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Ship of Ghosts Reading Wed., Nov. 15th

Events, USS Houston & Military History

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 or by phone at 713-743-9744.

Donald Barthelme Literary Papers Finding Aid

Contemporary Literature, Finding Aids

Donald Barthelme

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.

Cruiser Houston Finding Aid Online

Finding Aids, USS Houston & Military History

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, 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 or by phone at 512-989-0000.

Tom Connally Letter, 1944

Finding Aids

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.

The Biographical Directory of the United States Congress