Austin History Center

Beverly Sheffield Papers

An Inventory of the Collection



Overview of the Collection

Creator: Sheffield, Beverly
Title: Beverly Sheffield Papers
Dates: 1895, 1909-2005
Abstract: Beverly Sheffield was a resident of Austin, Texas, who served as director of the Austin Parks and Recreation Department (PARD) for twenty-seven years. His papers consists of correspondence, memoranda, financial, legal and business records, photographs, printed materials, and clippings that document his life, activities, and interests. Included are materials related to PARD and Central Texas environmental issues and groups.
Identification: AR.1997.007
Quantity: 4 linear feet (9 text boxes and 2 lantern slide boxes)
Location: Archives Stacks, Outer Vault, qAR
Language: The records are in English.
Repository: Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, 810 Guadalupe, PO BOX 2287, Austin, TX 78768

Biographical Note

Beverly Sheffield was born on March 7, 1913, in San Antonio, Texas. After briefly attending St. Mary's University in San Antonio, he attended the University of Texas at Austin, where he received a B.S. degree in Physical Education (1934) and a Master's of Education (1948). After completing his undergraduate degree, Sheffield took his first job as aquatics director with the city of Austin's Recreation Department. During World War II, he served as a recreation officer in the Navy (1943-1945). After his military service, Sheffield returned to Austin and, in 1946, was hired as director of the Austin Parks and Recreation Department (PARD), a position that he held for twenty-seven years (1946-1973). In 1973, he left PARD and became director of the city's bicentennial celebration. Following the conclusion of that celebration in 1976, Sheffield served for one year (1977) as director of the city's Trusts and Endowments Program. He then became the first director and co-founder of the Austin Community Foundation (1989-1987).

Sheffield is perhaps most well known for the many recreational programs that he initiated during his time as director of PARD. He was actively involved in improving the condition of Barton Springs Pool, and he helped to establish the Town Lake Hike and Bike Trail, Zilker Botanical Gardens, and the Zilker Hillside Theater (renamed the Beverly S. Sheffield Zilker Hillside Theater in 1997). He also presided over the first lighting of the Zilker Park Christmas Tree, which became an annual Austin tradition.

Throughout his life, Sheffield was involved with numerous civic organizations in Austin; some of the organizations on which he served as a board member include the Austin Rotary Club, the Austin Heritage Society, the Austin Symphony Society, the Travis County Audubon Society, and the Austin Arts Council. He was twice honored by the American Parks and Recreation Society, receiving both the Merit Award and the Distinguished Fellow Award in 1971. In 1979, the Austin Board of Realtors named Sheffield the Most Worthy Citizen of Austin. In his later years, Sheffield worked with environmental groups to control development and preserve water quality in Austin, and he was a regular swimmer at Barton Springs Pool.


Scope and Contents

The collection, which is made up of donations made between 1969 and 2006, is comprised of materials both collected by and created by Beverly Sheffield and his wife, Lois.

The first series, Biographical Materials (1919-1959, 1971-1978, 1988-2005) consists of materials related to Sheffield's youth, his career at the Parks and Recreation Department, and his life following retirement. It includes correspondence (such as photocopies of letters from George Washington Carver to Sheffield), as well as obituaries, tributes, and eulogies. There are also some personal photographs and assorted professional photographs. (The bulk of this series comes from the 2006 donation.)

The second series, City of Austin Parks & Recreation Department (1895, 1909-1999), consists of materials related to specific divisions within the department (e.g., Administrative, Recreation, Golf, etc.), as well as materials related to events (e.g., Yule Fest) in which the department was involved, museums, and historical markers. Included are annual reports, histories, legal and financial records, and printed materials regarding the athletic, aquatic, community-recreation, playgrounds, special-populations, and tennis division of PARD. A significant portion of this series consists of materials that relate to the Parks division, including documentation of individual parks. Also included are materials relating to cultural programs sponsored by the Activities division as well as materials relating to museums, including the O. Henry Museum and the Elisabet Ney Museum. In addition, there are materials related to Sheffield's career at the department, including awards, honors and recognition that he received. (The bulk of the latter comes from the 2006 donation.)

