Tired Texan Barbecue

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Tired Texan Barbecue was a barbecue restaurant first opened by Ira "Tex" Ellison and his wife Madeline as the Tired Texan Country Club at the Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort, Texas.

Ellison continued to sell barbecue and repair televisions on the side while serving at other postings, including El Toro, California. He moved to Birmingham after leaving the Marines in 1967 and built a barbecue shack at 1425 8th Avenue North in Fountain Heights.

Ellison moved the Tired Texan to 508-B 8th Avenue West in Graymont in the early 1990s. He closed the restaurant just after Mexico lost their match during the 1996 Summer Olympics soccer competition at Legion Field. He later sold barbecue from the VFW Post 668 Lodge at 1801 11th Avenue North near the BJCC. A sign for Tired Texan Bar-B-Q was also visible at Oddo's Sav-A-Stop at 285 9th Court North in Smithfield in 2011.

Tired Texan Barbecue was known for being open late, often into the wee hours. The menu featured sliced barbecue pork, hot dogs, pig ears, sweet potato pie, and pineapple banana cake. The "Dammit to Hell Sandwich" was a pile of pork scraps, chopped hot dog pieces, and chicken necks, hearts, livers and gizzards drenched in a extra-hot sauce consisting of Ellison's usual sweet barbecue sauce with Mancha's "Agent Orange" and ground cayenne. Ellison's sweet iced tea also had some coffee blended into it. The restaurant served sliced white bread to sop up the extra sauce.

Inspired by Ellison's business, Chip and Christine Holland opened their own Tired Texan BBQ in Omaha, Nebraska in 2017.


  • Reynolds, Ed (January 17, 2002) "Tired No More." Black & White
  • Spencer, Tara (July 4, 2017) "Where to Eat Now." Omaha magazine