Found: J. Frank Dobie’s 1962 Alcalde

September 1962 AlcaldeThis weekend, our intrepid Texas Exes historian, Jim Nicar, was rooting around Half Price Books for UT miscellany when he made one of his signature finds.

On the clearance cart, marked for sale at $1, Nicar discovered a copy of the September 1962 issue of The Alcalde, our UT alumni magazine.

Now, an old copy of The Alcalde, special as it is, is hardly something to blog about. But a close look at the cover revealed this particular copy was a keeper.

Along the left side, printed on a yellowing label (below), reads the name of one of UT’s most famous personalities: J. Frank Dobie.

A longtime professor and famed Texas folklorist, Dobie taught a popular Life and Literature of the Southwest class, and his name remains indelibly etched into campus history.

His house at 702 Park Place still stands just north of Dean Keeton Street and is now a historic landmark. His ranch outside of town is now a sought-after writers’ retreat.

Dobie died in 1964, so this copy of the magazine, with the cover article entitled “Mr. Football,” was one of his last. But it’s hard to know whether the marks next to an article on page 18 and on the cover are his.

Written in red ink, Dobie (or someone else) marked an entry in the Focus of the Forty Acres section highlighting a booklet of journal entries that Benjamin C. Tharp, a professor emeritus in botany, had just published.

The journals were those of Mary S. Young, Tharp’s former colleague, during an exploration in 1914.

We have no idea where Young went exploring or what Dobie would have wanted with her journals (if it was Dobie who marked the article), but either way, it’s pretty cool just to wonder.

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