Records Appraisal Report:
Secretary of State Republic of Texas Records

Appraisal of Archival Holdings

Contents of this report
Agency Contact | Agency History | Project Review | Record Series Reviews

Internal links to series reviews
Diplomatic correspondence: Department of State letter books
Diplomatic correspondence: United States diplomatic correspondence
Diplomatic correspondence: English diplomatic correspondence
Diplomatic correspondence: French diplomatic correspondence
Diplomatic correspondence: Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Belgium, the Netherlands, Hanse Towns, and Spain
Diplomatic correspondence: Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Mexico
Diplomatic correspondence: Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Yucatan
Consular correspondence: Correspondence with Texan consuls
Consular correspondence: Correspondence with foreign consuls
Consular correspondence: Chronological correspondence file
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations
Records relating to passports
General correspondence: Domestic correspondence
General correspondence: Home letters
General correspondence: Correspondence relating to domestic affairs
General correspondence: Index to correspondence
Financial records of the Department of State, Republic of Texas
Post Office records
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of John H. Money, Treasurer of Ayuntamiento of Austin
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of citizens meetings and committees of public safety
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Permanent Council
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Consultation
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Provisional Government letter book
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Records of the Governor
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Records of the Auditor
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Records of the Treasurer
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Records of the General Council
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Convention of 1836
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Ad Interim Government
Records relating to the Joint United States/ Republic of Texas Boundary Commission
Seat of government papers
Colonization records
Executive record books
Election registers (a.k.a. Appointment registers)
Election returns (county by county)
Legislative bills and resolutions filed (General and Special Laws)
Bonds and oaths
Public printing records
Extradition records

Related report
Appraisal of Secretary of State State of Texas records

Archival finding aids
Texas Secretary of State: An Inventory of Executive Record Books at the Texas State Archives, 1835-1917
Texas Secretary of State: An Inventory of Secretary of State Consular Correspondence at the Texas State Archives, 1836-1850, 1873-1875, bulk 1836-1846
Texas Secretary of State: An Inventory of Secretary of State Diplomatic Correspondence at the Texas State Archives, 1831-1832, 1835-1846, undated
Texas Secretary of State, Statutory Documents Section: An Inventory of Executive Clemency Records at the Texas State Archives, 1840, 1845-2002
Texas Secretary of State, Statutory Filings Division, Statutory Documents Section: An Inventory of Election Registers (a.k.a. Appointment Registers) at the Texas State Archives, 1837-1987
Texas Secretary of State, Statutory Filings Division, Statutory Documents Section: An Inventory of Legislative Bills and Resolutions Filed (General and Special Laws) at the Texas State Archives, 1836-2001


January 16, 1998
Revised December 18, 1998, Tony Black, Appraisal Archivist


Agency Contact:

This agency contact information was current at the time of the report but may have changed in the interim. Please call (512-463-5455) for current contact information of the agency's records manager or records liaison for these records.

Linda Stout
Records Administrator
Rudder Building, Room 214
1019 Brazos Street
Austin, TX 78711

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Agency History:

The Secretary of State is a constitutional officer of the executive branch of state government, appointed by the governor and confirmed by the senate for a term concurrent with the governor's (a two-year term at first, a four-year term since 1974). The office was first created by the Constitution of the Republic of Texas in 1836 (Article VI, Section 10), and has been continued by each succeeding Constitution.

The only duty of the Secretary of State specified by the Constitution of 1836 was to receive "returns of all elections for officers who are to be commissioned by the President" (General Provisions, Section 2). The 1st Congress approved a Joint Resolution on December 13, 1836 "defining the duties of the heads of departments of the government." However, the duties of this cabinet (composed of the Secretaries of State, War, Navy, and Treasury, and the Attorney General) were expressed in extremely vague terms, i.e.: "to conform to and execute the instructions of the president, whether general or particular; and to give respectively and collectively, such needful aid and counsel whenever required so to do by the chief magistrate of the republic, as may be requisite to a firm, wholesome and harmonious administration of the government." Much of our knowledge of what the Secretary of State did during the Republic period derives from the existing records themselves. Although never so stated in law, obviously a major function of the Secretary of State under the Republic of Texas was diplomatic, a function unique to Texas' history as an independent nation.

During the next nine years of the Republic's existence, Congressional acts added little in the way of explicit duties:

  • to receive from the chief justices of the county courts "a description of their county boundaries, and such other information and observations relative to the same, as they may conceive conducive to the convenience of their citizens" (December 17, 1836);
  • to furnish Texan consuls with instruction for the proper regulation of foreign trade (December 18, 1837);
  • to contract for the printing of the laws and journals of the Republic of Texas, and to arrange for their distribution (December 18, 1837 and later dates);
  • to contract for the translation and compilation of Republic laws into Spanish ("the Castilian language") (December 18, 1837 and January 12, 1842);
  • to become the depository for a Library purchased for the Republic of Texas (January 24, 1839);
  • to create a Patent Office, as a bureau of the office of Secretary of State, and to grant patent rights "for any new and useful art, machine, instrument or composition of matter, liberal arts, sciences or literature, books, maps or charts, or any new and useful improvement of the same ... invented or discovered" (January 28, 1839);
  • to draw from the war department funds appropriated to run a boundary line between the Republic of Texas and the United States (November 26, 1840);
  • to assume the duties of the Postmaster General, appointing and supervising a clerk for a bureau called the "General Post Office," and to receive from the former Postmaster General all records of the abolished Post Office Department (January 18, 1841);
  • to issue writs of election to fill certain vacancies in counties (December 7, 1841).

Except for its diplomatic duties, most of the functions of the Secretary of State under the Republic were apparently continued during the period of early statehood following annexation. An act of the 1st Legislature (approved May 9, 1846) "to define the duties of Secretary of State" included the following:

  • to maintain a register of all official acts of the governor, and to provide the same to the legislature when required (this duty had also been spelled out by the first state Constitution, 1845);
  • to keep a complete register of all officers appointed and elected in the state;
  • to commission all such appointed and elected officers when not otherwise provided for by law;
  • to record depositions and affirmations required by law to be made by resident aliens wanting to hold real estate in Texas;
  • to arrange and preserve all books, maps, parchments, records, documents, deeds, conveyances, and other papers belonging to the State, that have been or may be properly deposited there, and sealed with the state seal (which copies shall be considered admissible as evidence in the state's courts of law);
  • to attend every legislative session to receive bills which have became laws, and to bind and maintain such bills and enrolled joint resolutions in the office of the Secretary of State;
  • to deliver a certified copy of these laws (with indices and marginal notes) to the public printer, and to edit and correct them after printing;
  • to distribute the printed laws and journals to a list of state, local, and federal officials specified; and
  • to furnish forms to county election officials for election returns, and to receive certified election returns from these officials for members of the legislature (this last duty included in "an act regulating elections," approved May 11, 1846).

An act of February 11, 1854 created a Board of Commissioners composed of the Secretary of State, the Comptroller, and the Attorney General, "to superintend the arranging and filing of the archives of the late Republic of Texas and of the State Legislature, and also the recording of the Journals of the said Congress and State Legislature ... to be deposited in the General Land-office of the State." An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Project Review:

I volunteered to appraise the records of this agency in March 1996. In May 1997, the priorities of the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission shifted, and it was decided that I should perform an in-house appraisal of Secretary of State records retained by the State Library, rather than an appraisal of all existing Secretary of State records. In November 1997, the entire team of appraisal archivists agreed that I should first produce a separate appraisal report on the Republic-era records of the Secretary of State. Accomplishing this will hopefully make two substantial reports rather than one massive, indigestible report. In addition, it was reasoned, many of the Republic record series are no longer active, and will most likely be kept because of their age (quite apart from their historical value).

This is an in-house appraisal of Republic-era Secretary of State records retained by the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. The Office of Secretary of State now retains no records from the Republic era, having transferred all of them to the State Library years ago. Therefore we have not mailed any introductory letter concerning appraisal to the Office of the Secretary of State. I have consulted with the Records Administrator whenever necessary, for information concerning active series which span the periods of the Republic and Statehood.

I have reviewed the Constitutions of 1836 and 1845, and have searched Gammel's Laws of Texas, 1836-1845 (and later years). For perspective on more modern records, I have also reviewed the following: Handbook of Governments in Texas (1983); Manual of Texas State Government (1950); Guide to State Agencies (1st-9th editions, 1956, 1964, 1970, 1972, 1978, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1996); Texas Constitution, Article IV, Sections 1 and 21 (and others); legislation, including V.T.C.A., Government Code, Chapter 405; and biennial reports of the Secretary of State, 1874, 1886-1888, 1895-1896, and others. Specifically for this report, I also consulted Binkley's Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, Jenkins' Papers of the Texas Revolution, and Garrison's Diplomatic Correspondence of the Republic of Texas.

I have also reviewed the Secretary of State's records retention schedule, a recertification approved November 1, 1995.

Thirty-eight series on the agency records retention schedule are marked "A", as archival. Of these, only seven have any relevance to records of the Republic of Texas:

Elections Division:

Election Returns (County by County).

Statutory Filings Division, Statutory Documents Section:

Commissions, Governor's Official;
Election Registers;
Executive Orders, Governor's;
Legislative Bills and Resolutions Filed (General and Special Laws);
Proclamations, Governor's Clemency;
Proclamations, Governor's Official.

Thirty-one series are marked "R", for archival review. Of these, only one has any conceivable relevance to records of the Republic of Texas:

Executive Division:

Administrative Files.

Archives Holdings:

The Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission holds 18 series of Secretary of State records which contain Republic of Texas documents.

Ten of these series have virtually nothing but Republic of Texas records:

Diplomatic correspondence, 1827-1846 (bulk 1836-1846), 6.33 cubic ft. (this series consists of seven subseries, each of which will be reviewed separately in the pages that follow).
Consular correspondence, 1836-1850, 1873-1875 (bulk 1836-1846), 2.12 cubic ft. (this series consists of three subseries, each of which will be reviewed separately in the pages that follow).
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations, 1839-1844, 0.24 cubic ft.
Records relating to passports, 1836-1845, 1858, 0.37 cubic ft.
General correspondence, 1822-1845, 1860, 5.39 cubic ft.
(this series consists of four subseries, each of which will be reviewed separately in the pages that follow).
Financial records of the Department of State, Republic of Texas, 1837-1845, 0.30 cubic ft.
Post Office records, 1836-1846, 3.72 cubic ft.
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic, 1835-1836, 2.32 cubic ft.
(this series consists of seven subseries--and one subseries contains five sub-subseries--each of which will be reviewed separately in the pages that follow).
Records relating to the Joint United States/Republic of Texas Boundary Commission, 1837-1843, 0.47 cubic ft.
Seat of government papers, 1836-1842, 0.12 cubic ft.

The remaining eight series have a mixture of Republic of Texas records and records from the post-annexation period as well:

Colonization records, 1820-1879, 1.5 cubic ft.
Executive record books, 1836-1917, 15.18 cubic ft.
Election registers (a.k.a. Appointment registers), 1836-1980, 29.96 cubic ft.
Election returns (county by county), 1835-1980, 171.66 cubic ft.
Legislative bills and resolutions filed (General and Special Laws), 1836-1993, 185.35 cubic ft.
Bonds and oaths, 1835-1920, 68.04 cubic ft.
Public printing records, 1835-1905 (bulk 1874-1897), 3.05 cubic ft.
Extradition records, 1837-1940, 57 cubic ft.

Previous destructions:

Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the office of the Secretary of State, and none were found for Republic of Texas records.

Project Outcome:

This partial agency appraisal is now completed. The appraisal decisions are summarized as follows:

The following series are archival on the basis of their historical value:

Diplomatic correspondence (all seven subseries),
Consular correspondence
(all three subseries),
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations,
Records relating to passports,
General correspondence
(all four subseries),
Post Office records (probably the majority),
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic:
Records of citizens meetings and Committees of Public Safety,
Records of the Permanent Council,
Records of the Consultation,
Records of the Provisional Government:
Provisional Government letter book,
Records of the Governor,
Records of the General Council,
Records of the Convention of 1836,
Records of the Ad Interim Government,
Records relating to the Joint United States/Republic of Texas Boundary Commission,
Seat of government papers,
Colonization records,
Executive record books,
Election registers (a.k.a. Appointment registers),
Legislative bills and resolutions filed (General and Special Laws).

The following series are archival due to their age and to the fact that the records date from the Republic of Texas, despite the fact that modern records of this kind would not normally be considered as having historical value:

Financial records of the Department of State, Republic of Texas,
Post Office records
(some of the records),
Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic:
Records of John H. Money,
Records of the Provisional Government:
Records of the Auditor,
Records of the Treasurer.

The following series contain archival records due to their historical value, but also contain enough marginal or duplicative records to justify reappraisal:

Election returns (county by county) (particularly those between 1884 and 1978),
Public printing records.

The following series are archival due to their informational value and their heavy use in the past (particularly by genealogists):

Bonds and oaths,
Extradition records.

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Record Series Reviews

Record Series Review
Series Title: Diplomatic correspondence: Department of State letter books

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Diplomatic correspondence -- Letter books, 1836-1846, 2.71 cubic ft. Duplicated on microfilm, 3 reels.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Consular correspondence,
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations,
and
General correspondence.

Description:
This series consists of seven letter books containing copies of correspondence between the Department of State and Texan and foreign diplomatic and consular representatives, dating 1836-1846. Subjects discussed focus on relations between Texas and various foreign countries, include negotiations for loans, and treaties of commerce and recognition, particularly a treaty with Mexico. Three of the volumes contain copies of incoming correspondence, 1836-1846 (with indexes in two of them); two of the volumes contain copies of outgoing correspondence, 1839-1846 (one of which has an index).

Purpose:
Letter books were created to preserve copies of incoming and outgoing diplomatic correspondence, which constituted the working files documenting the day-to-day diplomatic business of the Republic with all other nations.

Agency Program:
Following the defeat of the Mexican Army at San Jacinto and the ratification of the Constitution of 1836, the Republic of Texas proceeded to treat for recognition by other nations and for the exchange of diplomatic representatives.

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
Letter books are restricted due to their physical condition, so researchers must use microfilm.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
Indexes are included with the volumes.

Gaps? Outgoing correspondence: 1836-1838.

Problems:
The Online Public Access Catalog entry lists only five letter books. Possibly the two left out are the ones containing correspondence with the Texas Legations in Washington, Paris, London, and others?

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Garrison, George (ed.), Diplomatic Correspondence of the Republic of Texas, Washington, Government printing office, 1908-1911, 3 volumes.

Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Letter books containing incoming and outgoing diplomatic correspondence are important pieces of the documentation of the diplomacy of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. The letter books may fill gaps where the loose documents are no longer extant or readily available in the Library and Archives Commission. The indexes make them particularly useful. Garrison's publication of diplomatic correspondence is fairly thorough, but it is not complete, as he readily admitted. On the other hand, the State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission microfilmed these letter books. Nevertheless, their age and especially their historical importance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Diplomatic correspondence: United States diplomatic correspondence

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
United States diplomatic correspondence, 1828, 1836-1846, 1.5 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Consular correspondence,
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations,
General correspondence,
and
Extradition records.

