Dr. Z.T. Scott Family Papers
An Inventory to the Collection
The Z.T. Scott family of Austin, Texas was one of the city's most prominent families in the first sixty years of the twentieth century, notable for their many community activities and the film and theatrical career of their son, Zachary, Jr. Zachary, Sr. was a well-known physician whose work with tuberculosis treatment in the state was particularly important. He and his wife, Sallie Lee Masterson, were also instrumental in the formation of the Austin Heritage Society. In addition to their son, Zachary, Jr., the Scotts had two daughters, Abby Ann (Scott) Hearon and Mary Lewis (Scott) Kleburg.
Dr. Scott (1880-1964) was born in Fort Worth and grew up at his family's ranch, "Bel-Air," in Bosque County, Texas, which was named for a plantation in Virginia owned by his father, James McClure Scott. Young Zachary was educated by his aunts at a private school at the plantation near Fredericksburg, Virginia, and returned to Texas in 1898 to attend the University of Texas Medical School in Galveston. While a student there, Scott practiced medicine in Clifton, Texas, where in 1909 he met and married Sallie Lee Masterson, of the Masterson Ranch in King County. They moved that year to Austin, where he bought one-half interest in the Austin Sanitarium, with partner Dr. Thomas J. Bennett, and began a life-long commitment to tuberculosis treatment (Dr. Scott's own mother died of the disease).
During World War I, he organized a medical unit, which was moved to Gulfport, Mississippi, under his command. After the war he served on the Austin Selective Service Board for many years. Along with Dr. Frank C. Gregg, Dr. Scott established the Scott-Gregg Clinic in Austin in 1923, which also specialized in the treatment of tuberculosis. After the clinic closed in 1930 due to the Depression, Scott became Chief of Staff at Brackenridge Hospital, where he retired from active practice in 1947. Throughout this time he was active in the American Medical Association and the Texas Tuberculosis Association. After retirement Dr. Scott turned to cattle ranching, and he developed the "San Gerford" breed at the family ranch in the Buda-Creedmore, Texas area. He was also a ruling elder and trustee of University Presbyterian Church, and a member of the board of directors of the Capital National Bank of Austin from its creation in 1934 until his death.
Sallie Lee Masterson Scott (1888-1984) was the daughter of Robert B. and Anna (Exum) Masterson. She attended public school in Fort Worth, where she lived until her marriage in 1909. She was instrumental in the relocation and later restoration of the John Swisher residence (originally located on San Antonio Street between Cedar and Pine Streets in Austin, Texas) in 1929, to its present location at 2408 Sweetbrush, Austin, Texas (then 3700 Windsor). Swisher was Treasurer of the Republic of Texas and later the Texas State Treasurer. The house, which the Scott family called "Sweetbrush," served as the family residence and for many years it was known as one of Austin's finest homes. The Scotts were also founding members of the Austin Heritage Society and hosted many of the Society's activities at Sweetbrush. After the Scotts' deaths the home was donated to the University of Texas.
Abby Ann (Scott) Hearon (1910-1982) was the Scotts' eldest daughter. She married Lawrence Haggy, and later Fanning Hearon. Zachary Thomson Scott, Jr. (1914-1965) was well known as a film star in such films as Mildred Pierce, Stallion Road, and The Southerner (as well as thirty others). He grew up in Austin, Texas and studied drama at the University of Texas. He married Elaine Anderson in 1935. Later that year, Zachary Scott, Jr. worked his way to Longon on a freighter to work in theatre there, but returned in 1936 to serve as director of the Austin Civic Theatre. Zachary, Jr. and Elaine were divorced in 1950, and he married actress Ruth Ford in New York in 1952. They each worked in film and the theatre, and together produced William Faulkner's only play, Requiem for a Nun (which Faulkner wrote specifically for Ruth) for the London stage in 1959. Zachary, Jr. died at Sweetbrush in 1965. In 1968 the Austin Civic Theatre was renamed the Zachary Scott Theatre in his honor. Mary Lewis (Scott) Kleberg (1921-2009) was the youngest daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Scott, and married Richard Kleberg, of the King Ranch.
Printed material, diaries, correspondence, certificates and awards, and creative works, 1891-1984, comprise the bulk of the papers of the Zachary Thomson Scott family of Austin, Texas, and the personal papers of Dr. Scott and his wife, Sallie Masterson Scott. Major themes include family life and travel, the career and accomplishments of Dr. Scott (especially his work on Tuberculosis), the "Sweetbrush" family home (1957-1984), the family's ranching activities in the Buda-Creedmore, Texas area (1955-1960), the Scotts' civic engagement through work with the Austin Heritage Society and Dr. Scott's service on the Austin Selective Service Board, and Civil War reminiscences by male family members (1891-1892). Also included is one diary (1930) by the parents of Sallie Masterson Scott and two of her own diaries (1906 and 1907), which predate her marriage to Zachary Scott, Sr. Previous processing records for the collection indicate that it once included a scrapbook, the contents of which were removed and integrated into the collection. In subsequent processing work on the collection, photocopies of two book covers, their respective bookplates or title pages, and two award plaques were made and retained in the collection, while the original items were discarded.
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The collection was donated by Mary Lewis (Scott) Kleberg, youngest daughter of Dr. Zachary and Mrs. Sallie Lee Masterson Scott, in 1984. Additional donations were made by Mrs. Arthur Fehr in the same year.
Dr. Z.T. Scott Family Papers (AR.V.011). Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Texas.
Donation Date: 1984 May 10; 1984 May 23
Donation Date: 1984 October 25; 1984 November 29
Processing and finding aid by Jane Hazelton and Don Howard/1996. Additional processing and finding aid revision by Ashley Adair/2011. Finding aid encoded by Ashely Adair/2011. Updates by Nicole Davis/2016.
Detailed Description of the Collection