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Secretary of State

Secretary of State

Secretary of State

Secretary of State

Agency Information

The Texas Secretary of State is a constitutional officer of the executive branch of state government, appointed by the governor and confirmed by the senate for a term concurrent with the governor’s (a two-year term at first, a four-year term since 1974). The office was first created by the Constitution of the Republic of Texas in 1836, and has been continued by each succeeding Constitution.

The Texas Constitution of 1845 required the Secretary of State to “keep a fair register of all official acts and proceedings of the Governor” and to provide these to the legislature when required. This duty (and others) were reiterated in the act “to define the duties of Secretary of State,” approved May 9, 1846. This authority was reconfirmed by the Constitutions of 1866 (Article V, Section 17), 1869 (Article IV, Section 17) and 1876 (Article IV, Section 21), and subsequent amendments.

The Secretary of State has an enormous number of duties and responsibilities, including the following: authenticating the publication of all laws passed by the state legislature; approving comptroller’s accounts against the state prior to payment; maintaining a register of all official acts and proceedings of the governor, and all appointments to state boards and commissions; interpreting and enforcing the Texas Election Code, as the state’s chief election officer; keeping the Seal of the State of Texas; and maintaining many business-related filings, including corporation and Uniform Commercial Code filings.

Bills and Resolutions Filed | Department of State Passports | Department of State Post Office records


Texas Secretary of State, Government Filings Section: Legislative Bills and Resolutions Filed (General and Special Laws), 1836-1884

Secretary of State Legislative Bills and Resolutions Filed

Example law from the collection

Creator: Texas. Secretary of State. Government Filings Section
Title: Secretary of State legislative bills and resolutions filed (General and special laws)
Dates: 1836-1884
Abstract: Since 1837, Texas law has required the Secretary of State to contract for the printing of the laws, and to arrange for their distribution. Since 1846, Texas law has required the Secretary of State to receive bills from the Texas Legislature which have become laws, and to bind and maintain such bills and enrolled joint resolutions; and also to deliver a certified copy of these laws (with indices) to the public printer. These records are the official, final, signed copies of legislative bills and resolutions (general and special laws) passed by the Congress of the Republic of Texas and the Legislature of the State of Texas, and subsequently filed with the Texas Secretary of State. These contain the original signatures of all officials (President of the Senate, Speaker of the House, Chief Clerk of the House, Secretary of the Senate, and Texas President/Governor). Digitized laws date 1836-1884.

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Texas Secretary of State: Passports Issued by the Department of State, Republic of Texas , 1836-1858

Houston, General Samuel

Houston, General Samuel

Creator: Texas. Secretary of State
Title: Secretary of State records relating to passports issued by the Department of State, Republic of Texas
Dates: 1836-1845, 1855, 1858, undated
Abstract: Passports were issued by the government of the Republic of Texas to allow persons to freely leave and re-enter. These records consist of requests for passports, orders to issue passports, and one proclamation granting entrance into the Republic. Dates covered are 1836-1845, 1855, 1858.

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Texas (Republic). Department of State: Post Office Records, 1836-1847

Appointments and applications, September 13, 1841

Appointments and applications, September 13, 1841

Creator: Texas (Republic). Department of State
Title: Department of State Post Office records
Dates: 1836-1847, undated
Abstract:The postal system of the Republic of Texas was established to facilitate mail transportation within and outside the Republic. Records of the post office were created as a result of the establishment and daily management of the postal service of the Republic of Texas and document the legal, financial, and administrative activities of the office. These records consist of correspondence; vouchers, receipts, and other accounting records; lists of post offices, postmasters, and mail routes; and related documents of the Republic of Texas Post Office, dating 1836-1847, undated.

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