Please join the University of Houston Libraries for a reading by James D. Hornfischer, author of Ship of Ghosts: The Story of the USS Houston, FDR’s Legendary Lost Cruiser, and the Epic Saga of her Survivors, now available from Bantam Books. A riveting account of the story behind the library’s own Cruiser Houston Collection, Ship of Ghosts has been chosen as a Main Selection of the History Book Club and the Military Book Club, and as an Alternate Selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club.
The reading and book signing will be held in the Elizabeth D. Rockwell Pavilion at the M.D. Anderson Library, University of Houston, Wednesday, November 15, 2006 at 6:30 pm. Attendees are also invited to enjoy the USS Houston (CA-30) exhibition on display near the Pavilion.
To reach the Library from I-45 South (coming from downtown), exit Spur 5 South (44B). Turn right at the first stoplight and take University Drive to the entrance to the University. A parking garage is on your left. M.D. Anderson Library is past the student center towards the center of campus. The Elizabeth D. Rockwell Pavilion is located on the 2nd floor, accessible from the elevator or staircase just inside the front entrance. If you need special assistance, please contact Julie Grob by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 713-743-9744.
Photograph by Jerry Bauer
The finding aid for the Donald Barthelme Literary Papers is now available on the TARO website. Special Collections acquired the collection from Marion Barthelme in 2002.
Donald Barthelme grew up in Houston, Texas, and attended the University of Houston as an undergraduate. After moving to New York City in 1962 he began regularly contributing short stories to the New Yorker, becoming well-known for his use of untraditional structures and his sense of the absurd. Barthelme would go on to publish numerous collected works, four novels, and a book for children. In 1979 he joined the faculty of the UH Creative Writing Program in Houston, eventually becoming Director, a position he held until his death in 1989. Barthelme’s Sixty Stories is considered a classic of contemporary American literature.
The Barthelme Papers include typescript drafts, galley proofs, and page proofs of Donald Barthelme’s novels, collected works, short stories, and other writings, plus collages and collage stories created by Barthelme. The collection also includes letters and cards from Barthelme’s writing friends and colleagues, and about a dozen photographs of the author.
A guide to the Cruiser Houston Collection, an archival collection of materials related to the USS Houston (CA-30) and her crew, is now available online at TARO. The heavy cruiser, first launched in 1929, was named for the city and port of Houston. On March 1, 1942, the Houston was sunk by the Japanese in Sunda Strait following a fierce battle, and her surviving crew members were made prisoners of war. Most of them worked as slave labor on the Burma-Thai Railway, immortalized in the film Bridge on the River Kwai. Following the war, the survivors formed the USS Houston Survivors Association, as well as a companion organization for younger family members called The Next Generation.
The Cruiser Houston Collection contains over seventy boxes of photographs, correspondence, diaries, copies of the ship’s newsletter the Blue Bonnet, POW records, memorabilia, and much more. Some recent donations are not yet lised in the finding aid, but are also available for use. For assistance with the collection, please contact curator Julie Grob by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at 713-743-9744. For information about the USS Houston Survivors Assocation and the Next Generation, please contact the organization directly by e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 512-989-0000.
Another finding aid has gone up on TARO. The Tom Connally Letter, 1944 contains a letter Senator Tom Connally, then chair of the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, sent to G.V. Brindley of Temple, Texas, regarding the case of a missing serviceman, Lieutenant Lloyd L. Withers. The Biographical Directory of the United States Congress has a brief biography, bibliography and details of research collections related to the senator.
Once again, the collections represented in this week’s crop of of new finding aids represent some far-reaching aspects of the history of Houston, Texas, and beyond.
Special Collections holds the papers of the late great Houston society columnist Maxine Mesinger. Mesinger, also known as "Miss Moonlight", wrote the "Big City Beat" column for the Houston Chronicle. At her memorial service, Liz Carpenter eulogized "She was the last of the dot dot dot girls". Our holdings include the entire run of the "Big City Beat" column, Mesinger’s personal photo collection and an audio tribute from Joan Rivers!
Moving right along, I’ve put up the finding aid for this collection, which is really just a broad assortment of historical materials from Mexico. Translations are available for many of the documents. If you are a UH Faculty member, student, or any other community member with an interest in historic documents from the US-Mexico border region, get in touch with me. We have an even larger collection of materials, and they’re very underresearched.
More items unearthed from our unprocessed Manuscripts:
This document details a skilled worker’s entry to Cuba.
Letter from the modernist architect and designer Marcel Breuer, written from New York City to University of Houston Professor of Architecture Howard Barnstone. October 12, 1971. Regards letter from Barnstone asking for support in Hugo V. Neuhaus Jr.’s nomination to the AIA College of Fellows.
Photo: Maxine Mesinger with Judy Garland. Photo dated Dec. 15, 1965. Houston Chronicle File Photo