The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 83, July 1979 - April, 1980 Page: 226
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
for which the Texas Freedmen's Bureau records have relevance, a brief
recapitulation may be in order. The Texas Bureau holdings contain
significant material on the black community in relation to adjustment
to freedom, race relations, education, labor, family, politics, crime,
urban life, and violence. There is less on migration, housing, medical
care, social strata, and internal divisions within black society itself. These
omissions should not deter any researcher. The views which emerge
from the records may raise questions which will lead to an intensive
search for supplementary materials. Still needed is a composite picture
of what life was like for the Texas black masses during those first mo-
mentous years of freedom.
The Freedmen's Bureau records, including those for Texas, have
only begun to be tapped for the tremendous amount of material that
awaits those seriously interested in black history. In order to begin to
understand what went on in any southern state during Reconstruction,
especially in the black community, the records of the Bureau of Refu-
gees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands are the indispensable starting
place. No other manuscript collection has such detailed accounts nor
so many letters written by blacks. How the freedmen coped in the
postwar years and how the Freedmen's Bureau affected their everyday
lives can be found in the vast number of papers the Bureau left behind.
However the accomplishments of the Bureau may be evaluated either
now or in the future, the records that the whole agency left behind con-
stitute one legacy to the field of black history.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 83, July 1979 - April, 1980, periodical, 1979/1980; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101207/m1/270/: accessed September 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.