On Thursday, September 13, the Payne Street Team attended the Algodon First Bale Auction in Harlingen, Texas. This event featured a live and silent auction, food, music and a continuation of a long-standing tradition in Texas.

Chris Marshall with the First Bale of Cotton

The Algodon First Bale Auction comes from the tradition of the first bale of cotton grown in the nation being required to be certified in Houston, Texas.

The tradition of certifying the nation’s First Bale of the year dates back to the 1800’s when the grower of the First Bale was required to transport the cotton to the Houston Cotton Exchange for certification.

Once certified as the first bale of cotton to be harvested in that year, the Houston Cotton Exchange would then put it up for auction. This continued since from the 1800s to 1953, when the Harlingen Cotton Committee took over the rights to auction the First Bale.

For almost 70 years, the Harlingen Cotton Committee has been solely responsible for certifying the First Bale of the nation.

Winner of the First Bale

This year celebrated the 2018 cotton crop with a First Bale Auction & Scholarship Fundraiser at the TSTC Cultural Arts Center. This auction and scholarship fundraiser is held with he Algodon Club, a non-profit organization founded in 1953 whose purpose is to exhibit the importance of cotton to the Rio Grande Valley’s economy.

Chris Marshall of the Payne Street Team was auctioned off for $1200. This money goes to the Harlingen Cotton Committee who in turn puts it into scholarships awarded through the Algodon Club.

Chris Marshall entertaining the crowd at the event

Payne Auto Group is proud to be able to support the Rio Grande Valley in such an important tradition! We hope to be a part of this tradition for many years to come!

For more information about the First Bale tradition and the Harlingen Cotton Committee, please visit the Harlingen Chamber of Commerce’s website.

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