Records relating to Indian Affairs.

Description:
These are chiefly letters received by the Department of State from commissioners and agents to the United States, and copies of letters to the Secretary of State and commissioners to others. Also included are some commissions and appointments and correspondence of the Department of State with U.S. representatives to Texas. Dates covered are 1828 and 1836-1846. (The 1828 item is a copy of a boundary treaty between the United States and Mexico.) Subjects covered include instructions of the Secretary of State to commissioners and instructions of commissioners to agents appointed by them. Also discussed are Indian affairs, recognition and annexation of Texas by the United States, negotiations for loans, settlement of claims between the two countries, negotiations for duties, extradition, boundaries, and general information on relations with the United States and activities there as reported by the commissioners. Correspondents include Stephen F. Austin, David G. Burnet, Anson Jones, William Bryan, Samuel P. Carson, William H. Wharton, James P. Henderson, Robert A. Irion, Memucan Hunt, Abner S. Lipscomb, John Forsyth, Alice L. LaBranche, Richard G. Dunlap, James Reily, Joseph Waples, Joseph Eve, Isaac Van Zandt, John C. Calhoun, Ebenezer C. Allen, Raymond H. Charles, and Andrew J. Donalson.

Purpose:
United States diplomatic correspondence was created in the course of conducting diplomacy between the Republic of Texas and the United States of America, in which Texas sought recognition, aid, and annexation into the Union.

Agency Program:
During the Texas war for independence, Texas attempted to gain U.S. aid in their cause. Following the defeat of the Mexican Army at San Jacinto and the ratification of the Constitution of 1836, the Republic of Texas proceeded to treat for recognition by the United States, for the exchange of diplomatic representatives, and (after an election in September 1836) for annexation. On November 16, 1836, the Congress of the Republic of Texas approved a Joint Resolution for sending a minister to the United States of America. The first charge d'affaires from Texas was William Wharton, who assumed that office in Washington upon recognition of Texas independence by the United States in early 1837; previous to recognition, he had acted under a commission as minister extraordinary to treat for it.

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None; the 1828 item is atypical.

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Garrison, George (ed.), Diplomatic Correspondence of the Republic of Texas, Washington, Government printing office, 1908-1911, 3 volumes.

Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

United States diplomatic correspondence with Texas is an important part of the documentation of the diplomacy of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. Garrison's publication of diplomatic correspondence is fairly thorough, but it is not complete, as he readily admitted. The age and especially the historical importance of these documents are such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Diplomatic correspondence: English diplomatic correspondence

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
English diplomatic correspondence, 1837-1846, 0.94 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Consular correspondence,
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations,
and
General correspondence.

Adjutant General,

Navy Papers.

Manuscript Collections,

Great Britain, Foreign Office records.

Description:
This series consists chiefly of correspondence with Texas representatives in England and with British secretaries of state for foreign affairs, Lords Palmerston (1830-1841) and Aberdeen (1841-1846), covering the years 1837-1846. Subjects covered include instructions from the Secretary of State to Texas representatives and their reports of activities back to him, claims against Texas for captured British vessels, commercial agreements, recognition of Texas independence, relations with Mexico, protection of British subjects in Texas, slavery and the slave trade, the Texas blockade of Mexican ports, and Texas' annexation to the United States. Correspondents include Lords Aberdeen and Palmerston, James Hamilton, Ashbel Smith, James P. Henderson, Richard Pakenham, and Charles Elliott. Approximately two-fifths of the original English diplomatic correspondence has been dispersed over the years to other series, including many of the papers relating to Mexican affairs, which were placed in the series "Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Mexico". At some time transcripts from the British Public Records Office of correspondence between the Foreign Office and its representatives relating to Texas were added to the file. These have since been removed and placed in a manuscript collection, "Great Britain, Foreign Office records".

Purpose:
English diplomatic correspondence was created in the course of conducting diplomacy between the Republic of Texas and Great Britain.

Agency Program:
Following the defeat of the Mexican Army at San Jacinto and the ratification of the Constitution of 1836, the Republic of Texas proceeded to treat for recognition by other nations and for the exchange of diplomatic representatives. On June 5, 1837, the Congress of the Republic of Texas approved a Joint Resolution requesting the President to appoint a secretary of the legation to the embassy to England. Diplomacy with England eventually resulted in three treaties, one of commerce and navigation, one obligating England to mediate with Mexico for Texas independence, and one allowing England to suppress the foreign slave trade.

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Garrison, George (ed.), Diplomatic Correspondence of the Republic of Texas, Washington, Government printing office, 1908-1911, 3 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

English diplomatic correspondence with Texas is an important part of the documentation of the diplomacy of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. Garrison's publication of diplomatic correspondence is fairly thorough, but it is not complete, as he readily admitted. The age and especially the historical importance of these documents are such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Diplomatic correspondence: French diplomatic correspondence

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
French diplomatic correspondence, 1838-1846, 0.71 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Consular correspondence,
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations,
and
General correspondence.

Description:
This series consists chiefly of correspondence between the Department of State and agents of the Republic of Texas in France, and French charges d'affaires in Texas, Alphonse de Saligny (1840-1842, 1844-1846) and Jules Edouard de Cramayal (1842-1844). Also present are copies of correspondence between French foreign ministers Louis Mathieu, Comet Mole' (1836-1839), and Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot (1840-1848); and Texan representatives and the Texas Department of State. Dates covered are 1838-1846. Subjects covered include instructions of the Department of State to its agents, letters of appointment, attempts to obtain commercial treaties, recognition of Texas independence by the French government, negotiations for a treaty of recognition with Spain, attempts to have France negotiate a treaty of peace and recognition between Texas and Mexico, and establishment of regular mail service between France and Texas. Correspondents, in addition to those previously listed, include Ashbel Smith, James Hamilton, James P. Henderson, Robert A. Irion, George S. McIntosh, and Anson Jones. A small number of letters have been added at some time, from another file transferred in 1905, "Miscellaneous French manuscripts", as well as from "Domestic correspondence".

Purpose:
French diplomatic correspondence was created in the course of conducting diplomacy between the Republic of Texas and France.

Agency Program:
Following the defeat of the Mexican Army at San Jacinto and the ratification of the Constitution of 1836, the Republic of Texas proceeded to treat for recognition by other nations and for the exchange of diplomatic representatives. On June 5, 1837, the Congress of the Republic of Texas approved a Joint Resolution requesting the President to appoint a commissioner and minister to France. The Republic of Texas signed a commercial treaty with France in September 1839, making France the first European nation to recognize Texas independence.

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Garrison, George (ed.), Diplomatic Correspondence of the Republic of Texas, Washington, Government printing office, 1908-1911, 3 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

French diplomatic correspondence with Texas is an important part of the documentation of the diplomacy of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. Garrison's publication of diplomatic correspondence is fairly thorough, but it is not complete, as he readily admitted. The age and especially the historical importance of these documents are such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Diplomatic correspondence: Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Belgium, the Netherlands, Hanse Towns, and Spain

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Belgium, the Netherlands, Hanse Towns, and Spain, 1842-1846. Duplicated on microfilm, 2 reels.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Consular correspondence,
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations,
and
General correspondence.

Description:
This series consists of correspondence of the Secretary of State primarily with Texan representatives to Belgium, the Netherlands, the Hanse Towns or Hanseatic League, and Spain. Dates covered are 1842-1846. Subjects concern the recognition of Texas in these countries and Texas' attempts to obtain treaties of amity and commerce. Also present are a few letters of credence. Correspondents include James Hamilton, V. Pierson, Ashbel Smith, W. Henry Daingerfield, and others. Also included is a letter book of correspondence of William Henry Daingerfield, Texas charge d'affaires to the Netherlands, Belgium, and the Hanseatic League, dating January 20, 1843-August 27, 1845.

Purpose:
The documents in this series were created in the course of conducting diplomacy between the Republic of Texas and Belgium, the Netherlands, Hanse Towns, and Spain.

Agency Program:
Following the defeat of the Mexican Army at San Jacinto and the ratification of the Constitution of 1836, the Republic of Texas proceeded to treat for recognition by other nations and for the exchange of diplomatic representatives. Secretary of State J. Pinckney Henderson signed a treaty of recognition and commerce with the Netherlands in September 1840. Belgium likewise recognized Texas independence in 1841.

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
Letter books are restricted due to their physical condition, so researchers must use microfilm.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Garrison, George (ed.), Diplomatic Correspondence of the Republic of Texas, Washington, Government printing office, 1908-1911, 3 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Diplomatic correspondence between Texas and Belgium, the Netherlands, Hanse Towns, and Spain is an important part of the documentation of the diplomacy of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. Garrison's publication of diplomatic correspondence is fairly thorough, but it is not complete, as he readily admitted. The age and especially the historical importance of these documents are such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Diplomatic correspondence: Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Mexico

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Mexico, 1835-1845, 0.47 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

General correspondence.

Adjutant General,

Army Papers,
Navy Papers.

Description:
This series consists chiefly of correspondence between the Secretary of State and Texas commissioners to Mexico; and with diplomatic representatives to Great Britain relating to negotiations with Mexico. Also present is some correspondence of the President with Mexican officials. Dates covered are 1835-1845. Subjects concerned include attempts to negotiate a treaty with Mexico, Mexican invasions of Texas, Texas prisoners in Mexico, negotiations with Yucatan for use of the Texas Navy, and the treaty of peace between Yucatan and Mexico. A few documents relate to domestic affairs, particularly Indian relations and the depreciation of Texas currency. Correspondents include David G. Burnet, Mirabeau B. Lamar, Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, James Webb, James Treat, Richard Pakenham, Barnard Bee, and Silas Wright. At some point a small number of documents were transferred from this series to the series "Correspondence Relating to Diplomatic Relations with Yucatan".

Purpose:
Documents in this series were created in the course of attempting to conduct diplomacy between the Republic of Texas and the Republic of Mexico.

Agency Program:
Following the defeat of the Mexican Army at San Jacinto and the ratification of the Constitution of 1836, the Republic of Texas proceeded to treat for recognition by other nations and for the exchange of diplomatic representatives. Since the Mexican government rejected the Treaty of Velasco, which Santa Anna had signed in 1836, Texas was still considered a rebellious territory, considerably complicating attempts at diplomacy between the two.

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Garrison, George (ed.), Diplomatic Correspondence of the Republic of Texas, Washington, Government printing office, 1908-1911, 3 volumes.

Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Mexico is an important part of the documentation of the diplomacy of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. Garrison's publication of diplomatic correspondence is fairly thorough, but it is not complete, as he readily admitted. The age and especially the historical importance of these documents are such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Diplomatic correspondence: Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Yucatan

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Yucatan, 1840-1842, fractional (86 items).

Related records are:

Adjutant General,

Navy Papers.

Description:
This series consists of correspondence of the Secretary of State, the President, and Edwin W. Moore, Commander of the Texas Navy, with the Secretary of War and Marine of the State of Yucatan. The treaty of the Republic and Yucatan, by which Texas agrees to furnish naval support to Yucatan's revolution, is also included. Photostats and typed copies of letters are included with the original documents. Dates covered are 1840-1842. Correspondents include Commodore Edwin W. Moore, Martin F. Pereza, Joaquin G. Rejon, and Pedro Lumas. This series was not originally part of "Diplomatic correspondence", but was created at an unknown date by removing materials from two series: "Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Mexico", and "Miscellaneous Manuscripts and Documents written in Spanish, French, and German."

Purpose:
The documents in this series were created in the course of conducting diplomacy between the Republic of Texas and the rebellious Mexican state of Yucatan.

Agency Program:
In 1841, the state of Yucatan revolted against the Republic of Mexico. Texas President Mirabeau B. Lamar entered into a brief alliance with the rebel state, involving Yucatan promises to maintain the Texan navy. The rebellion soon ended, however.

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Garrison, George (ed.), Diplomatic Correspondence of the Republic of Texas, Washington, Government printing office, 1908-1911, 3 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Correspondence relating to diplomatic relations with Yucatan is an important part of the documentation of the diplomacy of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. Garrison's publication of diplomatic correspondence is fairly thorough, but it is not complete, as he readily admitted. The age and especially the historical importance of these documents are such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Consular correspondence: Correspondence with Texan consuls

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Correspondence with Texan consuls, 1836-1846, 1.85 cubic ft. The letterbooks are duplicated on microfilm, 1 reel.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Diplomatic correspondence.

Description:
This series consists chiefly of letters and reports received in the Department of State from agents and consuls, covering the period 1836-1846. Some correspondence is from Texan consuls in Great Britain (London, Liverpool), France (Paris, Bordeaux, Marseilles, Havre), and other countries (Amsterdam, Bremen, Calcutta), but the majority comes from the Texan consulate office in New Orleans. Other U.S. cities with consular offices included New York, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Baltimore, Boston, Charleston, Cincinnati, Detroit, Mobile, Natchez, and Natchitoches. The finding aid contains a full list of Texan consuls. Subjects of the correspondence deal generally with the activities of Texan consuls in attempting to obtain loans, supplies, and favorable commercial relations from other nations, complaints of other nations against the Republic, and attitudes toward the Republic in other countries. Correspondents include William Bryan, David G. Burnet, Thomas Toby, and Robert Triplett.

Also included in this series are four letter books of consular correspondence, 1837-1845; and three registers of certificates, affidavits, and fees from New Orleans, 1837-1841, giving name of person, service rendered by the consul, and fee.

Purpose:
Correspondence with Texan consuls was created in the course of conducting normal consular business, particularly the regulation of commercial ties between Texas and other nations.

Agency Program:
The first Texas consulate was established on December 15, 1836, when President Sam Houston appointed John Woodward as consul-general at New York. However, previous to that time the agents of the Republic in New Orleans had come to be spoken of as consuls. The consuls acted as representatives for the Republic of Texas providing potential immigrants with information regarding Texas, certifying documents, and giving information back to Texas regarding foreign attitudes towards the Republic.

On December 18, 1837, the Congress of the Republic of Texas approved a Joint Resolution adopting the consular system of the United States for the government of the consular agents of the Republic of Texas, and delegating to the Secretary of State the duty of furnishing the Texan consuls with instruction "for the proper regulation of the commercial intercourse between this and foreign countries."

Arrangement:
Arranged alphabetically by the city in which the consulate was located and then chronologically.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
The letter books are restricted due to their physical condition, so researchers must use microfilm.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Researchers need to consult all three subseries of consular correspondence, including correspondence with foreign consuls and chronological correspondence file. Rearrangement would involve intensive work and would invalidate citations used since the early part of the 20th century. Most, if not all, of the loose documents have been laminated.

