farmers Gin Co
  • Tam Anne - Old Cotton Gin & Scale House
  • The Tarzan Gin
  • Turkey
  • Vincent
  • Walburg old gin
  • Westbrook
  • Willamar
  • Wilmeth
  • Winedale - Alfred Wagner Gin

    Cotton Artifacts -
    Cotton Boll & Cotton Scale
  • Eldorado - Cotton Scale
  • Estacado
  • Claude - Cotton Scale
  • Exum - Cotton Scale & Scale House
  • Lehman - Cotton Scale
  • Patricia - Scale House 3-27-17
  • Plainview - Cotton Boll
  • Ralls - Cotton Boll
  • Luther Scale House

    Cotton Fair

  • Texas Cotton Palace, circa 1909

    Cotton Fields

  • Mackay
  • New Sweden
  • Odem
  • Spunky Flat School surrounded by young cotton
  • Vattmann - School house, church and cotton field
  • An oil well being drilled in the middle of a cotton field

    Cotton Oil Mills
  • Itasca Cotton Oil Mill, 1932

  • Cotton Production
  • Chapman Ranch - Cotton picker in action, compactor and cotton bale.

    Cotton Scenes
  • Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Seven
  • Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Six
  • Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Five
  • Cotton Scenes in Texas: Series Four
  • Cotton Scenes in Texas: Three
  • Cotton Scenes in Texas: Two
  • Cotton Scenes in Texas
  • Abilene
  • Colorado County - First Cotton Bale
  • Houston Cotton Scenes
  • New Boston street scene
  • Marshall - "Hauling Cotton to Market"
  • Rockdale post office mural

    Cotton Trucks & Wagons

  • Ballinger
  • Bremond
  • >Patricia - truck & trailers 3-27-17
  • Sealy
  • Thalia

    Cotton Weigh Stations

  • Barwise
  • Calvert
  • Cedar Hill
  • Rayland
  • Westbrook

  • Cotton Gin
  • Cotton Pickin'

  • Waxahachie:
    Where Cotton Reigned King

    by Kelly McMichael Stott
    Photographs Courtesy of
    The Ellis County Historical Museum
    Arcadia Publishing's
    The Making of America Series.
    December 2002

    Cotton gin in oil
    by Boyer Gonzales, Jr., c. 1937.

    Anyone knowing the location, please Email jbaker1@suddenlink.net.
    - James and Kimel Baker



























































































































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