Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

William H. Foster Jr. papers, 1942-1995 and undated



Descriptive Summary

Creator: Foster, William Hague, 1918-1999.
Title: William H. Foster Jr. papers
Dates: 1892-1898, 1942-1995 and undated
Abstract William Hague Foster Jr. (1918-1999) was a Presbyterian minister in Texas and Virginia. He graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary in 1942 with a Bachelor of Divinity degree, and served as a chaplain in the U.S. Naval Reserve from 1944-1946. Foster received a Master of Theology degree in 1948 from Princeton Theological Seminary and became the assistant minister at First Presbyterian Church in Houston the same year. He became pastor of Trinity Presbyterian Church in Arlington, Virginia in 1952 and received an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree in 1963 from Austin College. After 23 years at Trinity, Foster moved to Sherman, Texas in 1977 and served as interim minister of First Presbyterian Church in Denison. He left Denison and served for nearly seventeen years at First Presbyterian Church in Whitewright before retiring from the ministry in 1995. Major subjects documented in the collection include Foster’s education at both Austin Seminary and Princeton Theological Seminary and his ministry at his subsequent church appointments. The bulk of the material covering his ministry is from his time at the First Presbyterian Church in Whitewright, Texas (1979-1995).
Identification: 2015-003; 2016-001
Extent: 2.5 feet manuscript material, 116 photographic negatives, 17 microcassette tapes, 4.5 feet note cards
Language: Materials are in English.
Repository: Austin Seminary Archives, Stitt Library, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary.

Biographical note

William Hague Foster Jr. (1918-1999) was born in Midland, Texas, on July 13, 1918 to Reverend William Hague Foster Sr. and Bess Hardwicke Omohundro. He attended Daniel Baker College for one year, and then moved to Austin College where he graduated with a Bachelors of Arts in 1939. He graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary in 1942 with a Bachelor of Divinity degree. While attending Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Foster was the editor of the Austin Seminary Theolog, the Seminary’s student publication. He was licensed and ordained in 1942 at El Paso Presbytery and was then called to First Presbyterian Church in Lubbock.

Foster married Dorothy Marion Sitter in Dallas, TX on August 28, 1942. They had four children together: Judith Lynn, Nancy Elizabeth, Evan Sitter, and William Hague III. He served as a chaplain in the U.S. Naval Reserve from 1944-1946.

Foster received a Master of Theology degree in 1948 from Princeton Theological Seminary and became the assistant minister at First Presbyterian Church in Houston the same year. He became pastor of Trinity Presbyterian Church in Arlington, Virginia in 1952 and received an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree in 1963 from Austin College. After 23 years at Trinity, Foster moved to Sherman, Texas in 1977 and served as interim minister of First Presbyterian Church in Denison. He left Denison and served for nearly seventeen years at First Presbyterian Church in Whitewright before retiring from the ministry in 1995.

Foster passed away on February 20, 1999 in Sherman, Texas.


Scope and Content Note

The materials in this collection date from roughly 1942-1995 and cover most of Foster’s adult life. The collection includes paper documents, photographic negatives, printed material, and twenty mini-cassette tapes. Major subjects documented in the collection include William Foster’s education at both Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary and Princeton Theological Seminary and his ministry at his subsequent church appointments. The bulk of the material covering his ministry is from his time at the First Presbyterian Church in Whitewright, Texas (1979-1995) where he spent seventeen years before retiring.

The first series, Education (1942-1948, and undated), contains photographic negatives from Foster’s time at Austin Theological Presbyterian Seminary and notes and assignments from his time at Princeton Theological Seminary (1946-1948). Fifteen negatives in the collection document the construction of the Austin Seminary Chapel in 1942. Several other photographic negatives document buildings on the campuses of both Austin Presbyterian Seminary and the University of Texas at Austin, including the finished chapel and the UT tower. The rest of the negatives capture recreational activities including lake outings, group dinners, and performances. There are also several group shots and a few portraits amongst the negatives.

