Encyclopedia of the Great Plains

David J. Wishart, Editor

HOGG, JAMES (1851-1906)

James Stephen Hogg, born near Rusk, Texas, on March 24, 1851, served Texas as attorney general from 1887 to 1890 and as governor from 1891 to 1895. Walter Prescott Webb described the "People's Governor" as having "the courage of leadership which is part of the Western tradition."

Hogg's influence on the modernization of the Great Plains was a "rough wooing." Hogg, himself a small cattleman, favored the open range over fencing. Perhaps remembering his father's support for homestead exemption during the Texas Republic, Hogg supported protection of homesteads and public school lands. He recovered much acreage from the railroads that had been granted for switches and sidings, but he lost a disputed border area, Greer County, to Oklahoma. In the Scottish tradition of being "agin' the government," he opposed federal crop subsidies. His campaign slogan was "Enforce the law," whether in dealing with two-bit outlawry or corporate robbery. He dissolved the Texas Tra.c Association, a combination of railroads that sought to fix rates, and he established the Texas Railroad Commission for railroad regulation. Hogg's regulatory program reflected moderate progressivism. Symbolically, when the railways shunted Coxey's Army of unemployed protesters near Sierra Blanca, Texas, in 1894, Hogg ordered them transported across the state. Although politically based in East Texas, in 1892 Hogg carried a number of Great Plains counties despite opposition from Populists and ranchers. Hogg's administration brought the maverick Plains, fit to be branded, into the twentieth century. Hogg died at Houston on March 3, 1906, and was buried in Austin.

See also AGRICULTURE: XIT Ranch / INDUSTRY: Goodnight, Charles.

Gilbert M. Cuthbertson Rice University

Cotner, Robert C. James Stephen Hogg: A Biography. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1959.

Cotner, Robert C., ed. Addresses and State Papers of James Stephen Hogg. Austin: University of Texas Press, 1951.

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