The American Quarter Horse JournalDecember 27, 2012
Louis Pearce Jr.
American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame member Louis Pearce Jr. died December 26.
Pearce, who was a former AQHA director, came to be known as “Mr. Houston Livestock Show” and was more of a fixture at the huge show than the Astrodome itself.
Pearce bought a bull at the show in 1938, got involved with the horse show in 1947 and has been involved ever since. He was chairman of the horse show from 1950 to 1966, the first year the entire show was held at the Astrodome. Pearce served six years as an officer and three years as president of the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo.
In 1986, when the livestock show celebrated its sesquicentennial, a life-size bronze statue of a young boy holding a calf, looking up at a man on horseback, was erected. The man in the statue is modeled after Pearce, and the entire statue was dedicated to him.
Pearce was born February 17, 1917, in Houston. He graduated from Texas Military Institute in San Antonio in 1936. Pearce attended the University of Texas from 1936-1939, majoring in business administration, and was a member of the Kappa Alpha fraternity.
Pearce began ranching in 1938. He operated ranches in three Texas counties, raising American Quarter Horses and Hereford-Brahman-cross cattle. He was recognized by AQHA in 2009 as a 50-year breeder, and has bred several Register of Merit earners both on the track and in the show ring.
He bred Especial, an AQHA Champion by Doc Bar and a prominent stallion in the cutting industry. In 1975, Pearce’s Cricket’s Dollye by Unk Cody won the world championship in senior cutting. The next year, the mare earned a high-point cutting title and placed eighth in senior cutting at the AQHA World Championship Show.
Pearce has been a long-time member of the National Cutting Horse Association and was inducted into the NCHA Hall of Fame in 1995. He is also a lifetime director of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association. In 1966, he sat on the AQHA Executive Committee. From 1961 to 1978, Pearce served as an AQHA director and was a member of the public information and education and the show and contest committees. He also held an AQHA judges card.
Pearce worked closely with the animal science department at Texas A&M University and donated several horses to the department, including Eyes Of Texas, a Three Bars (TB) stallion and AQHA Champion. The Louis Pearce Jr. Pavilion on the university campus was named in his honor.
Pearce was inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in 1998.
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