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New Exhibits in Special Collections for Fall 2014

September 25, 2014

Starting this fall, UTSA Special Collections has installed new exhibits in the John Peace Library reading room. Each exhibit case represents a different unit within Special Collections:  Manuscripts, Photograph Collections, Rare Books and University Archives.

Manuscripts and Photograph Collections


Persyn Family pose beside vegetable cart on farm near San Antonio, Texas, MS 362

Soon after World War I, a colony of Belgian immigrants established truck farms on the southwestern outskirts of San Antonio with the first farm being established along the San Antonio River not far from the Spanish mission, Concepcion. Derived from the French word “troquer” meaning to trade or barter, truck farms grew and sold an extensive variety of fresh vegetables, fruits, flowers and pecans in the markets of central San Antonio, particularly Military and Haymarket Plazas.

This most recent exhibit showcases materials from the Bexar County Truck Farmer’s Association, founded in 1939 as a co-operative, was organized to engage in activities in connection with the marketing or selling of the agricultural products of its members. As a complement to the manuscript material, photographs from the Belgian farmers that made up association are also on display.  Images include materials from the Aelvoet, Bauwens, Persyn,  and Verstuyft family farms. Additional images from Belgian Texans can be found in our digital collections.

Rare Books

Libreta de Cocina: Manuscript, Junio 17 de 1921-1951. María de los Angeles Dávalos. UTSA Libraries Special Collections

Libreta de Cocina: Manuscript, Junio 17 de 1921-1951. María de los Angeles Dávalos

The Mexican Cookbook Collection contains more than forty manuscript cookbooks. These handwritten recipes provide an intimate view of household cuisine over the course of more than two hundred years. They also show traces of other dimensions of family life. Most are recorded in small, lined notebooks, sometimes annotated with doodles, or written between (or over) school exercises. Six manuscript cookbooks will be on display during Fall 2014. Additional volumes are available in our digital collections.

University Archives


The Discourse, Vol 1, No 5, June 1973, UA 1.02.01

The University Archives exhibit case contains highlights of the University of Texas at San Antonio Serials and Journals Collection, 1973-2009. The University Serials and Journals Collection (UA 1.02.01) includes newsletters and magazines produced by the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) News and Information Office, which later became the Office of Communications.  The publications were produced to distribute information among faculty and staff and share information about UTSA’s growth and activities with alumni, the community, and the larger public.  Researchers can use these collections to search for news announcements and calendar postings, to find information about faculty and staff, and to review broader articles about UTSA that were produced by staff writers.  Special Collections staff have digitized hundreds of issues, which are available and full-text searchable as part of the UTSA Publications collection.

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