The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 59, July 1955 - April, 1956 Page: 256
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Most of the records created during 1835 and early 1836 were
those of the governor and council. Henry Smith kept some of
them and James W. Robinson kept others, and these two gentle-
men quarreled over who had the right to keep the archives. When
the Convention met in Washington-on-the-Brazos in 1836, the
remnant of the provisional government seems to have brought its
records to the meeting, and on March i , 1836, the Convention
procured a "suitable room for depositing the archives of the late
The records of the fleeting ad interim government, one imag-
ines, were originally stored in saddlebags and individual's wallets.
J. W. Moody, the auditor, made himself personally responsible
for the records of his office. By October, 1836, most of the records
of the early government were probably located at the seat of
government in Columbia. From there they were moved to Hous-
ton, again apparently by individual officials. When the records
were moved from Houston to Austin, however, in 1839, a separate
appropriation was made to cover the cost of the transfer, and they
were moved together as a group under the supervision of Anson
Jones. Those records never left Austin-despite Sam Houston's
efforts to remove them which precipitated the well-known "Ar-
chives War"-but the government did leave Austin, and while
functioning in Washington-the-Brazos, created additional records
which were moved to Austin in 1846.
The establishment of the state government resulted in some
reshuffling of the records, particularly those of the Treasury De-
partment. By this time the General Land Office also had a well
established archives of its own, including the land records of the
colonial land offices collected by John Forbes in 1835 and 1836.
The present writer is not yet certain when and by what author-
ization the secretary of state began to assume responsibility for
the care and preservation of the early records of the other depart-
ments which had accumulated in Austin, but it seems evident
that by about 1850 this was a fait accompli. In 1850 the Legisla-
ture authorized the secretary of state to take into custody the old
records of the political chief of Nacogdoches and of the Munici-
pality of Nacogdoches. This group of records became known as
the "Nacogdoches Archives," and it contained much more than
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 59, July 1955 - April, 1956, periodical, 1956; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101162/m1/282/: accessed July 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.