University of Texas, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

Woodrow Wilson Magness family papers, 1915-1989

Creator Magness, Woodrow Wilson, 1915-1998
Creator Magness, Margaret Hale, 1923-2015
Title: Woodrow Wilson Magness family papers
Dates: 1915-1989
Abstract: Correspondence, printed material, newspaper clippings, photographs, literary productions, family history, and audiotapes comprise the Woodrow Wilson Magness family papers.
Identification: camh-arc-004056
Extent: 7.75 linear feet
Language: Materials are written in English.
Repository: Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

Biographical Note

Woodrow Wilson Magness (1915-1998) was among the first men drafted from Fort Worth, Texas, into the U.S. Army during World War II. When he transferred to Arizona, he met Margaret Hale (1923-2015). Her Arizona family included her step-father James Prugh Herndon, the son of missionary teachers assigned to the Tohono O'odham Nation in the early 20th century.

Woodrow and Margaret married in 1943. After wartime service, he was assigned as personal navigator to U.S. Air Force Gen. George C. Kenney. Woodrow went on to become an Air Force colonel, assigned to the Pentagon, to Oslo, Norway, and to Toyoko, Japan, with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. He also served in the Korean War.

Woodrow and Margaret had three children; their son Hunter served in the Vietnam War.

After traveling the world with her husband, Margaret Magness moved to Austin, Texas, where she lived for 50 years.

Scope and Contents

Correspondence, printed material, newspaper clippings, photographs, literary productions, family history, and audiotapes comprise the Woodrow Wilson Magness family papers. The collection includes the Magness, Hale, Neal and Herndon families; family's military service during World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam conflict; and James Prugh Herndon's life with the Tohono O'odham Indians in early 20th century Arizona. The papers include extensive correspondence from Margaret Hale Magness to her mother, Margaret Neal Hale Herndon, concerning her husband, Woodrow; her children, Hunter, Margaret, and Stuart; and their daily lives while in the U.S. military and after retirement.


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research. 

Conditions Governing Use

There are no use restrictions on this collection. Publisher is responsible for complying with copyright law. 

Index Terms

Personal Names
Magness, Margaret Hale, 1923-2015
Magness, Woodrow Wilson, 1915-1998
Armed Forces--Military life
Indian reservations
Korean War (1950-1953)
Tohono O'odham Indians
Vietnam War (1961-1975)
World War (1939-1945)

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Woodrow Wilson Harkness Family Papers, 1915-1989, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Colleen Hobbs, January 2019.

Accession Numbers

91-254; 91-303; 92-039; 92-077; 92-261; 93-118

Detailed Description of the Collection


Correspondence 1942-1987
Margaret Hale Magness to Woodrow W. Magness 1942-1945
3F7 Woodrow W. Magness to Margaret Hale Magness 1943-1946
General correspondence to Woodrow W. Magness 1942-1945
3F8 Woodrow W. Magness to Margaret Hale Magness, Korean War 1950-1952
3F9 Hunter Magness from Vietnam 1965-1968
3F10 Woodrow Magness to Elsie Neal 1943-1959
2X57c Reel to reel tapes undated
Magness and Herndons correspondence 1938-1987
3F11 Magness and Herndons correspondence 1938-1947
3F12 Magness and Herndons correspondence 1947-1952
3F10 Magness and Herndons correspondence 1952-1957
3F14 Magness and Herndons correspondence 1958-1965
3F15 Magness and Herndons correspondence 1965-1970
3F16 Magness and Herndons correspondence 1971-1979
3F17 Magness and Herndons correspondence 1980-1987
2.325/U508 Correspondence, oversized undated
4Ab15.1 Reel to reel tapes from Hunter Magness 1965-1968
Printed materials 1940-1989
3F18 Literary productions, Margaret Hale Magness undated
James Prugh Herndon childhood memories of life on Arizona Indian reservation undated
NASA Shuttle, Bill Fisher flight, Florida 1985
Hot Springs, Arkansas, trip 1989
Olympics trip 1984
Margaret Hale Magness, college expense account 1940
3F19 Bicentennial, unprocessed materials 1976
3F20 Greeting cards undated
3F21 Greeting cards 1915-1972
2.325/U508 Literary production and printed material, oversized undated
Photographic materials undated
3S28 Photographic materials undated
3S197 Photographic materials, oversized undated