Last updated: 5/20/2011
San Marcos, Texas
Street Address
Visitor (LBJ) Parking Garage
704 Gaillardia Street
San Marcos, TX 78666
Mailing Address
601 University Drive
Alkek Library, Texas State University
San Marcos, TX 78666
phone: 512-245-2313
fax: 512-245-7431
Exhibition and research hours vary. Please call or visit the website for updates. Research is by appointment only—call or access the request form online.
Admission to the exhibitions and public events is free.

The Wittliff Collections offer books and other items for sale through an online gift shop. A Facility Use Policy governs the use of the gallery spaces for special events by outside parties. Wittliff staff are available to conduct tours for classes or groups with requests via the online form. Find all of this information at
Online Gift Shop
Special Event Rental
Group Tours
Steve L Davis, Sr Curator, Writers Collection/Interim Director
phone: 512-245-9180
Carla Ellard, Senior Curator, Photography Collection
phone: 512-245-1399
Beverly Fondren, Development Officer
phone: 512-245-9058
Katie Salzmann, Lead Archivist
phone: 512-245-3861
Joel Minor, Archivist
phone: 512-245-3229
Mary Garcia, Archives Assistant
phone: 512-245-3662
Michele Miller, Media Relations & Publications Specialst
phone: 512-245-1442
GG Mortenson, Office Manager
phone: 512-245-7410
Amy Cochran, Events Manager
phone: 512-245-2907

NOTE: The Wittliff Collections at the Alkek Library have no physical address, so we are listing the LBJ Student Center Visitor Parking Garage for those with GPS devices. See the website for detailed parking info.

Dedicated to furthering the legacy of the Southwest region’s creative arts and fostering “the spirit of place” in the wider world, the Wittliff Collections at Texas State’s Alkek Library welcome visitors, tours, and classes, host lectures, readings, and other public events, and assist scholars and researchers. Additionally, several new exhibitions are presented from the holdings each year, each one accompanied by a celebratory reception and informative program featuring a photographer, author, scholar, or panel elaborating on the work at hand. On permanent display are props, costumes, set designs, script drafts, and more from the critically acclaimed CBS miniseries “Lonesome Dove.”

Serving both the academic and non-scholastic communities, the Wittliff Collections’ comprehensive, interdisciplinary archives were established to collect, preserve, and make available primary and secondary resources that contribute to an understanding of Texas and the greater Southwest. Materials related to the literature, drama, film, music, and other cultural arts, and photography of and from the Southwest and Mexico are housed here to instruct, illuminate, and inspire the current generations as well as those to come.

Among the Wittliff Collections’ literary archives are the papers of numerous 20th century writers, including Cormac McCarthy, Rick Riordan, Sam Shepard, J. Frank Dobie, John Graves, Rick Bass, Elithe Hamilton Kirkland, Larry L. King, Preston Jones, and Beverly Lowry, among many others. The film holdings contain over 800 movie and television screenplays as well as complete production archives for several popular films, including "Lonesome Dove." The “King of the Hill” Archive documents the writing and production history of the Emmy-award winning Fox television show from conception to final episode. The music holdings represent the breadth and scope of popular Texas sounds, and include primary source collections on Willie Nelson, Tejano music, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Western Swing. In 1994 Texas Monthly magazine donated its complete archives, which document every aspect of the influential magazine's history. Authors’ works are highlighted in the Wittliff’s Southwestern Writers Collection Book Series published through the University of Texas Press.

The Wittliff Collections’ photographic archives represent the history of the medium from the 19th century to the present, with an emphasis on fine-art prints created using traditional darkroom techniques. A major component is modern and contemporary imagery from Mexico -- one of the largest collections of its type in the U.S. Displaying works primarily from its growing repository of over 18,000 prints by more than 150 artists, the Wittliff also travels exhibitions nationally and internationally, offers online presentations highlighting the collection, and showcases its artists in a book series with the University of Texas Press. The Wittliff holds major collections by such renowned photographers as Graciela Iturbide, Kate Breakey, and Keith Carter, as well as iconic images from Ansel Adams, Edward Curtis, Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Annie Leibovitz, and many, many others. Extensive supplementary materials such as books and rare editions, portfolios, magazines, videos, and ephemera lend further insight into this ever-advancing art form and the careers of its artists.


The Wittliff Collections are devoted to the acquisition, safekeeping, and sharing of the Southwest’s literature, film, and music, and the photography of the Southwest and Mexico. Strongly committed to professional stewardship of the archives and to personal service and timely access for scholars and researchers, the Wittliff is also dedicated to employing the collections in ways that engage and educate the public and students of all ages. Among its many activities, the Wittliff publishes two book series and a newsletter, presents in-house and traveling exhibitions from the permanent holdings, welcomes tours and classes, and hosts artist talks, lectures, readings, symposia, and other free public events.


In 1986, Austin screenwriter, photographer, and book designer Bill Wittliff and his wife Sally founded the Southwestern Writers Collection at Texas State University with a gift of materials from Texas folklorist J. Frank Dobie. The Wittliffs envisioned a place to collect and preserve the finest artistic representations of Texas and the Southwest—literature, film, music, and photography—and to inspire young writers and artists to follow their own visions. Since that time, the Southwestern Writers Collection has grown and flourished, thanks in large part to authors, screenwriters, and songwriters generously donating their papers and materials. In 1996, the significant photographic archives of the Southwestern Writers Collection became the Wittliff Gallery of Southwestern & Mexican Photography, and in 2008 the two repositories were combined as the Wittliff Collections to unite the holdings and honor the founders. Since then the exhibition spaces have been expanded—now seven major southwestern-inspired galleries and a redesigned reading room engage the general public, students, and scholars alike.

Artifact Collections

Please access our website for our two collections:

  • Research Collections


    Educational Programs

    The Wittliff Collections mount exhibitions that provide insight into the holdings, and host free public events such as exhibition and artist talks, readings, lectures, panel discussions, symposia, book signings, and other presentations. The staff conducts tours, and lectures to classes and other groups. Internships and volunteer opportunities are offered for qualified graduate and undergraduate students.



    Lecture Halls

    Performance Areas


    The Texas State University System


    Access: General Public, Students, Scholars

    Appointment required: No


    The Wittliff Collections publish a semiannual newsletter, "The Keystone," as well as both a literary and a photographic book series with UT Press (see the Wittliff website). An annual report is submitted and included in the Alkek Library's Annual Report.

  • Southwestern Writers Collection Book Series
  • Southwestern & Mexican Photography Book Series
  • "The Keystone" newsletter
  • Annual report
  • ADA

    Wheelchair Accessible


    Online Gift Shop

    Special Event Rental

    Group Tours

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