Hazardous Business
Industry, Regulation, and the Texas Railroad Commission

Peanut handling in Santo, Texas, 1949

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Handling peanuts, 1949

Cotton was king, but Texas rails moved hundreds of other commodities, including these peanuts. Both peanut hay and the nuts themselves had become valuable crops in Texas as early as 1910. In the 1930s, Texas peanut production was given over almost entirely to the Spanish peanut, which is delicious roasted and also yields a crop useful for candy and oil. In the 1940s, much former cotton land was given over to peanuts, and peanut shelling and roasting plants were built throughout the state. In recent years, Texas has ranked second in the nation in peanut production.

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Railroad Commission of Texas, Rail Division, Railroad history files. Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

Page last modified: August 17, 2011