Keeping and Using Texas Archives
The Texas State Library and Archives Commission collects, preserves, and makes available a vast number of materials. Some of our collections date back to before the Texas Republic formed in 1836. Keeping track of these materials and storing them safely are essential first steps in caring for archives.
Archivists and librarians can affirm that dealing with records is both an intellectual and physical job! The public rarely gets a behind-the-scenes look at the massive amounts of records kept in stack storage. Selected by Halley Grogan, Archivist. This photo captures both the literal and symbolic act of balancing the preservation of records with providing public access. Click or tap on thumbnail for larger image.
Long sought State Comptroller’s records in cowbarn are discovered by state librarian and microfilming supervisor. Click or tap on thumbnail for larger image.
“Accessions, 1-5000, about 1909.” Image 1, Cover and Image 2, Entries 1251-1275. Archives and Information Services Division records, Texas State Library and Archives Commission, 306-55. “Drake, Samuel Adams. The making of the great West, 1512-1883. New York: C. Scribners, 1891.” TSLAC-Main Collection, 978 D789.
These two items show the behind the scenes world of libraries and archives. The ledger records publication materials received by the then Texas State Library in 1909. Selected by Andrew Glass, Library Assistant. The Drake book is still a part of the Commission’s collection. Click or tap on thumbnails for larger image.
This Texas Supreme Court case file clarifies a procedural point of law concerning community property and a widow’s right to dispose of that property. The document highlights how conditions during the Civil War might have led a poor widow to sell land to feed her children, and how, decades later, her grown son would attempt to regain his birthright. Selected by Tonia Wood, Senior Reference Archivist. The case provides genealogical details about my great-great-great grandparents and serves as a reminder to check spelling variations when researching. Click or tap on thumbnails for larger image.
This original design for the Republic of Texas flag and seal is often overlooked for some of the higher profile records here at the archives. The design is signed by Mirabeau Lamar, President of the Republic of Texas; John M. Hansford, Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives; and David Burnet, President of the Texas Senate. Selected by Sergio Velasco, Research Assistant. Like many of the items at the State Archives, this flag has been viewed by many famous Texans. Click or tap on thumbnail for larger image.