1923 Lubbock gets Tech! City selected on first vote

1923 | FORT WORTH, August 8 — Lubbock was unanimous choice of the Locating Board for the Texas Technological College on the first ballot at the five-hour section of the board here today. The decision was made following a six months study of the briefs of the 35 applicant towns and a three weeks tour of inspection of the territory. At 1:42 o’clock Wednesday afternoon one of the members of the board, whose name was not divulged, moved that a ballot be taken and his motion prevailed. The roll was then called and every member voted for Lubbock. The board has been in session practically continuous since Wednesday morning and during that time various other towns were discussed.

That was the message that set Lubbock, the Plains and West Texas on fire. And that is the message that is being carried in every newspaper in the United States, Canada and in many foreign countries today. For the Texas Technological College is no ordinary, one-horse institution. It is a state, a national and an internationally known institution already. It starts with the most brilliant promises and possibilities that have ever accompanied the founding of a like institution in America and the realization of those promises and possibilities are so closely tied and woven into the promise and possibilities of Lubbock that every sane thinking citizen has a right to stop and think upon the inestimable importance of the events of the past 24 hours and wonder how Lubbock is going to mreasure up to the great future that is hers for the making.

To say the town went mad would be to put the matter to mildly. Old men and women, children and the house pups of Lubbock, with one accord, went into a series of ecstacies. Horns were totted, fire trucks thundered up and down the streets, automobiles honked, screetched, and scooted around with bells, tin cans and scrap iron dragging. The stores were closed by a proclamation written by a man that was not even a member of the city commission – and the proclamation was observed to the letter.

A dozen bon fires started in a dozen minutes. Plackards appeared as if by magic. In thirty minutes the sidewalks had overflowed into the streets and the uproar had spread into the residential sections of the city. In an hour delegations from nearby towns began pouring in to further swell the mass – for Lubbock got the Texas Tech.

Freak stunts were staged. Hat brims were torn off and the crowns work Happy Hooligan style. A Texas Tech Glee club was quickly organized with more enthusiasm than harmony. Candidates for “Freshman Class President” appeared and started lecturneering for election. The Rix Furniture Company changed its “Where else Could They Put It” to “There Was No Where Else They Could Have Put It.”

Lorenzo’s band came over, Slaton’s citizenship came up, Tahoka was represented. Littlefield, Idalou, Ralls, Shallowater, Brownfield, Big Spring – were all represented. Where they came from or how they got here no one knew but they were here when the band started playing the National Anthem of the West Texas chamber of Commerce – “The Old Gray Mare.”

Telegrams of congratulations poured in from all over the state. Abilene was first with “The people of Abilene extend heartfelt congratulations to the people of Lubbock on their victory and predict for Texas Tech a glorious future. One hundred and fifty Abilene businessmen will visit you on August 24th to shake hands and help you celebrate.

Plainview was second with a telegram from Secretary Boswell to Secretary Keen that read “Congratulations old Boy.” …

Sweetwater, Big Spring, Colorado, Post City, Vernon – oh, well, just all of the rest of towns in West Texas sent similar messages – always pledging to Lubbock and the Plains their fullest support and cooperation in making the Texas Tech the greatest institution in Texas.

 

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