December 31, 2009
Belo Corp., owner of WFAA-TV and former parent company of The Dallas Morning News, is donating the Belo Corporate Archives to SMU’s DeGolyer Library. The thousands of documents in the archives also include materials from A. H. Belo Corporation, which was formed to own The Dallas Morning News and other newspapers that were spun off from Belo Corp. in February 2008.
“Since 1985, Belo Corp. has invested in updating its archival collection that traces the history of the company as well as the City of Dallas,” says Robert W. Decherd, chairman of Belo Corp. “We are proud of this collection and believe it is best situated in a permanent curatorial setting such as the DeGolyer Library.”
Belo was established in 1842, making it the oldest continuously operated business institution in Texas. The archives include the private and business correspondence and private and business papers of company leaders; annual reports dating from 1926, when G. B. Dealey acquired the company from the heirs of Col. A. H. Belo; and audio recordings of important company-related events dating back to the 1920s, among other records.
“As the media industry continues to change, it will be invaluable to have historical resources showing the evolution of a leading corporation and its impact on print and broadcast outlets,” says President R. Gerald Turner.
“The dynamic nature of American enterprise is revealed in the DeGolyer Library’s collections,” says Russell Martin, director of DeGolyer Library. “Belo’s story begins in Texas, but it reaches the whole country and beyond. We are happy to preserve all these materials for the future. Researchers need such collections to gain a perspective on the past.”