The third series, Austin, Texas (1935-1999), consists of materials concerning the history of Austin, local landmarks, civic organizations, and persons of note. Included are writings, brochures, programs, newspaper clippings and text outlines for presentations about historical events in Austin and landmarks such as Barton Springs, moonlight towers, Texas State Cemetery, Treaty Oak, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Research Center, Town Lake (Lady Bird Lake), Mount Bonnell and Symphony Square. Sheffield's involvement with various civic organizations such as the Austin Office of Trust & Endowments and the Austin Community Foundation is documented with reports, memoranda, written histories and newspaper clippings. And lastly, an assortment of newspaper clippings, written biographies and testimonials highlight the achievements of several Austin individuals that have contributed greatly to the Austin community.

The fourth series, Central Texas Environment (1986-1998), consists of materials relating to local and regional environmental concerns and groups. Included are newspaper clippings, correspondence, reports, printed materials, and legal documentation. Of particular significance is documentation created by environmental organizations that came about in the 1990s in order to protect the water quality of Barton Springs, Barton Creek, and the Edwards Aquifer.

The fifth series, Assorted (1994-1996), includes a newspaper clipping about the federal Environmental Protection Act and a short typewritten note.

The final series, Photographs (1935-1954, 1964-1978), consists of 83 photographs that were mostly moved from the other series. See the Detailed Description of the Collection to identify where the photographs were moved from - notes about the moved photographs were added to the relevant series and the photos are identified by number. Also included are 102 glass lantern slides, primarily on natural subjects, which would have been used for lectures and presentations.


Arrangement

The collection is arranged into six series:
I. Biographical Materials
II. City of Austin Parks & Recreation Department
III. Austin, Texas
IV. Central Texas Environment
V. Assorted
VI. Photographs

Restrictions

Restrictions on Access

Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use

The Austin History Center (AHC) is the owner of the physical materials in the AHC collections and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from the AHC before any publication use. The AHC does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners. Consult repository for more details.

Physical Characteristics or Technical Requirements

Electronic records included in the collection will be processed at some point in the future. See processing archivist for more details.


Index Terms

This record series is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Persons:
Crenshaw, Roberta.
Ney, Elisabet, 1833-1907.
Henry, Oliver (pseudonym).
Porter, William Sydney.
Sheffield, Beverly.
Organizations:
Austin Community Foundation.
Barton Springs/Edwards Aquifer Conservation District.
City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department.
FM Properties.
Freeport McMoran Cooper & Gold Inc.
Hill Country Foundation.
Save Barton Creek Association.
Save Our Springs Coalition.
Places:
Austin (Tex.).
Barton Creek.
Barton Springs.
Deep Eddy.
Edwards Aquifer.
Town Lake.
Zilker Park.
Subjects:
Bicentennial.
Environmental Protection.
Parks.
Recreation--Texas--Austin.
Salamanders--Texas--Austin--Barton Springs.
Document Types:
Black-and-white photographs.
Business records.
Color photographs.
Correspondence.
Creative works.
Financial records.
Histories.
Lantern slides.
Legal records.
Memoranda.
Photographs.
Printed materials.

Related Material

Archives and Manuscripts


  • AR.J.006 Elisabet Ney Papers
  • AR.Z.021 Austin Aqua Festival Records
  • AR.Z.025 Austin (Tex.). Parks & Recreation Department Records
  • AR 1991.012 Marine McCalla Papers
  • AR.1996.012 Alma Sioux Scarberry Papers
  • AR.2001.003 Austin (Tex.). Parks and Recreation Department, Cemeteries Division Records
  • AR.2002.008 Gloria & Mel Pennington Papers
  • AR.2013.024 Austin (Tex.). Boards and Commissions. Parks and Recreation Board Records
  • AR 2014.017 Austin (Tex.). Parks and Recreation Department. Photo Negative Collection

