University of Texas, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

A Guide to the Trimble (David B.) Collection, 1764, 1783 - 1994

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Trimble (David B.)
Title Trimble (David B.) Collection
Identification: 2000-020
Extent 3 ft. of manuscript and printed materials; approximately 400 photographs; 32 tintypes; 3 cased images; approximately 600 negatives; 13 photo albums and scrapbooks
Language English.
Repository Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin

Creator Sketch

David B. Trimble, family historian and genealogist, self published a series of books on his family's history, which he traced back to the late 18th century. The Trimble family and their ancestors lived in Texas, Tennessee and Virginia with more distant relatives in Illinois. Members of the Buchanan and Gillespie branches served in the Civil War. The Hestand family had connections to the Ku Klux Klan in Tennessee the 1870s. Benjamin S. Davidson co-owned the American Pneumatic Equipment Corporation and held patents for shock absorbers for automobiles. Homer Trimble served in France during WWI, and during WWII he served in the South Pacific as Lieutenant Colonel in the Army Corps of Engineers and was awarded for his construction of a track through the New Guinea wilderness. Edgar F. Smith was a lawyer in Austin, Texas.

Scope and Contents

This collection documents the Bailey, Buchanan, Davidson, Gillespie, Hestand, Kincanon, McPherson, Nevill, Smith, Trimble, and Willis families with correspondence, business records, land records, manuscript materials, printed items, newspapers and clippings, and photographs. The collection dates from 1764 through 1994, but the bulk of materials date from the 1860s to 1940s. The items illustrate daily life in small towns and rural areas in Texas and in the South. The collection includes some items, such as the sermons of Rev. William Tennent and a German almanac, which do not appear to be related to the family, but collected by members of the family.

The collection is arranged by format and grouped by families alphabetically, much as it was received from the donor. The Photocopies and Transcripts series contain copies of letters and records which duplicate many of the original items in this collection, though they also contain copies of items which David Trimble did not own and are not otherwise found in this collection. In the Correspondence series, "bundle" refers to original groupings of letters that were tied with ribbon; the numbering here is arbitrary.

In the Scrapbook series, two albums have been dismantled due to the deteriorating state of the materials. Photographs were taken of the album pages before re-housing to record their original state; copies of these images are in the folders with the photographs.

Spellings of names appear here as they are most commonly spelled in the collection items, although some variations exist: Nevill also spelled Neville, Hestand also spelled Hiestand, Besse also spelled Bessie, Shell also spelled Shel, Wolfe also spelled Wolf.


Some portions are restricted due to format. Please contact repository for further information.

Index Terms

Civil War
Ku Klux Klan (19th cent.)
World War I
World War II
World War II—pictorial works
Anson, Texas
Austin, Texas—pictorial works
Australia—pictorial works
College Station, Texas—pictorial works
Denton, Texas
New Guinea—pictorial works
Seminole, Texas
Seminole, Texas—pictorial works
Snyder, Texas—pictorial works

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Trimble (David B.) Collection 1764, 1783 - 1994, the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.

