The Hightower Book Vault is located in the W.R. Poage Legislative Library and houses autographed editions donated by Judge Jack Hightower as well as rare items needing a climate-controlled environment.
Hightower Book Vault Nearing CompletionIn 2006, Judge Jack Hightower agreed to donate his collection of autographed editions to Baylor to join his Texas legislative, congressional, judicial and personal papers, which are already archived in the library. Through the years, the W. R. Poage Legislative Library has acquired similar rare items requiring special storage and handling. Unfortunately, the library did not have a suitable space to keep these items in a regulated environment.
A portion of the reading room was set aside and refurbished to archival standards for the long-term preservation of special collections. The architectural firm that designed the building in 1979 was asked to design this area in harmony with the rest of the building. The completed vault includes glass walls and walnut finished woodwork. This newly refurbished room will accommodate Hightower's autographed editions, as well as rare books and items currently located in Poage Library.
The location of a book collection as unique as Judge Hightower's will be an unprecedented addition to the Baylor and Waco communities. Preserving our country's history in books and letters has been the long-term goal of Jack Hightower since he was a young child. This book vault allows the archiving of books and special needs materials for future generations.
Those who have made significant gifts to the book vault project thus far include:
John and J.D. Dowdy Foundation
D. M. Edwards
Jo Stahala Hendrick
Jack and Colleen W. Hightower
David and Karyn Hill
Wen J. Hsu
Vester T. Hughes, Jr.
Mr. and Mrs. Lyndon L. Olson, Jr.
James B. Rogers
Alan Steelman, Jr.
The Standing Committee
Bill and Kathy Wardlaw
Extra funds raised will be used to establish the Jack and Colleen Hightower Signed Book Endowment. If you would like to contribute to the completion of this project, you may contact John Wilson in Library Development at 254.710.3457.
- Ben Rogers, W.R. Poage Legislative Library Director