Oral History Collection

MAIN ENTRY: Robnett, Yantis
DATE OF INTERVIEW: May 1, 1970; November 13, 1972
LOCATION OF INTERVIEW: Brownwood, Texas
INTERVIEWER: Fred A. Carpenter
LENGTH OF INTERVIEW: 3 hours, 5 minutes (total)
SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE: Yantis Robnett discusses the Robnett, Yantis and Lee families, the early days of Brownwood and Howard Payne University, his tenure as a professor of English at Texas Tech, and information concerning the administration of Texas prisons in the 1930s.
TAPE ONE, SIDE ONE: Article about Dr. James B. Robnett
Born: 1845 in Missouri
Minister of Baptist Church in Brownwood (1883-
1890)
Worked on campaign to establish Howard Payne
College (1888-1890)
President of Howard Payne (1893)
Dr. Robnett’s death and burial at Howard Payne
College
Article about John J. Ramey (?), Treasurer of Howard Payne (1902)
Robnett Family
James Robnett, grandfather
Settled in Fulton, Missouri
Story of Civil War experience
Story about Jesse James really being Henry Ford
Came to Brownwood and founded Howard Payne
College
Story about a fire in Baylor University Chapel
Dolly Powell Robnett, grandmother
Story of how Yantis Robnett got his name
TAPE ONE, SIDE TWO James P. Robnett, father
Died of meningitis (1900)
Pastor of First Baptist Church of Amarillo, Texas
Mrs. James P. Robnett, mother
Early Brownwood, Texas
Picnics
Saloons
Schools and teachers
Lyceum Courses
Music and plays presented
Story about Senator Baugh
Yantis Robnett
Education
J. B. Robnett, Jr., uncle
Teaching at San Marcos and Hillsboro
Secretary of State Highway Commission
Secretary of Texas Prison Board
Huntsville, Texas
Teaching at Tech as associate professor of English
(1927-1932)
Early Texas Tech campus
Paul W. Horn, 1st President of Tech
TAPE TWO, SIDE ONE: Tech’s early football
Howard Payne College
Professor’s life at Howard Payne
J. A. Walker’s contributions to Brownwood and to
Howard Payne
Story of the naming of Howard Payne
Yantis family
Tom and Ellen Yantis, grandparents
President of old Brownwood National Bank
The Yantis children
Lee Family
John G. Lee
Brownwood civic leader
Mrs. John Lee
Her children
Early Brownwood
Business district
Brownwood Bulletin newspaper
Baseball games
TAPE TWO, SIDE TWO: Coggin family
Mr. Bencini (?), first Brownwood millionaire
G. N. Harrison, lawyer
Swendlen (?) Dam
Story of Methodists feeding Governor Thomas M.
Campbell at Brownwood
Mr. K. R. Looney
Mr. D. S. Camp, druggist
Elks Club
Lubbock, Texas
Early population (c. 1927)
Early city limits
Dr. R. C. Goodwin, Tech President
TAPE THREE, SIDE ONE: John G. Lee’s career examined
Lee moved to Texas in 1891
Brownwood Milling and Feed Company recalled
Physical description of Lee
Discussion of Lee family
Speculation about Lee Street’s name
Lee’s civic leadership mentioned
Review of the Chandler family
Texas governor James E. Ferguson remembered
Anecdote told concerning the pardon of a black
criminal
TAPE THREE, SIDE TWO: Relates experiences working with the Texas Prison Board at Huntsville
Prison investigation explored
Female Texas prison reformer remembered
Impractical aspect of Texas liquor laws cited
Description of women prisoners’ protest march
Punishment by whipping condemned
Comments on death penalties
Governor Ferguson’s policy on pardoning prisoners revealed
Lists Brownwood citizens holding state offices
Recollections of Texas Tech
Howard Payne-Daniel Baker sports contest remembered
TAPE FOUR, SIDE ONE: Clarence Early’s career recalled
Sorting out relationships
Further mention of Douglas Coalson
Anecdote about illness of Mary E. Jones
Recollections of J. A. Walker and his family
TAPE FOUR, SIDE TWO: Blank
RANGE DATES: 1845-1930s
BULK DATES: 1883-1930s