Detailed Description of the Collection



3X227 Buchanan and Graham families, ca. 1850s – 8/15/1911
S. A. and George Buchanan [Civil War letters sent to family; includes drawing of S. A. Buchanan] 12/25/1863 – 1/24/1865
George Leigh Buchanan, [letter received from Bernice Adelle Petty], 9/13/1902
Mr. and Mrs. S. C. Buchanan, [letters received from relatives], 7/14/1921 – 3/10/1938
Family correspondence, [includes birth announcement for Homer D. Trimble, 1922; list of children of S. C. Buchanan; letter from Henrietta Long to David Trimble regarding this correspondence, 1958] 2/1/1921 – 2/11/1941, undated
Postcard correspondence with Trimble, Shell, and Beal families, [scenic postcards of Austin, Presidio, Seminole and Snyder, Texas] 1908-1914, undated
Buckner, Wolfe, Davidson, and Hestand families, 6/1868 – 12/10/1918
Davidson, B. S. and Effie Nevill,
Envelope 1, 4/2/1894 – 2/9/1901, undated
Envelope 2, [includes painted monogrammed ribbon] 1921 – 1938, undated
Davidson, Effie Nevill [letters sent to family; includes lock of hair] 5/31 – 6/14/1929
Gillespie and Kincanon 5/29/1869 – 6/11/1924, undated
[Civil War letters sent to family] 5/29/1861 – 12/4/1865, undated
2.325/P12b Mary Gillespie, [poem received from James R. Hubble] 3/18/1859
3X227 Kincanon, J. T. Rev., [letters sent; includes letter from Janet Gavock Boyd to David Trimble, 1955, regarding Kincanon's letters] 1921
Nevill, Sam Houston and Lucy
S. H. Nevill, [letters received], 9/9/1896 – 1/21/1906, undated
S. H. and Lucy Nevill, [letters received], 4/26/1896 – 9/11/1905
Nevill family, correspondence regarding family genealogy, 6/2/1927 – 3/13/1935, undated
Smith, Edgar F. and Besse
Bundle 1, 6/20 – 7/4/1913
Bundle 1, 7/5 – 7/20/1913, undated
Bundle 2, 6/25 – 7/15/1913
Bundle 2, 7/16 – 7/31/1913
Bundle 3, 6/3 – 7/5/1913
Bundle 3, 7/11 – 7/30/1913, undated
Bundle 4, 8/1 – 8/7/1913
Bundle 4, 8/7 – 8/14/1913
Bundle 5, 8/13 – 8/19/1913
Bundle 5, 8/21 – 8/24/1913
Trimble, David, letter from Clarice Esse with history of her family, 6/22/1994
Trimble, Mattie [letters received from Homer Trimble]
Bundle 6, 7/10 – 9/8/1918
Bundle 6, 9/12/1918 – 6/12/1919
Bundle 7, 4/2/1942 – 1/10/1943
Bundle 7, 1/20/1942 – 10/23/1943
Assorted greeting cards
2.325/P12b Unidentified author/recipient, 6/17/1880[?],


Manuscript Materials

2.325/D36d Buchanan, John and John Wolfe, land grants, [signed by governors James Monroe, John Tyler, Sr., and James Preston] 1783 – 1816
2.325/P12b Buchanan, Bessie, autograph book, 1900
Hestand, D. B. and F. P., court summons regarding Ku Klux Klan events and murder of a Negro; loyalty statements on their behalf, Coffee County, TN [includes letter to David Trimble from Florence Robertson regarding these events, 7/4/1966] 1874-1875
McPherson, John, receipts and deeds, 1824 - 1851
Nevill, Robertson
Land Records, Tennessee, 1828 – 1848
Notes, 1826 – 1847, undated
Papers relating to estates of Benjamin Nevill and William Stroud, 1829 – 1848, undated
Receipts and accounts records,
Envelope 1, 1827 – 1849, undated
Envelope 2, 1824 – 1847, undated
Tax receipts, contracts, assorted documents
Nevill, J. L., Assorted papers relating to J. L. Nevill and his brothers and sisters, 1858 – 1870s
Nevill, S. H. and Lucy, Receipts, business letters, notes, checks
Smith, E. F. diary/accounts books, 1936, 1941
Smith, E. F. and Besse, Wedding guest book, 9/24/1913
Tennent, Reverend William, manuscript of first sermons, 1764
Trimble, David B. drafts and notes of unpublished article on Civil War letters [from this collection], undated
Willis, William B. and Peter, Receipts, business documents, letters to S. H. Nevill, 1830s – 1850s


Business Records of Benjamin S. Davidson and the American Pneumatic Equipment Corporation

2.325/P12b Correspondence
12/4/1919 – 7/5/1923
7/7/1923 – 11/14/1925
Letters of Patent for Shock Absorbers 5/15/1923, 3/18/1924
Official Copy of Patent, 3/5/1921
Assignment of Application for Letters of Patent, 1923
Assorted Patents, 1914-1930
Blueprints for Equipment 1921, undated
Legal Documents, 6/26/1914 – 1/12/1923
Financial Documents, 1920-1922
History of Corporation, undated
Printed Materials
W. T. Fitz Gerald & Co., Information booklets, undated
Poindexter Automatic Air Springs, brochures, undated


