Southwestern Historical Quarterly
The colorful event, staged under a sunny sky with just enough
clouds for breath-taking color, included state and national figures
prominent in library and archival functions and a host of patri-
otic, historical and genealogical organizations. These organiza-
tions were in the forefront in initiating the move that brought
financial support for the new building.
Unquestionably a landmark was reached in the history of Texas,
particularly in the preservation of the priceless documents of
Texas history, and the historic address by Governor Price Daniel
is recorded here for all posterity.
One of the most satisfying and rewarding experiences of my public
service was to work with those of you gathered here today for the
construction of this magnificent new Texas State Archives and
Many of you here have also watched it grow to reality from a dream
shared by library, historical, patriotic and conservation groups and
others who love Texas history and honor our heritage. I know we
share a common sense of pride, joy and achievement on this occasion.
I commend and congratulate all of you who played a part in
bringing about the construction of a Texas Archives and Library
Building which is the finest of any state in the nation.
This housing of our precious state documents, books and papers
is a very long step indeed from the deplorable condition which
For many years, the priceless collection had been deposited wher-
ever there happened to be enough vacant space to stack them, often
under hazardous conditions. Once part of the archives were stored
in a cow barn. For a time, they rested in the comparative splendor
of the basement of the State Highway Department building. When
I entered this office, I found them in a quonset hut at Camp
In my first address to the Legislature on January 17, 1957, I
recommended that provisions be made "for a State Archives Building
sufficient not only to contain, preserve and exhibit our priceless
records of the past, but to provide ample space for documents of
historic interest in the future." I warned that "we must guard
against further loss, deterioration and damage to our public build-
ings and public records and in every way preserve for future gener-
ations our historic heritage."
Discovering that funds from the building tax would not be avail-
able until 196o, I recommended in my budget message that the 55th
Legislature immediately authorize the State Building Commission
to use excess special funds of the Department of Public Safety to
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101196/. Accessed July 7, 2015.