Austin History Center

United States Work Projects Administration, Texas District No. 9 Records

An Inventory to the Collection

Overview of the Collection

Creator: United States Work Projects Administration, Texas District No. 9
Title: United States Work Projects Administration, Texas District No. 9 Records
Abstract: The collection is made up of historical project files and administrative records of the United States Work Projects Administration, Texas District No. 9 (Austin, Texas). Included are typescripts of historical records dating from the 1840s through the 1930s and other research materials related to St. David's Episcopal Church and the University of Texas, as well as administrative reports, photographs, and a scrapbook.
Identification: AR.G.003
Quantity: 2.2 linear feet (3 boxes and 1 scrapbook)
Location: Archives Stacks, Archives Volume Collection
Language: The records are in English.
Repository: Austin History Center, Austin Public Library,
810 Guadalupe, , PO BOX 2287, , Austin, TX 78768,

Administrative History

In 1939, the Work Progress Administration was renamed the United States Work Projects Administration (WPA) and made into a part of the Federal Works Agency. The WPA provided jobs for people unemployed by the Great Depression, giving them a way to provide for themselves and their families. Projects undertaken by the WPA in Texas include archival and literary projects, archaeological surveys, construction of infrastructure, recreation programs, etc. As part of the Texas Historic Records Survey, unemployed people in Austin, Texas (Texas District No. 9) were set to work transcribing historic records and articles related to St. David's Episcopal Church and the University of Texas. The transcription project for St. David's resulted in a 1942 book titled, "St. David's Through the Years." In 1942 there was a 75% drop in the number of those employed by the WPA, likely due to the increase in business upon the United States' entry into World War II. The WPA was discontinued in 1943 due to higher rates of employment outside of the program.

Handbook of Texas Online, Mallory B. Randle, "Work Projects Administration," accessed April 22, 2017,

Scope and Contents

More than two thirds of this collection is made up of transcribed records of St. David's Episcopal Church. The records were transcribed in 1941 for a WPA research project and represent the years 1840-1939 of the church's history. The records transcribed include newspaper articles, lists of vestryman, ministers, and communicants, church journals, baptism and marriage records, and pages from "Frank Brown's Annals of Travis County." Prominent Austin families who attended the church and who are mentioned in the records include the Bremond, Haynes, Baker, and Pease families. Also included are typescripts of interviews with church members conducted in 1941 and 1942. There are also a few items of printed material from the church including church service programs from 1941, a 1935 yearbook, a 1941 "Annual Report of the Associated Women of the Church," and an undated booklet titled, "The Windows of Old St. David's." These transcribed records and research resulted in the 1942 book, "St. David's Through the Years."

About a third of the collection is made up of transcribed newspaper articles regarding the history of the University of Texas at Austin (UT), also done as a WPA research project. The transcribed articles cover the years 1895-1927. Publications whose articles were transcribed include the Austin Statesman, the Austin Daily Statesman, the Austin American, the Texan, and the Daily Texan.

Also included are the February 1941 and June 1942 Narrative Reports of the WPA projects being done in District No. 9 which includes employment information and statistics, reports about the projects, and newspaper clippings. The collection also contains a scrapbook containing materials documenting the District No. 9 WPA exhibitions for "This Work Pays Your Community" Week, held in May 1940. The scrapbook contains clippings, bulletins, invitations, exhibition material, press releases, radio scripts, programs, posters, speeches, photocopied photographs, and visitor comments and letters. Also included are 77 photographs taken from the scrapbook of people working on WPA projects.

The photographs depict the following:

  • Sewing Projects Exhibit- Austin Public Library (#001)
  • Exhibits- Smithville, Texas (#002-004)
  • Sewing Project Demonstration Unit- Austin Public Library (#005)
  • Sewing Room (#006-011)
  • Sewing Supervisor and Sponsor discuss "This Work Pays Your Community" Week (#012)
  • Commodity Distribution- Austin Public Library (#013)
  • School Lunch Exhibit- Austin Public Library (#014)
  • School Lunch Exhibit- Hearne-Robertson Company (#015)
  • School Lunch Projects in Action Exhibit- Killeen, Texas (#016-018)
  • Soup Kitchen at West Avenue Mexican School- Austin, Texas (#019-020)
  • Austin Negro Schools- School Lunch- Rosewood School (#021)
  • Austin Negro Schools- School Lunch- Blackshear School (#022-023)
  • Housing Aide Exhibit- Austin Public Library (#024)
  • Housekeeping Aide in Action- Austin, Texas (#027-030)
  • Matron Service (#031-034)
  • Clinical Assistance (#035-037)
  • Exhibit of Library and Writers Project- Austin Public Library (#038)
  • Exhibit of Library Project- Franklin, Robertson County (#039)
  • Listing Spanish Broadsides for Early American Imprints Inventory (#040)
  • Oiling and Polishing Leather Bound Books- University of Texas (#041)
  • Copying from Microfilm- University of Texas (#042)
  • Recording Title Entries of Duplicate Collection- University of Texas (#043)
  • Arranging Genealogical Clippings- University of Texas (#044)
  • Listing Newspapers for Early Imprints Inventory (#045-046)
  • "The House That Books Built"- San Saba Library Exhibit (#047)
  • Discharging Talking and Braille Books- State Library- Austin, Texas (#048)
  • Checking and Packing Traveling Library- State Library- Austin, Texas (#049)
  • Preparing Books for Demonstration Libraries- State Library (#050)
  • Museum Extension Exhibit- Austin Public Library (#051)
  • Statewide Museum Project (#052-058)
  • Museum Extension Project (#059-061)
  • Nursery School (#062-065)
  • Adult Education (#066-071)
  • Handicraft- Marble Falls, Texas (#072)
  • N.Y.A Resident Girls Receive Instruction (#073)
  • Research and Records Exhibit of Statewide Records and Census Tabulation- Austin Public Library (#074)
  • Research and Records Exhibit of Archeological and Paleontological Projects- Austin Public Library (#075)
  • 4-H Clubs Parade in Honor of Rural Citizen's Day- Belton, Texas (#076)
  • Project 14198- Georgetown, Texas (#077)