Austin Files


  • AF Biography File: Sheffield, Beverly, H.
  • AF Parks and Recreation Department P 1400
  • AF Celebrations-U.S. Bicentennial, 1976 C1900 (14) P T
  • AF Community Leadership-Austin Community Foundation, The C6075 (6) T
  • AF Zilker Park-Zilker Hillside Theater Z0400 (3) P T

General Collection


  • A 711.558 Austin (Tex.). Dept. of Parks and Recreation. Town Lake Development Regulations. 1968.
  • A 711.558 SH Sheffield, Beverly S. Planning Ahead for Recreation in Austin: A Study of Present and Future Needs of the Parks and Recreation System in Austin, Texas, 1950-1960. 1952.
  • A 793.01922 AUR245S Austin (Tex.). Recreation Department. Social Recreation Institute, Book II: Review of Material Used in the Institute Conducted by Mrs. Anne Livingston, Nat'l. Recreation Assn., Oct. 14-18, 1946. 1946.
  • A 796.068 SH Sheffield, Beverly Stephen. Study of the Community Use of the Shipe Playground. 1948.
  • A 797.2 SH Sheffield, Beverly S. Historical Narrative on 'Deep Eddy Bathing Beach' in Austin, Travis County. 1990.
  • A DVD 361.7609764 AU Austin Community Foundation. Austin Community Foundation 2000-2002 [videorecording]. 2000-2002.
  • A VHS 361.7609764 AU Austin Community Foundation. Austin Community Foundation October 2001 [videorecording]. 2001
  • A 352.73 AU Austin (Tex.). Recreation Department. Annual Report. 1935-1963 (complete set)
  • A 352.73 AU Austin (Tex.). Department of Parks and Recreation. Annual Report. 1963-2012 (few years missing)


Separated Material

The following materials were deaccessioned because two copies of each are available in the general collection:

  • A 352.73 AU 1937 Austin (Tex.). Recreation Dept. Annual Report. 1937.
  • A 352.73 AU 1960-61 Austin (Tex.). Recreation Dept. Annual Report. 1960-61.
  • A 352.73 AU 1962-63 Austin (Tex.). Recreation Dept. Annual Report. 1962-63.
  • A 352.73 AU 1974-75, 75-76 Austin (Tex.). Dept. of Parks and Recreation. Annual Report. 1974-75, 75-76.
  • A 352.73 AU 1976-77 Austin (Tex.). Dept. of Parks and Recreation. Annual Report. 1976-77.
  • A 352.73 AU 1977-78 Austin (Tex.). Dept. of Parks and Recreation. Annual Report. 1977-78.
  • A 352.73 AU 1978-81 Austin (Tex.). Dept. of Parks and Recreation. Annual Report. 1978-81.

The following materials were added to the general collection:

  • A 352.73 AU 1932 Austin (Tex.). Recreation Dept. Annual Report. 1932.
  • A 352.73 AU 1981-82 Austin (Tex.). Dept. of Parks and Recreation. Annual Report. 1981-82.

Eight issues (Fall 1987, Spring 1988, Fall 1989, Spring 1990, Winter 1991-92, Spring 1992, Fall 1994, and Summer 1995) of the "Garden Grapevine newsletter," published by Friends of the Umlauf Sculpture Garden, were moved from the folder containing materials on the Umlauf Garden to the Periodicals Collection.


Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Beverly Sheffield Papers (AR.1997.007). Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Texas.

Acquisition Information

Donor #: DO/1969/091

Donation Dates: 1978-2006

Processing Information

Initial inventory and preliminary processing by Linda Zezulka, April 24, 1997, and Todd Gilliam and Ruth Baker, July 26, 2001.

Final processing and finding aid by Amy Bowman, Nora Stick, and Kyong Rae Lee, December 1, 2003.

Additional materials processed by Roger Simon, July 2014.

Finding aid modified and encoded by Roger Simon, May-August 2014.