Also, the Online Public Access Catalog entry lists only two letter books of consular correspondence.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Correspondence with Texan consuls is an important part of the documentation of the foreign affairs of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they are limited chronologically to the Texas Revolution, and may not be complete even within that time period. The State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission microfilmed the letter books, but not the loose documents. The age and especially the historical importance of this series of documents is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Consular correspondence: Correspondence with foreign consuls

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Correspondence with foreign consuls, 1841-1845, 0.18 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Diplomatic correspondence.

Description:
This series consists of correspondence with foreign consuls, all located in Galveston, covering the period 1841-1845. Countries involved were the United States, Great Britain, France, the Netherlands, and the Hanseatic League or Hanse towns. Subjects of the correspondence deal generally with foreign relations between Texas and other nations, complaints of other nations against the Republic, and attitudes toward the Republic in other countries. Correspondents include Robert Irion and Anson Jones.

Purpose:
Correspondence with foreign consuls was created in the course of conducting normal consular business, particularly the regulation of commercial ties between Texas and other nations.

Agency Program:
In addition to corresponding with Texan consuls, the Department of State also corresponded with the consuls of foreign governments. This is a normal consequence of establishing consular relationships.

Arrangement:
Arranged alphabetically by country represented and then chronologically.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Researchers need to consult all three subseries of consular correspondence, including correspondence with Texan consuls and chronological correspondence file. Rearrangement would involve intensive work and would invalidate citations used since the early part of the 20th century. Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Correspondence with foreign consuls is an important part of the documentation of the foreign affairs of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. The age and especially the historical importance of these documents are such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Consular correspondence: Chronological correspondence file

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Chronological correspondence files of Consular correspondence, 1836-1850, 1873-1875 (bulk 1836-1846), 0.09 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Diplomatic correspondence.

Description:
This series consists of correspondence to and from Texan and foreign consuls, dating 1836-1850. This material was added late to the series (after the transfer from the Office of Secretary of State in 1905) and supplements the first two subseries. Subjects of the correspondence deal generally with the activities of Texan consuls in attempting to obtain loans, supplies, and favorable commercial relations from other nations, complaints of other nations against the Republic, and attitudes toward the Republic in other countries. Countries involved include the United States, Great Britain, France, the Netherlands, and the Hanseatic League or Hanse towns. Correspondents include William Bryan and Thomas Toby.

Also present is a file regarding the efforts of the widow of Thomas Toby, agent for the Republic, 1836-1838, to collect state monies owed her husband for his services. These files are dated 1873-1875.

Purpose:
These chronological correspondence files were created in the course of conducting normal consular business, particularly the regulation of commercial ties between Texas and other nations.

Agency Program:
The first Texas consulate was established on December 15, 1836, when President Sam Houston appointed John Woodward as consul-general at New York. However, previous to that time the agents of the Republic in New Orleans had come to be spoken of as consuls. The consuls acted as representatives for the Republic of Texas providing potential immigrants with information regarding Texas, certifying documents, and giving information back to Texas regarding foreign attitudes towards the Republic.

On December 18, 1837, the Congress of the Republic of Texas approved a Joint Resolution adopting the consular system of the United States for the government of the consular agents of the Republic of Texas, and delegating to the Secretary of State the duty of furnishing the Texan consuls with instruction "for the proper regulation of the commercial intercourse between this and foreign countries."

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Researchers need to consult all three subseries of consular correspondence, including correspondence with Texan consuls and correspondence with foreign consuls. Rearrangement would involve intensive work and would invalidate citations used since the early part of the 20th century. Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

The chronological correspondence files of Consular correspondence are an important part of the documentation of the foreign affairs of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. The age and especially the historical importance of these documents are such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations, 1839-1844, 0.24 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Diplomatic correspondence (including correspondence originally filed with the treaties),
Records relating to the Joint United States/ Republic of Texas Boundary Commission.

Records Relating to Indian Affairs (including treaties with Indian nations).

Description:
These are signed copies of treaties between the Republic of Texas and other countries--France, Great Britain, the Netherlands, the Hanseatic League, and the United States, dating 1839-1844. Most of the treaties concern amity, navigation, and commerce.

The following treaties have been photographed, and photographic copies are located in the Prints and Photographs collection:

with France (1839): 1/105-104, 118, and 119; (Oct. 2, 1839): 1976/155
with Great Britain (1842): 1/105-105 thru 112, 118, and 119; (May 26, 1842): 1976/156
with the Netherlands (Holland) (Sept. 18, 1840): 1/105-113 thru 116, 118, and 119;
with the Cherokee (Feb. 23, 1836): 1/105-117, and 1/167 and 1/199 (signature page, negatives).

Purpose:
Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations were created as the most formal and official records of diplomacy, the ultimate product so to speak.

Agency Program:
Following the defeat of the Mexican Army at San Jacinto and the ratification of the Constitution of 1836, the Republic of Texas proceeded to treat for recognition by other nations and for the exchange of diplomatic representatives. This resulted in the signing of treaties between the Republic of Texas and France, Great Britain, the Netherlands, the Hanseatic League, and the United States, primarily for amity, navigation, and commerce.

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Five of the treaties are on display in the lobby of the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building. Therefore they are exposed to ultraviolet light. Three of these have been photographed.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Suggested series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not Applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Treaties between the Republic of Texas and other nations constitute a vital part of the documentation of the diplomacy of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. Garrison's publication of diplomatic correspondence does not include the texts of these treaties. Some of the treaties have been photographed, but not all. The age and especially the historical importance of these documents (including their intrinsic value as artifacts) is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records relating to passports

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records relating to passports, 1836-1845, 1858, 0.37 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Executive record books, and
Election registers. (The first Election register includes a register of passports issued, 1838-1842.)

Description:
These records consist of requests for passports, orders to issue passports, and one proclamation granting entrance into the Republic. Dates covered are 1836-1845, and 1858. Information on persons contained in these files varies considerably from file to file, but may include the following: names, dates, places (including destination), relationships to other persons, sometimes the purpose of the passport, and occasionally age and a physical description. The finding aid contains an alphabetical list of persons requesting and/or receiving passports.

Purpose:
This series documents the issuing of passports by the government of the Republic of Texas. Passports were created to allow persons to freely leave and re-enter the Republic of Texas.

Agency Program:
On December 18, 1837, the Congress of the Republic of Texas approved a Joint Resolution relative to consulates, which stated that "no consul of this republic shall be allowed to charge any fees for passports or certificates of characters or intentions."

Arrangement:
Arranged alphabetically by name of person issued or requesting a passport.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
The finding aid contains an alphabetical list of persons requesting or receiving passports.

Gaps? None

Problems: None

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Suggested series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not Applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records relating to passports constitute the major documentation of this unique function of the Department of State under the Republic of Texas. They are apparently not published anywhere. In addition to providing insight into the process of issuing passports, the records contain personal information of interest to genealogists, biographers, and historians (including names, dates, places, relationships to other persons, sometimes the purpose of the passport, and occasionally age and a physical description). This enduring value, in addition to their age, makes them archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: General correspondence: Domestic correspondence

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Domestic correspondence, 1822-1845, 1860, 2.40 cubic ft. Letter books are duplicated on microfilm, 3 reels.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Diplomatic correspondence,
Legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic,
Colonization records,
Executive record books,
Election returns,
Election registers,
and
Public printing records.

Records Relating to Indian Affairs.

Adjutant General,

Army Papers, and
Navy Papers.

Description:
These records consist chiefly of letters received by the Executive and State departments (including the Consultation, Provisional, and Ad Interim governments), and also outgoing letters of the Department of State; as well as letters received by Sam Houston as commander-in-chief of the Army. Also included are some commissions, resolutions, and proceedings of citizen's meetings and committees of safety, reports to the President, and addresses of the Convention of 1836 to the people of Texas. Materials prior to the Republic include correspondence, circulars, and reports of Mexican political chiefs and citizens. These records date 1822-1846. Also included are four letter books containing domestic correspondence, 1836-1842 (which contain, among other things, lists of commissions, estimated expenditures, reports on county boundaries, and lists of county officers).

Subjects covered include military defense, Indian relations, land claims, supplies for the Army, the Texas Navy, organization of the government, appointments and commissions, loans and credit of the government, capture and disposition of Santa Anna, claims against the Republic, relations with other nations, elections, printing and translation of laws, reports on county boundaries, and colonization contracts. Correspondents include Robert A. Irion, Stephen F. Austin, Juan N. Seguin, and the presidents of the Republic--David G. Burnet, Sam Houston, Mirabeau B. Lamar, and Anson Jones.

Purpose:
Domestic correspondence was both created and collected by the office of the Secretary of State during the normal course of business (mostly excluding diplomatic and consular business), and documents the non-diplomatic functions of the office.

Agency Program:
The Secretary of State was created by the Constitution of the Republic of Texas in 1836 (Article VI, Section 10), as a member of the President's cabinet. He was assigned the following duties during the period of the Republic: conducting diplomacy and overseeing consular activities (December 18, 1837); receiving "returns of all elections for officers who are to be commissioned by the President" (Constitution of 1836, General Provisions, Section 2); receiving from the chief justices of the county courts descriptions of their county boundaries (December 17, 1836); contracting for the printing of the laws and journals of the Republic of Texas, and arranging for their distribution (December 18, 1837 and later dates); contracting for the translation and compilation of Republic laws into Spanish (December 18, 1837 and January 12, 1842); becoming the depository for a Library purchased for the Republic of Texas (January 24, 1839); creating a Patent Office (January 28, 1839); drawing from the War Department funds appropriated to run a boundary line between the Republic of Texas and the United States (November 26, 1840); and assuming the duties of the Postmaster General (January 18, 1841).

Although these records were created during the Republic era, the presence of some of them in the records of the Secretary of State may derive from later duties assigned to that office, requiring the collecting of records. On May 9, 1846, the 1st Legislature approved an act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," which among other things required the Secretary of State to "arrange and preserve all books, maps, parchments, records, documents, deeds, conveyances, and other papers belonging to the State, that have been or may be properly deposited there"; and to maintain a register of all official acts of the governor, and to provide the same to the legislature when required (this last duty was either performed under the Republic as well, or was done retroactively to include official acts of the President).

An act of February 11, 1854 created a Board of Commissioners composed of the Secretary of State, the Comptroller, and the Attorney General, "to superintend the arranging and filing of the archives of the late Republic of Texas ... to be deposited in the General Land-office of the State."
An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
Letter books are restricted due to their physical condition, so researchers must use microfilm.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Researchers need to consult all three subseries of general correspondence, including home letters and correspondence relating to domestic affairs. Rearrangement would involve intensive work and would invalidate citations used since the early part of the 20th century. Most, if not all, of the loose documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Domestic correspondence not only documents the wide variety of non-diplomatic duties performed by the Secretary of State in the Republic of Texas, but also contains additional documentation of all kinds of governmental activities, both civil and military, and both Republic and pre-Republic. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they are limited chronologically to the Texas Revolution, and may not be complete even within that time period. The State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission microfilmed the letter books, but not the loose documents. In addition to all these considerations, the age of these documents and especially their historical importance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: General correspondence: Home letters

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Home letters, 1835-1847, 1.28 cubic ft. Letter books are duplicated on microfilm, 2 reels.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic,
Executive record books,
Election registers,
Election returns,
Bonds and oaths,
Colonization records,
Post Office records,
and
Public printing records.

Adjutant General,

Army Papers, and
Navy Papers.

Description:
These are letters received and sent by the Secretary of State, with some going to the Executive Department, Provisional Governor, and the General Council. Dates covered are 1835-1847. Also included are two letter books labeled "Home Letters," 1842-1847: one contains letters from the Secretary of State to Republic officials, both national and county; the other contains a list of Perote Castle prisoners, correspondence and colonists lists for several colonization ventures, and a copy of the annexation ordinance adopted July 4, 1845.

Most letters pertain to Presidential nominations, appointments, resignations, and supplies for the Army and government offices; also covered are the Texas Navy, postal contracts, claims against the government, printing and distribution of laws, county boundaries, elections, bonds and oaths of office, receipts for payments, and some election returns. Correspondents of note are the presidents of the Republic--David G. Burnet, Sam Houston, Mirabeau B. Lamar, and Anson Jones.

Purpose:
Home letters were both created and collected by the office of the Secretary of State during the normal course of business (excluding diplomatic and consular business), and document the non-diplomatic functions of the office.

Agency Program:
The Secretary of State was created by the Constitution of the Republic of Texas in 1836 (Article VI, Section 10), as a member of the President's cabinet. He was assigned the following duties during the period of the Republic: conducting diplomacy and overseeing consular activities (December 18, 1837); receiving "returns of all elections for officers who are to be commissioned by the President" (Constitution of 1836, General Provisions, Section 2); receiving from the chief justices of the county courts descriptions of their county boundaries (December 17, 1836); contracting for the printing of the laws and journals of the Republic of Texas, and arranging for their distribution (December 18, 1837 and later dates); contracting for the translation and compilation of Republic laws into Spanish (December 18, 1837 and January 12, 1842); becoming the depository for a Library purchased for the Republic of Texas (January 24, 1839); creating a Patent Office (January 28, 1839); drawing from the War Department funds appropriated to run a boundary line between the Republic of Texas and the United States (November 26, 1840); and assuming the duties of the Postmaster General (January 18, 1841).

Although these records were created during the Republic era, the presence of some of them in the records of the Secretary of State may derive from later duties assigned to that office, requiring the collecting of records. On May 9, 1846, the 1st Legislature approved an act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," which among other things required the Secretary of State to "arrange and preserve all books, maps, parchments, records, documents, deeds, conveyances, and other papers belonging to the State, that have been or may be properly deposited there"; and to maintain a register of all official acts of the governor, and to provide the same to the legislature when required (this last duty was either performed under the Republic as well, or was done retroactively to include official acts of the President).

An act of February 11, 1854 created a Board of Commissioners composed of the Secretary of State, the Comptroller, and the Attorney General, "to superintend the arranging and filing of the archives of the late Republic of Texas and of the State Legislature, and also the recording of the Journals of the said Congress and State Legislature ... to be deposited in the General Land-office of the State." An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
Letter books are restricted due to their physical condition, so researchers must use microfilm.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Researchers need to consult all three subseries of general correspondence, including domestic correspondence and correspondence relating to domestic affairs. Rearrangement would involve intensive work and would invalidate citations used since the early part of the 20th century. Most, if not all, of the loose documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Home letters document the wide variety of non-diplomatic duties performed by the Secretary of State in the Republic of Texas. Binkley's publication of official correspondence draws upon these records, but it is limited chronologically to the period of the Texas Revolution, and it is not complete, as he readily admitted. The State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission microfilmed the letter books, but not the loose documents. In addition to all these considerations, the age of these documents and especially their historical importance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: General correspondence: Correspondence relating to domestic affairs

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Correspondence relating to domestic affairs, 1825-1826, 1830-1831, 1834-1846 (bulk 1836-1846), 1.28 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Diplomatic correspondence,
Records of the Provisional Government,
Records of the Convention of 1836,
Executive record books,
and
Colonization records.

