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Seminar Guide - Texas Legal History

Political, Legal & Judicial History Resources

These resources cover politics, law, and the judiciary in Texas history. Databases with a key icon (key icon) in front of them are provided by the Law Library or the Texas A&M Libraries. A NetID and password may be required for access.


Jan Miller & Jerry Perry, Development of Political Parties in Texas, State Bar of Texas (2012)

Stanley E. Siegel, A political history of the Texas Republic, 1836-1845 (Rice University, 1953 Ph.D Dissertation)


Texas State Law Library

Gammell's Laws of Texas (via the Portal to Texas History) - charts Texas from the time of colonization through to statehood and reveals Texas' legal history during crucial times in its development. The Laws consist of documents not only covering each congressional and legislative session but comprise other documents of significance, including the constitutions, select journals from the constitutional conventions, and early colonization laws.

Portal to Texas History: Government & Law

Texas Constitutions 1824-1876 at UT School of Law

Texas Legislative Reference Library

Texas Legal History Reference Sources from the South Texas College of Law (mainly covers print resources)

key iconHistorical Texas Statutes on HeinOnline


Justices of Texas 1836-1986 at UT School of Law

Texas Courthouse Database

Texas Supreme Court Historical Society

Historical Timeline of the U.S. District Courts for the District of Texas

Leila Clark Wynn, "A History of the Civil Courts in Texas", 60 Southwestern Historical Quarterly 1 (1956)

Social History Resources

These resources provide access to materials chronicling the social history of America and Texas. Databases with a key icon (key icon) in front of them are provided by the Law Library or the Texas A&M Libraries. A NetID and password may be required for access.

Newspapers & Magazines

key iconAmerica's Historical Newspapers - Includes Early American Newspapers and features cover-to-cover reproductions of hundreds of historic newspapers, providing more than one million pages as fully text-searchable facsimile images.

key iconChronicling America: Historic American Newspapers - This historical newspaper collection provided by the Library of Congress provides genealogists, researchers and scholars with online, full-text coverage of historical U.S. papers from 1836 to 1922. The website also provides access to a US Newspaper Directory, 1690 to the present.

key iconHarpWeek - Provides access to a digitized version of the famous nineteenth century Harper's Weekly magazine from the Civil War and Reconstruction era. Searchable text includes articles, illustrations, cartoons, editorials, and even advertisements.

key iconThe Nation Archive - A fully searchable electronic version of the magazine's complete backfile, offering a 145-year archive with thousands of historic articles, editorials, letters, reviews, poems, and puzzles dating back to Volume I, Number 1, from July 6, 1865.

key iconProQuest Historical Newspapers:

These historical newspaper databases provides genealogists, researchers and scholars with online, easily-searchable first-hand accounts and unparalleled coverage of the politics, society and events of the time.  

Race, Gender & Ethnicity  

key iconEveryday Life & Women in America, c1820-1900 - Covers American social, cultural, and popular history with emphasis on women. Includes fully searchable images (alongside transcriptions) of primary source documents including monographs, pamphlets, periodicals and broadsides.

The African-American Story, Bob Bullock State History Museum  

Texas Slavery Project - examines the spread of American slavery into the borderlands between the United States and Mexico in the decades between 1820 and 1850.  

Texas Historical Commission, Hispanic Texans: Journey From Empire to Democracy (2015)  


Texas Education Agency, Texas Public Schools Sesquicentennial Handbook (2004) - provides a brief history of the public school system and suggested ways school districts could celebrate and preserve their history.  

History of Public Education in Texas  

I. Thomas Holleman Jr., The Development of Free Public Schools in Texas (1973)

Texas School Finance History  

The Texas Schoolhouse Prior to 1950  


Texas Historical Commission, The Development of Highways in Texas: A Historic Context of the Bankhead Highway and Other Historic Named Highways (2014)  

Texas Transportation Archive - the volunteer effort of researchers Murry Hammond and Lester Haines to provide access to their private collections of rare photographs, maps, and manuscript material related to Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Arkansas.

Texas Transportation Museum - preserves transportation history in San Antonio. See the "Transportation History" dropdown menu for historical timelines and resources.  

Texas State Archives Exhibits