Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Texas Secretary of State, Elections Division:

An Inventory of Correspondence at the Texas State Archives, 1967-1968, 1970-1975, 1980-1983



Overview

Creator: Texas. Elections Division.
Title: Correspondence
Dates: 1967-1968, 1970-1975, 1980-1983
Abstract: These records include correspondence, memoranda, newsclippings, samples of voter registration materials, and some legislative reports. They comprise the correspondence files of the Elections Division of the Texas Secretary of State, dating 1967-1968, 1970-1975, and 1980-1983. Correspondence is with citizens as well as various county, state, and federal officials and addresses a wide range of election-related issues, concerns, complaints, and requests for information.
Quantity: 12.25 cubic ft.
Repository: Texas State Archives

Agency History

The Texas Secretary of State is a constitutional officer of the executive branch of state government, appointed by the governor and confirmed by the senate for a term concurrent with the governor's (a two-year term at first, a four-year term since 1974). The office was first created by the Constitution of the Republic of Texas in 1836, and has been continued by each succeeding Constitution.

The Secretary of State has an enormous number of duties and responsibilities, including the following: authenticating the publication of all laws passed by the state legislature; approving comptroller's accounts against the state prior to payment; maintaining a register of all official acts and proceedings of the governor, and all appointments to state boards and commissions; interpreting and enforcing the Texas Election Code, as the state's chief election officer; keeping the Seal of the State of Texas; maintaining many business-related filings, including corporation and Uniform Commercial Code filings.

The office of the Secretary of State is divided into five divisions: Executive, Elections, Business and Public Filings, Administrative Services, and Information Services.

The Elections Division assists the Secretary in interpreting and applying the Election Code and other election laws, and in carrying out his duties as the state's chief election officer. This involves the following tasks: receiving, examining, and filing the official certified returns of all general elections, special elections for members of the legislature, and constitutional amendment elections; preparing detailed and comprehensive written instructions on election laws and distributing them to state and local authorities who administer the laws; receiving official filings of election-related lists, records, and petitions; maintaining a registration service master file containing voter registration information for each registered voter in the state; providing for the training of election judges and clerks; certifying (in writing) the name of each candidate for U.S. president and vice-president and each candidate nominated at a primary election or party convention for a statewide or district office that will appear on the general election ballot.

In 1992, the functions of the Elections Division's Disclosure Filings Section were transferred to the newly created Texas Ethics Commission. Those duties had included the administration of certain ethics filings, created during the 1970s: statements of campaign contributions and expenditures for individuals and for political action committees (PACs), personal financial disclosure statements required of candidates and certain elected and appointed state officials, speaker's race reports, registration and reports of lobbyists.


Scope and Contents of the Records

These records include correspondence, memoranda, newsclippings, samples of voter registration materials, and some legislative reports. They comprise the correspondence files of the Elections Division of the Texas Secretary of State, dating 1967-1968, 1970-1975, and 1980-1983. Correspondence is with citizens as well as various county, state, and federal officials and addresses a wide range of election-related issues, concerns, complaints, and requests for information. The files contain incoming and outgoing letters covering such topics as residency requirements, voter registration, redistricting, voting procedures, voting patterns, election returns, campaign expense statements, election legislation, local option elections, candidates, ballots, and Secretary of State election law opinions.

To prepare this inventory, the described materials were cursorily reviewed to delineate series, to confirm the accuracy of contents lists, to provide an estimate of dates covered, and to determine record types.


 

Arrangement of the Records

These records are arranged first in roughly chronological groupings, then in various other ways. Some subject arrangement exists (especially through 1971), but most of the correspondence beginning in 1980 is divided among citizen, county, and state/federal correspondence. Citizen correspondence is grouped alphabetically by correspondent, then in reverse chronological order within folders. County correspondence is alphabetical by county. State/federal correspondence is alphabetical by correspondent.

Restrictions

Restrictions on Access

None.

Restrictions on Use

None.

Technical Requirements

None.


Index Terms

The terms listed here were used to catalog the records. The terms can be used to find similar or related records.
Subjects:
Election law--Texas.
Elections--Texas.
Voter registration--Texas.
Voting--Texas.
Document Types:
Correspondence--Texas--Elections--1967-1968, 1970-1975, 1980-1983.
Memorandums--Texas--Elections--1980-1981.
Clippings--Texas--Elections--1980-1981.
Reports--Texas--Elections--1980-1981.
Functions:
Regulating elections.

