The Library

The Bryan Museum library houses a print collection of over 6,000 books that are the result of a concerted effort to preserve the story of Texas and the American West, from its earliest stirrings, exploration, settlement, Revolution, the Republic, statehood, the discovery of oil, and into the present. It’s an amazing multicultural story, rich in tales of heroism as well as dastardly deeds, success, and failure.

“The very qualities that made many of the Texas pioneers rebels to society and forced not a few of them to quit it…fitted them to conquer the wilderness – qualities of daring, bravery, reckless abandon, heavy self-assertiveness. A lot of them were hell-raisers, for they had a lust for life and were maddened by tame respectability.”

The Flavor of Texas by J. Frank Dobie

The Life of Stephen F. Austin, Founder of Texas, 1793 -1836

The Life of Stephen F. Austin, Founder of Texas, 1793 -1836

A chapter in the Westward movement of the Anglo-American People By Eugene C. Barker, published in 1925

This work is the first biography of Stephen F. Austin and, by all counts, the most significant to date. Billed by the publisher as “the first lengthy biography of the man who gave his life for Texas”, this work is 550 pages of insight into the life and trials of the founder of Anglo-American Texas. The author spent 25 years researching and writing this book, becoming increasingly convinced that Stephen F. Austin had not yet been justly recognized for his immense contribution to the State of Texas. This work is an invaluable addition to the story of Texas and Western Expansion.

Interwoven: A Pioneer Chronicle

Interwoven: A Pioneer Chronicle

By Sallie Reynolds Matthews, published in 1936

“When she wrote Interwoven, Sallie Reynolds Matthew’s modest intention was a family history for her children and their children. The book, however, became more than a clan chronicle and, from the day of its publication in 1936, found a host of interested readers other than Mrs. Matthew’s descendants. It is now well established as a basic source of information for research in the history of the Texas frontier.” Introduction by Robert Nail, Interwoven, 1958 edition.

Coronado’s Children, Tales of Lost Mines and Buried Treasures of the Southwest

Coronado’s Children, Tales of Lost Mines and Buried Treasures of the Southwest

By J. Frank Dobie, published in 1930

The dream of Coronado, to find untold riches in the New World, did not die over the ensuing years even though no golden cities were found. Coronado’s children are the seekers for lost mines and lost treasure in the American West.

J. Frank Dobie built this compilation of tales over a span of 10 years, drawing from his Legends of Texas, issued in 1924 as volume III of the Publications of the Texas Folklore Society.

“This is the best work ever written on hidden treasure, and one of the most fascinating books on any subject to come out of Texas.” John H. Jenkins Basic Texas Books.