Texas Governors and Their Times

A logo with the text of Texas Governors and Their Times 1846-1946


In This Exhibit:   The Governor's Office  |  The Governor's Mansion  | 
Early Statehood  |  War, Ruin, and Reconstruction  |  The Wild West  |
 Texas Rising  | The Politics of Personality  |  HOME

 

The Governor's Office

A photograph of a large floor space with various office equipment and a man sitting down at a desk. Governors Business Office, 1911 or 1912, Texas State Capitol Interior Photograph Collection, 001/006-022. Prints and Photographs.

Governors Business Office, 1911 or 1912, Texas State Capitol Interior Photograph Collection, 001/006-022. Prints and Photographs.

After the U.S. Congress approved the annexation of Texas in March of 1845, delegates gathered in Austin on July 4 to draft a new constitution for the state. The result was an impressive document considered by many to be one of the best state constitutions, notable for its simplicity and clarity. Provisions for the Executive Department included a governor who was a U.S. citizen, a resident of Texas for three years prior to the election, and at least 30 years of age. Terms were set at two years and unlimited, but a governor could not hold office for more than four years in a six-year period. Decades later, after joining the Confederacy and participating in the Civil War then rejoining the Union during the period of Reconstruction in the 1860s, delegates would once again craft documents outlining the structure of government and the office of governor.

Authors of the 1876 constitution, which stands today, limited the power and authority of the leader. Some duties of the governor included signing legislation into law, appointing judges when vacancies occurred, and issuing pardons. The governor also served as the commander in chief of the state military. One powerful tool the constitution granted to the governor was the ability to veto single items of legislation. In 1975, the legislature expanded the two-year gubernatorial term to four years.

The governor maintained an office in the Texas State Capitol building in Austin. From 1856, Texas governors were able to reside in the Texas Governor’s Mansion, located near the Capitol.
 


An open book with text on the right. A long tassel is also shown. Inaugural Ball dance card in honor of Governor O.B. Colquitt, January 17, 1911. Inaugurations of Texas Governors, Box 2-23/902.

Inaugural Ball dance card in honor of Governor O.B. Colquitt, January 17, 1911. Inaugurations of Texas Governors, Box 2-23/902. 
Cover, Front page, Pages 2 and 3, Pages 4 and 5Pages 6 and 7, Pages 7 and 8, and Back Cover. 

Front cover of book with brown tassel on spine. An image of the Texas Capitol is included. Inaugural Ball dance card in honor of Governor Thomas M. Campbell, January 15, 1907. Inaugurations of Texas Governors, Box 2-23/902.

Inaugural Ball dance card in honor of Governor Thomas M. Campbell, January 15, 1907. Inaugurations of Texas Governors, Box 2-23/902.
Cover, Pages 1 and 2, Pages 3 and 4Pages 4 and 5, and Back Cover

Photograph of a book cover in blue with a gold tassel on the spine. Inaugural Ball dance card in honor of Governor James V. Allred and Lieutenant Governor Walter F. Woodul, January 19, 1937. Inaugurations of Texas Governors, Box 2-23/902. 

Inaugural Ball dance card in honor of Governor James V. Allred and Lieutenant Governor Walter F. Woodul, January 19, 1937. Inaugurations of Texas Governors, Box 2-23/902. 
Cover, Front page, Pages 2 and 3Pages 4 and 5Pages 6 and 7, and Back Cover

Part of the inauguration celebration of Texas governors is the inaugural ball. This small booklet includes a program of the events of the inauguration and a dance card. A woman attending the ball would have used this dance card to record the names of her intended dance partners for each dance of the night.
 


 

A photograph of a page with handwriting on it. Image 1 of Journal of the 1845 Convention, Texas Constitutional Convention of 1845 records, Volume 1932/002-1.A photograph of a page with handwriting on it. Image 2 of Journal of the 1845 Convention, Texas Constitutional Convention of 1845 records, Volume 1932/002-1A photograph of a page with handwriting on it. Image 3 of Journal of the 1845 Convention, Texas Constitutional Convention of 1845 records, Volume 1932/002-1A photograph of a page with handwriting on it. Image 4 of Journal of the 1845 Convention, Texas Constitutional Convention of 1845 records, Volume 1932/002-1.

Journal of the 1845 Convention, Texas Constitutional Convention of 1845 records, Volume 1932/002-1.
 

When the Republic of Texas was annexed as a state into the United States of America, the Texas Constitutional Convention of 1845 formed to create a new constitution. This journal documents reports of the committees within the constitutional convention. The Executive Committee report shown here reflects the creation of the role of the governor of the state. Image 1, Image 2, Image 3Image 4. Click or tap on thumbnails and links for larger images.
 

Next - The Governor's Mansion -->

Texas Governors and Their Times Exhibit Pages:

Home | The Governor's Office | The Governor's Mansion | Early Statehood | War, Ruin, and Reconstruction | The Wild West | Texas RisingThe Politics of Personality

 

Top of page

Lobby Exhibits Home 

Page last modified: September 16, 2022