Finding Aids

Neas, Pearl A. Collection

Manuscript Collection Number:
Pearl A. Neas Collection
Data Span:
3.3 Linear Feet

Processed by: Baker, Sarah
Date Processed: 1998

  • Pearl Alma Neas was born in Liberty Hill, Texas in 1893 to Isaac and Hester (Ottinger) Neas. In 1913, Pearl Neas graduated from Tyler Business College in Tyler, Texas. She continued her education at Southwestern University, which she attended from 1913-1916, 1923-1924, 1925-1926, 1930-1932, and 1933-1934. Ms. Neas also attended the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago in 1931.

    It is no exaggeration to state that Southwestern University encapsulated Ms. Neas’ career. In 1913, she came to Southwestern as secretary to the President; in 1917, she became Assistant Registrar. Six years later, she took over as Registrar, a position she held until her death in 1962. Ms. Neas was the first woman in the history of the University to hold this position. She served the University in other ways as well, working as Director of Publicity and Correspondence in the mid-1930s, and as Executive Secretary of the Ex-Students Association in 1936. She also wrote A Brief History of Southwestern for fundraising purposes in the late 1930s.

    Ms. Neas worked to promote higher education through her membership in several organizations. She was one of three founding members of the Texas Association of Collegiate Registrars, and was a member of the Southwestern and National branches of that organization. She held memberships in the Association for the Advancement of Science, the Association for Higher Education, and the National Education Association. Her interests included cultural and civic issues as well: she was a member of the Chamber of Commerce and founder of the Georgetown Business Women’s League, and held leadership positions in the Texas Federation of Women’s Clubs, Pi Gamma Mu, Pi Delta Epsilon, Zeta Tau Alpha, the Wesleyan Guild, and the Texas Fine Arts Association.

    Ms. Neas was active in politics, having served as a delegate to Democratic conventions. She used her connections to Lyndon Baines Johnson to bring great civic improvements to Georgetown and Williamson County. The collection contains some correspondence between her and Lyndon B. Johnson which reveal her influence in promoting the construction of the Georgetown Airport and the San Gabriel Dam. She was also instrumental in securing a V-12 Military Training Unit for the University during World War II, which was a lifesaver for the campus during those difficult years.

    In 1956, Ms. Neas was named Woman of the Year by the Georgetown Business Women’s League. She received other honors as well, for her dedicated service to Georgetown and to the University. She was named in Who’s Who in Texas; in the South and Southwest; in Education; and in Methodism. She was recognized in Notable Women of the Southwest, The Blue Book, The International Blue Book of Notables, and the National Social Directory.

    During her forty-nine years at Southwestern University, Pearl Neas was a force for progress and change. Her efforts bridged the gap between the University and the Georgetown community, and brought cultural, educational, and civic improvements to both. When she died on July 3, 1962, her funeral and subsequent memorial services were held on campus in the Lois Perkins Chapel.

  • Correspondence, printed material, personal files, photographs, artifacts and textiles, 1914-1962 (3.3 linear feet). The bulk of the correspondence is between Ms. Neas and Lyndon Baines Johnson, conducted throughout the 1940s and 1950s. Most of this correspondence concerns the Naval V-12 Unit, a military training program instituted at Southwestern for the duration of World War II. Other correspondents include Lady Bird Johnson, Rebekah (Mrs. Sam) Johnson, Coke Stevenson, W. Angie Smith, and A. Frank Smith.

    The collection houses many other items relevant to Southwestern University history. Ms. Neas’ personal files contain her secretarial work on the Inaugural Committees for J. N. R. Score’s and William Carrington Finch’s inaugurations; a list of students inducted into Pi Gamma Mu; programs from Southwestern University-related events, and other cultural, community, and business-related events. Of particular interest are Southwestern University football programs from the 1940s (8 items). Ms. Neas’ personal files also include advertisements for Southwestern University placed in Texas newspapers from the 1920s-1940s. These files also contain advertisements designed by Southwestern University journalism students (1926-1927).