Detailed Description of the Collection

I. Biographical Materials, 1919-2005, undated

Personal, 1919-1959, 1971-1978, 1988-2005, undated
Box Folder
1 1 Family correspondence, 1919-1921, 1937
2 Alamo Heights High School (includes photos #103-105), 1927-1931, undated
3 YMCA (includes photos #106-108), 1927-1932, 2000, undated
4 Rags the dog (includes photos #109-146), 1928, 2000, undated
5 Correspondence, 1931
6 George Washington Carver (includes photo #147), 1932-1934, 2003
7 Byers Peak Ranch for Boys (includes photos #148-178), 1932-1939, 1993, undated
8 Writings, 1935-1936, undated
9 War ration books, undated
10 Clippings, 1943-1959, 1971-1978, 1988-2001, undated
11 Correspondence, 1990-1999
12 Barton Springs (includes photo #179), 1994-2001, undated
13 Barton Springs Lifetime Pass group (includes photos #180-187), 1957, 1993-1998, undated
14 Memorabilia, 1998, undated
15 Swim a Lap for Beverly (includes photos #188-195), 1999
16 Recordings of and about Sheffield (2 DVDs), 1991-2001, undated
17 Obituaries, tributes, and eulogies, 1978, 1997-2000, undated
Box Folder
2 1-2 Posthumous award and recognition (including 2 DVDs), 2000-2005
3 Assorted photographs (#084-093), 1943, 1973, 1997-2000, undated
Professional, 1930-2001
Box Folder
2 4 Photographs (#094-102), 1930-1940, 1959, 1969
5-8 Newspaper clippings and printed materials, 1942-1978, 1988, undated
9-10 Awards, honors, and recognition, 1953-2001, undated
11 Correspondence, 1957-1973, 1987-1997, undated
12 Arizona Parks & Recreation Association Convention, 1966
13 Materials by, for, and on Beverly Sheffield, 1949, 1971-1979, 1993-1999, undated
Box Folder
3 1 Materials by Sheffield, 1991-1997
2 Accomplishments, 1971, 1988-2001, undated
3 Retirement, 1978
4 Assorted, 1970



