Charles Bowden Comes to the Wittliff Collections
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The Charles "Chuck" Bowden archive in the Wittliff Collections at Texas State University, San Marcos, documents the literary journalist's prolific career from 1970 to 2014, with a few family items dating back to 1947. Comprising 172 boxes, the collection includes his published writings on the environment, social justice, political corruption, and U.S.-Mexico border violence; correspondence, proposals, research, and financial materials; photographs, electronic media, and artifacts; and Bowden's library of books, LP records, and cassette tapes. A complete finding aid and folder list is on the Wittliff Collections website and on Texas Archival Resources Online.
The materials were given jointly by Bowden and Mary Martha Miles, his longtime companion, literary executor, and co-editor of The Charles Bowden Reader, just prior to the book's publication in 2010. In addition to the archiving finding aid, researchers have access to Mile's 250-page item-level inventory, which includes descriptions of, and at times contextual and other comments on, the many items in the collection. Miles is currently working to publish Bowden's earlier, unpublished works. These materials, while housed in the archive, are restricted until the time of their publication. Several boxes of materials given to Miles by Bowden's friend and colleague Bill Broyles are also included in the archive.
The following overview is not meant to be exhaustive, but rather is intended to provide an introduction and highlight some interesting items and possible areas of research. The papers are open to researchers. The Wittliff Collections offers funding through the William J. Hill Visiting Researcher Travel Grants.