Executive Advisory Committee Member for the Handbook of Texas Women



From the TSHA website:

The Texas State Historical Association (TSHA) seeks to shed light on the achievements of Texan women through a massive initiative to expand on the nation’s oldest & most successful digital state encyclopedia, the Handbook of Texas. The Handbook of Texas project began in 1939 as an effort led by University of Texas Professor Walter Prescott Webb to preserve Texas history and create “the most useful book that has ever been published in Texas.” The TSHA was organized in Austin on March 2, 1897, and the Handbook began as two printed volumes in 1952, with a supplemental third volume in 1976. Twenty years later, the six-volume Handbook included 23,640 entries and 687 illustrations within 6,945 pages. The Handbook of Texas Online launched in February 1999 and was among the first digital encyclopedias accessible for free on the Internet to the general public. The Handbookconsists of more than 27,000 overview, general, and biographical entries focused on the entire history of Texas from the indigenous Native Americans and the Prehistoric Era to the state’s diverse population and the Modern Age. These entries emphasize the role Texans played in state, national, and world history.

Handbook entries are written by volunteer historians and professionals, reviewed by TSHA staff, vetted by scholars, and approved by TSHA’s Chief Historian before appearing online. The development of new entries is driven by current events, user suggestions, and internal identification of missing topics, which are reviewed by the TSHA Chief Historian for consideration. Authors utilize secondary and primary sources such as books, census records, newspapers, military service records, obituaries, diaries, and letters to craft historically accurate entries. The sources are compiled into a bibliography and updated regularly to provide readers with the most current scholarship. The Handbook editors fact-check, copyedit, and format entries using appropriate language for users ranging from middle school to college.

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