The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 49, July 1945 - April, 1946 Page: 21
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Lester Gladstone Bugbee
Professor Garrison lent his aid, and the end of the story is
told by Newton in a letter to Bugbee dated October 1, 1899:
At last I have succeeded in getting the Commissioner's Court to transfer
the old Spanish Archives to the University. It wasn't a very easy matter
as they were afraid of it politically, but I insisted and when it came to
a vote they all reluctantly voted aye. I sent Prof. Garrison a copy of
the conditions they were transferred upon, which are about the same
as the ones you submitted. I hope that you and Garrison will have
smooth sailing with the regents and that the conditions of the transfer
will be satisfactory to them.
The papers came to the University packed in boxes, com-
pletely without arrangement, as time and occasional handling
had jumbled them in their travels from one storage place to
another in San Antonio; and the boxes were deposited on the
floor of the new vault in the old Main Building --and there
for eight months they remained untouched. Bugbee wrote
Garrison a report on May 8, 1900, telling him what should be
done to make them available. It is one of the few formal
manuscripts written by him during this period that I have
found; and it seems worthy of lengthy quotation both for its
content and as an example of meticulous statement:
Dear Sir: The Archives of Bexar in their present condition are next
to useless and I understand that the financial condition of the University
is such that no appropriation adequate for the classification and indexing
of these papers can be hoped for just now. I venture, then, to make the
following suggestions for bringing a small portion of them within reach
of the investigator.
1. The vault should be provided with shelves and tables. Prof. Mather
estimates that the cost of lumber for shelves for the four sides of the
vault will be about $60. I presume that the work can be done by the
University carpenter, but I wish to urge especially the desirability of
having the shelves in place by Commencement.
2. 2500 manila wrappers should be provided. I recommend the size
and form of the one attached. Only one document should be enclosed in
a wrapper, and the proper spaces should be indicated for numbering and
indexing. . .. 2500 wrappers printed as indicated by the attached sample
will cost $25.
3. An assistant should be employed to facilitate classification. As you
know, the papers are in the greatest confusion. It will be necessary to
handle each paper and first arrange the collection according to some
chronological plan. This can be done by anyone who has a very slight
acquaintance with the Spanish language.
As the appropriation for this purpose will probably be small, I suggest
that we concern ourselves first with that portion of the papers bearing
date between 1820 and 1835. I suggest further that the following classi-
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 49, July 1945 - April, 1946, periodical, 1946; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth146056/m1/27/: accessed September 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.