Home About Chat Users Issues Party Candidates Polling Firms Media News Polls Calendar Key Races United States President Senate House Governors International

New User Account
"A historical political resource." 
Email: Password:

  Sterling, Ross S.
NameRoss S. Sterling
Houston, Texas , United States
Born February 11, 1875
DiedMarch 25, 1949 (74 years)
ContributorThomas Walker
Last ModifedRBH
Dec 02, 2017 12:03am
InfoBorn: February 11, 1875 in Anahuac, Chambers County, Texas

Early Career: Sterling grew up on a farm and, after little formal education, began working as a clerk at the age of twelve. At the age of 21 he started his own merchandising business, and in 1911 he organized the Humble Oil Company. In addition to oil, Sterling was also involved in a railroad, a newspaper, banking, and real estate in the Houston area, and was an active member of the Houston Port Commission. He served as chair of the Highway Commission under Governor Dan Moody.

Accomplishments: Sterling defeated former governor Miriam Ferguson and several other candidates in the 1930 race for governor. When Sterling took office, the worst effects of the Depression were beginning to appear in the state. Appropriations exceeded revenues, and Sterling had to veto funding for education and other programs. During Sterling's term in office, the East Texas oil fields experienced rapid and uncontrolled development. The Railroad Commission attempted proration, but the courts struck the plan down. Because of the chaotic situation, Sterling declared martial law in four counties for six months. National Guard troops were sent to the oil fields to limit waste and control production. This action was later declared unwarranted by the federal district court and the U.S. Supreme Court, and the Railroad Commission's plan for proration was accepted. Cotton prices also suffered during Sterling's term in office.

Later years: Governor Sterling was defeated by Miriam Ferguson in his attempt at reelection in 1932. He was a very successful oil man and philanthropist. Ross Sterling died on March 25, 1949.


Title Purchase Contributor

Start Date End Date Type Title Contributor

Date Category Headline Article Contributor

Importance? 10.00000 Average


  08/27/1932 TX Governor - D Runoff Lost 49.80% (-0.40%)
  07/23/1932 TX Governor - D Primary Won 30.62% (+0.00%)
  11/04/1930 TX Governor Won 79.97% (+60.29%)
  08/23/1930 TX Governor - D Runoff Won 55.19% (+10.37%)
  07/26/1930 TX Governor - D Primary Won 20.49% (+0.00%)
TX Governor - Nov 08, 1932 R Orville Bullington