The Records of Governor George W. Bush

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An explanation of the finding aids to the George W. Bush gubernatorial records
Requesting these Bush finding aids


The Records of Governor George W. Bush are located at the George W. Bush Presidential Library in Dallas, Texas. Researchers will expedite the fulfillment of their reference requests by first consulting finding aids describing the records. Requests for records must follow the procedures set forth in the Texas Public Information Act. Public information requests for Governor Bush's records will continue to be submitted to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

The finding aids listed here will also assist researchers in locating records of interest.


An explanation of the finding aids to the George W. Bush gubernatorial records

All but one of these finding aids were created and maintained by the governor’s staff, probably during Bush’s term, to control the records. The exception is the finding aid titled "Bush box and folder." It was begun by individuals working at the George Bush Presidential Library to gain some administrative control over the records while in the Library’s care; it was completed by the staff of the Texas State Archives.

The finding aids are mostly in the form of databases. The finding aids may describe single documents or entire boxes of records; within a finding aid, either is possible.

The finding aids are listed in the order of their probable usefulness to researchers.

Bush Correspondence

The biggest finding aid has 489,257 entries. The data describe individual documents received from 1995 to 2000 including the correspondent’s name and address, date received and replied to (if replied to), who referred to (if referred), and major issue and sub issue. The purpose of several fields is unknown. Only correspondence directed to the governor’s office or to Governor Bush directly was entered into this system; correspondence addressed to other offices within the governor’s office or to individual staff members was not entered.

E-mail addresses that had originally been redacted from the finding aid were restored following Texas Attorney General Open Records Decision OR2002-2314.

The requester’s advantage with this finding aid is the item-by-item description. The requester’s disadvantage when using these records is that the context of the creation and use of the records is absent because the records are filed by their unique number. In addition, some items are missing from the central file. The missing items may be filed elsewhere, but, until the records have been fully prepared for research, locating them will be difficult. The finding aid covers approximately 1,100 cubic feet of records.

The database contains a minor (we believe) number of records whose data fields have shifted. These errors will be corrected as soon as possible.

Bush box and folder

This finding aid was created by individuals working at the George W. Bush Presidential Library to establish administrative control over the Bush gubernatorial records while they were in the Library’s care; it was completed by the staff of the Texas State Archives. It consists of 16,428 records that are folder title lists of the records as received. The file includes the name of the particular office within the Governor’s Office that created and maintained the records. The finding aid covers approximately 1,000 cubic feet of records.

Bush mail log

This finding aid has 489,257 entries. The data in this finding aid are similar to those in the Bush Correspondence finding aid except that it lacks the major issue and sub issue fields. For about half the records, an abbreviated subject term (using only eight spaces and a three-space extension) has been entered. The lack of subject access limits the utility of this finding aid. A comparison of the Bush mail log finding aid to the Bush Correspondence finding aid was not conducted although it seems very likely that Bush mail log database is a subset of Bush Correspondence. E-mail addresses that had originally been redacted from the finding aid were restored following Texas Attorney General Open Records Decision OR2002-2314.

Bush

Seventeen offices within the Governor’s Office have individual finding aids within this file. They range in size from one record to almost 6,000. The contents vary as well. The finding aids may describe individual documents or entire boxes of records. Data fields give the category and sub-category of the correspondence, a date, an author, a description, response and response date, folder and box numbers, the retention schedule, date destroyed and by whom authorized, and comments. Although the fields are constant across the seventeen databases, data entry is not. Not all fields were used by all offices; nor were they used consistently within one office. The box number and folder fields were rarely employed. The degree to which the gubernatorial records now in the custody of the State Library and Archives Commission match the finding aids is unknown at this time. Retrieving documents described in these finding aids will be slow, but the documents, if found, will be in context with other records.

Division

Number of records

Administration – Accounting

38 records

Administration – CSD

6 records

Administration – Operations

27 records

Communications

173 records

Correspondence

421 records

Criminal Justice

87 records

Disabilities Commission

1 record

Executive Office

504 records

General Counsel redacted *

5,993 records

Grants Team

3 records

Human Resources

33 records

Legislative

21 records

Music Film and Multimedia

5 records

Office of the First Lady

32 records

Policy Office

83 records

Scheduling

84 records

TCWEC [Texas Council on Workforce and Economic Competitiveness]

589 records

* Records within the General Counsel finding aid have been redacted for information made confidential by Texas Government Code 552.101 (common law privacy) as we were instructed by the Texas Attorney General in Open Records Decision OR2002-2314. E-mail addresses that had originally been redacted from the finding aid were restored following the same open records decision.

Finding aids for six other offices were set up, but were not used. Those six offices are:

Administrative – Office

Executive Office – Executive Assistant

Executive Office – Senior Advisor

Internal Auditor

Mansion

Womens Commission

Filing Cabinets

The finding aids consist of general descriptions of records (by series) in each of these offices within the Governor’s Office, the quantity of the records, and their disposition (e.g., stay, send to Presidential Library, destroy). Inventories exist for these offices:

Administration

Administration – Accounting

Administration – Human Resources

Administration – Internal Auditor

Administration – Operations

Appointments

Correspondence Filing Cabinet

Correspondence Inventory (box numbers and dates of contents [a few months in 1995])

Executive

General Counsel

Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities

Grants

Human Resources

Legislative Office

Policy

Press

Vickers Filing System

Empty document:

Audit

Executive - Archives Inventory

In this finding aid the first row of a set has a folder title and the following rows describe the contents. Folders are listed alphabetically by subject. The finding aid contains 2,793 rows. The inventory was created by Sheryl Labar, who worked as administrative assistant to Senior Advisor Margaret LaMontagne. Most of the documents concern education issues.

Gifts

The finding aid consists of 5,400 records. It describes the gift to the governor; whether it was a personal gift, a gift to the state, or accepted to be donated elsewhere; from whom received; and value. E-mail addresses that had originally been redacted from the finding aid were restored following Texas Attorney General Open Records Decision OR2002-2314.


Requesting these Bush finding aids

Follow the Texas Public Information Act procedures to request a copy of the Bush finding aids on CD.

 

 

Page last modified: May 10, 2013