Not many folks in East Texas are familiar with the name Spit and Whittle.  But, back in 1921, that was how many affectionately referred to the new grocery store that was founded by Austin and Tom Brookshire. 

Flash forward 95 years and Brookshire Brothers has blossomed into a community-minded, thriving grocery business for customers throughout Texas and Louisiana.  Over 7,000 employee-owners are a part of Brookshire Brothers which boasts 113 retail locations.  In February, they opened a store at Canyon Lake near New Braunfels, and the retailer has 4 stores under construction.

Wednesday, Brookshire Brothers threw a huge cook-out party for their employees at their corporate warehouse in Lufkin.  A number of dignitaries and media were also invited.  State Representative Trent Ashby presented a flag that had flown above the Capitol building to Jerry Johnson (pictured above).  Other dignitaries that were recognized included Mayor Bob Brown, Lufkin City Manager Keith Wright, Judge Bob Inselmann, Fire Chief Ted Lovett, and Lufkin Chamber President Jim Johnson.

Also in attendance was Eugene Brookshire, who along with R.A. and Oscar Brookshire, assumed leadership of the company in 1966.  Oscar's widow, Dot, was also in attendance and took the occasion to take a ride in one of the company's 18-wheelers.

This Saturday, all of the Brookshire Brothers locations are inviting the public to birthday parties at their stores.  There will be special pricing, cake, giveaways and more.  Their weekly ad gives more details.

Here is a timeline of important events through the 95 years of Brookshire Brothers.

  • 1921 - Brothers Tom and Austin Brookshire founded Brookshire Brothers in Lufkin
  • 1928 - The first expansion of Brookshire Brothers began as the Brookshire family rallied to build a strong regional company
  • 1952 - Brookshire Brothers acquired Moore Grocery and Lufkin Produce Company.
  • 1966 - Three songs of Austin Brookshire, R.A., Eugene, and Oscar, assumed leadership of the company, which grew to 69 stores in East Texas
  • 1999 - Brookshire Brothers embarked on an employee-owner stock buyout
  • 2006 - Brookshire Brothers achieved 100% employee ownership
  • 2014 - Brookshire Brothers acquires the assets of David's Supermarkets
  • 2015 - Brookshire Brothers expand west to Canyon Lake and begins construction on four new 'Express' locations.