Who Is BD Riley?
Bessie Dee (B.D.) Riley was born in Hempstead, Texas in 1896, to Irish immigrants Charles and Alice Riley.The Riley clan came to America in 1871 from County Cavan. The Rileys were part of over one million Irishmen who migrated to America to escape the death and disease brought about by the potato famine.
Charles Riley made his way to Alabama, and then to Texas in search of farmland and a better life for he and his growing family. Bessie and her sister Jessie were one of three sets of twins born into the family of 10 children. After long days in the cotton fields, the family would sit close to the fireplace and tell stories of the Beauty and Pride that is Ireland.
Charles and Alice dreamed of someday visiting their homeland. However, the children grew to have children, and grandchildren soon followed, and the Rileys never returned to their beloved Ireland.
To honor the spirit of this family, and the many proud Irish, we have named the Pub in honor of Bessie. Her portrait has a place of honor on the east wall of the Pub.