Perry, Hally Ballinger Bryan (1868–1955)

By: Nancy Baker Jones

Type: Biography

Published: 1976

Updated: April 14, 2021

Hally Ballinger Perry, cofounder of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas and a grandniece of Stephen F. Austin, was born in Galveston on January 10, 1868, the third of four children of Laura (Jack) and Col. Guy Morrison Bryan. Her father was a member at various times of both the House and Senate of Texas, speaker of the Texas House, and a member of the Thirty-fifth Congress of the United States. After Hally's mother died, the Bryan family moved to the Oaks, the home of Hally's aunt and uncle, Harriet Patrick (Jack) and William Pitt Ballinger. Hally attended Hollins Institute in Virginia, then returned to Galveston when she was seventeen. In 1891, with her cousin Betty Ballinger, she founded the Daughters of the Republic of Texas to encourage historical research, to promote the celebration of Texas independence day on March 2, and to honor the memory of the people who fought to establish the republic. She served as secretary for an early executive committee of the DRT but thereafter chose not to hold office. She was, however, an honorary life president.

On November 3, 1909, Hally Bryan married Emmett Lee Perry, a half cousin, and the couple moved to Bay City. They had no children. After her husband died in 1921 Hally moved to Houston, where she lived for the next twenty-seven years. She traveled in Europe and Latin America as well as in the United States, and in 1940 she organized the Pan American Round Table of Houston. She served on the State Library Historical Commission. She was also a member of the Texas State Historical Association, the Delta Kappa Gamma Society, the American Association of University Women, the Texas Folklore Society, and the Philosophical Society of Texas. After moving to Alpine in 1948, she became a member of the board of directors of the Alpine Community Center and a member of the Presbyterian Church. She also founded the local chapter of the DRT, which is named in her honor. After her father's death, she and a cousin became executors of the Stephen F. Austin papers, and she presented the papers to the University of Texas at Austin. In response, the university established the Hally Bryan Perry Fund for historical research in 1954. Hally Perry died in Alpine on June 27, 1955, and was buried in the State Cemetery in Austin.

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Daughters of the Republic of Texas, Fifty Years of Achievement: History of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas (Dallas: Banks, Upshaw, 1942). Daughters of the Republic of Texas, Ninety Years of the Daughters: History of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas (Waco: Texian, 1981). Hally Bryan Perry Papers, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin. Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.

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The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Nancy Baker Jones, “Perry, Hally Ballinger Bryan,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed August 14, 2022,

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April 14, 2021

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