II. City of Austin Parks & Recreation Department , 1895, 1909-2005, undated

General, 1970, undated
Box Folder
3 5 Historical materials, 1970, undated
Administrative Division, 1939, 1952-1974, 1985, undated
Box Folder
3 6 Memoranda and correspondence, 1963-1974
7 Printed materials, clippings, and memoranda, 1939, 1952-1972, 1985, undated
Accompanying photographs of staff and board members (#003-007) were moved to box 9, folder 13.
Recreation Division, 1937-1938, 1979-1980, 1990, undated
Box Folder
3 8 Aquatics histories, memoranda, and clippings, 1979-1980, 1990
9 Athletics histories, flyers, and brochures, 1937-1938, 1979-1980, undated
Community Recreation Division, 1939-1950, 1971-1982, 1994-1997, undated
Recreation Centers, 1939-1950, 1971-1982, 1994-1997, undated
Box Folder
3 10 Austin Recreation Center, 1979, undated
11 Alamo Recreation Center, 1980, undated
12 Dougherty Cultural Arts Center, 1979-1980, undated
13 Givens Cultural Arts Center, 1979-1980, undated
14 Hancock Recreation Center, 1980
15 Jordan Recreation Center, 1980
16 Metz Recreation Center, 1980, undated
17 Montopolis Recreation Center, 1979-1980, undated
18 Northwest Recreation Center, 1980
19 Pan American Recreation Center, 1950, 1971-1980, 1997, undated
Accompanying photograph of Fiesta Sweetheart, 1964, (#022) was moved to box 9, folder 13.
20 Rosewood Recreation Center, 1968-1982, 1997, undated
21 South Austin Recreation Center, 1979, undated
22 Tenth Ward Recreation, 1979, undated
23 Zaragosa Recreation Center, 1979, undated
Assorted Programs, 1934-1948, 1980, 1997, undated
Box Folder
3 24 Summer playground program, 1934-1941, 1997, undated
Accompanying photograph of Mothers Club, 1941, (#008) moved to box 9, folder 13.
25 Special Populations Program/Adaptive Programs, 1980, undated
26 Caswell Tennis Center, 1948, undated
Golf Division, 1980
Box Folder
3 27 Golf Division, 1980
Parks Division, 1917, 1933-1998, undated
Austin Area Garden Center, 1957-1980, 1993-1998
Box Folder
3 28 Zilker Botanical Gardens, 1957-1977, 1993-1998
Box Folder
4 1 Swedish Log Cabin, 1965-1980
Accompanying photographs (#009-020) were moved to box 9, folder 13.
Barton Creek and Barton Springs Pool, 1938-1976, 1992-1998, undated
Box Folder
4 2 Barton Creek, 1990-1994, undated
Box Folder
6 7 Barton Creek, 1969-1974, undated
Box Folder
4 3-5 Barton Springs Pool, , 1946-1955, 1971-1976, 1992-1998, undated
Accompanying photographs, 1990, (#074-076) were moved to box 9, folder 14.
Assorted Parks, Gardens, Fields, & Lakes, 1917, 1933, 1958-2005, undated
Bee Creek Park
Photograph of dedication, 1954, (#071) was moved to box 9, folder 13.
Box Folder
4 6 Bull Creek Park, 1966
7 Deep Eddy Park, 1917, 1958, 1989-1992, undated
Accompanying photographs, 1916-1928, (#077-083) were moved to box 9, folder 14.
8 Fiesta Gardens, 1964-1970
9 Krieg Ballfield, 1974
10 Lamar Park, 1965
11 Lake Austin Park, 1993, undated
12 Long Lake, undated
13 Mayfield Park, 1967-1978
14 Northwest District Park, 1955-1972, 1988, undated
15 R.D. Thorp Field, 1958-1961, 1993-1995, undated
16 Town Lake, 1960-1973, 1985-1997, undated
17 Umlauf Sculpture Garden, 1987-1995, undated
18 Walnut Creek Park, 1976, undated
19 Woolridge Park, 1969
20-22 Zilker Park, 1933, 1978, 1988-2005, undated
Accompanying photograph of Army Bicentennial Celebration (#021) was moved to box 9, folder 13.
Special Activities Division, 1937-1939, 1950-1951, 1962-1981, 1996-1997, undated
Cultural Arts Programs, 1937-1939, 1950-1951, 1962-1981, 1996-1997, undated
Box Folder
4 23 Austin Arts Commission, 1980
Accompanying photographs of board members, circa 1977-1983, (#023-026) were moved to box 9, folder 13.
24 Austin Arts Council, 1980
25 Austin Symphony and Civic Chorus, 1938-1939, 1950-1951, 1968-1973, 1996-1997, undated
Accompanying photographs, 1945, (#027-031, 065-067, 070) were moved to box 9, folder 13.
Box Folder
5 1 Dance Program, 1967, 1970
Accompanying photograph of children in costume, 1967, (#032) was moved to box 9, folder 13.
2 Zilker Hillside Theater, 1937-1938, 1962-1969, 1981, 1997, undated
Accompanying photographs (#072-073) were moved to box 9, folder 14.
Outdoor Nature Programs, undated
Box Folder
5 3 Nature Preserves Program, undated
Senior Citizens Program, 1973-1980
Box Folder
5 4 Austin/Travis County Senior Luncheon Program, 1980
5 Senior Activity Center, 1979-1980
6 Senior Aides Program, 1979-1980
7 Community Workshop Market (Old Bakery), 1973-1980
Events, 1936-1942, 1961-1980, 1990-1999
Box Folder
5 8 Austin Centennial, 1939, 1994, undated
9-10 Bicentennial Celebration, 1975-1976, 1999, undated
Location BoxItem
qAR 016/056-058 Bicentennial poster and calendar, 1976
Box Folder
5 11 Christmas Program, 1938-1940, undated
12 Kite Tournament, 1936, undated
13 Washington's Birthday Celebration, 1942
14-16 Yule Fest, 1961, 1966-1980, 1990-1999, undated
Accompanying photographs of tree lighting, Santa's village, and nativity scene, 1966-1970, (#001-002, 033-059) were moved to box 9, folder 13.
Museums, 1895, 1909-1941, 1951-1979, 1990, undated
Box Folder
5 17-18 Elisabet Ney Museum, 1909-1941, 1951, 1966, 1979, undated
Accompanying photographs of board members (#060-061) were moved to box 9, folder 13.
19 Laguna Gloria Art Museum, 1958-1962
Box Folder
6 1-2 O. Henry Museum, 1895, 1935, 1951-1978, 1990, undated
Accompanying photograph of historic marker, 1966, (#062) was moved to box 9, folder 13.
Historical Markers, 1955-1962, 1977
Box Folder
6 3 Historical Markers, 1955-1962, 1977