Related Material

The following materials are offered as possible sources of further information on the agencies and subjects covered by the records. The listing is not exhaustive.

Texas State Archives
Texas Secretary of State, Elections Division, Election materials, 1909-1984, 49.47 cubic ft.
Texas Secretary of State, Elections Division, Election returns (county-by-county), 1835-1984 (not inclusive), 173.61 cubic ft.
Texas Secretary of State, Elections Division, Election returns (precinct-by-precinct), 1972-1988, 93.25 cubic ft.
Strays Collection, Secretary of State, Election returns, 1903, fractional [There is no finding aid available for this unprocessed collection. Call number is Strays S6]
Texas Secretary of State, Election registers (a.k.a. appointment registers), 1836-1980 (not inclusive), 29.96 cubic ft.
Texas Secretary of State, Elections Division, Disclosure Filings/Campaign and Ethics Section, Candidate campaign contribution and expense statements, 1918-1989, 253.39 cubic ft.
Texas Secretary of State, Elections Division, Disclosure Filings/Campaign and Ethics Section, Political action committee campaign contribution and expense statements, 1973-1983, 1985-1989, 193.2 cubic ft.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

(Identify the item and cite the series), Correspondence, Elections Division, Texas Secretary of State. Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

Accession Information

Accession numbers: 1979/195, 1989/092, 1991/163, 1993/137

These records were transferred to the Archives and Information Services Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission by the Elections Division of the Texas Secretary of State on June 1, 1979; January 13, 1989; May 31, 1991; and March 22, 1993.

Processing Information

Laura K. Saegert, September 1989

Lisa M. Hendricks, July 1992

Tonia J. Wood, May 1995

Tony Black, October 2003


Detailed Description of the Records

 

Correspondence, 1967-1968, 1970-1975, 1980-1983,
12.25 cubic ft.

1967-1968, 1970-1975
Box
1979/195-1 General correspondence, 1967-1968
Statements mailed to candidates for U.S. Senator, 1970
Correspondence on changes in names, etc., general election, 1968
Correspondence re: election law seminar, 1967-1968
Instructions for mailing election materials to county clerks, 1970
Correspondence, 1970:
A - F
G - Q
R - Z
Box
1979/195-2 Correspondence files, 1971:
Absentee voting
Apportionments
Assistance to voter
Ballot boxes
Ballots
Bond elections
City elections
Contest of elections
Deputy registrars
Election law changes
Election officers
Ethics bill, financial disclosures
Federal postcard applications
Filing fees
Independent candidates
Local option elections
Nut file
Political expenditures
Qualifications to hold office
Refunds
Registrations
Residence
School district elections
Vacancy
Write-in voting
Correspondence, A - Z
[25 folders]
Box
1989/92-65 Correspondence, A - S, 1972
Box
1989/92-66 Correspondence, T - Z, 1972
Correspondence, A - Z, 1973
Correspondence re: residency requirements and voter registration, 1973-1974
Box
1989/92-67 Correspondence re: campaign contributions and expenditures, 1973-1974
Correspondence, A - J, 1974
Box
1989/92-68 Correspondence, K - V, 1974
Box
1989/92-69 Correspondence, W - Z, 1974
Correspondence, A - Z, 1975
1980-1983
Box
1991/163-1 Citizen correspondence (A-Z), 1980
County correspondence, 1980:
Anderson County - Dawson County
Deaf Smith County - Jefferson County
Jim Hogg County - Robertson County
Rockwall County - Zavala County
Miscellaneous correspondence, 1980
Box
1991/163-2 Citizen correspondence (A-Z), 1981
[4 wallets]
Organizational cross reference (A-Z), 1981
State/federal correspondence (A-Z), 1981
County correspondence, 1981:
Anderson County - Hidalgo County
Box
1991/163-3 Hill County - Titus County
Travis County - Zavala County
Box
1993/137-1 Citizen correspondence, 1982-1983 (bulk 1982):
A thru L
Box
1993/137-2 M thru Z
Box
1993/137-3 County correspondence, 1982-1983 (bulk 1982):
Anderson County - Hill County
Hockley County - Zavala County
State/federal correspondence, A - Z, 1982-1983 (bulk 1982)