Austin History Center

Simnacher Family Papers

An Inventory of the Collection

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Simnacher family
Title: Simnacher Family Papers
Inclusive Dates: 1902-1952
Bulk Dates: 1942-1952
Abstract: The Simnacher Family Papers are composed primarily of correspondence between family members during the 1940s when three Simnacher sons were living away from the family home in Austin, Texas.
Identification: AR.1992.030
Quantity: .4 linear feet (1 box)
Language: The records are in English.
Repository: Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, 810 Guadalupe, PO BOX 2287, Austin, TX 78768

Biographical Note

Thomas Simnacher was born in Germany in 1874 and arrived in Texas in 1895. His wife Mary, a Texas native, was born in 1875. The couple had four children: Edmund, Mary Elizabeth, Theodore and Earnest. Thomas Simnacher was a general contractor and at least one of his sons (Edmund) joined him in the business. While living in Austin the family resided at 4608 Harmon Avenue.

Scope and Contents

The majority of the collection consists of correspondence between family members dating from 1939-1951 when the Simnacher sons were living outside of Austin, Texas. During the 1940's Theodore served in the United States Armed Forces and wrote letters to his parents and brothers from various locations about his World War II experience. Edmund "Slim" was in San Diego, California working in a factory (possibly Vultee Aircraft Corp.) in the early 1940s and his letters contain information about factory life during World War II. Earnest "Doc" wrote from Dallas, Texas and Fort Worth, Texas throughout the 1940s were he was working as a pharmacist. Thomas, Mary and their daughter Elizabeth remained in Austin and the collection contains a few letters written to Edmund, Theodore and Earnest about home life. Also included are a limited amount of greeting cards and letters written to the family from friends and relatives.

In addition to the correspondence there are two diaries - one small notepad maintained by Edmund dated 1944 and a daily report of activities written by Thomas in 1949. There are two legal documents dated circa 1902 and 1911 concerning property owned by Thomas. Also included are tax (poll and property) and merchandise receipts, Theodore's 1940 selective service notice to appear for physical examination, Thomas's business cards and an unidentified photograph of a ship.


Arranged by material type. The correspondence is further arranged by the sender's name.


Restrictions on Access

Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use


Index Terms

This record series is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Simnacher, Earnest.
Simnacher, Edmund.
Simnacher, Elizabeth.
Simnacher, Mary.
Simnacher, Theodore.
Simnacher, Thomas.
Austin (Tex.)
San Diego (Cal.)
World War II.

Administrative Information

Custodial History

Material was found in the Simnacher house (4608 Harmon Avenue, Austin, TX) before the house was razed in 1982. Donor was unrelated to the family.

Preferred Citation

Simnacher Family Papers (AR.1992.030). Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Texas.

Acquisition Information

Donor #: DO/1972/078

Donation Date: 1992, 2005

Processing Information

Finding aid created and encoded by Molly Hults/2010.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Simnacher Family Papers, 1902-1951

Box Folder
1 1 Cards, 1943-1952
2 Correspondence - Earnest "Doc", 1939-1948
3 Correspondence - Edmund "Slim", 1942-43
4 Correspondence - Elizabeth "Shorty", 1943
5 Correspondence - Theodore, 1934-1951
6 Correspondence - Thomas and Mary, 1942-1943
7 Correspondence - Assorted, 1935-1947
8 Diaries, 1944, 1949
9 Legal documents - property, circa 1902, 1911
10 Tax and merchandise receipts, 1904-1905, 1940-1948
11 Assorted, 1939, 1941, undated