The second series, Ministerial (1941-1995, undated), contains work and materials related to Foster’s ministry. Most of these documents are related to Foster’s time at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Arlington, VA and First Presbyterian Church in Whitewright, TX. Sermons and related materials are organized in folders according to Foster’s original system. Each book is broken up into chapters; with missing chapter numbers indicating material missing from the accession at the time of donation (2015-003). These folders contain typed and annotated sermons, handwritten sermon notes, and printed sermons from other ministers. The Sermon notes sub-series contains notes boxed together and labeled by year. The titles in the finding aid reflect the labels on the original boxes and do not always accurately reflect the actual date ranges of the documents. The Published materials (1892-1961) sub-series contains published reference documents not authored by Foster. The Ministerial series also contains a small collection of session meeting minutes from the First Presbyterian Church of Whitewright. In addition to these documents, the collection includes three distinct research indexes compiled on index cards. One collection of index cards is organized by book of Bible (the Holy Scripture), one by theme (sermon illustrations), and the last contains bibliographic information (texts for sermons). Foster appears to have used these indexes to organize ideas and references for use in sermon writing. The microcassettes make up the last part of the Ministerial series. These have not been listened to, but the inventory of the collection contains a list of the labels from the tapes.


Organization of Collection

Series 1: Education, 1942-1948, undated
Series II: Ministerial, 1941-1995, undated

Restrictions

Access Restrictions

Materials are available by appointment only. Contact the archivist for details.

Usage Restrictions

Microcassettes are restricted due to format.


Index Terms

Personal Names
Foster, William Hague, 1918-1999.
Organizations
Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary.
First Presbyterian Church (Whitewright, Tex.)
Trinity Presbyterian Church (Arlington, Va.)
Princeton Theological Seminary.
Subjects
Presbyterian Church--Clergy.
Sermons, English--United States.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Foster (William H. Jr.) papers, 1942-1995 and undated, Austin Seminary Archives, Stitt Library, Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary

Acquisition Information

Received from Bill Foster and Nancy McGraw in April 2015.

Processing Information

Processed by Jennifer Allen and Elyse Chevallier, volunteers from The University of Texas at Austin School of Information, May 6, 2016.


Detailed Description of the Collection

Box
F007 Series 1: Education, 1942-1948, undated
Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary negatives:
Austin Seminary chapel construction, 1942
Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, undated
The University of Texas at Austin, undated
Lady Bird Lake, undated
Austin, undated
Box
F104 Princeton Theological Seminary:
Greek New Testament edited with critical apparatus by Dr. Eberhard Nestle, American bible Society, [photocopy of cover, title page, and inscription made by archivist], 1946
Studies in John, Dr. Howard Kuist, 1946
What to Preach, 1946-1947
Epistle to the Hebrews, Dr. H. T. Kuist, 1948
Doctrinal Preaching, Dean Edward H. Roberts, 1948
Christology, undated
Austin College baccalaureate and commencement program, 1963



