Frances B. Vick


Frances Brannen Vick was born in Trinity, Texas, August 14, 1935. She moved with her family to Lake Jackson, Texas in 1944 and graduated from Brazosport High School in 1953.  She holds a B.A. degree in English 1958 from The University of Texas at Austin, a M.A. degree in English 1969 from Stephen F. Austin State University, and a Doctor of Humane Letters (honoris causa) from the University of North Texas, 2000. 

She founded E-Heart Press in 1979–1987 and is the retired director and co-founder of the University of North Texas Press 1987–2000. She taught English at Stephen F. Austin State University, Angelina College and Baylor University before turning to publishing.

She served as president of Texas Institute of Letters 2006–2008; president of Texas State Historical Association 2008, Board member 2004–2010; president of The Philosophical Society of Texas 2012, Board until 2021; Fellow of the Texas Folklore Society 2008 and Texas State Historical Association; Pro Bene Meritis Liberal Arts Award from The University of Texas at Austin, the highest award given by that college 2009; The Humanities Texas Award 2009. She served as interim Secretary-Editor of the Texas Folklore Society 2019–2021. She serves on the Development Board, and the College of Liberal Arts Advisory Board at The University of Texas at Austin, the Texas A&M University Press Advisory Board, and TWU Advisory Council of the Institute for Women’s Leadership. 

In retirement, she has written One Hundred Years of “The Eyes of Texas” for the University of Texas Exes, Life Member 18,676; co-authored Petra's Legacy: The South Texas Ranching Empire of Petra Vela and Mifflin Kenedy, which won the Coral Horton Tullis Award for best book on Texas history from Texas State Historical Association; editor of Literary Dallas; co-authored Letters to Alice: Birth of the Kleberg–King Ranch Dynasty; editor of Texas Folklore Society Publications,The Family Saga: A Collection of Texas Family Legends and Tales of Texas Cooking: Stories and Recipes from the Trans-Pecos to the Piney Woods and High Plains to the Gulf Prairies; co-authored Dr. Arthur Spohn: Surgeon, Inventor, and Texas Medical Pioneer; written chapters in Texas Women Writers, Texas Women on the Cattle Trails, and Notes from Texas Writers. (photo by Nancy Campbell)


Petra's Legacy

The matriarch of one of the most important families in Texas history, Petra Vela Kenedy has remained a shadowy presence in the annals of South Texas. In this biography of Petra Vela Kenedy, the authors not only tell her story but also relate the history of South Texas through a woman’s perspective. Utilizing previously unpublished letters, journals, photographs, and other primary materials, the authors reveal the intimate stories of the families who for years dominated governments, land acquisition, commerce, and border politics along the Rio Grande and across the Wild Horse Desert.
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TSHA Positions

Handbook Entries

Title Contributor Type
Kleberg, Alice Gertrudis King Author
Brannen, Bess Courtney Author

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