A Guide to the Gonzales County (Tex.) Collection, 1861-1979
Present-day Gonzales County was first settled by Green C. DeWitt’s colony in 1825. The colony sent delegates to the conventions of 1832 and 1833 as well as the Consultation of 1835, which the Mexican government deemed treasonable. Troops were sent to Gonzales, which became the site of the first armed encounter in the Texas revolution on October 2, 1835. After independence, Gonzales County, with a county seat at Gonzales, organized in 1837 as one of the original counties in the Republic of Texas. Following annexation to the United States, portions of the county were split into eight additional counties. The county population increased from 1,492 in 1850 to over 28,000 in the early 1900s. During the Great Depression and World War II, the population decreased, and continued to fall until 1970 with only 16,375 residents. By 1990, the populace reached 17,205.
Handbook of Texas Online, s.v. “Gonzales County,” http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/GG/hcg7.html (accessed October 6, 2010).
The Gonzales County (Tex.) Collection, 1861-1979, contains photographs, printed material, certificates, scrapbooks, postcards, school papers, an autograph album, and a photocopy of a muster roll for Company H, Heavy Artillery, Cook’s Battalion, Gonzales, Texas. The school papers and an autograph album document the life of Ethyl Zivley Rather Villasano, while other papers relate to George Holmes, Courtney H. Hodges, Emma Jahnke during World War II, and the postcards of Theresa Johnson. The certificates include a Gonzales postmaster appointment for Daniel Ramsay, 1913, United Daughters of the Confederacy certificate for Mrs. W. J. Bright, 1921, and school certificates and diplomas for Eli Ray Bright, 1898, and Lexie Ham, 1914-1915. The printed materials and scrapbooks consist of newspaper and magazine clippings as well as flyers and programs. Photographs depict Massey Business College in 1908, the dedication of a Waldine Tauch sculpture of the first shot fired in the Texas Revolution at Cost, Texas, in 1936, and a parade in London, among other topics.
This collection is open for research use.
Gonzales County (Tex.) Collection, 1861-1979, 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.
This collection contains unprocessed materials.
Detailed Description of the Papers