Monroe Dunaway Anderson
Monroe Dunaway Anderson is known as the "father" of the Texas Medical Center and M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. He was born 29 June 1873 on McNairy Hill at the present site of 111 East Orleans Street. Educated in Jackson City Schools and at Union University, he was a banker, philanthropist, and founding partner of Anderson, Clayton & Co., the world's largest merchandiser of cotton during the mid-20th century. His $19 million estate was as of 1939, the largest charitable fund created in the state of Texas. Anderson's generosity not only helped establish the world's largest medical center but also libraries, auditoriums, college buildings, and, on the campus of Lambuth University, a planetarium. He is buried with his family in Jackson's Riverside Cemetery.
Anderson, Clayton & Company
Anderson, Clayton & Company, at one time the world's largest merchandiser of cotton, began as Frank E. Anderson & Company, across the street from this plaza. Frank Anderson, Will Clayton and Monroe D. Anderson established their partnership in Oklahoma City on August 1, 1904. Company headquarters moved to Houston in 1916. World War I demands for cotton enhanced their fortunes. Overseas operations were set up in Europe, Egypt, India, and China. By 1945, with 223 gins, 33 cottonseed oil plants and 123 warehouses, the company was the largest buyer, seller, storer, and shipper of raw cotton in the world.