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Merchants & Planters Oil Company lease agreement with International and Great Northern Railroad Company, Oct. 1900

wrc01658_003cropped.jpg

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Title

Merchants & Planters Oil Company lease agreement with International and Great Northern Railroad Company, Oct. 1900

Subject

Rice University -- History

Description

One page lease agreement and accompanying map of the area and relevant buildings, near Buffalo, Texas. Copy signed by Merchants and Planters Oil Company secretary, Benjamin Botts Rice.

Abstract

This lease agreement is an example of many such agreements where the Merchants and Planters Oil Company can clearly be seen actively participating not only in the production of cotton goods but also in the wide transportation of its goods by railway by use of many seed house warehouses along the railways.

Merchants and Planters Oil Company, manufacturers of cottonseed oil, oil cake, meal and linters, based in Houston, Texas, was founded in 1890. The business was one of a number of cotton-based businesses owned by Rice Institute founder, William Marsh Rice at the time of his death in 1900. On September 8, 1900, a powerful hurricane struck the Gulf Coast, causing severe damage to one of the company's warehouses and inventory. The business manager telegraphed Rice stating that the company needed money for repairs; the sum nearly equaled the total of Rice's most liquid assets.

This financial turn of affairs accelerated an already brewing plot to murder Rice for his extensive fortune, and indeed Rice was killed on September 23, 1900 by his valet and a lawyer marginally associated with Rice. (See Rice University Archives and general Rice University histories for further information on the story of William Marsh Rice.)

At that time B.B. Rice, the youngest son of William Marsh Rice's brother, F.A. Rice, was the secretary and treasurer for the company. Probably shortly after his uncle's death, B.B. Rice became the Vice President and general manager of the company, a position he held until the company's demise in 1941.

Creator

International and Great Northern Railroad Company

Source

Merchants and Planters Oil Company - Papers, 1894-1941, MS 260, Box 18 folder 19, Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, Rice University

Publisher

Rice University

Date

1900

Rights

This material is in the public domain.

Format

Document

Type

Text

Identifier

wrc01658

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