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The Jim W. Keeland Collection, no. 6 - Rio Grande Valley (1956)

Brazoria County Historical Museum

Silent | 1956

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    • About the video
    • The Texas Citrus Fiesta The Texas Citrus Fiesta
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    This film from the Keeland Collection features two distinctly different views of the Rio Grande Valley. The clip opens with the pageantry and glitter of the Texas Citrus Fiesta in Mission, followed by cattle ranchers in Bee County working with their herds. Of note is footage of the ranchers using a propane torch to burn thorns off of cacti, making them safe for the cattle to eat. The producer of this film, Jim W. Keeland, was a photographer and videographer in the Houston area for sixty years. He took photographs and films for Houston's NBC affiliate, KPRC-TV, from 1948 until 1961, worked for the Houston Post from 1951 to 1982 as a printer, and was a freelance photographer of agricultural subjects.
    The Texas Citrus Fiesta is celebrated annually in Mission, Texas. The region’s agricultural industry produces Texas ruby red grapefruits, oranges, lemons, limes, and tangerines. The Fiesta celebrates the culture and farming traditions of the region with a festival, a parade, and the crowning of King Citrus and Queen Citrianna. After being crowned, the King and Queen ride on elaborate floats during a parade that celebrates the citrus fruits that are the livelihood of citizens of the region. The Texas Citrus Fiesta began in 1932 and remains an integral part of the community’s culture today.