    The collection also contains scrapbooks compiled by Neas from the late 1910s-1930s (3 items), and the push to move Southwestern University from its Georgetown location is thoroughly documented in these newspaper clippings. Other artifacts of interest are a set of Texas Centennial placards (36 items) with text written by J. Frank Dobie; a plaster model of the Cullen Building made for the Golden Jubilee in1923; and a leather-bound Southwestern University calendar from 1914. A Southwestern University diploma for Jannie McCollough (date unknown) and a sampler dating from 1831 are other items of interest in this collection.

  • Box and Folder
    1.1 Press Releases and Speeches Supporting Lyndon Baines Johnson n.d., 1941 Thumbnail biography of LBJ; radio broadcast transcripts; Neas: incoming correspondence from Lady Bird Johnson; newspaper clippings; telegrams re: Navy V-12 unit at SU and Georgetown Airport

    1.2 Correspondence with Lyndon Baines Johnson 1942: Incoming correspondence to Neas from LBJ, Lady Bird Johnson; outgoing correspondence from Neas to LBJ and Lady Bird Johnson; “Statement of Lyndon B. Johnson, Member of Congress from 10th Texas District, October 20, 1942” (typed copies); “Address of Congressman Lyndon B. Johnson on the Occasion of the Scrapping of the Battleship Oregon”, December 7, 1942”; “Young Congressman from Texas” The Oregonian, December 12, 1942”

    1.3 Correspondence with Lyndon Baines Johnson January-December 1943: Incoming correspondence to Neas from LBJ, Lady Bird Johnson and Mary Rather (Johnson’s secretary); outgoing correspondence from Neas to LBJ, Lady Bird Johnson, Mary Rather; Cody, Claude; Kurth, Ernest; McCook, I. J.; Perkins, J. J.; Score, J. N. R.telegrams and newspaper clippings; Naval Training Unit (V-12) at SU; 1943 Commencement Address of LBJ at SU and LBJ’s Honorary Degree; purchase of KLBJ radio station; construction of Lois Perkins Chapel; Congressional Records; 

    1.4 Southwestern University Commencement Program, autographed by Lyndon Baines Johnson, 1943; Leather-bound with Cullen Building and Southwestern seal on cover; gold-painted leather thong holding leaves; original moved to autograph file in vault

    1.5 Correspondence with Lyndon Baines Johnson n.d., 1944
    Incoming correspondence to Neas from Lyndon Baines Johnson; outgoing correspondence from Neas to Lyndon Baines Johnson and Buck Taylor (LBJ’s opponent); LBJ Naval Affairs committee; birth of Lynda Bird Johnson; Foster, Cedric; Score, J. N. R.; newspaper clippings and pamphlets

    1.6 Correspondence with Lyndon Baines Johnson January-December 1945
    Incoming correspondence to Neas from LBJ, DeGeurin, Walter Jenkins (LBJ’s secretary); outgoing correspondence from Neas to LBJ, DeGeurin, Walter Jenkins; Brown, Herman; Clark, Edward; Connally, John; Fox, Henry B.; Keyser, Dr. Lester; Scarbrough, Don; Score, J. N. R.; NROTC unit for SU; V-12 unit for SU; Victory ship, S. S. Southwestern; Georgetown Airport; newspaper clippings, State Journal April 4, 1945; Congressional Records

    1.7 Correspondence with Lyndon Baines Johnson 1946, 1947
    Incoming correspondence to Neas from Lyndon Johnson, Rebekah Johnson (LBJ’s mother), outgoing correspondence to LBJ; newspaper clippings

    1.8 Correspondence with Lyndon Baines Johnson 1948-1949
    Incoming correspondence to Neas from LBJ, Lady Bird; outgoing correspondence from Neas to LBJ, Lady Bird; LBJ campaign material, campaign letters–1948 Senatorial campaign; newspaper clippings; Pickle, Jake; Connally, John

