Ruby Allmond was born in Fannin County, Texas in 1923. She grew up on a blackland cotton and corn farm during the Great Depression and World War II. Music was the chief source of entertainment for the Allmond family and Ruby developed an early interest in the art. In 1947, at the Municipal Auditorium in Greenvillle, Texas, Ruby was awarded the title of "National Champion Lady Fiddler." This was a significant accomplishment as women were previously banned from entering fiddling competitions. From this point, she began playing shows all around Northeast Texas as trio fiddle with two of America’s best fiddlers, Georgia Slim Rutland and Howdy Forrester. During this period the band consisted of her two brothers, Roy and Raymond Allmond on guitars, and Harold Carder playing bass. Ruby went on to form a band of her own, Texas Jamboree, consisting of Guy Bryant, Joyce Bryant, Gene Bryant and Clay Harvey.
The Honorable Mr. Sam Rayburn, Speaker of the U. S. House of Representatives, took Ruby’s band on his campaign tours to entertain the crowds. Throughout her career, Ruby was a prolific songwriter. Cindy Walker, a fellow Texas songwriter, sent Ruby’s songs to a publisher at RCA in Nashville. Chet Atkins took notice and made several outstanding recordings from her works. "Reno," performed by Dottie West and produced by Chet Atkins, became a top-ten national hit song.
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Andrea Weddle-Head of Archives and Special Collections Andrea.Weddle@tamuc.edu
Adam Northam-Digital Collections Librarian Adam.Northam@tamuc.edu