Jackson Walker Represents Receiver in Case Involving Historic W.T. Waggoner Ranch


The agreement to sell the property marked a turning point in the legal dispute among heirs of the W.T. Waggoner Estate that has spanned more than two decades.

Since being retained in 2012, Jackson Walker partners Wayne Malecha and Albon Head have represented Mike Baskerville, the Receiver in the case; together, they and other Jackson Walker lawyers have played a key role in advancing the proceedings to this point.

“All parties and their attorneys have worked diligently to complete a detailed agreement for the marketing of all of the assets of the estate,” said Mr. Baskerville. “The result was the approval of the agreement granted by Judge Bird.”

Dating back to the mid-1800s, the ranch currently encompasses 510,000 acres in and around Vernon, Texas, spanning six counties. It is currently the largest ranch under one fence in the U.S. and includes thousands of cattle, hundreds of homes and horses, and significant oil reserves. It has been listed for $725 million and is being marketed by brokers Sam Middleton of Lubbock and Bernie Uechtritz of Dallas. The listing has received considerable media coverage, including a feature story by CBS News and articles by the Associated Press, Wall Street Journal, Dallas Business Journal, and Houston Chronicle.

“The ranch is a true American icon,” Mr. Baskerville said. “It is a living link to the history and development of the American West. No ranch with this kind of legacy will ever be available in the United States again. We believe we will now begin to find out what an exciting prospect this property represents.”

At the conclusion of the August 6 hearing, Judge Bird praised the efforts of all the parties involved in reaching this historic agreement.

“I’m an old football player. I love to watch good football teams. Well, I’m an old trial lawyer, too, and I love to watch good trial lawyers, and it’s been a pleasure for me to see all of you to get to this point,” he said, noting that the approved agreement represented “a significant moment in the history of this receivership and I would be remiss not to acknowledge the tremendous efforts of all you folks in this courtroom.”

Jackson Walker is one of the oldest and largest law firms in Texas and has represented some of the state’s most influential individuals and businesses. Attorneys in the firm’s Real Estate practice group have an in-depth understanding of the matters unique to transactions involving Farm and Ranch properties. Jackson Walker also maintains one of the largest trial groups in the Southwest, including attorneys with particular experience in Real Estate Litigation.