The Benson Latin American Collection

William F. Buckley, Sr. :

An Inventory of His Papers at the Benson Latin American Collection

Descriptive Summary

Creator Buckley, William Frank, 1881-1958
Title William F. Buckley, Sr., Papers
Dates: 1910-1922
Abstract Papers of William F. Buckley, Sr., University of Texas law graduate, lawyer and oil business executive, active in business and politics in Mexico from 1908 until 1921.
OCLC Record No. 34003009
Extent 23 linear feet
Languages Spanish and English
Repository Benson Latin American Collection,University of Texas Libraries,The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical Note

Born 1881; died 1958. B.S. 1904 and LL.B. 1905, University of Texas. Lived in Mexico from 1908 until 1921, when he was expelled for opposition to the Álvaro Obregón government.

In Mexico Buckley served as advisor to U.S. and European oil companies, operated a law firm, and engaged in real estate and leasing of oil lands. In 1914 he founded the Pantepec Oil Company. Buckley was counsel to the Mexican government's delegation to the Niagara Falls Conference in 1914; in December, 1919 he testified before the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Foreign Relations as an expert witness on conditions in Mexico. As founder and president of the American Association of Mexico, Buckley worked to remove restrictions on U.S. oil and landed interests in Mexico imposed by the Mexican Constitution of 1917.

In 1924 he transferred the Pantepec Oil Co. to Venezuela. He continued as the company's president until 1943 and remained active in international oil exploration and production.

July 11, 1881 born at Washington-on-the Brazos, Washington County, Texas
1899/1900 entered UT; taught Spanish and attended law school
1904 received B.S.
1905/1906 received LL.B.
1906 received license to practice law
1908 settled in Mexico and established with two brothers/brother Claude the law firm of Buckley & Buckley to represent major (American and European) oil companies operating in Mexico
1911 opened law office in Tampico with brother Edmund (representing American and European oil companies
1913 founded and became president of the Pantepec Oil Company of Mexico in Tampico
1914 named by Huerta as counsel for the Mexican government at the ABC conference in Niagara Falls (when Argentina, Brazil, Chile acted as mediators between U.S. and Mexico); gave up law practice and engaged in real estate and leasing of oil lands; refused position of civil governor of Veracruz
Dec. 1919 testified before U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Foreign Relations as an expert witness on conditions in Mexico
-- founded and became president of the American Association of Mexico, working to have the Mexican Constitution of 1917 amended to remove restrictions on U.S. oil and landed interests in that country
Nov. 1921 expelled from Mexico by Obregón's government under Article 33/because of the activities of the AAM in opposing recognition of the Obregón government
1922 gave full report of expulsion to the U.S. Secretary of State; gave his papers to UT
Oct. 5, 1958 died in New York

Scope and Contents

Newspaper clippings, correspondence, and literary productions relating to political conditions in Mexico during the revolutionary period and to Mexico's relationship with the United States and U.S. oil companies operating in Mexico. Narrower topics include revolutionary disturbances in Mexico; the situation of American residents of Mexico, described in materials of the American Association of Mexico and other groups representing Americans in Mexico; the 1914 American occupation of Veracruz; and Buckley's expulsion from Mexico.

Clippings, which form the bulk of the papers, are from both Mexican and American newspapers; some are in scrapbooks. Correspondence pertains to Buckley's professional and personal business and includes reports from field agents. Literary productions include transcriptions of newspaper texts as well as reports, statements, speeches, notes, and interviews reflecting Buckley's opinion of events in Mexico. Materials dating from after Buckley's residence in Mexico are few.

The materials are in English and Spanish.


Organization Note

Mr. Buckley's staff devised a subject arrangement scheme for his papers which was never fully implemented. The papers were borrowed from UT in 1925 by the United States and Mexican Claims Commission and were returned in 1929 in disarray. They were partially restored to their original arrangement by Benson staff (these materials now constitute Subgroup I); the remainder form Subgroup II, which was arranged by the staff of the Mexican Archives Project into series based on format of material. The project staff completed the processing of the papers in September 1995.


Materials are arranged by subject or format of material.

Index Terms

Buckley, William Frank, 1881-1958--Archives.
Mexico--History--Revolution, 1910-1920
Mexico--Politics and government--1910-1946
Mexico--Foreign relations--United States--20th century.
United States--Foreign relations--Mexico--20th century.
Petroleum industry and trade--Government policy--Mexico--History--20th century.
Other Authors
American Association of Mexico.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

William F. Buckley, Sr. Papers, Benson Latin American Collection, University of Texas Libraries, The University of Texas at Austin

Acquisitions Information

The papers were donated by William F. Buckley, Sr., to The University of Texas in 1922. The original gift was supplemented by gifts from William F. Buckley, Jr. in 1963 and Jane Buckley Smith in 1985. The Smith gift was transferred from the Barker Texas History Center to the Benson Latin American Collection on October 21, 1985.

Processing Information

Prepared by the Mexican Archives Project, October 9, 1995.

Alternative Form Available

The papers are also available on microfilm.

Subgroups and Series


I. Subgroup, Materials arranged by subject (restored to Buckley's arrangement)

Under each subject code are usually found the following groups:
1. Speeches, reports, correspondence, etc.
2. Typescripts of clippings
3. Clippings


II. Subgroup, Materials arranged by format

1. Series, Clippings and other printed material
a. Clippings
i. loose
ii. scrapbooks
iii. oversized
b. Other printed material
2. Series, Correspondence
a. To or from William F. Buckley, Sr.
i. Professional, 1914-1946
ii. Personal, 1922-1948
b. Other correspondence
i. Assorted, 1913-1916, 1919-1923, 1927-1928, 1938 and undated
ii. Reports from field agents, 1919-1920
3. Series, Literary productions
a. Literary productions, clippings, and other materials by or pertaining to William F. Buckley, Sr., 1919-1922, 1924-1925, 1927-1928, 1940-1943
b. Other literary productions
i. Transcriptions of newspaper articles, 1914-1923 and undated
ii. Reports, statements, memoranda, speeches, notes, etc., 1913-1916, 1918-1921, 1923, 1926 and undated
4. Series, Organizations representing Americans in Mexico
a. American Association of Mexico
i. Correspondence
-Outgoing, 1921-1923
-Incoming, 1921-1923
ii. Bulletins and memoranda
b. Association of Producers of Petroleum in Mexico/National Association for the Protection of American Rights in Mexico
c. Society of the American Colony
5. Series, Photographs of the assassination of Padre Miguel Agustín Pro Juárez