Collection is arranged into 2 series:
I. Administrative Records
II. Projects


Restrictions on Access

Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use


Index Terms

This record series is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.
Subjects (Organizations)
St. David's Episcopal Church (Austin, Tex.).
Texas Historical Records Survey.
United States. Federal Works Agency. Work Projects Administration. Texas District No. 9.
University of Texas at Austin.
Austin (Tex.)--Economic conditions.
Austin (Tex.)--Social conditions.
Travis County (Tex.).
West Avenue School (Austin, Tex.).
Archival surveys--Texas.
African American students--Texas--Austin.
Mexican American schools--Texas--Austin.
Episcopal Church--Texas--Austin.
Great Depression, 1929.
Public service employment--Texas.
Universities and colleges--Texas--Austin--History.
Document Types:
Research notes.

Related Material

Archives and Manuscripts

  • AR.Q.009 St. David's Episcopal Church Papers

Austin Files

  • AF Churches - Episcopal - St. David's C3638
  • AF Churches - Episcopal - St. David's - W.P.A. History C3638 (3)
  • AF Subject – Austin – History A8500
  • AF University of Texas - History U3900
  • AF New Deal N2000

General Collection

  • A 976.41 BR Annals of Travis County and of the City of Austin by Frank Brown
  • A 283.73 TA The History and Treasures of St. David's Church by Daisy Barrett Tanner
  • A 378.73 L242 History of the University of Texas by J. J. Lane
  • A 283.73 FE St. David's Through the Years by Federal Writers' Project. Texas
  • A 378.76431 UN University of Texas: Newspaper Excerpts by Texas Writers' Project

Administrative Information

Custodial History

Materials generated by the Works Projects Administration projects were placed at the Austin Public Library, where most of it remained in storage until 1968. Materials out of scope for the Austin History Center collections were transferred to other repositories (Briscoe Center for American History) and the remaining materials were processed as AR.G.003 United States Work Projects Administration, Texas District No. 9 Records.

Preferred Citation

United States Work Projects Administration, Texas District No. 9 Records (AR.G.003). Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Texas.

Processing Information

Finding aid created and encoded by Kendall Newton in 2017.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Administrative Records, 1940-1942

Box Folder
1 1 Narrative reports, 1941-1942
2 Work Projects Administration scrapbook photographs (#001-010, #012-077), 1940
Location ArchivesCollection
Outer Vault qAR photo box Works Project Administration scrapbook photograph (#011), 1940
Oversized Volumes Work Projects Administration scrapbook, 1940

Projects, 1935, 1941-1942, undated

St. David's Episcopal Church history project, 1935, 1941-1942, undated
Box Folder
1 3 1840-1844 Church records typescripts, 1941
4 1845-1849 Church records typescripts, 1941
5 1850-1855 Church records typescripts, 1941
6 1856-1859 Church records typescripts, 1941
7 1860-1864 Church records typescripts, 1941
Box Folder
2 1 1865-1869 Church records typescripts, 1941
2 1870-1873 Church records typescripts, 1941
3 1874-1879 Church records typescripts, 1941
4 1880-1894 Church records typescripts, 1941
5 1895-1909 Church records typescripts, 1941
6 1910-1930 Church records typescripts, 1941
7 1930-1939 Church records typescripts, 1941
Box Folder
3 1 Interviews with church members, 1941-1942
2 Printed material, 1935, 1941, undated
University of Texas history project, undated
Box Folder
3 3 1895-1909 University records typescripts, undated
4 1910-1914 University records typescripts, undated
5 1914-1917 University records typescripts, undated
6 1918-1921 University records typescripts, undated
7 1921-1927 University records typescripts, undated