University of Texas, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

Burton Wilson Collection, circa 1920s-2000

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Wilson, Burton
Title: Burton Wilson collection
Dates: [circa 1920s-2000]
Abstract: Collection contains photographs and writings which document the photography and, to a lesser extent, pottery careers of Burton Wilson. Also included is Wilson's collection of blues and jazz recordings.
Identification: urn:taro:utexas.cah.00623
Extent: 2.25 linear feet
Language: English .
Repository: Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical/Historical Note

Burton Wilson (1918-2014) graduated in 1941 from the Rhode Island School of Design where he studied sculpture. While a student, one of his sculptures was accepted and displayed at the 1940 World's Fair in New York City. Following World War II, Wilson returned to the Rhode Island School of Design to take some ceramics classes. From 1965 to 1967 Wilson studied photography at the University of Texas under famous documentary photographer, Russell Lee. His personal interest in jazz and blues music led Wilson to music photography. Wilson was house photographer for the Vulcan Gas Company concert venue between 1967 and 1970. He then became house photographer for the legendary Armadillo World Headquarters. As a house and freelance photographer, Wilson photographed such notable musicians as Willie Nelson, Bruce Springsteen, Frank Zappa, Doug Sahm, Jerry Garcia, Janis Joplin, Muddy Waters, and many others. In 1971, Wilson published Burton's Book of Blues, a collection of photographs taken of musicians in Texas and California. Eakin Press published his book The Austin Music Scene Through the Lens of Burton Wilson, 1965-1994, in 2001.

Scope and Contents

The Burton Wilson Collection, [ca. 1920-2000], contains photographs of musicians, primarily at Vulcan Gas Company and Armadillo World Headquarters. Wilson's extensive personal collection of early jazz and blues records forms the bulk of the collection. Furthermore, the collection includes examples of Wilson's writings, such as his newsletter, which recounts his reminiscences and documents all aspects of his daily life and career. These newsletters often contain clippings and photographs.

Archivist's Note: Contact repository for detailed inventory of sound recordings or to arrange appointment to use audio recordings.


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Access to some audiovisual formats requires an appointment; contact repository for more information.

Conditions Governing Use

There are no use restrictions on this collection. Publisher is responsible for complying with copyright law.

Index Terms

Personal Names
Lipscomb, Mance, 1895-1976
Myers, Glenn
Wilson, Burton
Corporate Names
Armadillo World Headquarters
University of Texas at Austin. Folklore Center
Vulcan Gas Company
Folk music

Related Materials

See also UT Folklore Center Archives, ca. 1928-1981 for 7-inch reel-to-reel copies of Burton Wilson's jazz and blues 78 recordings.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Burton Wilson Collection, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.

Accession Number(s)

1988-046; 1988-234; 1988-311; 1989-239; 1990-174; 1991-031

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Amy Armstrong, January 2008. Subsequent revisions were made by Megan Mummey, June 2010.

