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MORE, ROBERT LEE (1873–1941). Robert Lee More, ranch manager and ornithologist, the son of Charles and Kittie Denolus (Miller) More, was born at Decatur, Texas, on September 16, 1873. For a time he worked with his father in the grocery business, but later he established an abstract office and ran the opera house in Decatur. In 1900 he moved to Vernon, where he continued in the abstract business and handled title matters for the ranch interests of William T. Waggoner. More became partner-manager of Waggoner and Son in the ranch and stock business in 1903 and, after 1911, in the oil and refinery business. He became manager of the Waggoner estate in 1923. He also established his own wholesale and retail gasoline and oil business and started Vernon's first movie house, where jazz artist Weldon L. (Jack) Teagarden made his first public appearances. More began collecting bird eggs in June 1888 and continued his hobby over a period of fifty-three years, until his collection contained eggs of 750 species of birds and numbered between 12,000 and 15,000 eggs. Each egg was scientifically marked according to the plan of the American Ornithological Union. He kept the collection in his home in the early years and later moved it to his office building in Vernon. The collection was considered the finest west of the Mississippi River and the outstanding private collection of the world. In 1894, with J. A. Donald, More wrote "Lists of Birds of Wise County, Texas" for The Naturalist. Herbert Brandt dedicated his Bird Adventures in Texas (1940) to More. More married Inez Lindley, daughter of Marshall Lindley, a landowner from Peerless. Their only child, Robert Lee Jr., married actress Ann Christy, worked as a junior partner in his father's oil business, and later established his own garage and tire company in Vernon. More died at Vernon on September 6, 1941, and was buried there. His bird collection is still housed in the family's private museum, located on the upper floor of the Robert L. More Tire Company in Vernon.


J. Frank Dobie, "Bob More: Man and Bird Man," Southwest Review 27 (Autumn 1941). Vernon Daily Record, September 8, 1941. Wilbarger County Historical Commission, Wilbarger County (Lubbock, 1986).

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

Handbook of Texas Online, "MORE, ROBERT LEE," accessed May 24, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fmo41.

Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Modified on February 15, 2019. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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