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Rooke, Allen Driscoll (1892–1964)

Hobart Huson Biography Entry

Allen Driscoll Rooke, banker, cattleman, and military man, was born in Victoria, Texas, on July 11, 1892, son of Frank B. and Roberta (Driscoll) Rooke. After graduating from the West Texas Military Academy at San Antonio and the University of Texas, he returned to Refugio County and engaged in ranching with his father and brothers. He attended the first officers' training camp at Leon Springs in 1917, was commissioned, and served overseas on the battlefront as a captain in World War I. In 1919 he joined the family firm of F. B. Rooke and Sons, of which he eventually became managing partner. In 1940, as an advocate of military preparedness, he helped organize the Royal Irish Regiment of Refugio County, precursor of the Texas Defense Guard, later the Texas State Guard. Upon the mustering out of the Twenty-first Battalion of the Texas Defense Guard in 1946 he was commissioned a colonel in the Texas National Guard. Since he was convinced of the value of the Texas State Guard as a permanent active militia, Rooke was active in obtaining legislation authorizing the Texas State Guard Reserve Corps, of which he was deputy corps commander and major general at the time of his death. He was a charter member and president for two terms of the Texas State Guard Association, a founder of the National Association of State Militia, and an active lobbyist in Congress for national recognition and support of the state guards of the several states. After his death an act of the Fifty-ninth Texas Legislature, 1965, made the State Guard a permanent part of the state's military establishment. Rooke was president of the First National Bank of Woodsboro and a vice president of the Southwest Cattle Raisers' Association. Among his benefactions was the Rooke Foundation, Incorporated. He died in San Antonio on May 3, 1964.

Dallas Herald, May 4, 1964. Hobart Huson, Refugio: A Comprehensive History of Refugio County from Aboriginal Times to 1953 (2 vols., Woodsboro, Texas: Rooke Foundation, 1953, 1955). Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.


  • Ranching and Cowboys
  • Activism and Social Reform
  • Civic Leaders
  • Business
  • Patrons, Collectors, and Philanthropists
  • Law, Law Enforcement, and Outlaws
  • Military
  • Ranchers and Cattlemen

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

Hobart Huson, “Rooke, Allen Driscoll,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed January 24, 2021,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.