University of Texas San Antonio

A Guide to the Frank Toudouze Collection, 1965-1995

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Toudouze, Frank G., 1913-1996
Title: Frank Toudouze Collection
Dates: 1963-1995
Creator Abstract: Frank Toudouze and his family were evicted from their San Antonio home of 52 years to make way for HemisFair '68, the San Antonio World's Fair.
Content Abstract: The Toudouze Family Collection includes newspaper clippings, correspondence, photographs, legal documents, telegrams, interview transcripts, and assorted print materials.
Identification: MS 369
Extent: .25 linear feet (1 box)
Language: English
Repository University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries Special Collections

Biographical Sketch

The Toudouze family includes Frank Toudouze (1913-1996), his wife Mary (1913-1995), and his mother Lizzie (1890-1976). Frank Toudouze was a retired aircraft mechanic and Mary Toudouze worked at Judson Candies, Inc. The family lived at 123 Wyoming Street in San Antonio, Texas for 52 years before the Urban Renewal Agency, a San Antonio public works program, gave notice that they would be demolishing their house in preparation for HemisFair 1968.

On January 12, 1965, a representative from the Urban Renewal Agency notified the Toudouzes that they will be evicted from their home if they did not sell it. Sitting within the boundaries of Urban Renewal Project No. 5, 123 Wyoming Street was condemned so that the land could be developed for use in HemisFair 1968. This started Frank Toudouzes battle against Urban Renewal.

Toudouze was inspired by Maude Wilcox, an elderly widow who fought to keep her land from being developed as part of an Interstate 37 renovation. Toudouze believed that his and his community’s civil rights were violated and sought justice for his family until well after HemisFair. Toudouze believed the seizure of his land to be illegal as HemisFair was a private project.

On April 7, 1966 the family was evicted and their house demolished. The Urban Renewal Agency offered the family $10,597.58 in compensation, though the Toudouzes refused the award.

Scope and Content Note

The collection contains correspondence between Frank Toudouze and numerous politicians at the local, state, and federal level. There is also correspondence with lawyers, journalists, and contractors as well as clippings from San Antonio newspapers that document his public statements. Also included is a list of lawyers the Toudouzes contacted for help in their case and their opinions on its viability. Photographs depict handmade signs created by Toudouze chronicling the battle against eviction. Other photographs are of the family plot in St. Joseph's Parish Cemetery. One large photographs shows the back of the Toudouze house.

Organization of Collection



Access Restrictions

This collection is housed at UTSA's Main Campus and must be accessed via the John Peace Library Special Collections reading room. To request access, please use the Collections Request Form.

Use Restrictions

The researcher assumes full responsibility for observing all copyright, property, and libel laws as they apply.

Index Terms

Toudouze, Frank G., 1913-1995
Toudouze, Mary, 1913-1995
Toudouze, Lizzie, 1890-1976
HemisFair (1968: San Antonio, Tex.)
Urban renewal.
San Antonio (Tex.)
Legal documents.
Local Subjects
HemisFair '68 (The 1968 World's Fair)
San Antonio History
Urban Development and Growth

Related Material

Materials about Frank Toudouze and the eviction can also be found in the Institute of Texan Cultures Vertical File collection .

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Frank Toudouze Collection, MS 369, University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries Special Collections.

Acquisition Information

Donated to the Institute of Texan Cultures Library by Frank Toudouze in November 1978. Transferred to Special Collections in 2011.

Processing Information

Processed by Nikki Lynn Thomas, Manuscripts Archivist in 2011.

Additional processing done by Paige Hayhurst, Student Clerk in September 2017.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Correspondence, 1963-1995

Box Folder
1 1 HemisFair urban development, demolition of the Toudouze residence, 1963-1995
2 Demolition of Toudouze residence with clippings, 1970-1988
3 ITC time capsule, collection provenance, 1978-1988

Clippings, 1965-1995

Box Folder
1 4 Toudouze eviction, HemisFair, 1965-1995

Photographs, 1966-1979

Box Folder
1 5 Signs made by Frank Toudouze, Toudouze residence, family plot in St. Joseph's Parish cemetery, 1966-1979 and undated