Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Texas Tourist Development Agency:

An Inventory of Texas Tourist Development Agency Scrapbooks at the Texas State Archives, 1970-1977


Creator: Texas Tourist Development Agency.
Title: Tourist Development Agency scrapbooks
Dates: 1970-1977
Abstract: The Texas Tourist Development Agency was responsible for promoting and advertising Texas tourist attractions and encouraging the development of additional attractions and facilities to draw in tourists. Records are loose-leaf scrapbooks documenting United States and foreign travel writers' tours of Texas, dating 1970-1977.
Quantity: 10 linear inches
Language: These materials are written predominately in English, with some Spanish and French.
Repository: Texas State Archives
Sponsor: This EAD finding aid was created in cooperation with Texas Archival Resources Online.

Agency History

The Texas Tourist Development Agency was responsible for promoting and advertising Texas tourist attractions and encouraging the development of additional attractions and facilities to draw in tourists. Prior to 1958, the Texas State Constitution forbade the use of state funds to attract immigrants, including tourists. Despite this fact, tourism emerged in 1950 as the state's fifth largest industry. When it was later discovered, however, that Texas's tourist industry was declining while tourism spending in the U.S. was growing, a 1958 constitutional amendment was passed that allowed the use of tax money to attract visitors (Senate Joint Resolution 4, Texas 55th Legislature, Regular Session; Texas Constitution, Article XVI, Section 56). In 1963 the state's first tourist advertising budget was allocated, and the Texas Tourist Development Agency was established (House Bill 11, 58th Legislature, Regular Session).

An administrator and board were both appointed by the governor, the administrator to serve during the governor's term of office, and the board to serve staggered six-year terms. The agency was organized into three committees: Advertising; Legislative Affairs; and Research, Development, and Special Projects. The agency's goal was to increase Texas's share of the national tourist market. To this end, it encouraged the development of new tourist attractions and facilities and advertised and promoted existing tourist attractions. In addition, it promoted a responsible and accurate national and international image of Texas through advertising and public relations.

The Texas Tourist Development Agency coordinated the efforts of several state agencies in tourism matters. It cooperated with the Texas Department of Transportation, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, and other agencies. It provided consultant assistance to communities in creating tourism programs and published a monthly newsletter.

In 1965 the agency expanded and, beginning in 1967, it sponsored a $12,000 touring exhibit on Texas: "Texas for a World of Difference." It participated in HemisFair '68 and sponsored the Texas Arts and Crafts Fair in Kerrville. Throughout its existence, it sponsored at least 19 tours for travel writers, editors, and agents that resulted in international publicity. In 1969 the board was expanded to nine members and given control and management of the agency. The board hired an executive director to administer the agency (House Bill 792, 61st Legislature, Regular Session).

Texas was the first state to use national opinion polls and motivational research to develop tourism advertising. Belden Associates opinion polling firm of Dallas conducted in-depth interviews. The national Gallup Poll supplemented this research with quantitative data. The research determined that Americans had misconceptions about Texas, believing that it was largely a desert inhabited by cowboys and oilmen and that it was without appealing vacation attractions such as inland water, beaches, forests, mountains, historic sites, and cosmopolitan cities. In response to this, the agency was able to promote Texas's cultural diversity, pleasant climate, abundant water, good accommodations, and sophisticated activities in radio, television, newspaper, and magazine advertising.

In 1987 the Texas Tourist Development Agency became part of the Texas Department of Commerce, which was established that year (House Bill 4, 70th Legislature, Regular Session). A decade later, in 1997, the Texas Department of Commerce was abolished and all functions were transferred to the newly created Texas Department of Economic Development (Senate Bill 932, 75th Legislature, Regular Session). In 2003, the Texas Department of Economic Development was abolished and its functions transferred to the Texas Economic Development and Tourism Office within the Governor's Office (Senate Bill 275, 78th Legislature, Regular Session).

(Sources include: Guide to Texas State Agencies, varying eds., agency statutes, the records themselves, and Texas Legislature Online.)

Scope and Contents of the Records

The Texas Tourist Development Agency was responsible for promoting and advertising Texas tourist attractions and encouraging the development of additional attractions and facilities to draw in tourists. This collection consists of a series of loose-leaf scrapbooks documenting United States and foreign travel writers' tours of Texas, dating 1970 to 1977, which were sponsored by the Texas Tourist Development Agency. There were a total of nineteen tours represented in the original accession. Materials representing seven of the tours have been retained. These materials represent a sampling of the tours by year, as well as by Mexican and Canadian travel writers.