Records relating to Indian Affairs.

Adjutant General,

Army Papers.

Description:
This series consists of letters received by the Department of State, the Executive Department, or the Provisional Government. Dates covered are 1825-1826, 1830-1831, and 1834-1846, the bulk being 1836-1846. This series of letters was added to the General correspondence at a later date (i.e., after 1905) than the other subseries--Domestic correspondence and Home letters. It also includes records of the Provisional Government, the Convention of 1836, and the Executive Department. Subjects covered include Indian affairs, relations with Mexico and other nations, organization of the government, contracts, resignations and appointments, loans and credit of the government, colonizations, land claims, claims against the Republic, supplies for the government and the Army, and proclamations of the President. Correspondents include Stephen F. Austin, Santa Anna, William Bryan, and the presidents of the Republic--David G. Burnet, Sam Houston, Mirabeau B. Lamar, and Anson Jones.

Purpose:
Correspondence relating to domestic affairs was collected by the office of the Secretary of State during the normal course of business (mostly excluding diplomatic and consular business), and documents the non-diplomatic functions of the office.

Agency Program:
The Secretary of State was created by the Constitution of the Republic of Texas in 1836 (Article VI, Section 10), as a member of the President's cabinet. He was assigned the following duties during the period of the Republic: conducting diplomacy and overseeing consular activities (December 18, 1837); receiving "returns of all elections for officers who are to be commissioned by the President" (Constitution of 1836, General Provisions, Section 2); receiving from the chief justices of the county courts descriptions of their county boundaries (December 17, 1836); contracting for the printing of the laws and journals of the Republic of Texas, and arranging for their distribution (December 18, 1837 and later dates); contracting for the translation and compilation of Republic laws into Spanish (December 18, 1837 and January 12, 1842); becoming the depository for a Library purchased for the Republic of Texas (January 24, 1839); creating a Patent Office (January 28, 1839); drawing from the War Department funds appropriated to run a boundary line between the Republic of Texas and the United States (November 26, 1840); and assuming the duties of the Postmaster General (January 18, 1841).

Although these records were created during the Republic era, the presence of some of them in the records of the Secretary of State may derive from later duties assigned to that office, requiring the collecting of records. On May 9, 1846, the 1st Legislature approved an act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," which among other things required the Secretary of State to "arrange and preserve all books, maps, parchments, records, documents, deeds, conveyances, and other papers belonging to the State, that have been or may be properly deposited there"; and to maintain a register of all official acts of the governor, and to provide the same to the legislature when required (this last duty was either performed under the Republic as well, or was done retroactively to include official acts of the President).

An act of February 11, 1854 created a Board of Commissioners composed of the Secretary of State, the Comptroller, and the Attorney General, "to superintend the arranging and filing of the archives of the late Republic of Texas and of the State Legislature, and also the recording of the Journals of the said Congress and State Legislature ... to be deposited in the General Land-office of the State." An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None (the half-dozen or so letters prior to 1835 are not at all typical, and should not really be considered part of the same series).

Problems:
Researchers need to consult all three subseries of general correspondence, including domestic correspondence and home letters. Rearrangement would involve intensive work and would invalidate citations used since the early part of the 20th century. Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Correspondence relating to domestic affairs not only documents the wide variety of non-diplomatic duties performed by the Secretary of State in the Republic of Texas, but also contains additional documentation of all kinds of governmental activities, both civil and military, and both Republic and pre-Republic. Binkley's publication of official correspondence may have drawn upon these records, but it is limited chronologically to the period of the Texas Revolution, and it is not complete, as he readily admitted. In addition to these considerations, the age of these documents and especially their historical importance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: General correspondence: Index to correspondence

Agency: Secretary of State

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Index to correspondence of 1822-1859, undated, 0.43 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Diplomatic correspondence,
Legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic,
Colonization records,
and
Financial Records of the Department of State.

Records Relating to Indian Affairs.

Adjutant General,

Army Papers and
Navy Papers.

Governors (The records of individual governors cover the period after annexation.)

Description:
These records consist of a one-volume index to correspondence addressed to officials of the Republic of Texas (especially to the Secretary of State, the President, and other members of the President's cabinet), covering the years 1822-1859 (the bulk 1835-1846). The spine of the volume is labeled "Index to Diplomatic Correspondence, etc., Republic, State Department."

The volume consists of two sections. The first section is divided into the following columns: from whom, to whom, number, file box, date, and where recorded (book and page; this last entry is mostly blank). Separate sections within each letter of the alphabet list general (unlabeled) correspondence, Army and Navy of Texas, Indian Affairs, Colonial Affairs, and Financial Affairs. The numbers given to each item are unique and sequential, from 1 to 3,230 or so; these numbers were obviously assigned at the time of the compilation of the index, which is in one clerk's handwriting.

The second half of the volume gives the following: subject matter, file number, and file box number. Examples of the subjects (which are arranged alphabetically) include the following:

Annexation - full power to Jno. C. Calhoun to treat for.
Austin, S.F. - congratulates Gov. Viesca on his release from prison.
France - Hamilton urges removal of duties on wines from.
Mediation - Mexico refuses English.
Travis Co. - concerning archives of.
Treasury Note - form of.

Purpose:
Correspondence was both created and collected by the office of the Secretary of State during the normal course of business (including diplomatic/consular business and domestic business), and documents all of the functions of the office.

Agency Program:
The Secretary of State was created by the Constitution of the Republic of Texas in 1836 (Article VI, Section 10), as a member of the President's cabinet. He was assigned the following duties during the period of the Republic: conducting diplomacy and overseeing consular activities (December 18, 1837); receiving "returns of all elections for officers who are to be commissioned by the President" (Constitution of 1836, General Provisions, Section 2); receiving from the chief justices of the county courts descriptions of their county boundaries (December 17, 1836); contracting for the printing of the laws and journals of the Republic of Texas, and arranging for their distribution (December 18, 1837 and later dates); contracting for the translation and compilation of Republic laws into Spanish (December 18, 1837 and January 12, 1842); becoming the depository for a Library purchased for the Republic of Texas (January 24, 1839); creating a Patent Office (January 28, 1839); drawing from the War Department funds appropriated to run a boundary line between the Republic of Texas and the United States (November 26, 1840); and assuming the duties of the Postmaster General (January 18, 1841).

Although these records were created during the Republic era, the presence of some of them in the records of the Secretary of State may derive from later duties assigned to that office, requiring the collecting of records. On May 9, 1846, the 1st Legislature approved an act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," which among other things required the Secretary of State to "arrange and preserve all books, maps, parchments, records, documents, deeds, conveyances, and other papers belonging to the State, that have been or may be properly deposited there"; and to maintain a register of all official acts of the governor, and to provide the same to the legislature when required (this last duty was either performed under the Republic as well, or was done retroactively to include official acts of the President).

An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives"; and an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement:
The first half of the index is roughly alphabetical by name of the correspondent, then numerical (which is also roughly chronological).

The second half of the index is roughly alphabetical by subject matter of the correspondence.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None (within the bulk dates of 1835-1846).

Problems:
Because the Secretary of State's records are not maintained as they were when the index was created, it cannot easily be used to locate correspondence. Researchers need to consult several series of correspondence.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

This index to correspondence, although it can no longer be easily used to locate specific items written to or by the Secretary of State or the President/Governor, is nevertheless useful as a guide to what kinds of correspondence were received and sent. It provides a context and therefore adds to our knowledge and understanding of the period. The subject listing is especially enlightening. For these reasons, and not simply because of its age, this index is an archival record, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain it.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Financial records of the Department of State, Republic of Texas

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Financial records of the Department of State, Republic of Texas, 1837-1845, 0.30 cubic ft.

Description:
These are mostly vouchers and abstracts of State Department receipts, and vouchers to the State Department for payments, dating 1837-1845. Also included are statements of the Second Auditor of the condition of the accounts for the State Department, an estimate of the cost for printing the laws for 1841, and statements of the balance from the appropriation for the State Department, February 5, 1840. These records relate to the expenses of the Department for employee expenses and travel, supplies, and building rent, as well as for reimbursement of expenses of consular, diplomatic, and other agents of the Republic. This is an artificial series, created by combining records from several other series. Some of the records are from the Treasury Department, some were removed from a file originally in the Secretary of State's office entitled "Financial affairs", and also from another file in the same office, "Diplomatic, Domestic, and Consular Correspondence."

Also included is one account book, 1838-1841.

Purpose:
This series of financial records of the Department of State is an artificial series, created by combining records from several other series, including the Treasury Department. They now serve to document the expenditures of the State Department during the Republic period. Vouchers authorize the payment of sums of money, and statements balance payments against receipts.

Agency Program:
The Secretary of State was created by the Constitution of the Republic of Texas in 1836 (Article VI, Section 10), as a member of the President's cabinet. He was assigned the following duties during the period of the Republic: conducting diplomacy and overseeing consular activities (December 18, 1837); receiving "returns of all elections for officers who are to be commissioned by the President" (Constitution of 1836, General Provisions, Section 2); receiving from the chief justices of the county courts descriptions of their county boundaries (December 17, 1836); contracting for the printing of the laws and journals of the Republic of Texas, and arranging for their distribution (December 18, 1837 and later dates); contracting for the translation and compilation of Republic laws into Spanish (December 18, 1837 and January 12, 1842); becoming the depository for a Library purchased for the Republic of Texas (January 24, 1839); creating a Patent Office (January 28, 1839); drawing from the War Department funds appropriated to run a boundary line between the Republic of Texas and the United States (November 26, 1840); and assuming the duties of the Postmaster General (January 18, 1841).

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems: None

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes. (Use of these records is claimed by Jenkins, although the date spans do not overlap.)

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Purchase Vouchers/Expenditure Vouchers
Series item number: 4.2.005/4.2.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: None
Retention: FE + 3

Appraisal Decision:

Financial records of the Department of State are rather routine vouchers, abstracts, and statements, which under normal circumstances would not be deemed archival. Because of the age of these records, however, and the fact that they are from the Republic of Texas era, the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Post Office records

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Post Office records, 1836-1846, 3.72 cubic ft. Duplicated on microfilm, 1 reel.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Home letters.

Description:
These records consist of correspondence; vouchers, receipts, and other accounting records; lists of post offices, postmasters, and mail routes; and related documents of the Republic of Texas Post Office, dating 1836-1846. The correspondence includes letters from the Postmaster General or chief clerk to the Congress, the Executive Department (including annual and quarterly "State of the Department" reports to the President), the Secretary of State, the Auditor, etc., 1836-1846; plus two letter books, containing copies of outgoing letters of the Postmaster General and the Chief Clerks, 1840-1846. Accounting records include payments for mail transportation, expenditures, appropriations, and general receipts, 1836-1846; and three volumes including an account of contractors and post offices, a journal account of expenditures, and a day book of daily accounts and summaries of accounts due, 1840-1842. Lists of post offices, postmasters, and mail routes date 1836-1842 and 1844. Other documents (mostly legal) include mail contracts, route schedules, appointments and applications, oaths, affidavits, and powers of attorney.

Purpose:
Records of the post office were created as a result of the establishment and daily management of the postal service of the Republic of Texas, and document the legal, financial, and administrative activities of the office.

Agency Program:
The Provisional Government established a provisional Post Office Department by an ordinance and decree of December 12, 1835. The 1st Congress of the Republic of Texas created the Post Office Department by an act approved December 20, 1836. Legislation over the next few years frequently dealt with the Republic's postal service.

On January 18, 1841, Congress approved an act abolishing the office of Postmaster General, and requiring the Secretary of State to establish a bureau to be called the General Post Office; the Secretary of State appointed and supervised this clerk. This same act required the Postmaster General to deliver to the Secretary of State all books, documents and papers of the Post Office.

Arrangement:
Loose post office records are in two subseries, corresponding to the periods before and after the Secretary of State's office assumed those duties. Within each chronological subseries arrangement is roughly by type of record, and therein chronological.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
These records were microfilmed by the State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission in 1976 (paid for by the researcher requesting the microfilming). However, no restrictions have been placed on use of the originals.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Although the provenance of post office records is clear, they have not been treated consistently as Secretary of State records. Also, the records have not been loaded into the Online Public Access Catalog.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Day, James M. (ed.), Post Office Papers of the Republic of Texas, 1836-1839 and 1839-1840, Texas State Historical and Archives Commission, 1966-1967, 2 volumes.

Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Title: Purchase Vouchers
Series item number: 4.2.005
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: None
Retention: FE + 3
Appraisal Decision:

Post Office records document the creation and administration of the postal service of the Republic of Texas, a function unique to that time period. Day's publication of post office "papers" is fairly thorough, but covers only the early period, to 1840. Jenkins' publication draws upon these records, but it is limited chronologically to the Texas Revolution, and may not be complete even within that time period. The State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission microfilmed these records in 1976. The vouchers and receipts would not normally be deemed archival. Nevertheless, the age of these documents, and especially the historical importance of most of them, is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of John H. Money, Treasurer of Ayuntamiento of Austin

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of John H. Money, Treasurer of Ayuntamiento of Austin, 1835, fractional.

Description:
This subseries consists of receipts issued to and by John H. Money, Treasurer of the Ayuntamiento of [San Felipe de] Austin, dating January 1-July 20, 1835.

Purpose:
Records of John H. Money were created to document the receipt of funds by the Treasurer of the Ayuntamiento of [San Felipe de] Austin, January-July 1835.

Agency Program:
Ayuntamientos were the principal governing bodies of Spanish and Mexican municipalities at the time of the Texas Revolution. They functioned as town councils, and mediated between local and central authorities. The particular ayuntamiento represented in these records is probably that of San Felipe de Austin.

On May 9, 1846, the 1st Legislature approved an act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," which among other things required the Secretary of State to "arrange and preserve all books, maps, parchments, records, documents, deeds, conveyances, and other papers belonging to the State, that have been or may be properly deposited there."

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of John H. Money, Treasurer of Ayuntamiento of Austin, are rather routine receipts, which under normal circumstances would not be deemed archival. Because of their age, however, and the fact that they are from the pre-Republic of Texas era, the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of citizens meetings and committees of public safety

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of citizens meetings and committees of public safety, 1835-1836, undated, fractional.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Domestic correspondence.

Description:
These are circulars, proceedings, and correspondence from citizens meetings and various committees of public safety. Dates covered in these records are August 30, 1835-January 19, 1836. These records are not specifically addressed to any of the governing bodies of the Revolutionary period, and it is uncertain whether they came into their custody during their existence or were later added to their records. Copies of circulars, proceedings, and letters specifically addressed to one of the Councils or the Consultation are filed with other communications received by those bodies in other subseries. The papers of the Committee of Safety of [San Felipe de] Austin were required to be received by the Secretary of the Consultation by a resolution approved November 3, 1835 and are filed with the records of that body.

