Ebby Halliday Foundation Donates Namesake’s Papers To SMU

The Ebby Halliday Foundation donated real estate legend and philanthropist Ebby Halliday Acers’ papers, including letters, journals, speeches and scrapbooks, to SMU’s DeGolyer Library. The foundation also made a donation to the DeGolyer Library. 

The founder of the Ebby Halliday Companies passed away in 2015 at theage 104.

The DeGolyer Library is the principal repository at SMU for special collections in the humanities, the history of business and the history of science and technology. Its rare books, manuscripts, photographs, maps and other materials are available to all SMU students, faculty, visiting scholars and other researchers. 

Ebby Halliday’s papers now reside in the Archives of Women of the Southwest, one of the special collections of DeGolyer Library. This collection, established in 1993, documents the historical experience of women in the Southwest, highlighting those who have influenced women’s roles in society and shaped the culture, arts, business, social issues, law, and politics.

“We felt this donation was important in solidifying the Ebby Halliday Foundation and Ebby’s legacy to ensure future generations access to her life’s written work,” said Ebby Halliday Foundation Board Member Ashley Cook. 

“Ebby Halliday was truly a pioneer in the real estate industry, expanding opportunities for others not only here in the Dallas area but around the country, by the force of her example and influence,” said Russell L. Martin III, director of SMU’s DeGolyer Library. “Her energy and enthusiasm knew no bounds. We are grateful to the Foundation for entrusting her remarkable archive to us, where it will be preserved and made accessible to researchers.”

Among the many tributes to Ebby’s philanthropic legacy in North Texas are Juliette Fowler Communities’ The Ebby House, a transitional community for young women who have experienced foster care or have been abandoned, displaced or abused; the WiNG’s Center at Ebby’s Place, which seeks to lift economically challenged working women out of poverty; and the Ebby Halliday Library at Happy Hill Farm in Granbury, a 500-acre farm that is home to North Central Texas Academy, an independent college-preparatory day, boarding and international school which seeks out underserved students. Halliday was also honored with the building and naming of the Ebby Halliday Elementary School in Southeast Dallas. 

Ebby was also honored with The Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans award, which honors the simple but powerful belief that hard work, honesty and determination can conquer all obstacles. 

To see more about Ebby Halliday’s remarkable career, see our look back at the 75th anniversary of the company she founded.

Rachel Snyder

Rachel Snyder, deputy editor at People Newspapers, joined the staff in 2019, returning to her native Dallas-Fort Worth after starting her career at community newspapers in Oklahoma. One of her stories won first place in its category in the Oklahoma Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest in 2018. She’s a fan of puns and community journalism, not necessarily in that order. You can reach her at [email protected]

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