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Baylor University Libraries Digital Collections

About the W.R. Poage Legislative Library

The W.R. Poage Legislative Library is part of the Baylor University Libraries, functioning as a special collections library and research facility which collects congressional records and personal papers related to the political history of Central Texas. It was established in 1979 in honor of Congressman W.R. Poage, Baylor alumnus and retired public official whose career spanned over fifty years.

W.R. Poage Legislative Library currently houses the papers of twelve former members of Congress, six Texas legislators, five judges, an editorial cartoon collection, extremist organizations' materials, one Lieutenant Governor's papers, and records of the McLennan County Democratic Party. In addition, the library contains a map collection, an extensive campaign materials collection, and a 20,000 volume book collection focusing on Congress, political history, and areas of public policy.

Learn more about the Poage Legislative Library from the Poage website.

The Poage Legislative Library's Digital Collections

9/11 Newspapers

Project 9-11 is an attempt to preserve original publications concerning the September 11, 2001 terror attacks, and to make them available to researchers.

Bob Bullock Cartoon Collection

The Bob Bullock Political Cartoon subseries contains political cartoons about Bullock created by cartoonists from different Texas newspapers. The majority of these cartoons are framed and the physical collection contains duplicates of many of the cartoons. When a cartoon was published with Bullock in it, he would contact the cartoonist to try to purchase the cartoon. Then he would make copies and frame them (including the original) and either hang them at his home or office or simply give them away.

Bob Bullock Photographs

This collection contains a curated set of images drawn from a larger collection of 6,000 photographs. The photos visually document Bullock's life from his family roots and early childhood through his political career and beyond. The collection contains digital images of framed photographs, notebooks, photo albums and unframed oversize photographs.

U.S. Rep. Chet Edwards Collection

The Chet Edwards Collection is drawn from the Congressional records of former U.S. Rep. Chet Edwards (D-TX). Edwards, whose 30-plus years in public service include stints in the Texas Senate (1983-1990) and the U.S. House of Representatives (1991-2011), saved many of the documents generated by his office, from emails to photos and other documents.

Ben Guttery Campaign Materials

Ben Guttery, originally from Austin, has collected Texas political items since his youth. He has a Master's Degree in Urban Planning from Texas A&M University and a Bachelor's Degree in Geography from Southwest Texas State University. He has written two books: Encyclopedia of African Airlines (McFarland, 1998) and Representing Texas: A Comprehensive History of the United States and Confederate Senators and Representatives from Texas. He is married with children and lives in Fort Worth.

Iraqi Posters Collection

These Iraqi and American propaganda materials were collected by Jeffrey Ward during a tour of duty while serving in Iraq. Imagery of Iraqi cleric Moqtada al-Sadr and former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein are prominent in this collection. A striking visual amidst the scenes of propaganda and smiling authoritarians is a 2004 calendar featuring an image of a young girl. The posters have been translated by Mark Long, Baylor professor of Middle Eastern studies.

JFK: John Armstrong Collection

For ten years, John Armstrong conducted research for his book Harvey & Lee [Arlington, Tex. : Quasar, c2003]. His travels took him all over the country and to several foreign countries gathering materials and conducting interviews. His research resulted in more than 100,000 pages of documents, dozens of reels of microfilm, many books and hundreds of photographs. He arranged his materials into dozens of oversize notebooks which were divided into topics and subtopics. The W.R. Poage Legislative Library and Riley Digitization Center at Baylor University began digitizing these notebooks in November, 2009 and completed work in the Spring of 2011.

JFK: Robert Cutler Collection

Robert Bradley Cutler was born on November 8, 1913 in Charles River, Massachusetts. He graduated from Harvard University and the Harvard Graduate School of Design. He served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy in the Pacific theater in World War II. He practiced architecture in New York City, Boston and Manchester, Massachusetts. He researched extensively the assassinations of both John and Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr., published several books on his theories and established The Conspiracy Museum in Dallas, Texas to disprove the lone assassin conclusion of the Warren Commission's investigation of President Kennedy's assassination.