Purpose:
Records of citizens meetings and committees of public safety document the activities of these extra-governmental bodies during the period August 1835-January 1836.

Agency Program:
Committees of Safety and Correspondence were organized by citizens in Mina (Bastrop), Gonzales, Viesca, and Columbia, and then in nearly all Texas communities by the end of the summer of 1835. They would ultimately make possible effective and organized resistance during the Texas Revolution.

On May 9, 1846, the 1st Legislature approved an act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," which among other things required the Secretary of State to "arrange and preserve all books, maps, parchments, records, documents, deeds, conveyances, and other papers belonging to the State, that have been or may be properly deposited there."

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of citizens meetings and committees of public safety are significant pieces of the documentation of the Texas Revolution. To my knowledge no one has published them, nor have they been microfilmed. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Permanent Council

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of the Permanent Council, 1835, fractional.

Description:
These records consist of correspondence, reports, resolutions, and vouchers and receipts of the Permanent Council, dated between August 19 and November 2, 1835. There are letters and reports from citizens of Texas and Mobile, Alabama, and government agencies relating to their activities and the state of the country. There are also signed copies of letters, addresses, and commissions sent to the citizens of the United States and Texas, army officers, and government agents, communicating instructions and appeals for aid. Correspondents include Stephen F. Austin, Thomas F. McKinney, and Richard R. Royall.

Purpose:
Records of the Permanent Council were created to document the work of the Permanent Council in governing Texas in the absence of a quorum of the Consultation (October-November 1835).

Agency Program:
The Permanent Council, composed of the Committee of Safety of San Felipe and representatives from other areas, assumed the powers of government in the absence of a quorum of the Consultation, which had been elected to meet there on October 16, 1835. It governed Texas from October 11, 1835, until a quorum arrived for the Consultation in early November. Richard R. Royall was elected President and Charles B. Stewart Secretary. During the three weeks it operated, the Council organized supplies and reinforcements for the Army, set up a postal system, ordered the land offices closed, and attempted to obtain a loan in the United States.

The records of the Permanent Council were turned over to the Provisional Government, which in turn turned its records over to the Convention of 1836 pursuant to a resolution of March 10, 1836. By 1854, the "Archives of the Congresses and Legislature" which were required to be arranged, copied, and filed in the General Land Office, included the records of the Provisional Government. An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives"; and an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement:
By type of document, and chronological therein.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems: Possible misfilings. Most of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of the Permanent Council are significant pieces of the documentation of the Texas Revolution. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they may not be complete. Vouchers and receipts would not normally be deemed archival. No one has microfilmed these documents. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance of most of them is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Consultation

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of the Consultation, 1835, 0.5 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Domestic correspondence.

Description:
These records consist of minutes, proceedings, resolutions, declarations, reports, correspondence, and delegate rolls of the Consultation, dating between October 11 and November 14, 1835. Also present are the papers of the Committee of Public Safety of [San Felipe de] Austin, dated between September 21 and October 1, 1835. Some of the proceedings are signed by P. B. Dexter, Secretary of the Consultation, R. R. Royall, Chairman, or Samuel Whiting, Secretary Pro Tem. Also prominent in these records are Sam Houston, Stephen F. Austin, and Thomas F. McKinney. Correspondence was received from citizens meetings, the Permanent Council, Committees of Vigilance and Safety, and agents of government pertaining to defense, land claims, and other affairs of state. Letters addressed to the Permanent Council that arrived after it had adjourned were handled by the Consultation and are included in these records.

Purpose:
Records of the Consultation were created to document the work of the Consultation in determining the stance Texas should take toward the Republic of Mexico (October-November 1835).

Agency Program:
The Consultation, called for the purpose of determining the stance Texas should take toward the Republic of Mexico, arrived at San Felipe on October 16, 1835, but a quorum not being present, was forced to adjourn until November 1. However, a quorum still did not arrive until November 3. When the Consultation organized on that day, Branch T. Archer was elected President. The chief accomplishments of the Consultation were the promulgation of the Declaration of November 7, 1835, in which it established the policy of remaining within the Mexican Republic and attempting to restore the Constitution of 1824, the establishment of the Provisional Government, the appointment of Sam Houston as Commander-in-Chief of the Texas Army, the appointment of Stephen F. Austin, Branch T. Archer, and William H. Wharton as agents to the United States for the purpose of obtaining a loan, and the ratifications of many of the acts of the Permanent Council. The Consultation adjourned on November 14, 1835.

The records of the Consultation were turned over to the Provisional Government, which in turn turned its records over to the Convention of 1836 pursuant to a resolution of March 10, 1836. By 1854, the "Archives of the Congresses and Legislature" which were required to be arranged, copied, and filed in the General Land Office, included the records of the Provisional Government. An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement:
By type of document, and chronological therein.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems: Possible misfilings. Most of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Gammel, H. P. N. (comp. and arr.), Laws of Texas, Austin, the Gammel Book Company, 1898, vol. 1, pp. 505-548, 905-1060.

Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of the Consultation are significant pieces of the documentation of the Texas Revolution. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they may not be complete. Gammel also published part of these records in his compilation of Laws. No one has microfilmed these documents. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Provisional Government letter book

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Provisional Government letter book, 1835-1836, 0.39 cubic ft. Duplicated on microfilm, 1 reel.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Domestic correspondence.

Description:
This record is a letter book containing copies of the Declaration of November 7, 1835, Organic Law, ordinances and resolutions of the General Council, correspondence of the Executive and General Council, and correspondence and reports laid before the council. Dates covered are November 1835-February 1836. Also present are "Papers belonging to the Political Chief of the Department of Brazos, 1835-1836."

Purpose:
The Provisional Government letter book was created to document the work of the Provisional Government, which governed Texas during most of the period of the Revolution, November 1835-March 1836.

Agency Program:
The Provisional Government was created by the Consultation, which chose its members and appointed Henry Smith Governor and James W. Robinson Lieutenant Governor. It governed Texas from November 15, 1835 until March 1, 1836, operating under the authority of the Organic Law formulated by the Consultation. The legislative body of the Provisional Government was the General Council, composed of one member from each municipality, and presided over by the Lieutenant Governor as ex-officio president. Its membership was not stable however, as some men served during only a few sessions, while others attended for nearly the full duration. The number of members in attendance steadily declined, until by February 26, only two were present. During the brief existence of the Provisional Government, the Governor and General Council were in constant conflict, arising chiefly from disagreement about their relative powers and about the stance Texas should adopt toward Mexico. The dispute climaxed on January 10, 1836, when Governor Smith attempted to dissolve the Council, which retorted by impeaching Smith and naming Robinson as Governor. By February, the Provisional Government was almost non-existent as an effective government, with two claiming the office of governor and responsibility for directing the affairs of Texas, and with the Council gradually dissolving as members abandoned their posts. In spite of its uncertain authority and internal dissension, the Provisional Government accomplished several things: the founding of the Texas Navy, the appointment of Sam Houston and John Forbes to treat with the Cherokee Indians, the issuing of its instructions to Stephen F. Austin, Branch T. Archer and William H. Wharton, agents to the United States, and the calling of the Convention of 1836.

The Provisional Government turned its records over to the Convention of 1836 pursuant to a resolution of March 10, 1836. By 1854, the "Archives of the Congresses and Legislature" which were required to be arranged, copied, and filed in the General Land Office, included the records of the Provisional Government. An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
This letter book is restricted due to its physical condition, so researchers must use microfilm.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
The Online Public Access Catalog record for this series has two entries that almost duplicate each other, which is confusing to the researcher.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

The Provisional Government letter book is a significant piece of the documentation of the Texas Revolution. The State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission has microfilmed this volume. Nevertheless, the age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Records of the Governor

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of the Governor, 1835-1836, fractional.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Domestic correspondence, and
Home letters.

Description:
These records consist of correspondence, reports, commissions, and receipts, dating November 1835-March 1836. The correspondence chiefly relates to finances and supplies for the government. Correspondents include the provisional governors Henry Smith and James W. Robinson, and Sam Houston.

Purpose:
Records of the Governor were created to document the work (especially the financial business) of the executive branch of the Provisional Government, which governed Texas during most of the period of the Revolution, November 1835-March 1836.

Agency Program:
The Provisional Government was created by the Consultation, which chose its members and appointed Henry Smith Governor and James W. Robinson Lieutenant Governor. It governed Texas from November 15, 1835 until March 1, 1836, operating under the authority of the Organic Law formulated by the Consultation. The legislative body of the Provisional Government was the General Council, composed of one member from each municipality, and presided over by the Lieutenant Governor as ex-officio president. Its membership was not stable however, as some men served during only a few sessions, while others attended for nearly the full duration. The number of members in attendance steadily declined, until by February 26, only two were present. During the brief existence of the Provisional Government, the Governor and General Council were in constant conflict, arising chiefly from disagreement about their relative powers and about the stance Texas should adopt toward Mexico. The dispute climaxed on January 10, 1836, when Governor Smith attempted to dissolve the Council, which retorted by impeaching Smith and naming Robinson as Governor. By February, the Provisional Government was almost non-existent as an effective government, with two claiming the office of governor and responsibility for directing the affairs of Texas, and with the Council gradually dissolving as members abandoned their posts. In spite of its uncertain authority and internal dissension, the Provisional Government accomplished several things: the founding of the Texas Navy, the appointment of Sam Houston and John Forbes to treat with the Cherokee Indians, the issuing of its instructions to Stephen F. Austin, Branch T. Archer and William H. Wharton, agents to the United States, and the calling of the Convention of 1836.

The Provisional Government (including the Governor) turned its records over to the Convention of 1836 pursuant to a resolution of March 10, 1836. By 1854, the "Archives of the Congresses and Legislature" which were required to be arranged, copied, and filed in the General Land Office, included the records of the Provisional Government. An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement:
By type of document, and chronological therein.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Possible misfilings. Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of the Governor (Provisional Government) are significant pieces of the documentation of the Texas Revolution. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they may not be complete. No one has microfilmed these documents. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Records of the Auditor

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of the Auditor, 1835-1836, fractional.

Description:
These are accounts and receipts submitted for approval, dating October 1835-March 1836.

Purpose:
Records of the auditor were created for the purpose of the auditing and approval of financial accounts of the Provisional Government, which governed Texas during most of the period of the Revolution, November 1835-March 1836.

Agency Program:
The Provisional Government was created by the Consultation, which chose its members and appointed Henry Smith Governor and James W. Robinson Lieutenant Governor. It governed Texas from November 15, 1835 until March 1, 1836, operating under the authority of the Organic Law formulated by the Consultation. The legislative body of the Provisional Government was the General Council, composed of one member from each municipality, and presided over by the Lieutenant Governor as ex-officio president. Its membership was not stable however, as some men served during only a few sessions, while others attended for nearly the full duration. The number of members in attendance steadily declined, until by February 26, only two were present. During the brief existence of the Provisional Government, the Governor and General Council were in constant conflict, arising chiefly from disagreement about their relative powers and about the stance Texas should adopt toward Mexico. The dispute climaxed on January 10, 1836, when Governor Smith attempted to dissolve the Council, which retorted by impeaching Smith and naming Robinson as Governor. By February, the Provisional Government was almost non-existent as an effective government, with two claiming the office of governor and responsibility for directing the affairs of Texas, and with the Council gradually dissolving as members abandoned their posts. In spite of its uncertain authority and internal dissension, the Provisional Government accomplished several things: the founding of the Texas Navy, the appointment of Sam Houston and John Forbes to treat with the Cherokee Indians, the issuing of its instructions to Stephen F. Austin, Branch T. Archer and William H. Wharton, agents to the United States, and the calling of the Convention of 1836.

The Provisional Government (including the Auditor) turned its records over to the Convention of 1836 pursuant to a resolution of March 10, 1836. By 1854, the "Archives of the Congresses and Legislature" which were required to be arranged, copied, and filed in the General Land Office, included the records of the Provisional Government. An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of the Auditor (Provisional Government), consisting of accounts and receipts, would probably not be considered archival under normal circumstances. Because of their age, however, and the fact that they are from the revolutionary period, the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Records of the Treasurer

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of the Treasurer, 1835-1836, fractional.

Description:
These records consist of receipts given to and by the treasurer of the Provisional Government, dating December 1835-January 1836.

Purpose:
Records of the Treasurer were created to document the moneys received and spent by the Provisional Government, which governed Texas during most of the period of the Revolution, November 1835-March 1836.

Agency Program:
The Provisional Government was created by the Consultation, which chose its members and appointed Henry Smith Governor and James W. Robinson Lieutenant Governor. It governed Texas from November 15, 1835 until March 1, 1836, operating under the authority of the Organic Law formulated by the Consultation. The legislative body of the Provisional Government was the General Council, composed of one member from each municipality, and presided over by the Lieutenant Governor as ex-officio president. Its membership was not stable however, as some men served during only a few sessions, while others attended for nearly the full duration. The number of members in attendance steadily declined, until by February 26, only two were present. During the brief existence of the Provisional Government, the Governor and General Council were in constant conflict, arising chiefly from disagreement about their relative powers and about the stance Texas should adopt toward Mexico. The dispute climaxed on January 10, 1836, when Governor Smith attempted to dissolve the Council, which retorted by impeaching Smith and naming Robinson as Governor. By February, the Provisional Government was almost non-existent as an effective government, with two claiming the office of governor and responsibility for directing the affairs of Texas, and with the Council gradually dissolving as members abandoned their posts. In spite of its uncertain authority and internal dissension, the Provisional Government accomplished several things: the founding of the Texas Navy, the appointment of Sam Houston and John Forbes to treat with the Cherokee Indians, the issuing of its instructions to Stephen F. Austin, Branch T. Archer and William H. Wharton, agents to the United States, and the calling of the Convention of 1836.

The Provisional Government (including the Treasurer) turned its records over to the Convention of 1836 pursuant to a resolution of March 10, 1836. By 1854, the "Archives of the Congresses and Legislature" which were required to be arranged, copied, and filed in the General Land Office, included the records of the Provisional Government. An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement: Chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of the Treasurer (Provisional Government), consisting of receipts, would probably not be considered archival under normal circumstances. Because of their age, however, and the fact that they are from the revolutionary period, the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Provisional Government: Records of the General Council

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of the General Council, 1835-1836, 1 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Home letters.

Description:
These records consist of proceedings, correspondence, committee reports, ordinances, decrees, resolutions, legislative addresses of the Governor, and accounts and receipts, covering the period September 1835-March 1836. These records concern the actions of the General Council, including the establishment of the Texas Navy, the organization and supplying of the Army, the appointment of Sam Houston and John Forbes to treat with the Cherokee Indians, and the preparation of instructions of the agents to the United States, Stephen F. Austin, Branch T. Archer, and William H. Wharton. It also passed the act calling for the Convention of 1836. Correspondents and other figures involved here include the provisional governors Henry Smith and James W. Robinson, Sam Houston, and Stephen F. Austin. Proceedings of the Permanent Council are included in this series as is a copy of the proceedings of the Consultation.

