2013 was a special year for the Briscoe Center. Whether opening exhibits like News to History, publishing books such as Bill Cunningham’s The Texas Way, reopening the Briscoe-Garner Museum in Uvalde, or acquiring precious artifacts such as the George Washington letter, there was much to report and celebrate.
I expect 2014 to be an even bigger year, as the center continues to grow, both on campus and across the academic community.
First, on February 4, the center’s good friend Dennis Brack will join us for a public program. That evening, guests will be able to view our exhibit Dennis Brack: A Career in Photojournalism at the center’s Research and Collections division. Afterward, Dennis will speak next door at the Bass Lecture Hall about his experiences covering presidential administrations and major news events for publications such as The Washington Post, Life, Newsweek, and Time. Dennis donated his archive to the Briscoe Center in 2008.
Second, I’m pleased to support the History Department’s Littlefield Lecture Series, which will take place on Feb. 19–20. My enthusiasm for the lectures stems from the Briscoe Center’s outstanding Southern history resources, for which we have the series’ namesake to thank. It was George Washington Littlefield who in 1914 established a fund for the university to collect archival materials related to the Southern states. These materials, which have grown to include the Natchez Trace Collection and the Southern Newspaper Collection, are now housed at the Briscoe Center.
Third, Winedale’s annual quilt exhibit will run February 10–23 in Round Top, Texas. Red and White and a Bit of Another Color showcases the combination, popular since the 1840s, across a range of quilts, textiles and embroidered “redwork.”
In many ways, 2014 is still coming together; the center’s staff has been busy over the last few months as we prepare for exciting (very exciting) news regarding collections and projects. Stay tuned for what will undoubtedly be another fantastic year of growth for the Briscoe Center.
Don Carleton, Ph.D.
J. R. Parten Chair in the Archives of American History