On this day in Texas History, June 11, 1936: Robert Ervin Howard committed suicide at the age of 30. Born and raised in Texas, Howard was a prolific writer and is best remembered as the creator of 'Conan the Barbarian'.

That's right! The guy who created the classic character is from the Lone Star State, Peaster, Texas to be exact. He spent most of his life in the town of Cross Plains, with some time spent in nearby Brownwood.

(Peaster is in Parker County, just a few miles northwest of Weatherford.)

Wikipedia
Wikipedia
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Howard is credited with not only creating a beloved comic book character, but an entire subgenre known as sword and sorcery. He wrote a lot of stories too! Most of his writings were published in Weird Tales, which was a 'pulp magazine', which would eventually publish his 'Conan' stories.

The town of Cross Plains even holds 'Howard Days'...and we JUST missed it!

howarddays.com
howarddays.com
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According to the website, 'Howard Days' includes a jam packed itinerary:

"We hope you can join us at the REH Museum in Cross Plains, Texas, on June 7th & 8th (and maybe squeeze in June 6th as well) for The Best Two Days in Howard Fandom!

Project Pride of Cross Plains is the community organization that organizes Howard Days every year. They maintain the House and grounds and give tours by appointment all year long, but Howard Days is the big event that keeps them charged up! And it makes a visit to Cross Plains ever so enjoyable!

Arlene Stephenson, President of Project Pride, told us today that the House is all ready to welcome visitors from all over the world. Staale Gismervik and his wife will be here from Norway, Terry and Kay Allen are popping over from the UK and Patrice Louinet will be stateside from France, among others. And of course, the hundreds of fans from all corners of the U.S. will make for a great international "family reunion"!

As we make our last minute preparations to head to Texas, don't forget the little bits of information that will help you enjoy yourself even more. The Howard Museum Gift Shop and the Silent Auction are only set up for CASH (or checks). (There are several convenient ATM's around Cross Plains).

Texas in June can be brutally hot and the weather can change on a dime, so remember to keep hydrated! Water and Gatorade are your friends; there will be water available in the big public cooler at the Pavilion. There should also be bug spray available there too, but it never hurts to bring some along. Same goes for sun screen - there's no sun like the sun in Texas!

Dressing cool will help as well and you can put your sombreros, fedoras and cowboy hats to use, too. Fortunately the Pavilion is well shaded, as is the yard surrounding the House and we can hope for some nice winds to blow our way."

Sadly, Howard took his own life after a battle with tuberculosis, his mother's failing health and his own mental health issues caused a major depressive episode. On this day, June, 11th, 1936, he shot himself in his car with a .380 Colt Automatic. A sad end to a great mind.

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