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Conrad Hilton was born in New Mexico but opened his first hotel, the Mobley, in the small Texas town of Cisco in 1919. Between 1925 and 1930 he opened a new hotel in Texas every year. Nearly bankrupted by the Depression, Hilton merged his operations with those of W. L. Moody Jr. of Galveston to form the National Hotel Co. In 1934 Hilton resumed his own operations, eventually owning 188 hotels in 34 states, including New York’s Waldorf-Astoria. In 1954 he took over the Statler hotel system.