Reference Materials

Archives and Manuscripts:
Archived Subject Files — An easily accessible collection of news clippings, magazine articles, documents, notes, memoranda, research papers, advertising ephemera, and other items arranged by subject. Some of these include the President Johnson’s Great Society speeches and legislation, LBJ’s campaigns and elections, Texas State University history, politics and political science, and LBJ-related historical sites. Same as the “vertical files” in a library or archives.

Gerald Blankenship Stamp Collection — Pre-cancelled postage stamps from mostly foreign countries commemorating Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson.

Costume Patterns — Original historic designs, drawings, and tracing patterns for clothing and home interiors from the 1940s through the 1980s.

Norman Dietel Papers — Personal papers from long-time publisher of the Fredericksburg Radio Post and organizational records for the creation of the President’s Ranch Trail, a late-1960s Hill Country initiative of heritage tourism and highway beautification.

Higher Education Act 40th Anniversary Collection — Programs, invitations, and other documents. Research materials on the history and impact of higher education in the 20th century are of notable significance. A video and a ballpoint pen have been separated.

Hughes Papers s— Invitations to Johnson’s Inauguration, the dedication of the LBJ Library, and other national events.

Lyndon Baines Johnson Collection — Primary source documents relating to LBJ throughout his career.

LBJ Museum of San Marcos Records — Various manuscripts, minutes and agendas, construction documents and drawings, photographs, exhibit designs, and other materials documenting the creation, organization, and development of the Museum.

J.R. Thornton Papers — A collection of manuscripts, correspondence, invitations, greeting cards, and campaign materials from J.R. Thornton, a San Marcos banker, campaign fundraiser, and friend of the Johnson family. Some items, such as photographs, periodicals, objects, and audio-visual materials, have been separated to other collections.

Frank Zimmerman Papers — Correspondence with Johnson during the late 1940s and early 1950s. Frank Zimmerman was known for decades as “Mr. Theater” of San Marcos and once owned the Palace Theater.

Oversized Archives — Maps, architectural drawings (both flat and rolled), posters, and other large-format documents.

Art Collection: 
Our small but growing collection of art work includes a large oil-on-wood painting by Earl Fahrendorff, Jr., a miniature statue of Johnson as a student, LBJ busts, clay-and-paper-mache statues, paintings and sketches of Johnson and Johnson-related historical sites, and illustrated drawings of the LBJ Museum of San Marcos..

Artifacts Collection:
We have lots of campaign memorabilia, such as bumper stickers, pins, and buttons, a collection of Presidential signing pens, postage stamps, commemorative medals, ash trays and cigarette lighters, a formal gown worn to Johnson’s Inauguration in 1965, reproductions of 1920s school children’s clothing, a double-seated school desk, and other three-dimensional objects, some of which are displayed in our permanent exhibit.

Audio-Visual Materials:
LBJ Centennial Oral History Project — Oral histories of 48 individuals sharing their recollections of Lyndon Johnson in San Marcos and Central Texas and covering a broad range of topics, such as civil rights and the impact of Great Society legislation, the Gary Job Corps and the Federal Fish Hatchery, the White Stars fraternity, and Johnson attending the Southwest Texas State Teachers College. Written transcripts are also available.

Other materials include videos of President Johnson giving speeches and national television coverage of major events, audio CDs of Johnson speeches and humorous stories, a comedy-satire record album, and a silent 16-mm film of the Johnson Inauguration Parade.

We are accumulating books and booklets regarding Lyndon Johnson’s biography and career, as well as those of other Texas politicians. Board Member Ed Mihalkanin has recently donated a substantial collection relating to national and international political science, foreign relations, the Civil War and the frontier West, and classic 20th century Southern literature.

The archives include roughly 300 newspapers, magazines, and newsletters concerning LBJ, from the 1930s through the 1970s, and arranged first by periodical title and then by issue date.

Photograph Subject Files — These photos come from various sources and are arranged by subject, including Johnson and his Cotulla students, Texas State University programs and events, James H. McCrocklin and Harriett McCrocklin, and Lyndon Johnson during his political campaigns and regular visits to San Marcos.

Liz Carpenter Collection — Various photos of Lyndon and Lady Bird Johnson, the LBJ Ranch, Johnson family members, the Hello Dolly! stage performance, and other notable individuals and events from the 1950s through the 1970s.

Norman Dietel Collection — About 1,200 black-and-white photographs originally taken for the Fredericksburg Radio Post during the 1950s, 60s, and 70s depicting the Johnson family, political campaigns in Central Texas, diplomatic events with international leaders, birthday and anniversary celebrations, press conferences, cabinet meetings, visits from former U.S. presidents and Texas politicians, ranch scenes and Hill Country scenery, and the dedication of parks and historical sites. Locations are mostly at the LBJ Ranch in Stonewall, Texas, but also Fredericksburg churches and rodeo grounds.

Higher Education Act 40th Anniversary Slide Collection — Positive slides coinciding with the production of the HEA 40th Anniversary Video produced in 2005.

Oversized Photographs — A few photos are stored separately due to their size.

Please contact the Museum at (512) 353-3300 or email, for reference requests or to arrange for an appointment at the Museum to view and research materials in our archives. Our mailing address is LBJ Museum of San Marcos, P.O. Box 3, San Marcos, Texas, 78667. We are located at 131 N. Guadalupe Street, on the west side of the Courthouse Square in downtown San Marcos, Texas.