III. Austin, Texas, 1935-1999, undated

City of Austin History, 1937-1938, 1962-1967, 1982, 1993-1999, undated
Box Folder
6 4-5 Writings and printed materials, 1937-1938, 1962-1967, 1982, 1993-1999, undated
Landmarks, 1935-1976, 1988-1997, undated
Box Folder
6 8-9 Barton Springs, 1935-1972, 1988-1997, undated
Location BoxItem
qAR 016/059-071 Barton Springs presentation panels, undated
Box Folder
6 10 Assorted, 1954-1976, 1992-1996, undated
Civic Organizations and Individual, 1938, 1966-1998, undated
Organizations, 1966, 1977-2001, undated
Box Folder
7 1-2 Austin Community Foundation, 1977-2001, undated
3 Austin Heritage Society, 1966
4 Austin Parks Foundation, 1995
5 Better Austin Tomorrow, 1995
Box Folder
6 6 Office of Trusts and Endowments, 1977, undated
Individuals, 1938, 1966-1998, undated
Box Folder
7 6 General, 1989-1991, undated
7 Roberta Crenshaw, 1985-1998, undated
8 Alden Davis, 1966-1977
19 Janet Fish, 1996
10 Willie and Maureen Kocurek, Ben Lecomte, and Charles Morrison 1938, 1966, 1995-1998, undated



IV. Central Texas Environment, 1986-1998, undated

Environmental Issues, 1986-1998, undated
Development, 1990-1997, undated
Box Folder
7 11 Balcones Canyonlands Conservation Program, 1992-1994, undated
12 Circle C Ranch Annexation, 1994-1997
13 Zilker Park Sewer Line, 1992-1993
14-15 Barton Creek, 1993-1997
Box Folder
8 1 Barton Creek, 1990-1992, undated
Water Quality, 1986-1997, undated
Box Folder
8 2 Barton Creek, 1990-1994
3-6 Barton Springs, 1990-1998, undated
7 Comprehensive Watershed Ordinance, 1990-1992, undated
8 Edwards Aquifer, 1986-1997
Box Folder
9 1 Edwards Aquifer (Opening of "Splash!" Exhibit), 1997-1998, undated,
2 Town Lake, 1994, undated
Endangered Species, 1992-1998, undated
Box Folder
9 3-4 Barton Creek Salamander, 1992-1998, undated
Environmental Groups, 1987-1998, undated
Box Folder
9 5 Barton Springs/Edwards Aquifer Conservation District, 1989-1997, undated
6 Hill Country Foundation, 1987-1994, undated
7 Save Our Springs Coalition, 1990-1998, undated
8 Save Barton Creek Association, 1991-1993, undated
9 Sierra Club, Austin Chapter, undated
10 We Care Austin, undated



V. Assorted, 1994-1996, undated

Box Folder
9 11 U.S. Environmental Protection Act (clipping), 1994
12 Assorted notes, 1996, undated



VI. Photographs, 1935-1954, 1964-1978, undated

Box Folder
9 13 Photographs removed from other folders and assorted photographs (#001-071), 1941-1976, undated
14 Photographs removed from other folders (#072-083), 1916-1990, undated
Lantern Slides, undated
Location LanternSlideBox
Outer Vault 1 Plant pictures (LS#001-006)
1 Plant structure (LS#007-021)
1 Fungi and bacteria (LS#022-036)
1 Birds (LS#037-052)
1 Mammals (LS#053-059)
1-2 Maps (LS#060-067)
2 Historic (from Keystone View Company) (LS#068-088)
2 Assorted nature (LS#089-102)