William Maury Darst papers, 1894-1973, undated
William Maury Darst was a professor at Galveston College at some point, probably in the 1970s, since most of his professional work dates from then. He must have been a prolific scholar, since he authored three entries in the Handbook of Texas Online and placed collections in both the Texas Collection and Rosenberg Library. His diverse research interests are reflected in the collection
The collection begins in 1894 and ends in 1973. Records include literary productions and photographic materials. A list of the courthouses and railroads is available in the collection and control file.
Two essays in this collection focus on a Confederate soldier in the American Civil War and Galveston’s role in railway medicine. The Civil War essay was built around Hodges’ letters home to his family. Transcriptions of these letters are included in the collection.
The subject of Darst’s Civil War essay, Robert Hodges Jr., was a Confederate sergeant in Company H, 8th Texas Cavalry and later a lieutenant in Company F, 24th Texas Cavalry. Hodges survived the war, lived in Bellville, Texas, and raised cattle. He received a pension from the state of Texas. In 1905, Robert Hodges, Jr. died at 67 years old, and was buried in Snake Creek Cemetery, near Needville, Fort Bend County, Texas.
There is also a Galveston medical essay in the collection. Read at a symposium in M.D. Anderson Hospital, Darst wrote about a the 7th annual convention of the National Association of Railway Surgeons, who met at Galveston in 1894. The essay continues with a history of different rail lines that built to Galveston, focusing on the medical work needed while building such lines. Not until the 1920s did railroad safety become a priority, as more medical graduates began to take notice of the lax railroad safety standards.
Darst’s transcriptions of rare Trans-Mississippi Confederate letters and work on Galveston railroad medicine are valuable items from his life and work. As a charter faculty member of Galveston College, he was well positioned to make a difference in local historical work. He was apparently well thought of at the college, because the school still awards two $500 scholarships from money the faculty raised in memory of him.
All requests for copying of materials must be submitted to The Texas Collection in writing. Please use the Request Form for Copying Materials sheet. Unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator (s) of this collection are in the public domain. There are no restrictions on use. Copyright status for other collection materials is unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
The collection is open for research.
General condition: Unknown.
William Maury Darst Papers, Accession #0594, Box #, Folder #, The Texas Collection, Baylor University.
Accession No. 594. Acquired 1974-03-01
Described by Paul T. Fisher. Released on 2013-06-17.
Detailed Description of the Collection