1-1           WHEREAS, Many proud residents of Panola County will visit
 1-2     Austin February 23-24, 1999, to celebrate Panola County Days at the
 1-3     State Capitol, and this festive event offers an ideal opportunity
 1-4     to recognize the county's many remarkable attributes; and
 1-5           WHEREAS, Situated deep in the Piney Woods of East Texas,
 1-6     Panola County was formerly the home of Caddo Indians; the county is
 1-7     named after the Indian word for cotton and was created in the late
 1-8     1840s from Harrison and Shelby counties; and
 1-9           WHEREAS, Its advantageous location and rich natural resources
1-10     have helped Panola County to flourish, and throughout its history
1-11     the area has significantly contributed to the state's prosperity;
1-12     the county enjoys a strong and diversified economic base, with gas
1-13     processing, oil-field operation, forest industries, agribusiness,
1-14     tourism, and manufacturing as its major industries; and
1-15           WHEREAS, Resplendent with lush forests and sparkling bodies
1-16     of water, the region boasts lakes Murvaul and Martin, the Sabine
1-17     River, and the Toledo Bend Reservoir, which attract nature lovers
1-18     and outdoor sports enthusiasts; additional recreational
1-19     opportunities in the area include hunting, scenic drives, historic
1-20     sites, and museums; and
1-21           WHEREAS, Carthage, named for two consecutive years by writer
1-22     Norman Crampton as one of "The 100 Best Small Towns in America,"
1-23     serves as county seat with approximately 23,000 residents and home
1-24     to Panola College, the East Texas Medical Center-Carthage, and a
 2-1     number of points of historic interest, several of which pay tribute
 2-2     to country music favorites Tex Ritter and "Gentleman" Jim Reeves,
 2-3     both natives of Panola County; and
 2-4           WHEREAS, The award-winning Tex Ritter Museum highlights the
 2-5     career of one of America's most beloved singing cowboys, and
 2-6     "Gentleman" Jim Reeves was recently honored with a state historical
 2-7     marker   at his grave site, which is also distinguished by a
 2-8     life-sized sculpture of the velvet-voiced singer; and
 2-9           WHEREAS, In 1997, the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame opened
2-10     in Carthage with Gene Autry as its first inductee; Willie Nelson
2-11     entertained an audience of 1,000 at the grand opening celebration
2-12     in 1998, when he was inducted into the hall; the museum is a
2-13     tribute to Chet Stout and his late wife, Johnny, who were
2-14     instrumental in its creation; and
2-15           WHEREAS, Area residents and visitors alike can learn more
2-16     about the rich heritage of the region by visiting the Panola County
2-17     Historical Heritage Museum and the Panola County Historical Jail
2-18     Museum, home to the Leila B. Lagrone Family History Center and the
2-19     Mini-Law Enforcement and Pioneer Museum; a new addition to the
2-20     library at the jail museum will be the East Texas Oral History
2-21     Archive, a collection of oral history interviews, numbering in the
2-22     hundreds, by the Carthage High School and Panola College students
2-23     of Mrs. Ann Morris; and
2-24           WHEREAS, At this time it is indeed fitting that Panola County
2-25     residents receive  legislative recognition for their county's proud
2-26     heritage and their citizens' many accomplishments; now, therefore,
2-27     be it
 3-1           RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives of the 76th Texas
 3-2     Legislature recognize February 23-24 as Panola County Days at the
 3-3     State Capitol and extend warmest best wishes to all Panola County
 3-4     citizens on this noteworthy occasion; and, be it further
 3-5           RESOLVED, That an official copy of this resolution be
 3-6     prepared for the Panola Chamber of Commerce as an expression of
 3-7     high regard by the Texas House of Representatives.
                                                   Speaker of the House
               I certify that H.R. No. 228 was adopted by the House on
         February 24, 1999, by a non-record vote.
                                                 Chief Clerk of the House