A Guide to the Mike Cox Papers, [ca. 1910s], 1938, 1953-1955, 1968-1991
Texas reporter, spokesman, and historian Mike Cox (b. 1948) began his journalism career in Austin when he was still a student at Lanier High School, writing a column for the Austin American-Statesman while working for the paper as a copy boy. After attending Angelo State University in San Angelo, Cox worked for a year in Lubbock before returning to the Statesman as police reporter in 1970. In 1985, Cox went to work as a public information officer at the Texas Department of Public Safety, a position he held for over 15 years. Cox retired in the fall of 2007 as Communication Manager for the Texas Department of Transportation, allowing him to devote more time to research and write on Texas history. As the writer of “Texas Tales,” a syndicated column on little-known incidents in Texas history, and “Texana,” a Texas book review column for the Austin American-Statesman begun in 1982, Cox continued to publish regularly in retirement. He also authored several books on Texas and its history, including Stand-off in Texas: "Just call me a spokesman for the DPS” (1998), Texas Disasters, True Stories of Tragedy and Survival (2006), and The Texas Rangers (2008).
Beach, Patrick. “Mike behind the mic.” Austin American-Statesman. June 22, 1997.
The Mike Cox Papers, [ca.1910s], 1938, 1953-1955, 1968-1991, document Cox’s research and writing as a journalist and historian. The papers include research, interview notes, and clippings Cox accumulated as a staff writer at the Austin American-Statesman concerning the University of Texas board of regents and student government (1975, 1978); Texas fish, parks and wildlife (1953-1980); Austin elections (1976-1979); and Texas penitentiaries (1938-1979), among other topics. Additionally, Cox gathered notes and clippings related to West Texas history and military forts (1964-1983) and general Texas history while writing about the state.
The papers also include Cox’s collection of WWI-era illustrated sheet music, primarily on military themes, by composers including Al Jolson and George M. Cohan.
This collection is open for research use.
Mike Cox Papers, [ca. 1910s], 1938, 1953-1955, 1968-1991, 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.
Detailed Description of the Papers