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Wittliff Collections Festival Re-scheduled

We’re pleased to announce a new schedule for The Wittliff Collections Festival. Out of an abundance of caution and with the safety of our sponsors and guests as our number one priority, the Festival Panel Discussions will now be held at The Wittliff Collections on Sunday, November 14, 2021, from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. The Festival Gala will be held on the evening of Thursday, December 2, 2021, at Austin City Limits Live at the Moody Theater. The Wittliff Collections Festival is a private fundraising event. All proceeds will be used to acquire important new collections that preserve the culture of Texas, Mexico, and the Southwest.

“Texas State University will play a starring role in The Wittliff Collections Festival,” said Dr. David Coleman, director of The Wittliff Collections. “Through this high-profile event, the university will help raise awareness of the importance of preserving the cultural heritage of the Southwest while raising private support for new acquisitions.”

The Wittliff Collections are a cultural treasure comprising a world-class research archive, exhibition gallery, and special collections library established at Texas State University in 1986 by acclaimed screenwriter and filmmaker Bill Wittliff and his wife Sally . The Festival will honor the late Bill Wittliff, who passed away on June 9, 2019, by celebrating his vision and creative spirit. All proceeds from the festival will be used to acquire important collections that preserve the culture of the Southwest.

“Bill and Sally had an amazing dream to create a place that would preserve and celebrate the ‘Spirit of Place’ that is unique to Texas and the Southwest,” said Coleman. “The Wittliff Collections Festival will be a special time for us to celebrate that dream and to pay tribute to Bill. For more than three decades, he ‘rode point’ toward our next big project or acquisition, and because of his profound inspiration, we know exactly where we’re headed: toward a future of growth, of promise and the fulfillment of the Wittliff’s vision for a world-class research archive, exhibition gallery and library.”

What began with the papers of Texas folklorist J. Frank Dobie has grown into a cultural touchstone with more than 500 prized collections in Southwestern literature, Southwestern and Mexican photography and Texas music. Holdings include the papers of writers Sam Shepard, Cormac McCarthy, Sandra Cisneros, Mary Karr, Stephen Harrigan and Lawrence Wright, as well as the entire Texas Monthly magazine archive and the King of the Hill collection; the largest collection of Mexican photography outside of Mexico; a burgeoning collection of Texas music including Willie Nelson, Jerry Jeff Walker, Ray Benson, Marcia Ball, and Cindy Walker; and the Lonesome Dove production archive. Plans are underway to add film and television to The Wittliff’s vast trove of primary source material.

For information on attending the Festival and sponsorship opportunities, email here.         


Texas State’s 38,231 students choose from 98 bachelor’s, 91 master’s and 14 doctoral degree programs offered by the following colleges: Applied Arts, McCoy College of Business Administration, Education, Fine Arts and Communication, Health Professions, Liberal Arts, Science and Engineering, University College, and The Graduate College. As an Emerging Research University, Texas State offers opportunities for discovery and innovation to faculty and students. Students come from around the globe, and the student body is diverse with 55.6 percent of Texas State students identifying as ethnic minorities. Texas State ranks 12th in the nation for total bachelor’s degrees awarded to Hispanic students.


The Wittliff Collections comprise an internationally known research archive, exhibition gallery, and special collections library established in 1986 as a partnership between Texas State University and founding donors Sally and Bill Wittliff. The Wittliff Collections are dedicated to collecting, preserving and sharing the creative legacy of the Southwest’s literary, photographic and musical arts, and to fostering the region’s “Spirit of Place” in the wider world. The Wittliff is located on the Texas State University campus in San Marcos. The Wittliff presents major exhibitions year-round; hosts readings, artist talks, lectures and other events; publishes significant books from its holdings; and makes its collections available to researchers from around the world. The Wittliff welcomes visitors, tours and classes. Admission is always free. For more on The Wittliff Collections, see here. 


For general press inquiries on The Wittliff Collections, or for press RSVPs to The Wittliff Collections Festival, please contact:

Heather Wagner Reed
713 208 3891

Tyler Ostby
210 854 9119