While our physical offices are closed until further notice in accordance with Austin's COVID-19 "stay home-work safe" order, the Handbook of Texas will remain available at no-cost for you, your fellow history enthusiasts, and all Texas students currently mandated to study from home. If you have the capacity to help us maintain our online Texas history resources during these uncertain times, please consider making a 100% tax-deductible contribution today. Thank you for your support of TSHA and Texas history. Donate Today »


Walter N. Vernon

BLAYLOCK, LOUIS (1849–1932). Louis Blaylock, publisher, civic leader, and mayor of Dallas, was born in Sevier County, Arkansas, on October 21, 1849, the son of Willis and Irene (Gibs) Blaylock. His family moved to Texas in 1852 and settled in Austin. In 1866 he began work as a typesetter for the Texas Christian Advocate, a Methodist paper (now the United Methodist Reporter). Blaylock and William A. Shaw eventually took over the paper, which by 1876 had a circulation of 13,000, supposedly the largest circulation of any contemporary paper in Texas. By 1887 the paper claimed a circulation of 18,000. Blaylock moved the Advocate to Dallas and formed the Blaylock Publishing Company in 1887. He left the paper in 1922 after being with it for fifty-six years. Blaylock served as Dallas police commissioner from 1901 to 1904 and was both police and fire commissioner from 1913 to 1915. He served as city administration and finance commissioner from 1919 until 1923, when he was elected mayor. Since he was seventy-four at the time of his election, he was soon nicknamed "Daddy" Blaylock. While in office he was noted for kissing every gorgeous movie star, festival queen, or other prominent female who visited Dallas, as an official welcome to the city. Blaylock was also known as one of the most able and conservative mayors in the city's history. In 1871 he married Georgia Darton, and they eventually had five children. He was active in the First Methodist Church in Dallas, as a member of the building committee and as president of the board of trustees. He was publisher of the daily paper for the Methodist General Conference when it met in Dallas in 1902. He was also a prominent Mason. Blaylock died on December 4, 1932, and was buried in Oakland Cemetery, Dallas.

John D. Barron, A Critical History of the Texas Christian Advocate, 1849–1949 (M.A. thesis, University of Missouri, 1952). Dallas Morning News, August 3, 1970.

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: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml

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.

Handbook of Texas Online, Walter N. Vernon, "BLAYLOCK, LOUIS," accessed August 14, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fbl63.

Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
visit the mytsha forums to participate

View these posts and more when you register your free MyTSHA account.

Call for Papers: Texas Center for Working-Class Studies Events, Symposia, and Workshops
Hi all! You may be interested in this call for papers I received from the Texas Center for Working-Class Studies at Collin College...

Katy Jennings' Ride Scholarly Research Request
I'm doing research on Catherine Jennings Lockwood, specifically the incident known as "Katy Jennings' Ride." Her father was Gordon C. Jennings, the oldest man to die at the Alamo...

Texas Constitution of 1836 Co-Author- Elisha Pease? Ask a Historian
The TSHA profile of Elisha Marshall Pease states that he wrote part of the Texas Constitution although he was only a 24 year-old assistant secretary (not elected). I cannot find any other mention of this authorship work by Pease in other credible research about the credited Constution authors...