Box
F104 Series II: Ministerial, 1941-1995, undated
Sermons and related materials:
Old Testament, 1956, 1974-1992
Prophets, 1956-1971, 1985, undated
Matthew 1, 1953-1958, 1974-1975, 1986, undated
Matthew 2, undated
Matthew 3, undated
Matthew 4, 1959, 1969-1973, undated
Matthew 5, 1954-1971, undated
Matthew 6, 1955-1971, undated
Matthew 7, 1956-1970, undated
Matthew 8, 1974, undated
Matthew 9, 1956-1963, undated
Matthew 10, 1947, 1959, undated
Matthew 11, 1981, undated
Matthew 12, 1962, undated
Matthew 13, 1961, 1973, 1986, undated
Matthew 14, 1966, 1991
Matthew 15, 1969, undated
Matthew 16, 1959-1970, undated
Matthew 18, 1957, undated
Matthew 19, undated
Matthew 20, 1962
Box
F105 Matthew 21, 1953, 1980, undated
Matthew 22, 1957-1959
Matthew 23, 1967
Matthew 24, 1959, undated
Matthew 25, 1952-1964
Matthew 26, 1964, 1978-1985, undated
Matthew 27, 1955-1964, undated
Matthew 28, 1951-1954, undated
Mark 1, 1969, 1985-1986, undated
Mark 2, 1966, undated
Mark 4, undated
Mark 5, 1970, undated
Mark 8, 1956, undated
Mark 9, 1971, undated
Mark 10, 1965, undated
Mark 12, 1954, undated
Mark 13, 1973
Mark 14, 1970, undated
Mark 15, 1968, undated
Mark 16, 1963
Luke 1, 1955, 1982, undated
Luke 2, 1968-1972, undated
Luke 5, 1970
Luke 6, undated
Luke 7, undated
Luke 8, 1967, undated
Luke 9, 1967-1970, undated
Luke 11, 1954
Luke 12, 1956-1967, 1983, undated
Luke 14, 1964
Luke 15, 1956-1963
Luke 17, 1985-1986, undated
Luke 18, undated
Luke 19, 1956, undated
Luke 21, 1960, undated
Luke 22, undated
Luke 24, 1954
John 1, 1949, 1963, 1974, undated
John 4, 1956, undated
John 7, 1954, undated
John 8, 1961-1963, undated
John 9, undated
John 10, undated
John 11, undated
John 12, 1971, 1986, undated
John 13, 1961, undated
John 14, 1969, undated
John 15, 1985, undated
John 16, 1987, undated
John 17, 1965, undated
John 18, undated
John 19, 1959
John 20, 1956-1963, 1985, undated
Acts 1-4, 1954-1965, undated
Acts 9-12, 1956, 1985, undated
Box
F106 Acts 13-16, 1959-1961, 1978-1984, undated
Acts 28, undated
Romans 1-4, 1951, undated
Romans 5-8, 1963, 1970, 1985, undated
Romans 13-16, 1955, undated
I Corinthians, 1978-1986, undated
Ephesians, undated
Philippians, 1961, 1975, undated
Hebrews, 1950, 1967, 1978-1986
Peter 1-2, 1986
Beatitudes, 1985-1990, undated
Ten Commandments, 1967-1975, undated
Men and women around the cross, 1978-1984, undated
Parables, 1983, undated
Christmas talks or sermons, 1958-1987, undated
Nation, 1956, 1969, 1983-1986, undated
Predestination, 1985-1992
The Lord’s Prayer (WMH Kadel 1957), 1957
Church music, 1979-1986, undated
Home – the Christian father and mother, 1951-1967, 1983, undated
Children’s sermons, 1971
Sin, 1986
Box
F107 Sermons, 1954, 1965-1971, 1982-1992, undated
Sermon notes, 1986-1995
Bible studies, 1944-1946
Printed material:
Book of Congregational Worship [photocopy of cover, title page, and inscription made by archivist] , undated
Outlines of Sermons Based on the Old Testament (1892-1898) by Rev. M. Craig Johnson, “for Wm. H. Foster, Jr., the gift of Mrs. Gould Cloud of Houston, Texas,” undated
Box
B074a The Book of Common Worship [annotated and with inserts], 1956
Box
F107 “Preaching and Doctrine,” lectures by Professor James S. Stewart, Edinburgh University, Scotland, given at the Thirteenth Annual Conference on Evangelism, Ontario Ladies’ College, August 24-26, 1960
“Appendix to The Anthology of Sermons,” compiled by Ben L. Rose, 1961
First Presbyterian Church of Whitewright, Texas, session minutes, 1981-1983
Research indexes (cards):
Loose notes removed from cards, “Prayers,” 1968, 1972
Box
F108a Sermon illustrations, undated
Box
F107 Sermon illustrations, undated
The Holy Scriptures, undated
The Holy Scriptures, undated
Texts for sermons, undated
Box
E009e Microcassettes, 1986-1990 (as labeled):
4-86 Bonham 1st Ch.
Blood/Martyrs 5-27-90Wh
McCord-AC Hall of Honor and CupCold Water Whitewright 11-88
How God Used a “decree” Roman King Wh/ 12.13.87
After Easter? 4-10-88 Wh
NOAH Wh. 5/29/88
Jesus/Thomas 3.22.87 and JESUS/CROWDS Palm S. 4.12.87
Only Believe Mk5/8-2-87 Wh
PS. 46 MI. Fort 8-21-88
Know Jesus? Wh. 8-6-89
PreInnaug Jan15. 89 and Capitol Pun. Wh.1.29.89
All This/Heaven Wh 4-22-90
Judas-Wh 3.15.87
David Wh. 6-26-88
Amazing Jesus Wh. 2-89
Happens in Ch? W. 10-29-89 and JosephGrtTxs 10-22-89
Compas./Sin Wh.6.24.90