Purpose:
Records of the General Council were created to document the work of the legislative branch of the Provisional Government, which governed Texas during most of the period of the Revolution, November 1835-March 1836.

Agency Program:
The Provisional Government was created by the Consultation, which chose its members and appointed Henry Smith Governor and James W. Robinson Lieutenant Governor. It governed Texas from November 15, 1835 until March 1, 1836, operating under the authority of the Organic Law formulated by the Consultation. The legislative body of the Provisional Government was the General Council, composed of one member from each municipality, and presided over by the Lieutenant Governor as ex-officio president. Its membership was not stable however, as some men served during only a few sessions, while others attended for nearly the full duration. The number of members in attendance steadily declined, until by February 26, only two were present. During the brief existence of the Provisional Government, the Governor and General Council were in constant conflict, arising chiefly from disagreement about their relative powers and about the stance Texas should adopt toward Mexico. The dispute climaxed on January 10, 1836, when Governor Smith attempted to dissolve the Council, which retorted by impeaching Smith and naming Robinson as Governor. By February, the Provisional Government was almost non-existent as an effective government, with two claiming the office of governor and responsibility for directing the affairs of Texas, and with the Council gradually dissolving as members abandoned their posts. In spite of its uncertain authority and internal dissension, the Provisional Government accomplished several things: the founding of the Texas Navy, the appointment of Sam Houston and John Forbes to treat with the Cherokee Indians, the issuing of its instructions to Stephen F. Austin, Branch T. Archer and William H. Wharton, agents to the United States, and the calling of the Convention of 1836.

The Provisional Government (including the General Council) turned its records over to the Convention of 1836 pursuant to a resolution of March 10, 1836. By 1854, the "Archives of the Congresses and Legislature" which were required to be arranged, copied, and filed in the General Land Office, included the records of the Provisional Government. An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement:
By type of document, and chronological therein.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems: Possible misfilings. Most of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Gammel, H. P. N. (comp. and arr.), Laws of Texas, Austin, the Gammel Book Company, 1898, vol. 1, pp. 549-813, 905-1060.

Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Daniel, Price and James C. Martin (eds.), Legislative Messages of the Chief Executives of Texas, Austin, Texas State Library, 1972, volume 1.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of the General Council (Provisional Government) are significant pieces of the documentation of the Texas Revolution. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they may not be complete. Gammel also published part of these records in his compilation of Laws. No one has microfilmed these documents. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Convention of 1836

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of the Convention of 1836, 1835-1836, 0.5 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Domestic correspondence.

Description:
These records include proceedings, a convention roll, rules of convention, records of votes, committee reports, an auditor's reports, correspondence, and acts of the convention, include the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. Dates covered are primarily March 1-17, 1836, with some correspondence dating back to November 1835. Subjects include the organization and supplying of the militia and other military forces, land concerns, and declaration of Texas' independence from Mexico.

Purpose:
Records of the Convention of 1836 were created to document the work of the convention that wrote the Declaration of Independence and the first constitution of the Republic of Texas, and organized the Interim Government (March 1836).

Agency Program:
The Convention of 1836 met at Washington-on-the-Brazos from March 1 to March 17, 1836, on the call of the General Council over the veto of Governor Henry Smith. Composed of 59 delegates, it elected Richard Ellis Chairman and Herbert Simms Kimble Secretary. In the two weeks of its existence, the Convention wrote the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the Republic, organized an Interim Government and elected its officers, and confirmed Sam Houston as Commander of the Republic military forces. Upon its hasty adjournment at the news of the advancing Mexican Army, the powers of government were immediately assumed by the Ad Interim Government, which was to serve until the Constitution could be ratified by the people and a general election held for executive officers.

The Provisional Government turned its records over to the Convention of 1836 pursuant to a resolution of March 10, 1836. By 1854, the "Archives of the Congresses and Legislature" which were required to be arranged, copied, and filed in the General Land Office, included the records of the Provisional Government (and presumably the Convention of 1836). An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement:
By type of document, and chronological therein.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Possible misfilings. Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Gammel, H. P. N. (comp. and arr.), Laws of Texas, Austin, the Gammel Book Company, 1898, vol. 1, pp. 821-904, 905-1060.

Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of the Convention of 1836 are significant pieces of the documentation of the Texas Revolution. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they may not be complete. Gammel also published part of these records in his compilation of Laws. No one has microfilmed these documents. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records of legislative and executive bodies prior to the Republic: Records of the Ad Interim Government

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records of the Ad Interim Government, 1836, fractional.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Executive record books,
Diplomatic correspondence,
Consular correspondence,
General correspondence,
and
Public printing records.

Adjutant General,

Army Papers.

Records Relating to Indian Affairs.

Description:
These records consist of copies of presidential addresses, correspondence, commissions issued, a memorial, list of government officers, a resignation, and a receipt. Also included are some private letters, including ones to James Fannin, R. R. Royall, and Stephen F. Austin, from Santa Anna, Robert Triplett, and Edward Hall, relating to loans, supplies, and other subjects. Dates covered are March-September, 1836. Correspondents and others represented here include David G. Burnet, Mirabeau B. Lamar, Lorenzo de Zavala, and Robert Triplett. The majority of the records of the Secretary and the President for this period have been dispersed among several different series of Republic records.

Purpose:
Records of the Ad Interim Government were created to document the work of the Texas government which served between the adjournment of the Convention of 1836 and the ratification of the Constitution (March 16, 1836-October 16, 1836).

Agency Program:
The Ad Interim government served from March 16, 1836 to October 16, 1836, between the adjournment of the Convention of 1836 and the ratification of the Constitution and election of Sam Houston as the first President of the Republic of Texas. Appointed by the Convention, it contained no legislative or judicial departments. David G. Burnet was appointed President and Lorenzo de Zavala Vice-President along with Secretary of State Samuel P. Carson, Secretary of the Treasury Bailey Hardeman, Secretary of War Thomas J. Rusk, Secretary of the Navy Robert Potter, and Attorney General David Thomas. The activities of the Ad Interim government revolved chiefly around attempts to obtain financial and military assistance from foreign nations, and around organizing the citizens of Texas into a military force. Fleeing with the Texas population before the advancing Mexican Army, the temporary government was located successively at Washington-on-the-Brazos, Harrisburg, Galveston Island, Velasco, and Columbia.

By 1854, the "Archives of the Congresses and Legislature" which were required to be arranged, copied, and filed in the General Land Office, included the records of the Provisional Government (and presumably the Ad Interim Government). An act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives." And an act of March 25, 1887 provided that "the entire archives of the late Republic of Texas, ... together with the records, books, and journals of said Congress" would be "deposited in the Office of the Secretary of State," and "declared to be Archives of said office."

Arrangement:
By type of document, and chronological therein.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Possible misfilings. Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records of the Ad Interim Government are significant pieces of the documentation of the Texas Revolution and the early Republic. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they may not be complete. No one has microfilmed these documents. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Records relating to the Joint United States/ Republic of Texas Boundary Commission

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Records relating to the Joint United States/Republic of Texas Boundary Commission, 1837-1843, 0.47 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Manuscript collections:

George W. Smyth papers, and
Memucan Hunt papers.

Description:
These records consist of correspondence, reports, vouchers, and abstracts of account of the Texas Boundary Commissioners, Memucan Hunt and later George W. Smyth; and of the United States Commissioner, John H. Overton. Dates covered are 1837-1843. The Texas Boundary Commissioners filed reports of their progress with either the Secretary of State or the President. The correspondence was maintained by the Secretary of State. Reports deal with relations with the U.S. Commissioner, progress of the survey, and routine supply and personnel matters. Additional correspondents represented include David G. Burnet and Mirabeau B. Lamar. Also present are two journals of the Commission. One dates from May 22, 1840 to July 10, 1841 and covers the running of the boundary from the mouth of the Sabine River to the Red River. The other journal, from May 18, 1840 to April 25, 1841, covers the running of the boundary from the Sabine River to the 32nd parallel.

Purpose:
These records were created to document the work of the Joint United States/Republic of Texas Boundary Commission, 1837-1843.

Agency Program:
By a law approved June 12, 1837, the Congress of the Republic of Texas authorized the President to appoint a commissioner to act with a commissioner to be appointed by the United States to survey the eastern boundary of Texas. On October 4, 1838, the Congress ratified a Convention between the two nations providing for such a survey. Supplementary acts dated November 23, 1839; January 18, 1840; November 23 and 26, 1840; and February 4, 1841, authorized appropriations and additional personnel for the Texas representation on the boundary commission. Memucan Hunt was the first Texas Commissioner appointed; he served from 1839 until 1840, when he was dismissed from the post. He was succeeded by George W. Smyth, who served until June 1841, when the work of the Commission was completed.

By an act approved November 26, 1840, the Secretary of State was required to draw from the War Department funds appropriated to run a boundary line between the Republic of Texas and the United States.

On May 9, 1846, the 1st Legislature approved an act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," which among other things required the Secretary of State to "arrange and preserve all books, maps, parchments, records, documents, deeds, conveyances, and other papers belonging to the State, that have been or may be properly deposited there."

Arrangement:
Chronological, with vouchers and abstracts filed at the end, and journals filed separately.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records: None

Suggested series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not Applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Records relating to the Joint United States/Republic of Texas Boundary Commission document a crucial issue during the Republic's brief history. To my knowledge no one has published them, nor have they been microfilmed. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Seat of government papers

Agency: Secretary of State, Republic of Texas

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Seat of government papers, 1836-1842, 0.12 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Manuscript collections,

Mirabeau B. Lamar papers, and
Seat of Government manuscript collection.

Description:
These records consist of reports (and related records) to Congress and the President regarding the choices for the seat of government, and proposals from individuals or towns seeking to become the seat of government. Dates covered are 1836-1842.

Purpose:
Seat of government papers were created during the process of considering and selecting the site of the permanent capitol of the Republic of Texas.

Agency Program:
On October 9, 1837 by a joint resolution of the Congress of the Republic of Texas, five commissioners, jointly elected by the two houses, were to receive proposals and examine sites for the permanent seat of government. This commission reported back to Congress with a number of possible sites. On January 14, 1839 five commissioners were again elected by Congress and the search was narrowed to "some point between the rivers Trinidad (Trinity) and Colorado, and above the old San Antonio Road." The town was to be called Austin. On April 13, 1839, the commissioners reported to President Lamar their selection of Waterloo on the Colorado as the seat of government.

On May 9, 1846, the 1st Legislature approved an act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," which among other things required the Secretary of State to "arrange and preserve all books, maps, parchments, records, documents, deeds, conveyances, and other papers belonging to the State, that have been or may be properly deposited there."

Arrangement:
Reports are filed chronologically, followed by correspondence filed alphabetically by the name of the proposed town.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not Applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Seat of government papers document the highly competitive struggle to determine where the Republic should maintain its capitol. Binkley's publication of official correspondence drew upon these records, but it covers only the period of the revolution, and it is not complete, as he readily admitted. No one has microfilmed these documents. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Colonization records

Agency: Secretary of State

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Colonization records, 1820-1879 (bulk 1836-1845), 1.5 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

General correspondence.

Treasury,

Custom House Papers.

Congress/Legislature,

Memorials and petitions (especially a list of colonists in McMullen and McGloin's San Patricio Colony, listed under "McGloin").

Description:
This series consists of colony contracts filed in the Department of State, as well as correspondence of the Department relating to the colonies. Also included is correspondence of the President and members of Congress relating to colonies and a small amount of material related to colonization in the Republic of Mexico. In addition, documents received in the office of the Secretary of State after annexation relating to the colonies is included. Dates covered are 1820-1879, the bulk covering the Republic period, 1836-1845. Lists of immigrants brought to Texas as colonists (usually called "ships' lists") were filed in the Department of State in accordance with the requirement that evidence be made of meeting the numbers of colonists specified in the contract; these lists are included with this series. Specific colonies to which the records relate are those granted to Stephen F. Austin, John C. Beales, Henri Castro, Juan Dominguez y Valdez, Henry F. Fisher and Burchard Miller, Arthur Ikin, William Kennedy and William Pringle, John McMullen and James McGloin, Charles F. Mercer, Alexander Bourgeois d'Orvanne, W. S. Peters, V. Pirson, the Rio Grande and Texas Land Company, Sterling C. Robertson, and John L. Woodbury. This series also includes some manuscript collections: "Papers of the Society for the Protection of German Emigrants," 1844-1846; "Papers of Henri Castro," 1846, 1850; "Letters of John E. Cravens and W. G. W. Jowers," 1849, 1852; and the "Robert Swartwout Papers," 1820-1848.

Purpose:
Colonization records were created to document the efforts of the Republic of Texas to encourage the immigration of new citizens by the signing of contracts with agents, similar to the Mexican government's empresario grants, and the enforcement of the agreements contained within those contracts. The records, especially the lists of immigrants, have been heavily used since their accessioning into the State Archives by researchers conducting both historical and genealogical research.

Agency Program:
In a law of December 22, 1836, the Congress of the Republic invalidated all empresario grants under the Mexican Republic, declared all vacant lands under them the property of the Republic, and required empresarios and public officers to deliver the titles for such property to the Commissioner of the General Land Office. Following this repudiation, colonization in the Republic of Texas was not officially regulated until 1841, when a law of January 4 authorized the President to make contracts with W. S. Peters and others "for the purpose of colonizing and settling a portion of the vacant and unappropriated lands of the Republic." A subsequent act approved February 4, 1842, extended the provisions of the law to other colonization companies. The contracts, which were required to specify the number of families to be introduced within three years, were to be drawn up and filed by the Secretary of State. Contractors were to commence settlement within one year and to have one-third the number of families contracted for in the Republic by the end of the same period, under penalty of forfeiture of the contract. It was the duty of the Secretary of State to publish and declare such forfeitures.

Arrangement:
By colony, and therein chronological.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
Alphabetical name indexes (in card-file format) are available for the Fisher-Miller Colony, the Peters Colony, and the Castro Colony.

Gaps? None

Problems:
Most, if not all, of these documents have been laminated.

Another potential problem is that the finding aid, following a description and folder listing of the Colonization records, includes a chart of "Ships arriving in Texas, 1836-1846, listed on passenger returns and colony lists found in the Customs House and Colonization Papers." The Custom House papers form a series in the records of the Office of the Treasurer. While helpful in many ways, this list/chart confused me at first.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Correspondence -- Administrative (?)
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

Colonization records help to document the interesting work of enticing settlers to fill up Texas' empty spaces and become productive citizens. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they are limited chronologically to the Texas Revolution, and may not be complete even within that time period. No one has microfilmed these documents. The age of these documents and especially their historical significance is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Executive record books

Agency: Secretary of State

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Executive record books, 1836-1917, 15.18 cubic ft. Duplicated on microfilm, 13 reels.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Pardon registers,
Executive clemency records,
Extradition records,
Rewards,
Records relating to passports,
Diplomatic correspondence,
Colonization records,
Election registers (Appointment registers),
and
Election returns.

