Pioneers - J. A. "Happy" Drummond

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Pioneers of Ellis County

J. A. "Happy" Drummond


[This little gem was posted to the Ellis County Mailing List on RootsWeb on Dec. 3, 1999]

Can anyone remember the given name of Happy Drummond who used to have a hamburger stand in the alley behind the bank at the NW corner of the square?

I went to the Ellis County Museum for the first time this week and there was a copy of a program for a historical marker for "Happy's Place." The only name given for him was J. A. Drummond.

Here is a copy of the info in the program (it says it is from a plaque erected by Historic Waxahachie, Inc.):

Happy's Place
J. A. "Happy" Drummond
Born April 25, 1894 / Died February 24, 1968

J. A. "Happy" Drummond established a hamburger stand on the Northwest corner of this alley in 1911, behind the Waxahachie Bank and Trust Company. The small structure, approximately 20 feet by 5 feet, was home to a simple menu of hamburgers, soft drinks, chips, and candy bars. These old -- fashioned hamburgers consisted of a toasted bun, meat, sour pickles, onions, and mustard. Everyone loved his hamburgers which sold for only 5 cents each or 6 for a quarter. Kids or grown-ups could enjoy a great meal of two hamburgers, a cold drink, chips, and a candy bar for only 25 cents. At one time or another, during almost half a century of operation, virtually everyone in Ellis County ate at "Happy's" and it was the unofficial headquarters for the youth of the community.

Happy was an outstanding leader of Boy Scouts and was a Scoutmaster for over twenty years. He was a recipient of the Silver Beaver Award from the Boy Scouts of America. As a longtime member of the First Methodist Church, he taught a youth Sunday School class for more than thirty years. He left his estate to establish a "Memorial Fund" for the education of young people in the fields of the ministry, missions, and other Church related educational programs.

"Happy" had a profound influence on the youth of this community and was a vital factor in contributing to their success as adults. He was known as a kind and successful businessman, a youth leader, Church official and worker, counselor, and one of the few persons about whom on unkind word was ever said. "Happy" was a man who left a legion of friends and not one single enemy.

This program is labeled Happy Drummond Hamburger Day October 16, 1999.

Kathleen Ellis


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