Ben Guttery acquired the papers from a paper dealer in Oklahoma. He first purchased a lot of about 100 letters in 1999 when he noticed the dealer selling a Congressional letterhead on eBay. Mr. Guttery asked about one letter and ended up buying the first 100. Later, he noticed the same man selling more letters and acquired the balance of the materials. Some of these were separated from the collection as they were sold for the interesting letterhead. Mr. Guttery collected these as part of his overall interest in Texas politics. They represent a unique view into the life of a traveling district judge and congressman separated from his wife while serving in office.