In 1933, the Texas Legislature created the post of Texas Poet Laureate. The post was filled continuously until 1981. Since then the post has been vacant all but a handful of years. The last Poet Laureate left the post in 1994. This project is an effort to convince Austin that the post is important and that Texans want someone in the post.

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Past Texas Poet Laureates

1932-1934 Judd Mortimer Lewis (Houston) HBT P
1934-1936 Aline T. Michaelis (Austin) HBT
1936-1939 Grace Noll Crowell (Dallas) HBT
1939-1941 Lexie Dean Robertson (Rising Star) HBT I
1941-1943 Nancy Richey Ranson (Dallas) B
1943-1945 Dollilee Davis Smith (Cleburne)
1945-1947 David Riley Russell (Dallas) HBT
1947-1949 Aline B. Carter (San Antonio) I
1949-1951 Carlos Ashley (Llano) C B
1951-1953 Arthur M. Sampley (Denton)
1953-1955 Mildred Lindsey Raiborn (San Angelo)
Dee Walker (Texas City), alternate
1955-1957 Pierre Bernard Hill (Hunt)
1957-1959 Margaret Royalty Edwards (Waco)
1959-1961 J.V. Chandler (Kingsville)
Edna Coe Majors (Colorado City), alternate
1961 Lorena Simon (Port Arthur)
1962 Marvin Davis Winsett (Dallas)
1963 Gwendolyn Bennett Pappas (Houston)
Vassar Miller (Houston), alternate
1964-1965 Jenny Lind Porter (Austin)
Edith Rayzor Canant (Texas City), alternate
1966 Bessie Maas Rowe (Port Arthur)
Grace Marie Scott (Abilene), alternate
1967 William. E. Bard (Dallas)
Bessie Maas Rowe (Port Arthur), alternate
1968 Kathryn Henry Harris (Waco)
Sybil Leonard Armes (El Paso), alternate
1969-1970 Anne B. Marely (Austin)
Rose Davidson Speer (Brady), alternate
1970-1971 Robby K. Mitchell (McKinney)
Faye Carr Adams (Dallas), alternate
1971-1972 Terry Fontenot (Port Arthur)
Faye Carr Adams (Dallas), alternate
1972-1973 Mrs. Clark Gresham (Burkburnett)
Marion McDaniel (Sidney), alternate
1973-1974 Violette Newton (Beaumont)
Stella Woodall (San Antonio), alternate
1974-1975 Lila Todd O'Neil (Port Arthur)
C.W. Miller (San Antonio), alternate
1975-1976 Ethel Osborn Hill (Port Arthur)
Gene Shuford (Denton), alternate
1976-1977 Florice Stripling Jeffers (Burkburnett)
Vera L. Eckert (San Angelo), alternate
1977-1978 Ruth Carruth (Vernon)
Joy Gresham Hagstrom (Burkburnett), alternate
1978-1979 Patsy Stodghill (Dallas)
Dorothy B. Elfstroman (Galveston), alternate
1979-1980 Dorothy B. Elfstroman (Galverston)
Ruth Carruth (Vernon), alternate
1980-1981 Weems S. Dykes (McCamey)
Mildred Crabtree Speer (Amarillo), alternate
1981-1982 none designated
1982-1983 William D. Barney (Fort Worth)
Vassar Miller (Houston), alternate
1983-1984 none designated
1984-1985 none designated
1985-1986 none designated
1986-1987 none designated
1987-1988 Ruth E. Reuther (Wichita Falls)
1988-1989 Vassar Miller (Houston) O B P P P P O
1989-1990 none designated
1990-1991 none designated
1991-1992 none designated
1992-1993 none designated
1993-1994 Mildred Baass (Victoria)
1994-1995 none designated
1995-1996 none designated
1996-1997 none designated
1997-1998 none designated
1998-1999 none designated
1999-2000 James Hoggard (Wichita Falls) G
2000-2001 Walt McDonald (Lubbock) G

The list of Texas Poets Laureate is drawn from a list assembled by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. Two poets who've been credited in various sources as Texas Poets Laureate --Chris Crabtree and Karle Wilson Baker-- are not on this list. If anyone has any documentation on whether or not Crabtree and baker were official Poets Laureate, we'd like to hear.

The third column contains links to more information on that Poet Laureate. The links were assembled by Tim Wood. T: Texas Poet Laureate NOW! HBT: Handbook of Texas. G: Google search. A: artsDFW. P: Poem(s). B: Book(s). C: Cassette/CD/Vinyl. I: Story of Someone Inspired/Affected by that Poet Laureate (you may have to search for their name on the page in question). O: Other

General background on Texas poetry can be found in HBT.