Perry Kallison, Jewish Community Businessman, Rancher & Radio Personality of San Antonio, Texas

Perry Kallison

Values Codes: I-H-E-P

Perry Kallison Radio Adv

Perry Kallison Radio Adv

Perry Kallison was born in San Antonio, Texas in 1903.

Perry Kallison worked with his brother, Morris, in managing Kallison’s Farm and Ranch Store (also called Kallison’s Big Country Store), which sold everything from furniture to hardware to ‘feed and seed” to appliances.

Perry Kallison also worked at the family’s ranch – riding horses, experimenting with crops and raising cattle.

Among other breeds, he raised a large herd of award winning American Polled Hereford cattle.

 

When the State of Israel was founded, Perry Kallison helped it develop its agricultural systems.

He arranged for Israelis to visit San Antonio so that they could learn from the Texas ranchers.

He also sent a herd of 76 angora goats to Yodfat Kibbutz, which were shared with other kibbutzim.

 

In 1936, Perry Kallison started a radio program that provided farm and ranch news, philosophical editorials (“sermonettes”) and other stories.

His programs were broadcast until 1981.

Civic

Perry Kallison founded the San Antonio Livestock Show and Rodeo.

He and his wife, Frances, hosted the show at their ranch.

BBQ at the Kallison Ranch

BBQ at the Kallison Ranch

Community

While in college, Perry Kallison joined the Temple League Players, a theatrical group in San Antonio.

Perry Kallison served as President of Temple Beth El in San Antonio in 1948.

He remained active on various synagogue committees for his entire life.

Perry Kallison was President of the San Antonio Jewish Federation in the 1970s.

Family

In 1931, Frances Rosenthal married Perry Kallison.

They had three children: Maryann, Perry M. “Pete” and Frances Ray “Bobbi.”

Perry Kalisher's Family at BBQ, 1940s

Perry Kalisher’s Family at BBQ, 1940s

 

Perry Kallison died in 1999 in San Antonio.

Frances Kallison died in 2004 in San Antonio.

They are buried at the Temple Beth El Cemetery in San Antonio.

Legacy

The genealogy section of the San Antonio Public Library archives the Kallison’s family records, correspondence, etc.

This collection takes up approximately 15 cubic feet.

Temple Beth-El Cemetery, San Antonio

Temple Beth-El Cemetery, San Antonio

For more information, see this issue of Western States Jewish History:

  • Weiner, Hollace Ava. “Frances Rosenthal Kallison 1908-2004: Texas Cowgirl with a Jewish Conscience.” Western States Jewish History. Fall 2015; 48 (1): 3-25.

Other Sources:

  • Kotz, Nick. The Harness Maker’s Dream: Nathan Kallison and the Rise of South Texas. Fort Work, TX: Texas Christian University Press, 2013. Print.
  • Findagrave.com

 Samantha Silver is Curator for this Perry Kallison exhibit.

Other family pictures would be appreciated.

Be sure to share this exhibit on your facebook page so other hear about the Jewish Museum of the American West.