JFK: Edward T. Haslam Collection

Ed Haslam, the author of "Dr. Mary's Monkey," was born in Kansas where his family had lived for several generations. His grandparents were the schoolteachers and country doctors of the prairie. Shortly after his birth in 1951, his father (who had just returned from Harvard University and the U.S. Navy) accepted a teaching position at Tulane Medical School in New Orleans. During the next 35 years that Ed Haslam lived in New Orleans, he personally heard and saw things that related to the investigation into the Kennedy Assassination, the murder of one of his father's colleagues, and claims of biological weapons to be used for political purposes. Haslam's 1969 comment, "If there is a bizarre global epidemic involving cancer and a monkey virus thirty years from now, at least we'll know where it came from" states his concerns clearly.

JFK: Jack White Collection

The materials in this collection include slides and photographs from White's personal collection. The slide carousels contain images - and, in some cases, scripts - of presentations White gave to various audiences on his work analyzing photographs of the assassination and its major players.

JFK: Newspapers

This collection features newspapers gifted to the Poage Legislative Library as part of collections received from Jack Hightower, Penn Jones and Bob Poage. Each man collected numerous issues of major American newspapers in the days immediately surrounding Kennedy's murder in Dallas. They are presented here as a curated collection focused on newspaper accounts of the crisis as it unfolded.

JFK: Other Materials

This collection contains materials related to the life and legacy of U.S. President John F. Kennedy. Items in this collection vary in scope and origin and range from teletypes of the coverage of Kennedy's assassination on November 22, 1963 to documents related to the event's subsequent investigations. A copy of a newspaper collected by Jack Hightower on the day of Kennedy's inauguration is also included.

JFK: Penn Jones, 'The Continuing Inquiry'

William Penn Jones, Jr. (1914-1998) was a journalist and World War II veteran best known for his research into the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Jones wrote a series of books entitled Forgive My Grief and was editor-in-chief of The Continuing Inquiry, a newsletter focused on assassination theories. This collection contains a nearly complete run of The Continuing Inquiry and is full text-searchable.

JFK: Penn Jones Photographs

In 1963, Penn Jones became involved in investigating the assassination of John F. Kennedy. A fellow researcher, Gary Mack, later explained, "Penn was one of the first generation of researchers who felt the government was behind the assassination - probably a conspiracy involving military intelligence... He always thought LBJ was behind it somehow." Jones was also the author of several books on the assassination: Forgive My Grief I-IV (1966-1976).

LBJ - George Meyer Photos Collection

This collection's materials came from archives kept by members of Johson's staff and others in his close circle. The collection contains campaign items from most of his campaigns. The collection is unique in the political items hobby area for its breadth of coverage and historical value.

Bob Platt Collection

Dr. Robert "Bob" Platt was born on June 10, 1928 in Utica, New York. He began collecting buttons beginning in 1936 when his grandfather gave him an “Al Landon” for President Button. He has pursued his hobby of collecting books and political memorabilia to the present.

Bob Poage Photograph Collection

William Robert "Bob" Poage served as U.S. Representative from Texas' 11th Congressional District from January 3, 1937 until his resignation on December 31, 1978 (75th-95th Congresses). His service coincided with an era of great influence for Texas and southern congressmen both on Capitol Hill and in the Democratic Party. Following his 1978 retirement, Poage donated his papers from nearly fifty years of public service to Baylor University, forming the keystone of the present Baylor Collections of Political Materials.

Prestridge-Sandford Family Letters

This collection documents the lives of George Harper Prestridge and his wife, Mary Ann Rebecca Frost Prestridge. According to Herman Prestridge Sandford, a descendant of the letter writers, "The letters tell of the love George and Rebecca shared amid the horrors of the Civil War. They reveal the courage and the suffering of the soldiers. They disclose, to a degree not found in history books, the hardship of women, widows in particular, and the sufferings and the joys of the children of those fatherless families."
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