While North Texas newcomers may love the lower taxes and the bargains on estates, they may want to be forewarned that there’s something in the air that can be more irritating than COVID, influenza and RSV rolled into one. It’s that dang seasonal allergy.
It was more than evident at the Dallas Historical Society’s Centennial Champagne Reception and Open House on Thursday, January 19.
Despite Texas heroes Sam Houston (aka author/historian Jack Edmondson) and William B. Travis at the Hall of State front doors, guests both present and in absentia were victims of the season’s mountain cedar.
One of the victims was the night’s Honorary Chair/Award of Excellence recipient Louise Phinney Caldwell, who had to bow out due to inhalant issues. But thankfully after a stay in doctor’s care and bit of careful rehabbing, she would be back in action in the days ahead. Alas, Louise’s MIA resulted in daughters Mattie Caldwell Roberts and Jane Barron Caldwell Jackson heading back to their hometown from the northeast for their mom’s special occasion.
Luckily past awardees like Gail Thomas, Tom Dunning, Veletta Lill, Taylor Armstrong, Lynn McBee, Joe Dealey Jr. and Barbara and DHS Board of Trustees Chair Dr. Roy Washburn were in fine fettle for the traditional A.C. Greene toast “Would everyone who was born in Dallas, please stand up. Would everyone who was born in Texas, please stand up. We toast the rest of you – who were smart enough to move here as fast as you could! Here! Here!”
But before the gathering got underway, many took the opportunity to visit the Texas Liberty Forever! diorama. Other like past awardees Peggy Carr and Pat Porter strolled down memory lane recalling the days when Peggy on a fluke moved from Tennessee to Dallas after graduation in the 1960s. That move would lead to her marriage to Web Carr.
In turn she would meet Pat whom she would put up for the award. That recall triggered poignant memories for both women. It seems that knowing her husband writer Bob Porter was nearing the completion of his life, Pat had scribbled her acceptance speech and spoken words from her heart on how Bob had told her to get out of the house and branch out. That led to her being a part of the glory days of the Dallas Museum of Art at Fair Park and its legendary Beaux Arts Ball that had quite a reputation for over-the-top costumes.
Pat recalled that as one of the black-tie costumed fundraisers was on the verge of taking place, “I think it was a Middle Eastern theme,” she hadn’t given much thought of what to wear. At the last minute she wore a house coat, only to see Patsy Nasher in a similar attire.
Peggy, on the other hand, recalled that when she broached the idea with husband Web of taking a chance and venturing out of his hometown Dallas for a new adventure, his answer was Tyler.
When the program began with Stuart Thomas welcoming guests including trustees Scott Barnes, Sheila Brown, Shannon Callewart, Sunhee Hong and Delva King, a slideshow was presented of Louise and acknowledging the 40 years that she had been involved with the Dallas Historical Society.
Following Pegasus Bank President Joe Goyne telling the guests that the Bank was honored to be the presenting sponsor of the evening as well as the DHS Centennial Community Celebration at Klyde Warren Park on Sunday, April 23, a video was presented of Mayor Eric Johnson proclaiming that in honor of the Dallas Historical Society’s centennial, it was indeed a vital institution and 1-19-23 was the start of the second 100 years.