HISTORY OF POPE, HARDWICKE, CHRISTIE,
SCHELL, KELLY & TAPLETT, L.L.P.
Robert Etter Hardwicke graduated from Virginia Military Institute and the University of Texas School of Law (1911). After several years of private practice and many years with the Legal Department of Gulf Oil Corporation in Fort Worth and then in Caracas, Venezuela, Mr. Hardwicke returned to Fort Worth and became a nationally recognized expert in oil and gas conservation laws. Mr. Hardwicke served as Chief Counsel of the Petroleum Administration for War during World War II. After World War II, he founded Hardwicke and Hardwicke, composed of himself and his two sons, Robert E. Hardwicke, Jr., and Greer Hardwicke. Mr. Hardwicke authored several books on the oil and gas industry, and is widely recognized as the author of the Texas oil and gas unitization and pooling laws. He received numerous awards from the Society of Petroleum Engineers, the Texas Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association and the Tarrant County Bar Association, including the Blackstone Award. Mr. Hardwicke died in 1970.
Hardwicke and Hardwicke merged with the firm of Haddaway and Pope, consisting of Arthur Haddaway and Alex Pope, Jr., in 1952. The new firm was called Hardwicke, Haddaway and Pope and was the predecessor of the present firm. Robert E. Hardwicke, Jr. was also an oil and gas specialist and wrote numerous papers on the subject. He graduated from Harvard Law School in 1941. He died in 1991.
Alex Pope graduated from the University of Texas School of Law in 1937. His father, grandfather, and great-grandfather were also attorneys, and his great-grandfather signed the Ordinance of Secession from the Union on behalf of the State of Texas. Like Robert E. Hardwicke, Sr., Mr. Pope began his practice as an attorney for Gulf Oil Corporation. He then practiced with the law firm of Masterson and Pope in Angleton and later with Pope, Hardwicke, Christie, Schell, Kelly & Taplett, L.L.P. and its predecessors from 1952 until the time of his death in 1988. Mr. Pope was a prominent water law specialist and served on the Governor’s Water Planning Committee in 1957. He represented major Texas landowners and owners of water rights in numerous proceedings before the Texas Water Commission and is profiled in the Handbook of Texas published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Today the firm continues its practice of oil and gas and water law, and its approximately twenty attorneys also practice in the areas of business and corporate law, banking, bankruptcy, real property, eminent domain, zoning and land use, estate planning and probate, civil litigation and governmental law.