The Argyle and The Texas Biomedical Research Institute

The Argyle is devoted exclusively to support the life-saving efforts of the Texas Biomedical Research Institute.

The Argyle was originally built in 1854 as the headquarters of a horse ranch which extended from down-town San Antonio to the town of Boerne, some 30 miles distant, it was an outpost of Texas hospitality.

Through a succession of owners, it epitomized the pleasant ways and good living of the storied South. It was purchased in 1884 by two Scotsmen, who added the third floor and opened a hotel, which they named Argyle because the rolling hills of the section reminded them of their native hills of Scotland.

Today, after restoration in 1956, The Argyle stands as a symbol, both of its rich past and of progress toward a better tomorrow for mankind. It is performing a unique and important new function, serving as a bond between a fine research institution and those who give time and money to support it. Formed among persons deeply interested in The Texas Biomedical Research Institute, it is a meeting place for the men and women of science and the men and women who have dedicated personal resources for the advancement of this Institution.

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  • The Texas Biomedical Research Institute
    • The Texas Biomedical Research Institute began as the scientific dream of its founder, Thomas Baker Slick Jr. A businessman, inventor, oilman, rancher, engineer, philanthropist, peacemaker and adventurer, Tom Slick might best be described as a visionary. Motivated by the philosophy that the welfare of mankind could best be advanced through scientific endeavor, he dared to imagine a “city of science” in South Texas that could be a “great center for human progress through scientific research.”

      Although at the time many people believed his grand ideas were impractical, he succeeded in establishing three premier scientific research organizations that continue to carry out his vision: the Texas Biomedical Research Institute, Southwest Research Institute, and the Mind Science Foundation.

      On December 16, 1941, when he was only 25, Tom Slick, Jr. established the Foundation of Applied Research (FAR) by a trust indenture. Endowed with 1,875 shares of the Slick-Urschel Oil Company, FAR’s mission was to provide fundamental research and advanced education, covering agricultural research, the natural sciences and medicine. FAR’s name was changed in 1952 to the Southwest Foundation for Research and Education, succeeded by the Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research in 1984. In 2011, the name was changed to Texas Biomedical Research Institute.

      The Institute has made important contributions in the fight against disease, working in such fields as cancer, heart disease, sterility, endocrinology, microbiology, virology, biochemistry and mental retardation.

      Grants-in-aid have been and are being received from such sources as The National Institutes of Health, Texas Heart Association and Foundations interested in its medical research programs. These agencies make their grants-in-aid only for part of the cost of specific research projects. To continue to receive such grants-in-aid, The Institute must underwrite outstanding personnel and facilities and it must be able to take care of its own general expense. This independent stature comes only from private philanthropy. Those individuals who support The Institute have the satisfaction of knowing that each dollar contributed is matched by nine dollars of grants-in-aid from the national agencies.

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