    2.1 Correspondence with Lyndon Baines Johnson n.d., 1950, 1951
    Neas–incoming and outgoing correspondence with Johnson; correspondence between LBJ and Dr. William Carrington Finch; newspaper clippings; LBJ speeches

    2.2 Correspondence with Lyndon Baines Johnson n.d., 1953, 1954
    Neas–incoming and outgoing correspondence with LBJ and his secretary George H. Reedy, Jr.; newsletters from LBJ, Democratic leader; speeches; Directory–Texas State Society [Washington, D.C. organization of Texans]

    3.1 Inaugural Committee Ephemera- J.N. R. Score S.U. President 1942
    Invitations, guest list, processional arrangements, invitations from other colleges and universities

    3.2 Accepts and Regrets from Delegates of Universities 1942

    3.3 Inaugural Committee Ephemera- J.N.R. Score S.U. President 1950
    Programs, invitations, Inaugural Committee minutes, list of delegates 

    3.4 Accepts and Regrets from Delegates A-L 1950

    3.5 Accepts and Regrets from Delegates M-Z 1950

    3.6 List of Delegates, Speech by Bishop William C. Martin

    4.1 Programs–Southwestern University n.d., 1923, 1933, 1936-1939, 1940, 1942
    Commencements; choir recitals; Mask and Wig Players; V-12 Military Ball invitation; Inaugural Program-King Vivion 1923; Golden Jubilee-1923; Pigskin Revue; Ex-Students’ News; Dinner of the Golden Bowl; Cody Memorial Library Dedication, 1939; SU Centennial Celebration, 1940; Inauguration of J. N. R. Score-programs (includes a typed copy of comments made by Gov. Coke Stevenson) and invitation, 1942

    4.2 Programs–Southwestern University 1943-1949, 1950, 1953, 1954, 1961, 1963
    Homecomings; commencements; choir recitals, Mask and Wig Players; Lois Perkins Chapel special bulletin; Ex-Students News; Iva Kitchell; Abram Chassins; V-12 Military Ball Invitations; Ruth Page; orientation for new students, 1949-1950, 1950-1951, 1951-1952; Miss Southwestern 1950, 1953; Dedication of Fondren Jones Science Hall, McCook-Crain Clinic, 1954; Laying Cornerstone for Ernest L. Kurth Hall, 1961

    4.3 Programs–Church, Community, and Business-Oriented n.d., 1917, 1933, 1935-1939, 1942
    International Order of King’s Daughters and Sons; House of Representatives Journal, 1917; “Tell Me About Texas: A Summary of Outstanding Interesting Facts about Texas”; The Woman’s Club Yearbook, 1935-1936; First Methodist Church, Georgetown, Texas; “The Emancipator” September 1938; Texas Association of Collegiate Registrars; Inaugural Program-Homer Price Rainey, University of Texas, 1939; 12 O�clock Club; Georgetown Chamber of Commerce

    4. 4 Programs–Church, Community, and Business-Oriented 1943-1945, 1949-1954, 1961
    Austin Chamber of Commerce; Texas Federation of Women’s Clubs; Texas Federation of Music Clubs; Texas Association of Collegiate Registrars; Georgetown High School Commencement; First United Methodist Church, Georgetown, Texas; Georgetown Chamber of Commerce; Divinity School News, 1950; American Association of University Women; J.C. Godbey Sunday School Class

    5.1 Programs–Entertainment, Fine Arts n.d., 1933, 1936, 1937-1939, 1940, 1942-1945, 1949, 1950-1954
    Souvenir books: “Iva Kitchell”, “Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne”, “The Great Waltz”, “Gone With the Wind”, “Sonja Henie”; Texas Fine Arts Association, “Fine Arts in Historic Settings”; Marian Anderson recital in Waco, Texas; Municipal Opera of St. Louis; Texas Centennial Exposition in Dallas; Community Concert series; Austin Symphony Orchestra; Roland Hayes at Samuel Huston College, Austin, Texas 