These scrapbooks consist of photographs and newspaper and magazine articles written by the participating travel writers of the tours about the places they visited. Some of the scrapbooks contain lists of expenses and the amount each article written about Texas would cost in terms of advertising. The articles written in Spanish by the Mexican writers and those written in French by the Canadian writers have English transcripts which are filed with the articles. All of the newspaper clippings and newsprint magazine articles have been photocopied and placed in file folders.

Organization of the Records

These records were arranged chronologically by the creating agency.


Restrictions on Access

Materials do not circulate, but may be used in the State Archives search room. Materials will be retrieved from and returned to storage areas by staff members.

Restrictions on Use

Most records created by Texas state agencies are not copyrighted and may be freely used in any way. State records also include materials received by, not created by, state agencies. Copyright remains with the creator. The researcher is responsible for complying with U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17 U.S.C.).

Technical Requirements

Researchers are required to wear gloves provided by the Archives when reviewing photographic materials.

Index Terms

The terms listed here were used to catalog the records. The terms can be used to find similar or related records.
Tourism--Government policy--Texas.
Government advertising--Texas.
Travel photography--Texas.
Texas--Description and travel.
Document Types:
Press releases--Texas--Tourism--1970-1977.
Promoting tourism in Texas.

Related Material

The following materials are offered as possible sources of further information on the agencies and subjects covered by the records. The listing is not exhaustive.

Texas State Archives
Texas Department of Commerce, Communications Division, Press releases, 1991-1997, 2.65 cubic ft.
Texas Tourist Development Board, Minutes, 1973-1987, [unprocessed]
Texas Tourist Development Agency audiovisual material, [ca. 1963] - 1987, 16.95 cubic ft.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

(Identify the item), Texas Tourist Development Agency scrapbooks. Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

Accession Information

Accession number: 1981/131

These records were transferred to the Texas State Archives by the Texas Tourist Development Agency on March 27, 1981.

Processing Information

Processed by Laura K. Saegert, April 1981

Revised and DACS compliance by Jessica Tucker, December 2009

Detailed Description of the Records

Texas Tourist Development Agency scrapbooks, 1970-1977,
10 linear inches

815-1 West Texas Tour, November 1-4, 1970:
Itinerary and guests of tour
Press coverage
General articles
Fort Worth
Hill Country
Alamo Village
Big Bend
Fort Davis
El Paso
El Paso-Big Bend Tour, October 26-November 2, 1972:
Participants and itinerary
General articles
Big Bend - Rio Grande raft trip
Juarez, El Paso, Fort Davis
Big Bend - Rio Grande raft trip
El Paso
Big Bend National Park
Lower Rio Grande Valley-South Padre Island Tour, November 10-16, 1973:
Participants, expenses, and itinerary
Stephanie Bonsavage
Bob Bruce
Dave Bruce
Pearl Hafstrom
Judy Hamilton
C. W. Johnson
Eunice Juckett
Press release - a tarpon catch
Helmut Koening
Harold McClelland
Erma Perry
Connie Sherley
Jean Simmons
Bill Simar
Alice Slade
Bob Tonsing
Richard Wagner
Mexican Writers' Tour, October 5-11, 1974:
Sr. Raymundo Ampudia
Yolanda Cabello
Conrado Menendez Diaz
Luis Gutierrez
Ernesto Ochoa
Jose Ortega
Hector Santos Zepeda
Unknown author, article about Astrodome
Air Canada Tour, September 15-19, 1975:
Participants, host, expenses, and itinerary
Bob Griffin
J. Dallaire
Daniel Rioux
Viviane Simard
815-2 Travel Writers Tour, October 29-November 4, 1976:
Participants, hosts, expenses, and itinerary
Bob Bruce
Yolanda Cabello
Bob Dietz
Bob Griffin
Frances Harris
Shirley Higgins
Edythe Jensen
Bill Marchard
G. Quarnstrom
Erma Perry
Mark Rhodes
Connie Sherley
Bette Thompson
Cheryl Vannoy
Jean Wysatta
East Texas Tour, March 31-April 7, 1977:
Participants, hosts, expenses, and itinerary
Press release
Jan Bauman
Bob Bruce
Kathy Bush
Hal Butler
Yolanda Cabello
Mike Carlton
Joe Fisher
Margie Fisher
Bob Griffin
Shelby Hodge
C. W. Johnson
Gayle Kelley
Expenses (book 2)
Press release
Karen Lingo
Randy Mink
Ed Neil
Margaret Ness
Erma Perry
Gordon Quarnstrom
Brooke Ramey
Expenses (book 3)
Connie Sherley
Ted Simon
Bette Thompson
Bob Tonsing
Liz Touchette
Cheryl Vannoy
1981/131 Photograph of a group of travel writers and their hosts while touring West Texas, November 1970
[Note: A list describing the people in the photo can be found in Box 815-1. The photo is 8 x 10 and black and white.]