Members Only Area
Bookmark and Share
sidebar menu icon


ROSS, WILLIAM HALLAM (1853–1918). William Hallam Ross, one of the first county agriculture agents in Texas, was born in Waco on August 18, 1853, the youngest child of Catherine H. (Fulkerson) and Shapley Prince Ross. He spent most of his early life in Waco, where he was a member of the Waco Grays, a military and social organization. Ross and his brother Robert Shapley Ross owned and published a newspaper, the Daily Reporter. Ross married Elizabeth Anne Denison on June 24, 1881, and they had eight children. Ross farmed land he owned in Palo Pinto County and near Stephenville in Erath County, where he took his family. On November 14, 1913, the Dallas County Commissioners Court appointed him federal agricultural demonstration agent for Dallas County, where he was in charge of educational and demonstration farm work, a program designed to encourage farmers to operate on a scientific basis. Upon retirement Ross settled in Tarrant County, where he farmed and operated a seed business. He died on July 4, 1918, while visiting relatives in Belton and was buried in Oakwood Cemetery, Waco.


Raymond L. Dillard, A History of the Ross Family and Its Most Distinguished Member, Lawrence Sullivan Ross (M.A. thesis, Baylor University, 1931). Frank W. Johnson, A History of Texas and Texans (5 vols., ed. E. C. Barker and E. W. Winkler [Chicago and New York: American Historical Society, 1914; rpt. 1916]). Dayton Kelley, ed., The Handbook of Waco and McLennan County, Texas (Waco: Texian, 1972). John Sleeper and J. C. Hutchins, comps., Waco and McLennan County (Waco: Golledge, 1876; rpt., Waco: Kelley, 1966). Waco Times-Herald, July 5, 1918, July 3, 1929.

Merle Mears Duncan

Image Use Disclaimer

All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.

For more information go to:

If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.


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

Merle Mears Duncan, "ROSS, WILLIAM HALLAM," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed December 01, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Modified on September 29, 2013. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.