    5.2 Programs–Southwestern University Football Games n.d., 1942, 1943, 1944, 1945
    Southwestern University vs. N. A. T. C.; Schreiner Institute; University of Texas; John Tarleton University; Bergstrom Field; Rice University; Baylor University

    5.3 Correspondence and Miscellaneous Ephemera n.d., 1942, 1943, 1944, 1945, 1946, 1948, 1961, 1962
    Cocktail napkins; place cards; postcards: Public Auditorium, Cleveland, Ohio, Kurt Stark, Dresden, Germany; W. Angie Smith; A. Frank Smith; Coke Stevenson-with copy of J. N. R. Score Inaugural Address; Durwood Fleming; ticket for Chester Nimitz speech, 1945

    5.4 Pearl A. Neas–Awards and Memorials n.d., 1927, 1954, 1957, 1962
    Personal data sheet; KTBC radio and television station “Sears Good Citizen Salute”; January 9, 1927 Austin American newspaper clipping; Georgetown Advertiser “Miss Neas Receives National Recognition” April 1, 1954; Texas Christian Advocate “Pearl A. Neas Woman of the Year” February 8, 1954; Austin American “Miss Neas Rites Set for Today” July 6, 1962; Williamson County Sun “SU Official for 49 Years Dies Here After Brief Illness” July 12, 1962; Texas Association of Collegiate Registrars: newsletter with notice of Neas’ death July 1962, resolution upon Neas’ death July 1962, minutes of annual meeting with Neas’ memorial, November 1962; Megaphone “Memorial Tribute Scheduled for Late Miss Pearl A. Neas” February 15, 1963; “A Service of Commemoration for Pearl Alma Neas, Southwestern University, Georgetown, Texas February 22, 1963” program

    6.1 Advertisements for Southwestern University–Correspondence 1919, 1920-1927, 1931, 1936
    Written gift agreement for Lois Perkins Aid Fund; letter to prospective student (Mr. Crockett Campbell) from Vice-President of SU; letters from Neas and R. W. Tinsley to Texas newspapers concerning ads for SU: Forth Worth Record, Ft. Worth Star-Telegram, Houston Chronicle, Houston Post, San Antonio Daily Express, San Antonio Evening News, Express Publishing Co.; correspondence between SU (Neas and Tinsley) and Crook Advertising Agency; SU Bulletin, May 1931; press release concerning Miss Josephine Ditts, music instructor at SU; “Pirate Prints” News Digest, November 1931; map of Dallas Morning News circulation

    6.2 Advertisements for Southwestern University–Text, Mock-Ups, Proofs [1920s-1930s]
    Mock-ups and text for newspaper ads: “Christmas Greetings from SU”, summer sessions, quarter system, “Lois Perkins Aid Fund”, “M. H. Smith Aid Fund”; proofs; “Southwestern Notes” by J. Sam Barcus; “Southwestern University Lyceum Series”; handwritten notes about SU; “Summer School of Theology”; “Notes on Football Men, Southwestern University”; “Count the Leaders”; notes on SU faculty, courses, classrooms, Mood Hall, Women’s Building, Dining Hall, Snyder Hall, Music Department, School of Fine Arts, and reservations

    6.3 Advertisements for Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings [1920s-1930s]
    Newspaper clippings from Texas newspapers: Beaumont Enterprise, Dallas Morning News, San Antonio Express, Houston Post, Houston Chronicle, Austin Statesman, Texas Christian Advocate; SU Bulletins, 1925, 1926

    6.4 Advertisements for Southwestern University–Student Designs 1926-1927
    Southwestern Advertisements designed by students in Journalism-56 class as final exam project: Tulane Gordon, Jewel Ozment, Lourine Ozment, Starkey Duncan, Elizabeth Joues, J. Lynnum (?), Dawson Duncan (2 entries), Dorothy Seale, Gladys Noble, other unidentifieds

    6.5 Southwestern University–Recruitment and Fundraising Ephemera n.d., 1942, 1946, 1949
    ” The Southwestern Story” booklet; Graduate Study bulletin; “Life at Southwestern University”; “Coming to Southwestern?”; 