Detailed Description of the Collection


3S246 [SRH1230022760] Photographs: Burton Wilson Photograph Exhibit
3S187.1 [SRH1230021907] Exhibit photograph
3Y193 [SRH1230028359] Photographs
4Za166 [SRH1230014556] Dolph Briscoe Center for American History Exhibit, "From the Vulcan to the Armadillo: Burton Wilson Photographs, 1967-1974"
Burton Wilson Newsletters
Burton's Book of the Blues (clippings, correspondence)
Japan (correspondence), 1976-1977
Mance, (correspondence with Glenn Myers, biographer of Mance Lipscomb), 1976-1982
Photos in ads and texts
Binns (ceramic lectures by Charles F. Binns)
Burton Wilson 78s (inventory of phonodiscs in collection)
2.325/S102 Clippings
Black and White Photographic Prints
La Zona Rosa, Joe Ely, Snuff Johnson, Kurt Van Sickle, Frank Zappa, Jerry Lee Lewis, Grey Ghost
Willie Nelson's First Picnic
Joe Ely, Emmylou Harris, Dr. John, Grey Ghost
The Vulcan Gas Company, October 1967-April 1970
"Ivy Dome" by Burton Wilson (photocopy of manuscript), April 1994
"It's Snow Time" by Burton Wilson (photocopy of manuscript), 1993
Photograph Log
Calendars (featuring Wilson photos), 1991, 2000
Design Quarterly , 1958
Shelter II , 1978
VHS tape
"The Photography of Burton Wilson,", July 1999
Texas Entertainment News, Show #6 Broadcast (Promo for Show #7 at end), February 24-25 1996
"Rock N' Roll Cities – Austin, Texas" (VH-1 series)
Armadillo World Headquarters Photo Essay, KXAN, September 8, 1988
Audiocassette tape
Mance Lipscomb at Vulcan Gas Company
Assorted Documents (regarding music and pottery and photograph career)
2.325/D32a [SRH1230000823] Oversized Music Posters and Clippings
4Za167 - 4Za171 78 rpm 10-inch phonodiscs
Alabama Sam
Albennie Jones
Arkansas Travellers
Albert Ammons
Albert Ammon & Rhythm Kings
Albert Clemens & Joe Williams
Alex Hill
Alfoncy Harris
Alonzo Yancey
Amos Milburn
Andy Boy
Arbee Stidham Orchestra
Ardell Bragg
B. B. King
Blind Darby
Bessie Smith
Boyd Senter
Boyd Senter & his Senterpedes
Blind John Davis
Blind Blake
Blind Lemon Jefferson
Blind Mack
Bob Wills & his Texas Playboys Cannon's Jug Stompers
Bumble Bee Slim
Cab Calloway Orchestra
Bertha "Chippie" Hill
Bessie Smith
Bessie Smith & Down Home Trio
Big Bill
Big Bill Johnson
Big Bill & his Chicago Five
Billie Holiday
Bo Carter
The Blind Pilgrim
Blue Jay Boys
Brownie McGhee
Bunk Johnson & Yerba Buena Jazz Band
Charley Jordan
Charlie Patton
Cab Calloway
Carl Martin
Carter Family
Casey Bill
Charles Thompson
Clara Smith
Cleo Brown
The Clovers
Cow Cow Davenport
Delmore Bros.
Dink's Good Time Music Ma Rainey
Dizzie Dean
Doctor Clayton
E. E. Hack String Band
Ed Lang & Lonnie Johnson/Mamie Smith
Eddie Hill
Edith Wilson & J. Dunn JazzHounds
Elijah Jones
Ethel Waters
Ethel Waters and Ebony Four
Eva Taylor
Eva Taylor & Clar. Williams Blue 5
Frisky Foot Jackson & his Thumpers
Georgia Tom
Georgia White
Golden Gate Quartet
Ham Gravy
Hank Williams
Henry Thomas
Harlem Hamfats
Honey Hill
Hot Lips Page Trio/Huddy Leadbelly
Howlin' Wolf
Huddie Leadbelly
Jay McShann
JB & Bayou Boys
Jabo Williams
Jabo Williams/Wesley Wallace
Jimmy McCracklin
Jelly Roll Morton/Levee Serenaders
Jelly Roll Morton
Jess Stacy
Jimmy Yancey
Joe Sullivan
Joe Turner
Joe Venuti & Orchestra
Joe Venuti's Rhythm Boys
Joe Venuti Blue 4
Johnny Dodds
Johnny Dodds/Jelly Roll Morton
Johnnie Temple
Josh White
Jelly-Roll Morton/Red Hot Peppers
Jim Jackson
Jimmie Rodgers
Jimmie Yancey & Faber Smith
John Estes
Joe Turner & Pete Johnson
Kansas City Bill Weldon
Kokomo Arnold
Lee Brown
Lee Morse
Leroy Carr
Leroy Carr & Scrapper Blackwell
Lee Morse & her South. Serenaders
Lee Morse & her Blue Grass Boys
Lee Wiley
Lemon Jefferson
Leona Williams & Her Dixie Band
Leroy's Buddy (Bill Gaither)
Lightening [sic] Hopkins
Little Brother
Little Brother/Leroy Carr
Little Brother & Tampa Red
Little Brother Montgomery
Little Sylvia Vanderpool & Mickey Baker Band
Lonnie Johnson
Ma Rainey & her Georgia Band
Mamie Smith & her Jazz Hounds
Mary Stafford & Jazz Band
Meade 'Lux' Lewis
Memphis Jug Band
Memphis Slim
Minnie Wallace & the Night Hawks
Mobile Strugglers
Montana Taylor
Muddy Waters
Ollie Shepard
Papa Charlie McCoy
Peetie Wheatstraw
Pete Johnson
Pete Johnson Band
Pete Johnson & Albert Ammons
Pete Johnson & Boogie Woogie Boys
Pink Anderson & Simmie Dooley
Piron's New Orleans Orchestra
Ray Charles
Red Lowery
Richard M. Jones
Rob Cooper
Romeo Nelson
Roosevelt Sykes
Sam Price & His Texans
Sam Price & Texas Blusicians
Scrapper Blackwell
Sister Rosetta Tharpe
Sister Vera Copeland
Sleepy John Estes
Sodarisa Miller
Sophie Tucker
Spike Jones & His City Slickers
State St. Ramblers
St. Paul Church Choir of L.A.
T-Bone Walker
Tampa Blue Jazz Band
Tampa Red
Tampa Red and Chicago Five
Tampa Red & Georgia Tom
Texas Alexander
Teddy Bunn
Texas Bill Day & Billiken Johnson
Tiny Parham & his Musicians
Tiny Parham and Orchestra/Jelly-Roll Martin
Tiny Parham/Boots & Buddies
Trixie Smith
Vic Meyers Orchestra
Victor Military Band
Walter Davis
Walter Roland
Washboard Rhythm Kings
Washboard Wonders
Washboard Sam and Band
Walter Vincent
Will Batts
Yas Yas Girl
Yas Yas Girl & the Jazz Boys