Printed Materials

2.325/P12b Bailey, B. F., Ranch/Farm Contract/Lease and Mortgage papers, 1904-1909
Buchanan, Patrick Campbell, Civil War Commission from Commonwealth of Virginia, 8/21/1861
Buchanan, William, Certificate of Appointment as Postmaster, 9/21/1885
Business cards and calling cards
The Chapparral [Yearbook of Anson High School; with MS Christmas lists by Zella Davidson] 1913
2.325/D36d Calendar, "Gaines County Land, Corn and Hogs", 1911
2.325/P12b Commencement Programs
College of Industrial Arts, 1922
Sam Houston State Normal School, 1885
University of Texas, 1932
Daughters of the American Revolution, Dedication of the George Washington Monument at UT, 2/22/1932
Death Announcements and Funeral Notices
Hiram Gist, 4/20/1898
Levi H. Gist, 1/7/1905
Effie Nevill Davidson, 8/2/1929
G. C. Buchanan, 8/31/1933
Der Boltsfreund und Haegerstauner Calender, [includes photocopies] 1806
Johnson, Lyndon Baines, Invitation to Inauguration [addressed to Marion Trimble] 1/20/1965
The Gaines County Story 1905-1955, [1955]
Marriage Announcements
Effie Nevill and B. S. Davidson, 5/16/1899
Allie Maxwell and Cecil E. Evans, 5/18/1899
Mary K. Buchanan and Finis E. Shell, 11/25/1907
Mary Zella Davidson and Homer B. Trimble, 11/23/1921
Nevill, S. H. [items bundled with his letters]
Advertisement/order form for Womack Bros. Distillery, ca. 1900
Self-Examination and Consultation Blank [medical form]
Special Notice, Laxative Bromo Quinine Tablets
Smith, E. F. and Besse Buchanan, marriage license, 9/25/1913
Trimble, Homer
Pocket New Testament, 1918
A Pocket Guide to New Guinea, [U. S. Army publication], 1943
News Report transcript [?], 12/19/1943
Trimble, Charley and Mattie, Land records, receipts and assorted records, 1909 – 1941
Unforgettable Niagara, [souvenir book], undated ca. 1940s


Newspapers and Clippings

2.325/P13d The Coming West, 8-9/1901, 9/19/1970
The Cyclone, 9/1887
The Dallas Morning News, 6/13/1913
The Seminole Sentinel, 1907-1913
The Scurry County Times, [souvenir reprint] 1971
The Summer Texan, 1932
The Western Observer, 5/23/1947
Assorted Clippings



2.325/P13d Bailey, B. F. papers
Buchanan Civil War letters
Buchanan records
Buchanan and Gillespie letters from Virginia
Davidson-Wolfe letters and grants
Gillespie Civil War letters
Graham lawsuit records (inheritance dispute)
Hestand records and letters
Hestand-Nevill letters (Ku Klux Klan records)
Kincanon, Reverend J. T. letters
McPherson deeds
Nevill, Benjamin and William Stroud estates records
Nevill, Lucy letters (regarding her and her sons)
Nevill, Robertson
Land records
Business records
Nevill-Buckner letters from Tennessee
Trimble records from Georgia
Trimble, Charlie letters and obituaries
Wolfe-Davidson lawsuit records (land dispute)
Willis family papers and letters to Robertson Nevill
Assorted letters [unidentified families]



2.325/P13d Buchanan Civil War letters
Buchanan letters and records
Gillespie Civil War letters
Hestand letters



