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Office of the President: Arthur C. Ferguson Papers

Identifier: 2008.085

Scope and Contents

This collection primarily contains Dr. Ferguson's personal and professional correspondence. Personal letters, Series I, range from 1931 to 1970, and are primarily between Ferguson and his siblings related to management of family agricultural properties and finances. The professional correspondence, Series II, is primarily related to publications of his grammar/spelling books and the operations of East Texas State Teachers College. In addition to correspondence, the collection contains speeches and lectures, Series III; financial/operational ETSTC documents, Series IV; biographical information, Series V; and pamphlets, Series VI. The bulk of the collection is from his tenure with ETSTC, both as Dean and President. There are however, some documents of note related to his activities after retirement from ETSTC, during which he served one term as Mayor of Commerce.


  • 1924-1970, inclusive
  • Majority of material found within 1940-1950,

Conditions Governing Use

Items in this collection are protected by applicable copyright laws.

Biographical / Historical

Dr. Arthur Clinton Ferguson served as East Texas State Teachers College’s fourth president after the death of Dr. Samuel H. Whitley in 1946. He was born near Stephenville, Texas, on October 29, 1876. He attended rural schools and Stephenville College (present-day Tarleton State University). Most of his education was at the University of Texas in Austin, where he received a B.A. (1907), M.A. (1908), and Ph.D. (1937). Prior to his career at ETSTC, he was a teacher in Stephenville, Temple and Marlin, Texas. Dr. Ferguson was hired as Dean of the College in 1925, replacing Dr. Whitley who had been promoted to president. During his tenure as dean, Ferguson oversaw academic affairs, the establishment of a graduate school in 1935, and campus expansion, including the construction of Binnion Dormitory. When Dr. Whitley died suddenly in 1946, Ferguson was appointed acting President and then full President later in the year. The mandatory retirement age however, required that Ferguson retire in 1947, shortly after his appointment. Outside of his duties at ETSTC, Ferguson authored or contributed to multiple grammar/spelling books and served four years as Mayor of Commerce from 1948 to 1952. Ferguson died at his home on November 18, 1973, at the age of 97.


1 Linear Feet

Language of Materials


Related Materials

Ferguson, A.C. Improvement of Instruction in College. Commerce, Tex. : East Texas State Teachers College, 1932.

McFadden, Effie B. and Arthur C. Ferguson. McFadden-Ferguson Language Series. Chicago : Rand McNally & Co. c1918.

Merkley, George Earle and Arthur C. Ferguson. Composition-Rhetoric. New York : Newson, c1913.

These titles are available in the Special Collections Department by request.

Processing Information

This collection was originally processed in the mid-late 1970s. The collection was reprocessed in 2013 to address numerous preservation concerns and to create a descriptive finding aid.

Office of the President: Arthur C. Ferguson Papers
Benjamin Williams
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives, Special Collections, Waters Library, Texas A&M University-Commerce Repository