Saturday, August 30, 2014

Durrett, J. R. (1881 - 1957) -- J. R. Durrett Investment Co., real estate, ranching

This fairytale home at 2202 S. Tyler was once owned by J. R. Durrett (2 Mar 1881 - Jun 1957). The house was built in 1925, and I think it has been in the Durret/Hays family ever since.

I am not sure if it was this house or another nearby, but a few years ago I saw some interior photos of a house in this neighborhood that showed a large living room with a beautifully ornate doomed ceiling. I am not sure, but maybe the whole living room was oval. It was beautiful. I wish I could remember which house it was.

Anyway, J. R. Durrett was described in an undated article in the Amarillo Daily News as follows:

"J. R. Durrett, a large land owner of Armstrong County, was born March 2, 1881, in Lampasas, Texas, and was educated in Belton, and at Hardin-Simmons University, Abilene. In the early 1900's he taught school and was principal of the school at McLean. It was there that he met and married Vern Teel, the daughter of G. J. Teel. From McLean he went to Clarendon where he continued to teach school. In Clarendon he also began to deal in real estate."

"He came to Miami, Texas where he was in the insurance business and bought and sold real estate. He then came to Amarillo in 1923 and has been engaged in extensive investments both in town and farming property in the Panhandle."

"He operated the J. R. Durrett Investment Co. in the Paramount Bldg. in partnership with his son Delmar and son-in-law McDonald Hays. Following the death of Eldon in a highway accident in 1950, Mr. Durrett established for his son the Eldon Durrett Memorial Scholarships. The initial amount of the fund was established at $30,000 to be used by young men of Amarillo to achieve a higher education. The Durrett family home is 2202 Tyler, Amarillo, where Mrs. Durrett lives following her husband's death June 1957."

Also, the Arts and Commerce building at Amarillo College was renamed J. R. Durrett Hall on July 7, 1958 in memory of Mr. Durrett, who died in June 1957.

2202 Tyler St. -- built in 1925

2202 Tyler St. -- built in 1925

2202 Tyler St. -- built in 1925

2202 Tyler St. -- built in 1925

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