We’re Cattlemen Too
The National Livestock Commission Association began doing business on September 15, 1931. At this time in our nation’s history, everyone was in the midst of the Great Depression. The primary objective of the new organization was to market livestock for its members. Any producer of livestock was eligible to become a member upon payment of $1 for one share of common stock. This purchase of stock provided each member “full privileges of membership without further payment of dues or assessments”.
On October 31, 1931, the commission contracted to buy the National Commission Company. It was the oldest firm on the Stockyards. In the early 1930’s, agricultural credit was all but gone. A three-fold disaster had occurred. The Great Depression combined with drought and crop surpluses caused agricultural credit to all but disappear. A full page ad for National appeared in the Oklahoma Livestock Market News on July 11, 1950. It offered livestock loans at 4.5%.
The long-established practice of selling livestock by “private treaty” eventually gave way to selling at public auction. Soon the Oklahoma National Stockyards became “The World’s Largest Stocker and Feeder Cattle Market.” Railroads had traditionally delivered livestock to the terminal markets in Oklahoma City.
Many of the original families who were pioneers of National are still actively involved as either customers or directors. This sense of service continues with the current staff, customers and board members of National.
Today, the National Livestock Commission Association continues as a leader at the Oklahoma National Stockyards. The National Livestock Credit Corporation serves 7 states in the Southern US. National has also evolved to add services at the Southern Oklahoma Livestock Auction, Superior Livestock Auction, and OKC West Livestock Market. The common thread of the National companies continues to be the pursuit of total customer satisfaction.
Many years ago, a director of National made the following comment. He said “I don’t think there’s any question that National will live and continue to serve the people, but possibly the organizations will serve them in some different respects. We already have seen some big changes and there will be more changes”. That certainly was a prophetic statement that continues to be accurate as the livestock business continues to change rapidly.