The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952 Page: 402

texas Colectio#
As the final checking of the manuscript copy for the
Handbook of Texas was being completed, Fred Cotten,
one of the many who helped with the work, suggested
that Quarterly readers would probably be interested in knowing
more about the manner in which the Handbook has been com-
piled and the efforts which have been made to bring out the
work as accurately as possible.
Long-time members of the Association will recall that the first
step in the preparation of the Handbook was a cataloguing of
topics which should be covered. Every member of the Associa-
tion, all persons known to be interested in Texas history, and all
members of the faculty of the University of Texas were asked to
submit lists of subjects which ought to be treated. All volumes
of the Quarterly, the standard histories of Texas, the State
Archives and General Land Office, the University Archives Col-
lection, the Dictionary of American History, the Dictionary of
American Biography, Who Was Who, and many specialized works
were checked for possible topics. The names of towns, streams,
and elevations were listed from United States Geological Survey
maps of Texas. After all these files had been combined and the
duplicates discarded, the resulting accumulated list was published
in 1945 as A Tentative List of Subjects for the Handbook of Texas.
From 1945 through 1950 emphasis was on the accumulation
of articles. Every effort was made to assign each topic to the
writer best qualified to handle it. Histories of counties and towns,
for example, were first assigned to persons who had written
books or theses on them. Those towns and counties which had
not been the subject of special studies were assigned to Associa-
tion members in the areas or to student writers in a specialized
course in the history department of the University. The resulting
articles have been checked, in so far as possible, against the
answers to mimeographed questionnaires, at least one of which
was sent to some person at every post office in Texas. Comparable
procedures have been followed on all other subjects.

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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 55, July 1951 - April, 1952, periodical, 1952; Austin, Texas. ( accessed July 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History,; crediting Texas State Historical Association.