Presidents 1880-1899

1897-98 S.M. Vernon Comanche Chief


Elected 19th president in 1897, S.M. Vernon became a member of Texas Press Association in 1883. He operated the Farmersville Times for many years and then purchased the Comanche Chief, of which he was owner and editor when he passed away in 1901.

1896-97 Col. F.B. Baillio Cleburne Review


Col. F.B. Baillio, 18th president, was a descendant of one of the original French settlers of Louisiana was born in Avoyelles Parish, La., on Feb. 6, 1848. At age 16 he enlisted in the Confederate Army and became a member of Benjamin’s Cavalry.

1895-96 John H. Cullom Garland News


John H. Cullom, 17th president, filled the unexpired term of W.A. Adair. His family moved from Nashville, Tenn., to Texas in 1877. In 1879 they moved to Haught’s Store, later Lawson, where he became the Haught’s Store correspondent of the Mesquite Mesquiter.

1895-96 W.A. Adair Marshall Messenger


W.A. Adair, 16th president, was born in Marshall on Sept. 6, 1857. He entered newspapers in 1884 as owner, devil, reporter and editor of the Marshall Reporter. Adair joined Texas Press Association in 1885.

1893-94 A.C. Scurlock Cleburne Chronicle


Alonzo C. "Lon" Scurlock, 14th president, was born in New Market, Ala., in 1845. At age 16 he was serving in the Army of the Confederacy in Walder’s Battalion. He was the son of James F. and Rebecca Criner Scurlock, who founded the town of Grandview, Texas. He attended Oakland College, which was west of old Grandview. For a time Scurlock was engaged in ranching in western Texas.

1892-93 John H. Copeland San Antonio News

John H. Copeland, 13th president, was editor and publisher of the San Antonio News in the 1890s. He participated in a train excursion to the National Editorial Association convention at Boston, Mass., in June 1890. Enroute, the group visited Sedalia, Mo., and received a small write-up mentioning Copeland specifically on page 8 of the June 24, 1890, edition of the Sedalia Weekly Bazoo.

1891-92 J.F. Mitchell Greenville Banner


J.F. Mitchell, 12th president, made efforts during his term to ensure that the custom of accepting free entertainment at annual conventions was set aside.

1890-91 Juan S. Hart El Paso Times


Born July 24, 1856,Juan Siquieros Hart, 11th president, was an El Paso-area native and editor and owner of the El Paso Times for 16 years beginning in 1884. He was remembered as "a fearless writer and an honest, incorruptible newspaperman." He crusaded against lawlessness on both sides of the border.

He retired from newspaper work about 1900 and returned to the mining business. During his career as a mining engineer, he worked in Colorado, New Mexico and Chihuahua, Mexico.

In El Paso, Hart also held the position of city engineer and was a volunteer firefighter, a noted baseball player and a musician, playing trombone in a civic band. He traveled to New York to persuade The Associated Press to string a news wire from Denver to El Paso and was instrumental in getting railroad service to El Paso.

Hart served as a U.S. Army officer in the Spanish-American War.

He died July 15, 1918.