    6.6 Southwestern University–Narratives n.d., 1923
    ” The Book of Southwestern University” 1873-1923; “A Brief History of Southwestern University” by Pearl A. Neas

    6.7 Neas, Pearl A. Pearl A. Neas–Speeches, Essays [1930s-1940s]
    ” The Elements of Success”; “Religious Training in the College”; “The Small Liberal Arts College”; “Why College Students Fail”; To the Seniors of 1930”; “Southwestern Women and the War” (2 copies); Texas Federation News, May 1943: “Southwestern Women and the War” (2 copies)

    6.7 Pi Gamma Mu n.d.
    List of all Southwestern members with induction dates, compiled and maintained by Neas; new entries added by someone else after Neas’ death in 1962


    6.9 Photographs [1880s-1890s, 1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s]
    All photographs moved to Photograph: Archives Box A12.4; see also Box A2.16

    7.1 Plaster Model of Cullen Building 1923
    Made by “E. Johnston of Waco Texas” for Golden Jubilee, 1873-1923; facade of Cullen (Administration) Building

    7.2 “Parties for the Bride” [1930s?]
    Pink paper cover with green design of woman’s hand with engagement ring; contains several different plans for wedding showers

    7.3 Southwestern University Calendar 1914
    Leather-bound calendar with faded, colored photograph of Cullen (Administration) building and SU seal on cover; contains photographs (some tinted) of Cullen (Administration) Building, SU football teams, SU baseball team, Mood Hall, Woman’s Building, Camp F. Girls, The Preparatory School, The University Church (First United Methodist, Georgetown) some pictures have been cut out

    7.4 Texas Centennial Cards, set of 36 1935
    Set of 36 cards celebrating events in Texas history, with text written by J. Frank Dobie; no. 16 “The Alamo Enters Into Immortality” autographed by Dobie

    7.5 Pearl A. Neas Scrapbook [1910s-1920s]
    Contains letters of recommendation from C. M. Bishop, P.M. Horn, (?) Simpson, Wilbur Wright (?), R. W. Tinsley, Albert Shipp Pegues, and I. M. Clark; notice from C. M. Bishop to Board of Trustees about Neas ill health; newspaper clippings about Neas as registrar and about her social activities 

    7.6 Pearl A. Neas Scrapbook 1933-1934
    Contains newspaper clippings pertaining to Neas and Southwestern, particular focus on effort to move Southwestern from Georgetown in 1933; also contains minutes and press release from Joint Commission on Methodist Educational Work in Texas

    7.7 Pearl Neas Scrapbook [1929-1934]
    Contains newspaper clippings pertaining to Neas, Southwestern University, and alumni

    8.1 Diploma for Jannie McCollough n.d.
    Printed on vellum-like paper with orange Southwestern University seal in bottom left corner; all text in Latin; signed by Samuel G. Sanders, C. C. Cody, R. S. Hyer, S. E. Burkelod (?), Asa Holt, B. Harris, other names too faded to be legible

    8.2 Sampler by Mary Jemima Matthews 1831
    Sampler with alphabet in three styles, floral border, unfinished

    9.1 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings n.d., 1924, 1926, 1932, 1933, 1934, 1935
    SU Athletics; Pearl Neas; editorial on SU’s lack of endowments (1932); Golden Bowl; choir; Mask and Wig Players; Bishop A. J. Moore, Sir Josiah Stamp (honorary degrees)

    9.2 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1935, 1936, 1937
    Honorary degrees; Pastors’ School; Dr. J. N. R. Score named President of SU (1935); SU Athletics; death of Laura Kuykendall; SU degree in Business Administration; SU students

    9.3 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1938
    Choir, orchestra, Mask and Wig Players; SU Athletics; SU alumni, students, professors; Golden Bowl; Homecoming; Mr. and Mrs. J. Frank Dobie

