Gordon & Rees Partner Bob Bragalone (or “Cowboy Bob”) isn’t shy when it comes to sharing his passion…that is, passion for Dallas Cowboys memorabilia. Appropriately titled, “The No. 1 fan of America’s Team” by Dallas’ Perot Museum of Nature and Science, Bob has been a fan and avid collector of all things Cowboys for more than 40 years. Inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Hall of Fans in Canton Ohio in 2003, Bob’s passion for collecting literally thousands of one-of-a-kind items such as Tom Landry’s game-worn fedora from the famous “Hail Mary” playoff game against Minnesota in 1975 to the Texas Stadium locker that belonged to both Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman, has caught the curiosity of news outlets for more than 20 years and, most recently, the curators at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science as they assembled a special exhibit exploring the "Eye of the Collector."
The exhibit, which opened April 16 and runs through Labor Day, features selections from Bob’s collection, mixed in with offerings from collectors of dinosaur bones, PEZ dispensers, Star Wars and Beatles memorabilia, and more. From “Cowboy Bob’s” collection, the curators selected items such as game-worn jerseys from Don Meredith, Roger Staubach, Bob Lilly and Emmitt Smith, enough bobble heads to field a team, many rare signed items, historic items from the team’s early days, and even a 50-year-old megaphone from the days before the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, when local high school students volunteered to whip up some enthusiasm for the home team.
Bragalone’s Cowboys Shrine is the world’s largest collection of Dallas Cowboys memorabilia. It has been featured more than a dozen times in local Dallas news outlets, by sports journals and legal publications, on the front page of the Dallas Business Journal, at the Pro Football Hall of Fame, in a feature-length documentary, and even in national television programs including Dateline, NBC, Fox & Friends, and Bob Costas’ Sports Special.
Texas Lawyer said Bragalone’s collection of Cowboys’ memorabilia, dating back to 1960 and filling the entire basement of his home, has landed him “in a class by himself.” In 2013, NBC Sports featured his collection in broadcaster Bob Costas’s television special on the assassination of President John F. Kennedy from the perspective of the 1963 Cowboys. Dallas-based ABC News mentioned Bob in a 2009 article on the thousands of Cowboys fans worldwide who collectively shelled out more than $245,000 to get their hands on pieces of Texas Stadium memorabilia during a 2009 auction, as the Cowboys wrapped up their final season in the iconic stadium, which was demolished in 2010. As Bragalone once remarked in a television interview when listing just some of the rare items from Texas Stadium that now reside in his Cowboys Shrine, “It’s a common misconception that Texas Stadium was destroyed in 2010. It wasn’t. It just moved.”
Bragalone even has the end zone turf from Texas Stadium that serves as the flooring to his Shrine. And, of course, when entering his private museum, you must pass through a Texas Stadium turnstile. Elements from the new stadium include his own custom “Jerry Tron” complete with 4 screens like the real one.
With the opening of “Eye of the Collector,” Bragalone and his collection again sparked the interest of local media. Dallas's Fox 4 News, CW33 and Sports Collectors Daily all featured elements of Bragalone’s collection on display at the Perot Museum and the story behind his massive Cowboys memorabilia collection.
Bragalone is a member of Gordon & Rees’s Professional Liability, Employment, Commercial Litigation, Tort & Product Liability, and Health Care practice groups. He has more than 26 years of litigation experience, which he brings to bear when representing his clients, which include start-ups, non-profits, small and large businesses, Fortune 500 companies, and national and international insurers. He is admitted in Texas and Oklahoma, and has been recognized by Texas Super Lawyers for distinction in the fields of professional liability, civil litigation, and employment.