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Dolph Briscoe

Gov. Dolph Briscoe

  • January 16, 1973 - January 16, 1979
  • Democratic
  • April 23, 1923
  • June 27, 2010
  • Texas
  • University of Texas
  • Married Betty Jane Slaughter; three children
  • Army


DOLPH BRISCOE, JR. was born in Uvalde, Texas. A 1943 graduate of the University of Texas, Governor Briscoe served in the China-Burma-India theatre during World War II. He was named Outstanding Conservation Rancher in Texas in 1958. That year, he was named one of five Outstanding Young Texans by the Texas Junior Chamber of Commerce. Briscoe was active in the Democratic Party of Texas throughout the 1950s and the 1960s and ran unsuccessfully for governor in 1968. He was elected governor of Texas in 1972 and reelected in 1974 to the state’s first four-year gubernatorial term.

Governor Briscoe was best known for keeping his promise of no new taxes. While serving as governor, he chaired the Southern Governors’ Association from 1976 to 1977 and was a member of on the Interstate Oil Compact Commission and the National Petroleum Council. Governor Briscoe also served as a member of the Executive Committee of the National Governors’Association (1973-1974). As president of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (1960-1961) he headed a group that raised $3 million in voluntary contributions to encourage the federal and state governments to launch a screwworm eradication program in Texas and the Southwest. The success of this program is considered by livestock growers to be the most important and beneficial development in the history of the industry, saving livestock producers millions of dollars each year. He also served as a regional director for the Boy Scouts of America. Briscoe died on June 27, 2010, at his home in Uvalde, Texas.


Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 4. Westport, CT: Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

Texas State Library & Archives Commission

The University of Texas at Austin

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