A Guide to the Texas War Records Collection, 1916-1919, 1940-1951
The Texas War Records Collection comprises materials related to Texas' participation in World War I and World War II. The collection has its roots in an organization developed at the University of Texas circa 1918-1919, the Texas War Records Collection organization. This organization was proposed by Milton R. Gutsch, history professor at the University of Texas at Austin, October 8, 1918, and approved by the School of History and then University President Robert E. Vinson a few days later. On October 22, the Board of Regents appropriated $7,500 for the collection and preservation of the Texas War Records, to span September 1, 1919, to September 1, 1921, and Gutsch was appointed Director.
The organization consisted of the director and administrative staff, county and community war records organizations, and auxiliary agencies, and was generously assisted by the Daughters of the Confederacy, the Daughters of the American Revolution, and the Federation of Women's Clubs. The main goals of the organization were to collect all materials representing the contributions of Texas to World War I, to classify the materials collected, and to preserve the records. Materials were divided into three groups: general material, both American and foreign; state materials; and county and community materials.
No such similar organization was formed to collect World War II records, but archivists at the University of Texas at Austin, particularly archivist Winnie Allen, accessioned, kept, and organized the records, and eventually added records related to Texas' participation in World War II to the Texas War Records Collection.
The Texas War Records Collection, 1916-1919, 1940-1951, includes correspondence, legal documents, reports, resolutions, lists, lecture notes, examinations, personnel records, class rolls, memoranda, proceedings, account papers, financial papers, minutes, blueprints, indexes, narratives, literary productions, broadsides, bulletins, military manuals, posters, pamphlets, bibliography, curriculum schedules, printers plates, clippings, maps, and photographs. These records concern Texas participation in World Wars I and II, specifically relating to the organization of committees, structures, and machinery to coordinate the work of documenting World War I and Texas participation in it, and to activities of organizations created for the duration of World War I and World War II which functioned at federal, state, local, and institutional levels.
The records also relate to the Air Service School for Radio Operators, School of Automobile Mechanics, School of Military Aeronautics, Texas State Council of Defense, National Council of Defense, Federal Fuel Administration, Federal Food Administration, American Library Association, Liberty Loan Drives, county draft records, draft bulletins, individual county participation in war effort, Engineering, Science and Management Defense Training at the University of Texas, and the Santo Tomás and Los Baños internment camps (Philippine Islands).
Also included in the collection are newspaper clippings about Texas soldiers in World War II, news clippings of world maps, articles about Texas civilians (primarily obituaries) and Walter Prescott Webb's column, "England in Wartime, As Seen by a Texas Historian". Also included is printed material on various facets of life in the United States during and immediately after World War II, including newsletters and pamphlets of service, relief, and political organizations, as well as information printed by the War Dept. to facilitate veterans' readjustment to civilian life after the war.
Of particular interest is a ration book containing ration stamps of Winnie Allen, Robert Powers, and Charles Ramsdell, as well as Winnie Allen's Red Cross card, 1945. Other noteworthy material includes six issues of the Main-Post newspaper, Wuerzburg, Bavaria, in German, published by the United States War Department for occupied Germany in 1946.
The collection is open for research.
Portions of this collection are stored remotely. Advance notice required for retrieval. Contact repository for retrieval.
Texas War Records Collection, 1916-1919, 1940-1951, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s "History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light" project, 2009-2011.
Portions of this collection are unprocessed. Contact repository for more information.
Detailed Description of the Papers