1886-87 Lafayette Lumpkin Foster Groesbeck New Era

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Lafayette Lumpkin Foster, the seventh president, was born in Georgia on Nov. 27, 1851. He moved to Limestone County, Texas, at age 18, working as a cotton picker and bricklayer to earn admission to Waco University. He founded the Limestone New Era in Groesbeck and operated the newspaper until 1890. Foster was elected to serve as the representative for House District 62 (McLennan, Limestone and Falls counties) in the 17th, 18th and 19th Texas Legislatures (1881-1883, 1883-1885, 1885-1887, respectively). Foster was elected speaker of the House on Jan. 13, 1885.

Gov. James S. Hogg in 1891 appointed Foster to the newly created Texas Railroad Commission. Foster later served two terms as commissioner of insurance and statistics. Foster was named president of Texas A&M College in 1898 and served in that capacity until his death of pneumonia on Dec. 2, 1901. He is buried in the Texas A&M cemetery.