3X225 Family Portraits, ca. 1850s-1950s
Alderson, Malcolm
Buchanan family
C. R. Buchanan and Bealls
in Virginia, and distant relatives
"Mellards, Egertons, Heards, Shells, Aunt Besse & Unk, Benjoe & Nellie"
Older photos
Davidson, B. S. and Darnel
Family members in Indiana
Hestand, Gist, Bennett
Pierce, Sally
Smith, E. F. and Besse
Trimble, Homer
Wolfe, I. J.
Assorted individuals
Unidentified, "from Peter Dozier"
Unidentified, "from Howard Wolfe of Catlin, Illinois"
Unidentified, "from B. S. Davidson album"
Assorted and unidentified
Family Snapshots ca. 1930s-1960s
Buchanan Castle, 1967
Buchanan Family (including Shell, Smith, Trimble, Heard)
Family houses
Family in Indiana
Smith, Edgar F. and Besse
Vacation photos, 1934-1937
Texas towns
3X227 Assorted Photographs
First telephone exchange in Anson, TX [reproduction]
Homer Trimble's photos from New Guinea during WWII ca. 1941 - 1944
Lee House, Arlington, Virginia
Personnel of the Attorney General's Office, Austin, TX, 1921
Wolfe family cemetery, [with captions] ca. 1960
Tin Types [ca. 1860s-1890s]
Buchanan and Trimble families
Wolfe, Susan
Davidson, Benjamin Soul ca. 1879
Nevill, S. H.
Unidentified, "from Peter Dozier"
Unidentified, "from Howard Wolfe of Catlin, Illinois"
3So100.1 Oversize and mounted photos ca. 1900s – 1930s
11x15 inches or smaller
Anson, Texas
Alderson, Malcolm
Buchanan families
B. S. Davidson home, Anson, TX, 1900
Davidson and Hestand family portrait ca. 1900s
First courthouse in Seminole, TX (with F. E. Shell) ca 1900s-1910s
Grace, Hybernia
Heard, Evelyn ca. 1930s
Hico Normal Students, 1901
Leach, Walter
Midland [Texas] Shipping Pens
Pickens, Mr. and Mrs. J. D., (wedding portraits) ca. 1920s
Smith, Besse, 1920
Smith, E. F. ca. 1940s
Trimble family apartment, Austin, TX, 1935
3S245 Larger than 11x15 inches
Buchanan family, 1911
Pierce, Abel and Ruth Harrison
Trimble, Charles
3X226 Panoramic Photographs [rolled]
American Bar Association, Boston, MA, 8/26/1936
Garden Party for the ladies of the Texas Bar Association, Fort Worth, TX, 7/6/1934
Cased and Framed Photographs
Unidentified children
Unidentified man
Unidentified man [broken]


Negatives [Restricted]

3S121f Buchanan and Trimble families, tin type reproductions
Davidson family, ca. 1920s-1940s
Gillespie, George Washington
Trimble family, ca. 1920s-1940s
Charles Trimble
Zella Trimble
Trimble, Mattie B. (clerk, Scurry Co., Snyder, Texas)


Scrapbooks and Photo Albums

3So100.3 Buchanan-Smith-Heard families,[ Seminole, Snyder, Austin, San Antonio, TX] 1900s-1920s
3So85.1 Davidson, Zella "Mutts I have Met" [friends and classmates], 1917-1918
Davidson Trimble, Zella, [including scenes and houses in Anson, TX] 1920s
3So100.3 Davidson Trimble, Zella (including graduation from College of Industrial Arts, Denton, TX 1922), 1920s
3S0100.2 Smith family, 1930s-1940s
3So94.2 Smith, E. F. and Besse, (including scenes of Austin, TX) 1930s
3X226 [Trimble, Homer] Scenes of soldiers in Australia, New Guinea and Okinawa, Japan during WWII, 1942 -1945
[dismantled; in folders labeled "album 1", organized by page number]
[dismantled; in folders labeled "album 2", organized by page number]
3So85.1 Unidentified
Five girls, including Zella Davidson, in Anson, TX; reunion in 1916-171933
Family snapshots, including Davidson and Nevill families, (2), 1900s-1910s
3So100.2 Unidentified loose pages, [scenes of College Station, TX and Texas A&M wrestlers] 1920s
3So94.3 Unidentified [Zella Davidson ?] [family scenes, Navy sailors, College of Industrial Arts faculty, vacation in Colorado] [ includes folder of invitations, clippings and photographs from the pocket in the album] ca. 1910s-1920s,
Unidentified creator and subjects