Austin History Center

Walter Tips Company Records

An Inventory of the Collection

Collection Summary

Creator: Walter Tips Company
Title: Walter Tips Company Records
Inclusive Dates: 1875-1952.
Bulk Dates: 1900-1935.
Abstract: The Walter Tips Company of Austin was founded in 1857. The papers of this collection contain correspondence, minutes, legal and financial documents, and printed material. The material is arranged in five main categories concerned with the purchase of land and building the warehouse, employee and employer concerns, a stock dispute, estate management, and wholesale catalogs.
Call Number: AR.X.021
Quantity: 2 linear feet, 4 boxes, 278 items.
Collection Unit: Archives and Manuscripts Collection.
Repository: Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, 810 Guadalupe, Austin, Texas, 78701.

Administrative History of Walter Tips Company

The Walter Tips Company of Austin was founded in 1857 by Edward Tips, who owned the business until his death in 1872. His brother, Walter Tips, bought the business after his death and incorporated it into his own business in New Braunfels. In 1881 Walter Tips sold his interests in his original business to his partners and devoted himself to the hardware business in Austin. The hardware store eventually branched out into other areas such as heavy machinery and leather and wood trappings for horse drawn vehicles. The Tips Foundry & Machine Company was created to service machinery. In the 1900s a division started building engines. Walter Tips served as chief administrator until his death in 1911. Today the Walter Tips Company still exists in Austin.

Scope and Contents of the Records

The papers contain correspondence, minutes, legal and financial documents, printed, and general material related to the Walter Tips Company of Austin. Arranged into four main categories concerned with the purchase of land and building the warehouse, employee and employer concerns, a stock dispute, estate management, and wholesale catalogs, the bulk of the material covers the period of 1900-1935 with a small amount of pre-1900 items and one 1958 item. The company's procedures for compensation of its travelling salesmen are especially well documented. The material related to the warehouse details the purchase of the land for the warehouse site and the actual construction of the warehouse, giving estimates on construction costs.

Organization of the Records

Theses records are organized into five series:
Warehouse - Land purchase and Construction.
Stock Dispute.
Hampton Estate.
Wholesale Catalogs.


Restrictions on Access


Restrictions on Use


Index Terms

Schmidt, Fox.
Wattinger, H. E.
Fristoe, H. M.
Younger, A. H.
Merrem, E. L.
Flynn, Thomas.
Smith, Roy.
Groos, George.
Smith, O. W.
Creighton, J. O.
Searight, Dan.
Fisher, Ed. J.
Kluge, Tom.
McSwain, J. M.
Posey, Frank
Goeth, A. C.
Tips, Kathryn S.
Tips, Walter H.
Oatman, Sneed [Bush].
Hampton, C. R.
Page Brothers.
Brown Brothers.
Johnson Brothers.
National Hardware Association of United States.
Hardware industry.
Austin (Tex.).
Document Types:
Financial documents.
Legal documents.
Printed material.
Profit Sharing with Employees.

Related Material

Walter Tips Papers AR.X.22

AF - Biography. Scherding Family. Austin Files.

AF - Biography. Tips Family. Austin Files.

HB - Congress Avenue 708-712. Austin Files.

HB - 7th Street, West, 315. Austin Files.

A 725.2109764 Fr.A History of the Tips Building. Frankling Savings Association. Austin, TX: The Association, 1981.

A 338.76 GO AA.One Hundred Years of Tips in Texas. Goeth, Ralph Conrad. Austin, TX: s.n., 1957.

Administrative Information

Custodial History:

The bulk of the collection was donated in 1985 by a former president of the Walter Tips Company, one of the catalogs was given by another donor, and company blank stationary was given by another.

Preferred Citation:

Walter Tips Company Records, 1875-1952 (AR.X.021). Austin, TX: Austin History Center, Austin Public Library.

Acquistion Information:

Donor #: DO/1985/037; DO/1995/025; DO/1968/012.

Donation Date: May, 1985; March, 1987; January, 1994.

Processing Information:

Initial Inventory and Preliminary Processing By/Date: Holley White / Nov. 1987.

Final Processing and Finding Aid By/Date: Ruth Baker / Feb. 2002.

Detailed Description of the Collection

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.

Series 1: Warehouse - Land Purchases and Construction

Land Purchases
Box Folder
1 1 Legal documents - Deeds, 1897-1941.
(14 items).
2 Legal documents - Abstracts of title, 1880-1927.
2 Agreements, 1898-1927. Marriage certificates, 1914-1921.
(14 items).
3 Correspondence, 1917-1921.
(5 items).
Box Folder
1 4 Correspondence, 1926-1927.
(18 items).
5 Minutes, Board of Directors' meetings, 1927.
5 Contracts, releases and agreements, 1927-1929.
(13 items).
6 Cost estimates, 1927. Bills & receipts, 1926-1929.
(18 items).
7 Bills and estimates, 1926-27, 1929.
(16 items).

Series 2: Employees/Employers

Box Folder
1 8 Correspondence-Letters sent by company to employees - Re: Salaries. 1915, 1916, 1918-21, 1930.
(28 items).
9 Correspondence - Letters received from salesmen and others - Re: Salaries. 1916, 1919-21, 1923.
(12 items).
10 Employee/employer agreements. n.d., 1916, 1920-23, 1925-27, 1934.
(41 items).
11 General, n.d., 1919.
11 Printed material, n.d."Profit Sharing with Employees."
(5 items).
12 Insurance policy on employees. 1944.
(1 item).

Series 3: Stock Dispute

Box Folder
1 13 Correspondence and related material, 1935-37, 1952.
(17 items).
14 General material - Patents. 1886, 1890, 1891, 1892.
(5 items).
15 Company stationary - blank. n.d.
(12 items).

Series 4: Hampton Estate

Box Folder
1 16 Correspondence and receipts relating to the Hampton Estate. Austin(Tex.). n.d., 1875, 1877-79.
(56 items).

Series 5: Wholesale catalogs

2 Catalog. 1971.
(1 item).
3 Catalog. 1970-1976.
(1 item).
4 Catalog - Automobile supplies. 1918.
(1 item).
(Item is in fragile condition).