Louis Pearce, Jr.
Inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in 1998
Louis Pearce, Jr. came to be known as "Mr. Houston Livestock Show." Pearce 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 was 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, Texas. He graduated from Texas Military Institute in San Antonio, Texas, 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, raised registered Quarter Horses and Hereford-Brahman cross cattle. As a breeder, he bred 357 registered Quarter Horses, including several Register of Merit earners both on the track and in the show ring.
He bred Especial, an AQHA Champion by Doc Bar and 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 was a long-time member of the National Cutting Horse Association and was inducted into the NCHA Hall of Fame in 1995. He was 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 judge's 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. He died in 2012.