Governor (Related executive records can be found in the records of each governor.)

Adjutant General's records.

Records relating to Indian Affairs.

Description:
The executive record books contain correspondence (mostly outgoing) of the Presidents of the Republic of Texas and Governors of the state, primarily with other Texas and U.S. officials; inaugural addresses; executive messages; Indian treaties; proclamations; appointments and resignations; passports; pardons and remissions; extraditions; rewards; etc. Some Department of State (later Secretary of State) records are also present, consisting primarily of election returns. Dates covered in these records are 1836-1917. Republic of Texas figures represented include Presidents Sam Houston, Mirabeau B. Lamar, and Anson Jones; David G. Burnet, Thomas J. Rusk; Thomas Toby; and Robert Triplett. Records of governors' actions are present from each administration covering the years 1846-1917. The earlier volumes contain a variety of materials, as listed above, with the books from 1887-1917 containing mostly proclamations and pardons. Of particular interest is Rusk's oration given at the burial of the Goliad victims and the text of the $200,000 loan negotiated by Stephen F. Austin in New Orleans, found on reel 3472; and on reel 3474 is considerable material on the attempt to annex "Santa Fe County" prior to the Compromise of 1850. Correspondence in the late 1850s-1860s concerns frontier defense and other military affairs.

Purpose:
Executive record books were created to record the official acts and proceedings of the presidents of the Republic of Texas, and the governors of the state of Texas, whether through correspondence, addresses and messages, proclamations, etc.

Agency Program:
The Constitution of 1845 required the Secretary of State to "keep a fair register of all official acts and proceedings of the Governor" and to provide these to the legislature when required. This duty (and others) were reiterated in the act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," approved May 9, 1846. This authority was reconfirmed by the Constitutions of 1866 (Article V, Section 17), 1869 (Article IV, Section 17) and 1876 (Article IV, Section 21), and subsequent amendments.

Arrangement: Roughly chronological

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
Letter books are restricted due to their physical condition, so researchers must use microfilm.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems: None

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Daniel, Price and James C. Martin (eds.), Legislative Messages of the Chief Executives of Texas, 1835-1846, Austin, Texas State Library, 3 volumes.

Winfrey, Dorman H. and Day, James M. (eds.), The Texas Indian Papers, 1825-1916, Austin, Pemberton Press, 1966, 5 volumes.

Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from agency records retention schedule
Title: Proclamations, Governor's Official
Series item number: --
Agency item number: 41
Archival code: A
Retention: 5 years
Microfilm: AC + 100 years

Title: Proclamations, Governor's Clemency
Series item number: --
Agency item number: 15.20
Archival code: A
Retention: 3 months

Title: Executive Orders, Governor's
Series item number: 1.1.011
Agency item number: 121
Archival code: A
Retention: 10 years
Microfilm: AC + 100 years

Title: Commissions, Governor's Official
Series item number: --
Agency item number: 13.00
Archival code: A
Retention: 10 years
Microfilm: AC + 100 years

Title: Memorandum by the Secretary of State or Governor (official)
Series item number: --
Agency item number: 193
Archival code: A
Retention: 10 years

Appraisal Decision:

Executive record books provide essential documentation of the actions of the Texas president/governor, and have been heavily used by researchers. The Secretary of State was required to keep these record books as part of his/her constitutional duties. The State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission has microfilmed these volumes. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon these records, but they are limited chronologically to the Texas Revolution, and may not be complete even within that time period. The historical significance of these documents is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Election registers (a.k.a. Appointment registers)

Agency: Secretary of State, Statutory Filings Division, Statutory Documents Section

Obsolete record series? No

Ongoing record series? Yes
Annual accumulation: 0.42 cubic ft. every two years.

Agency holdings:
Election registers (also known as appointment registers) are retained in the Statutory Documents Section's offices for ten years, according to their records retention schedule. The agency's actual holdings, however, are 1982-[ongoing], 4.53 cubic ft.

Archival holdings:
Election registers, 1836-1986, 31.07 cubic ft. Duplicated on microfilm, 36 reels.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Election returns,
Executive record books,
Bonds and oaths,
and
Records relating to passports.

Description:
These are registers listing elected and appointed officials of the Republic of Texas and later the state of Texas, dating 1836-[ongoing].

Three registers cover the Republic. The earliest, 1836-1842, is a working ledger with entries in several hands. The second is a very incomplete listing of officials in office May 1, 1838. The third, 1842-1846, is written in one hand and appears to be a fair copy done at a later date. Information given in the first and third Republic registers includes date of election or appointment, name of person and office held, and usually the date of confirmation and/or commissioning. The first register also includes a register of passports issued, 1838-1842.

Information in the post-annexation election registers usually consists of the following: office; name; residence/ post office/town; dates elected, appointed, confirmed, qualified, commissioned, and/or term expires; and remarks. The appointed offices and elected statewide and district offices usually come first in the register, followed by county offices (county judge, school superintendent, county clerk, county treasurer, county attorney, county surveyor, sheriff, county tax assessor/collector, justices of the peace, constables, inspector of hinds and animals, county commissioners, etc.). Registers stop giving these county officers in 1978. Finally, beginning consistently in 1884 but apparently ending in 1978, election registers provide election returns for general elections (giving the total number of votes cast in each county for each candidate on the ballot for presidential electors, statewide and district offices, and for each proposed constitutional amendment). No election returns are given for county offices.

Purpose:
Election registers are created to document the election of officials to state, district, and county office, and the appointment of officials to boards and commissions. Between 1884 and 1978, the election registers also recorded election returns for statewide and district offices and constitutional amendments.

Agency Program:
Although the creation of election or appointment registers was not specifically required by law during the Republic, the Constitution of 1836 provides for election returns for "officers who are to be commissioned by the President" to be made to the Secretary of State. The maintenance of election registers during the Republic may have been an extension of this function.

On May 9, 1846, the 1st Legislature approved an act "to define the duties of Secretary of State," which among other things required the Secretary of State "in a separate book, suitable for the purpose," to "keep a complete register of all the officers appointed and elected in the State."

Arrangement:
Volumes are chronological, with each volume covering a two-year period beginning in 1878. Within each volume, arrangement is usually alphabetical by name of county for elected county officials, preceded by or followed by appointed officials and statewide/district officials. Where election returns are included, they are usually at the back of the volume, arranged by office and therein alphabetical by county. Each volume usually contains an index for the elected/appointed offices.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
Letter books are restricted due to their physical condition, so researchers must use microfilm.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems: None

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Compiled Index to Elected and Appointed Officials of the Republic of Texas, 1835-1846. State Archives Division, Texas State Library.

Series data from agency schedule:
Title: Election Registers (a.k.a. Appointment Registers)
Series item number: Not applicable
Agency item number: 13.30
Archival code: A
Retention: 10

Appraisal Decision:

Election registers (also known as appointment registers) are the official, formal records of appointments to state boards and commissions, and of elections to county, district, and statewide offices. They provide the pertinent, basic information of these actions by the governor and by the electorate, in a fairly convenient form. The election returns for statewide and district offices included in the registers (1884-1978) are much easier to use than the loose series of election returns. The State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission has microfilmed these registers. Nevertheless, the age of the earlier registers, and especially the legal and historical importance of the entire series is such that they are definitely archival records, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Election returns (county by county)

Agency: Secretary of State, Elections Division

Contact: Mr. Marvin Thurman, Elections Division
463-9872

Obsolete record series? No

Ongoing record series? Yes
Annual accumulation: 0.7 cubic ft. biennially

Agency holdings:
Election returns (county by county) are retained in the Election Division's offices for four years after the end of the calendar year. Microfilm is maintained permanently for public use and for vital records protection. The agency's actual holdings are 1982-[ongoing], 6.3 cubic ft.

Archival holdings:
Election returns (county by county), 1835-1980, 171.66 cubic ft.
Election returns and certificates, 1906, 1924, 0.24 cubic ft.
Certificates of election, 1912-1913, 1926-1927, and 1936-1938, 0.72 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Precinct-by-precinct election returns (These constitute another active records series; Archives holdings of precinct-by-precinct returns date 1976-1986).
Election registers (which record election returns consistently beginning in 1884),
Executive record books,
Home letters,
and
Bonds and oaths.

Description:
These are county-by-county returns of general, special, and contested elections for Republic of Texas and state offices, national offices, district offices, and (for earlier years) county offices; also included are certificates of election and qualification of county and precinct officers. Dates covered are 1835-[ongoing]. Since 1835, returns of general and special elections for district, statewide, and federal offices were usually certified to the Secretary of State by county judges. For county and precinct offices, the county judge filed a certificate of election and qualification with the Secretary of State. These certificates of election are not precisely returns, for they do not indicate the number of votes for each candidate, or even the names of the losing candidates; the information they do give includes name of person elected, office, date of qualification, and post office address.

Additional information contained in these records varies according to the time period. During the Republic, voter lists were sometimes filed (in a number of instances these indicated how citizens voted); other returns show votes cast for all candidates; sometimes only the winner is reported. Poll lists are scattered throughout, especially in cases of contested elections. Resignations, notifications of death, and appointments to fill vacancies may be found, more frequently in later years. Returns for district offices are found in the county of the returning judge. For the Republic era, cross-references are made in the district's other counties. Returns for unorganized counties are usually filed with those of the returning judge. During early statehood, some militia returns are present. Scattered primary returns begin in 1906. Returns for 1976-1980 are computer printouts and are sometimes marked as "unofficial returns"; those in 1976 and 1978 also give the number of registered voters and percentage of voter turnout for each county.

Purpose:
Election returns are created as the official record of election results, in order to determine the winner in each race. Certificates of election and qualification are created as the official record of election results in county elections, to certify the winner in each race and to notify the Secretary of State as to which officials need to be issued commissions.

Agency Program:
The only duty of the Secretary of State specified by the Constitution of 1836 was to receive "returns of all elections for officers who are to be commissioned by the President" (General Provisions, Section 2). Since 1835, returns of general and special elections for district, national (for the Republic), statewide, and federal offices have usually been certified to the Secretary of State by county judges. For county and precinct offices (county judge, county clerk, district clerk, county attorney, county treasurer, county surveyor, sheriff, county tax collector, county tax assessor, county superintendent of public instruction, inspector of hides and animals, public weigher, justices of the peace, constables, county commissioners), the county judge filed a certificate of election and qualification with the Secretary of State. The 1st Legislature approved a law on May 11, 1846 requiring the Secretary of State to furnish forms to county election officials for election returns, and to receive certified election returns from these officials for members of the legislature. The 15th Legislature approved an Act regulating elections on August 23, 1876, which among other things, required that duplicate election returns be filed with the Secretary of State for the following races: members of the legislature (state senators and state representatives), governor, lieutenant governor, comptroller, treasurer, commissioner of the General Land Office, attorney general, judges of the Supreme, appellate and district courts, district attorneys, and representatives of the Congress of the United States. Additional state elective offices were added to this list as they were created: superintendent of public instruction (1884), railroad commissioners (1890), commissioner of agriculture (1907), and elected members of the State Board of Education (1949). When U.S. Senators began to be chosen by popular election after the ratification of the 17th amendment to the U.S. Constitution (1913), they also were (eventually) added to the returns. For most of these offices, the Secretary of State was required to open and count the returns in the presence of the governor and the attorney general.

Arrangement:
Files are arranged by year and then by county until 1970, when the arrangement is by year, by office, then by county.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
Records dating 1835-1872 have been laminated. There are many misfilings throughout, incorrect both in years and in counties. Transfer sheets for oversized material may be incorrect. Many boxes are only partially full, causing some curling of records.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Series data from agency schedule:
Title: Election Returns - County by County
Series item number: Not Applicable
Agency item number: 34.40
Archival code: A
Retention: CE + 4

Appraisal Decision:

Election returns (county by county) provide a wide range of information (not very consistent) about the votes cast in Texas elections. Binkley's publication of official correspondence drew upon these records, but it is limited to the period 1835-1836, and it is not complete, as he readily admitted. No one has microfilmed the early election returns. Between 1884 and 1978, however, the Election registers apparently provide this same information, and in a more convenient format: election returns for general elections (giving the total number of votes cast in each county for each candidate on the ballot for presidential electors, statewide and district offices, and for each proposed constitutional amendment). No election returns are given for county offices in the Election registers, but neither are these given in the Election returns; instead, the "returns" contain certificates of election and qualification of county and precinct officers, which duplicates the information given in the Election registers. In other words, there is some suspicion that Election returns between 1884 and 1978 may be redundant (except for occasional primary election returns beginning in 1906). Nevertheless, the inconsistencies and peculiarities of the Election returns require that careful comparison of them with the Election registers must occur before any of them can safely be discarded. At any rate, those returns prior to 1884 are fairly clearly archival, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them. As to returns between 1884 and 1978, serious consideration should be given as to whether the detailed comparison necessary to appraise them is justified in terms of staff time and effort. In the future, however, the Archives and Information Services Division should make appraisal decisions on each new accession of Election returns. I also propose to consult with the Secretary of State's office concerning this issue in the third phase of appraisal of Secretary of State records, that of ongoing record series.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Legislative bills and resolutions filed (General and Special Laws)

Agency: Secretary of State, Statutory Filings Division, Statutory Documents Section

Obsolete record series? No

Ongoing record series? Yes
Annual accumulation: 10 cubic ft. every two years, duplicated by 7 reels of microfilm

Agency holdings:
Legislative bills and resolutions filed (General and Special Laws) are theoretically retained in the Statutory Documents Section's offices for ten years (according to the Secretary of State's records retention schedule). Microfilm is maintained permanently, for public use and for vital records protection. The agency's actual holdings of hard copy, however, are 1997-[ongoing], 10 cubic ft. The agency's actual holdings of microfilm are 1978-[ongoing], 60 reels.

Archival holdings:
Legislative bills and resolutions filed (General and Special Laws), 1836-1995, 194.47 cubic ft. Duplicated on microfilm, 23 reels.

Related records are:

Legislature,

Bill files.

Description:
These are the official copies of General and Special Laws passed by the Congress and the Legislature, with original signatures of all officials. They date 1836-[ongoing]. The earlier volumes (1836-1911) are handwritten fair copies, replaced by typewritten copies in 1913. As early as 1923, typed indexes of the bills, arranged by bill number (e.g. House Bill 1, Senate Bill 99) are inserted loosely into some volumes; eventually these were bound into the front of each volume.

Purpose:
General and Special Laws are created as the official copy of the bills and resolutions passed into law by the Congress/Legislature.