    9.4 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1939
    Choir recitals, orchestra performances, and Mask and Wig Players; SU Athletics (death of Coach C. M. Edens); SU students, alumni, professors; Pigskin Revue; construction and dedication of Cody Memorial Library; Golden Bowl Dinner; Centennial Session

    9.5 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1940
    Choir recitals, orchestra performances, art exhibits, Mask and Wig Players; SU Athletics; SU students, alumni, professors; Pigskin Revue; construction of West Gymnasium; SU Centennial

    9.6 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1941v Choir recitals, orchestra concerts, Mask and Wig Players; SU students, alumni, professors; Pastors’ school; H.R. Knickerbocker; Golden Bowl Dinner

    9.7 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1942
    Choir, orchestra, Mask and Wig Players; SU alumni, students, professors; Inaugural of Dr. J. N. R. Score as President; new “defense” curriculum; V-7 Unit; H. R. Knickerbocker; Golden Bowl Dinner

    9.8 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1943
    Choir, orchestra, Mask and Wig Players; SU Athletics (football team); Su Alumni, professors, students (involvement in war effort); V-12 Unit; Pastors’ School; Lyndon Johnson honorary degree; Lois Perkins Chapel; SU women in WAAC, SU men in military; war rally with Robert Taylor and Jack Dempsey (boxer)

    9.9 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1944
    Choir, orchestra; SU Athletics, alumni, professors (involvement in war effort); Weatherford Junior College; Pi Gamma Mu; Bishop Boaz; Lyndon Johnson; Mrs. L. E. Weiss gift to SU (1937-1938)

    9.10 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings n.d., 1945
    Pearl Neas promotion as registrar; SU Athletics (Sun Bowl); U. S. S. Southwestern; V-12 Unit; SU students, alumni, professors (involvement in war effort)

    9.11 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1949
    Choir recitals; SU athletics; SU alumni, professors, students; construction of Lois Perkins Chapel; McManus gift; fire in Boiler Plant; Pastors ’ School; death of H. R. Knickerbocker; Dr. Heinsohn, Harry Benge Crozier

    9.12 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1950
    Choir recitals, orchestra performances, Mask and Wig Players; SU students, alumni, professors; SU Athletics (Spot Collins); Inauguration of William Carrington Finch as SU President; Lois Perkins Chapel Dedication; Pastors’ School

    9.13 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1951, 1952
    Choir recitals, orchestra performances; Mask and Wig Players; SU students, alumni, professors; establishment of Herman Brown Chair of History; SU Athletics

    9.14 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1952
    Choir and orchestra performances; Mask and Wig Players; “Dobie Day” October 29, 1952; announcement about construction of McCook-Crain Clinic; Sneed House

    9.15 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1953
    Choir recitals, orchestra performances, Mask and Wig Players; SU Athletics; SU alumni, students, professors; West Foundation; McCook-Crain Clinic, Fondren Jones Science Building; portrait of C. C. Cody, Jr.; stone SU sign on corner of University and Maple street; Pastors’ school; Madonna sculpture in courtyard of Lois Perkins Chapel; fire in Kappa Sigma House, Olive Street

    9.16 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1954
    Mask and Wig Players, choir and orchestra performances; SU students, alumni, professors; dedication of Bishops Memorial Union, Fondren Jones Science Hall; funding for Fine Arts Building; Ruter Dormitory for Men

    9.17 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1955
    Choir recitals, orchestra performances, Mask and Wig Players; SU Athletics; SU Alumni, students, and professors; SU’s 115th Birthday; golf course; dedication of Ruter Dormitory; dedication of R. S. Hyer statue; Pastors ’ school; Ford Foundation Grant

    9.18 Southwestern University–Newspaper Clippings 1956
    Choir recitals, art exhibits, Mask and Wig Players, orchestra performances; SU Athletics; SU alumni, professors, students; Snyder Home torn down; Willson lectures; construction of Religious Activities Center; quarter-million dollar gift to SU; Pi Gamma Mu; SU-Duke University arrangement–pre-forestry degree