Agency Program:
An act approved December 18, 1837 (and later acts) required the Secretary of State to contract for the printing of the laws of the Republic of Texas, and to arrange for their distribution; this function may have necessitated the compilation of an official manuscript copy of the laws. At any rate, an act approved by the 1st Legislature on May 9, 1846 required the Secretary of State to attend every legislative session to receive bills which have became laws, and to bind and maintain such bills and enrolled joint resolutions in the office of the Secretary of State; and also to deliver a certified copy of these laws (with indices and marginal notes) to the public printer, and to edit and correct them after printing. Furthermore, an act of December 14, 1863 made the Secretary of State "the custodian of the records of the Senate and House of Representatives."

Arrangement:
Chronological by congressional/legislative session, and therein numerical by chapter.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints:
Early volumes (1st Congress through the 18th Legislature) are restricted due to their physical condition, so researchers must use microfilm.

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? None

Problems:
The provenance of these records, both past and future, is relatively clear. Although the congress or legislature created the laws, their collection is a function of the Secretary of State. When the State Archives receives a new increment of these records, they come from the Secretary of State, not from the Legislature. However, in July 1983, the finding aid for these records was placed with the records of the Legislature. And when Record Group number-style call numbers were assigned (to the General and Special laws for 1923-1978), the Record Group number chosen was 100, the number used for the legislature. In its present location (at the end of the finding aid for bill files), and in its present undescribed condition, this finding aid (and these records) are practically unknown to many of the reference staff in the Archives and Information Services Division. This record series has also not been described in the Online Public Access Catalog.

Another problem is terminology. The Secretary of State's records retention schedule calls these Legislative Bills and Resolutions Filed (General and Special Laws), even though bills and resolutions which did not become law are not included. The alternate name, General and Special Laws, is accurate (and matches what is printed on the spines of the volumes), but is easily confused with the printed laws. Informally, these are usually called "Original Laws."

Known related records in other agencies:
Legislature, Bill Files, 1973-[ongoing] (in the Legislative Reference Library).

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Laws of the Republic of Texas in Two Volumes. Printed by Order of the Secretary of State. Houston, Office of the Telegraph, 1838. [etc., various printers, until:]
Laws Passed by the Eighth Congress of the Republic of Texas. Published by Authority. Cruger & Moore, Public Printers, 1844.
Laws Passed by the First Legislature of the State of Texas. Published by Authority. Austin, Ford & Cronican, Public Printers, 1846. [etc., various printers]
General Laws [or Special Laws, or General and Special Laws] of the State of Texas Passed by the [___] Legislature. ... Printed under the Authority of the State of Texas, [___] Secretary of State. [i.e., dropped names of printers beginning 1923].

Gammel, H. P. N. (comp. and arr.), Laws of Texas, Austin, the Gammel Book Company, 1898, Volumes 1-10 (1822-1897). Also Supplement Volumes 11-17 (1897-1917).

Series data from agency schedule:
Title: Legislative Bills and Resolutions Filed (General and Special Laws)
Series item number: --
Agency item number: 13.60
Archival code: A
Retention: 10

Appraisal Decision:

Legislative bills and resolutions filed (General and Special Laws) are the record copies of laws which the state legislature passes. The State and Local Records Management Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission has microfilmed the earlier volumes, 1835-1884. And of course these are printed as General and Special Laws. The printed laws have subject indexes, but these are often inconsistent and difficult to use. The record copies contain indexes according to the bill or resolution number, which is very helpful. The original signatures make the record copies unique. Researchers rarely request these records, but when they do request them, there is no substitute. They are therefore (for all of these reasons) archival, and the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Bonds and oaths

Agency: Secretary of State

Obsolete record series? Yes (Oaths)

Ongoing record series? Yes (Bonds)
Annual accumulation: 0.05 cubic ft.

Agency holdings:
Records of Employee bonds (both hard copy and microfilm) are kept in the offices of the Statutory Documents Section for ten years after the bond expires or is cancelled. Actual holdings are 1987-[ongoing], 0.5 cubic ft.; plus one reel of microfilm, 1979-1987.

Archival holdings:
Bonds and oaths, 1835-1920, 68.92 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Home letters,
Election returns,
and
Election registers.

Description:
These records are bonds and oaths and some related records of elected and appointed officials of the Republic and State of Texas, of districts, counties, and even of a few municipalities, dating 1835-1920. The records making up this series appear to have been collected from various record groups and filed into two subseries--one for the Republic, 1835-1846, and one for the State, 1846-1920. Not all files will have a bond and an oath and some will have more than one for successive offices. In some files additional materials may be present, such as letters of recommendation, resignation, or application; election returns; and minutes of commissioners meetings which include appointments to vacant offices. An alphabetical list of the Republic era officials is available in the Secretary of State finding aid. The state era officials can be accessed alphabetically through a card index.

Purpose:
Bonds are posted by public officials to secure their fiduciary responsibilities. Oaths are sworn and filed by public officials to assure their loyalty to the government, and their promise to uphold the duties of the office.

Agency Program:
According to Article V of the Constitution of 1836, "every person who shall be chosen or appointed to any office of trust or profit shall before entering on the duties thereof, take an oath to support the Constitution of the Republic, and also an oath of office." As offices were created, the enabling legislation usually specified the oath and bond required.

No one governmental office has had the responsibility for filing all bonds and oaths. Depending on the office and varying over time, bonds and oaths could be filed on different governmental levels (municipal, district, county, state), and in different offices. Not infrequently, the bond would be filed in one office and the oath in another. However, state law has required many if not most state officers to file bonds and oaths with the Secretary of State (as early as 1846). The State Employee Bonding Act of 1959 (House Bill 18, 56th Legislature, Regular Session) was repealed in 1993.

Arrangement: Alphabetical by surname in each of two subseries:
A. Bonds and oaths of county and Republic officials.
B. Bonds and oaths of county and State officials.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
Alphabetical listing in finding aid for Republic.
Alphabetical card file index for State.

Gaps? Not applicable. This series is somewhat artificial; no one governmental office has had the responsibility for filing all bonds and oaths.

Problems:
Some of the bonds filed are actually treasury or revenue bonds rather than security bonds required to be posted by a public official. The bonds and oaths for the Republic have been laminated.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and the following one was found for this series or for equivalent or related series:
Bonds, public employee, 1979-1987 (these records have been microfilmed) (approved November 3, 1987).

Publications based on records: None

Series data from agency schedule:
Title: Employee Bonds
Series item number: 1.1.042
Agency item number: 138
Archival code: None
Retention: AC + 10
(AC = bonds have expired, cancelled)

Appraisal Decision:

Bonds and oaths is an artificial collection, which has been heavily used, primarily by genealogists, for the personal information contained in the records. No one has microfilmed these documents. Current records of this sort are not considered archival. However, because of user demand, and also because of the age of the records, the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain the current holdings.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Public printing records

Agency: Secretary of State

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Public printing records, 1835-1905 (bulk 1874-1897), 3.05 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

Domestic correspondence,
Home letters,
and
Financial records of the Republic of Texas.

Description:
These records consist of minutes of meetings, correspondence, accounts, printing orders, samples, claims, bids, and contracts, all relating to public printing. Dates are scattered, covering the period 1835-1905, the bulk dating 1874-1897.

The Republic of Texas records relating to public printing consist mainly of correspondence of the Secretary of State and the Congressional Joint Committee on Public Printing, with the public printer and applicants for that position. Other records include contracts, advertisements for bids, bids submitted, accounts, samples of printed materials submitted with bids, and orders of the Secretary of State for printing supplies. These date 1836-1845.

Post-annexation records relating to public printing include minutes (mainly of the Board of Public Printing), 1862 and 1874-1896; account books of the Board of Public Printing, 1879-1902; two letter press books containing copies of outgoing correspondence from the Board of Public Printing, 1881-1891; and assorted other records.

Purpose:
This series was created to document the activities of public printing in Texas, including the contracting and supervising of the public printers, and keeping track of the expenditures involved.

Agency Program:
During the Republic and early statehood it was the practice of Congress and the Legislature to select a public printer whose duties were supervised by the Secretary of State; this was confirmed by acts approved November 15 and 18, 1836. On December 18, 1837, Congress approved an act to provide for the publication of the laws and journals of the Republic of Texas, with the Secretary of State required to contract for the printing and to arrange for its distribution.

The duty of editing and then distributing the printed laws and journals of each session of the legislature was affirmed by the 1st Legislature in the act to define the duties of Secretary of State, approved May 9, 1846. The 8th Legislature on November 22, 1859 provided that the Secretary of State, the Treasurer, and the Comptroller should advertise for proposals to print the laws and journals, governor's messages, reports, and other printing. They would award a contract and the printer would be supervised by the Secretary of State. The duties of these three were expanded by the 13th Legislature on February 17, 1873 when they "constituted a board for examination and approval of the accounts of the Public Printer." The composition of the board was changed by the 14th Legislature, March 14, 1874 to include the Governor, the Secretary of State, and the Attorney General. A Board of Public Printing was created by the 15th Legislature, June 27, 1876, composed of the Attorney General, the Treasurer, and the Secretary of State, with the Secretary of State in charge of the records. The Board was abolished by the 36th Legislature, April 5, 1919 and its functions transferred to the State Board of Control (currently the General Services Commission).

Arrangement:
The loose records of the Republic era are arranged chronologically, as are the post-annexation minutes, account books, letter press books, etc.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
None

Gaps? 1846-1861, 1863-1873, possibly others.

Problems:
The printing records for the Republic have been laminated. The Online Public Access Catalog record for this series is incomplete, describing only a part of these records.

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and none were found for this series or for equivalent or related series.

Publications based on records:
Binkley, William C. (ed.), Official Correspondence of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, New York, D. Appleton-Century Co., 1936, 2 volumes.

Jenkins, John H. (ed. and comp.), Papers of the Texas Revolution, 1835-1836, Austin, Presidial Press, 1973, 10 volumes.

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Title: Meeting Agenda and Minutes
Series item number: 1.1.058
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: A
Retention: PM

Title: Correspondence -- Administrative
Series item number: 1.1.007
Agency item number: Not Applicable
Archival code: R
Retention: 3

Appraisal Decision:

The overseeing of public printing was a significant function of the Secretary of State from the very beginning. The records documenting this function are mostly archival, particularly the minutes and the correspondence. Binkley's and Jenkins' publications both draw upon the Republic printing records, but they are limited chronologically to the Texas Revolution, and may not be complete even within that time period. No one has microfilmed these documents. The Republic printing records are archival due to their age as well as to the historical importance of at least some of the documents. The meeting minutes of the Board of Public Printing are also archival, and will be described separately as a part of the Agency Minutes project. Therefore the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain these records, and perhaps reappraise the non-Republic records during the next phase of the Secretary of State appraisal project.

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Record Series Review
Series Title: Extradition records

Agency: Secretary of State

Obsolete record series? Yes

Ongoing record series? No

Archival holdings:
Extradition records, 1837-1940 (bulk 1875-1900), 57 cubic ft.

Related records are:

Secretary of State,

United States diplomatic correspondence, and
Executive record books.

Governors (records of individual governors).

Adjutant General,

Lists of fugitives from justice.

Description:
The extradition records consist of both individual case files and ledger books, dating from 1837-1940. A case file typically contains a requisition form, which is a formal demand by a state and its governor for apprehension and return of a fugitive from that state. The requisition gives the name of the fugitive, the alleged crime, the court and county where the charges were filed, the location where the fugitive is presently thought to be, the agent appointed to bring the fugitive back, and the date of the requisition. A case file may also contain supporting documents such as correspondence or a copy of the grand jury indictment. These case files contain requisitions both to the governor of Texas from other states for fugitives hiding in Texas and from Texas governors to other states for the extradition of fugitives from Texas justice. Although there are some extradition case files as early as 1837 and as late as 1901, the bulk of them are concentrated between 1875 and 1900. There are also six ledger books of requisition requests to and from the state of Texas. There are separate sections in the ledger books for requisitions made by Texas on other states and for extraditions granted by Texas. In either case, each request has categories for the date, name of fugitive, offense, county, by whom, state, agent, and special conditions. The ledgers date from 1883-1940.

Purpose:
Extradition case files and ledger books were created to maintain records on requests for extraditions of fugitives from justice, both requests by the state of Texas to other states, and requests to the state of Texas by other states.

Agency Program:
The Code of Criminal Procedure adopted by the 6th Legislature, Adjourned Session in August 1856 provided for extradition of fugitives from justice between Texas and other states. Article 878 of the Code stated: "A person charged in any State or Territory of the United States with treason, felony, or other crime, who shall flee from justice and be found in this State, shall, on demand of the Executive Authority of the State or Territory from which he fled, be delivered up to be removed to the State or Territory having jurisdiction of the crime." Extraditions were made through the Governor's Office but were processed and retained by the Secretary of State and are considered records of that office. As late as 1978, the Secretary of State had the responsibility of processing all requests for extradition and fugitive warrants.

Arrangement:
Case files are alphabetical by name of fugitive. Ledgers list the requests in either alphabetical or chronological order.

Access Constraints: None

Use Constraints: None

Indexes or finding aids required for, or an aid to access?
Name index in finding aid (92 pages)

Gaps? Few records are present prior to 1875.

Problems: None

Known related records in other agencies: None

Previous destructions:
Destruction requests on file in the Archives and Information Services Division of the Library and Archives Commission were checked for the Secretary of State, and the following two were found for this series or for equivalent or related series:
Extradition records [microfilm], 1956-1979 (approved December 16, 1991); and
Waiver of extradition and fugitives from justice records, 1958-1974 (approved September 21, 1987).

Publications based on records: None

Equivalent series from state Records Retention Schedule:
Not Applicable

Appraisal Decision:

Extradition records have a history of appraisal at the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

In November 1984, David Gracy (then Director of the State Archives) replied to a questionnaire from the State Archivist at the Minnesota Historical Society, asking "no" to the following question: "Does your State Archives consider extradition records to be permanently valuable?" (My reading of the context of the questionnaire is that the question concerned future acquisitions rather than a retroactive appraisal.) When asked, "What is the rationale for your appraisal decision?" Dr. Gracy replied with the following: "(1) Research demand. (2) Knowledge that extradition information would appear in court or police records more appropriately than as a separate body of data." (I personally am not convinced that either court or police records are readily available; my sense is that much of them have been lost.)

In May 1988, Paul Beck (then Survey Archivist), wrote the following in a preliminary appraisal report on Extradition records: "Retention of these records is recommended because of the work already done on them [acid-free folders, alphabetical order, item-level finding aid], their intrinsic value, the difficulty and uncertainty that would be involved in separating out the more famous ones [e.g. Jesse James, Frank James, Sam Bass, James Courtright, John Wesley Hardin], and the fact that most pre-date 1900."

Extradition records do provide valuable information on crime in late-19th century Texas, and supplement at least one other series, the Adjutant General's lists of fugitives from justice. No one has microfilmed these documents. Although the somewhat large volume of these records (57 cubic ft.) may be regrettable, they do receive moderately high use for the genealogical and historical information they provide. Therefore the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission should retain them.

Page last modified: August 31, 2011