Robert W. Smith Martial Arts Collection

Identity elements

Reference code

TxAM-CRS C000026

Name and location of repository

Level of description



Robert W. Smith Martial Arts Collection


  • 1930-2012 (Creation)
  • 1950-1990 (Creation)


26 Linear Feet

Name of creator


Biographical history

Content and structure elements

Scope and content

This collection includes the major focus of RWS's research in the 1950s and early 1960s, while Mr. Smith's publication projects span the early 1970s to 2000. His writings as John F. Gibley are thought to be a composite of his friends Jon Bluming and Donn F. Draeger. There are several boxes of papers, notes, manuscripts, books, photographs, historic 16 mm movie film, videotapes, and personal correspondence (covering six decades). Some of the prominent correspondence, writings, and photographs include noted science fiction author Ray Bradbury, martial artist Jon Bluming, Donn F. Draeger, writer Kay Boyle, British novelist and literary critic Sir Victor Sawdon Pritchett (VS Pritchett), writer and critic John Sanford (aka Julian Shapiro) and many more. He also offered a critical eye on American culture that is reflected in his reviews, articles, and papers he wrote and collected. Researchers will find substantial scientific articles on how the brain, mind and body work.

System of arrangement

This collection came with an extensive inventory and since have been re-arranged in folders, primarily alphabetical by individual names. The access points include the names of individuals, subjects and places in the papers.

The collection is arranged into 6 series:

  • Series 1, Personal Papers of RW Smith (Boxes 1-2)
  • Series 2, Correspondence and Writings of Frequent Correspondents (Boxes 3-5)
  • Series 3, Martial Arts (Judo, Taiji (Tai Chi), Other Martial Arts) (Boxes 6-8)
  • Series 4, General Correspondence, A-Z (Boxes 9-14)
  • Series 5, Photographs (photos, slides, negatives, microfilm) (Boxes 15-16, 20)
  • Series 6, Media (DVD, VHS, Audiotapes, etc.) (Boxes 17-19)

Conditions of access and use elements

Conditions governing access

Physical access

These materials are stored offsite and require additional time for retrieval.

Technical access

Conditions governing reproduction

Languages of the material

  • Chinese
  • English
  • Japanese

Scripts of the material

Language and script notes

Finding aids

Acquisition and appraisal elements

Custodial history

Immediate source of acquisition

Robert Smith's widow Alice and daughter Anne McKay donated The Robert W. Smith collection with the assistance of Professors Russ Mason (University of Delaware) and Thomas Green (Texas A&M University).


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Notes element

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Description control element

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Sources used

Archivist's note

Finding Aid Authors: Rebecca Hankins and Syed Ahmed with substantial assistance from Zao Liu, and graduate students James Stoker and Jared Miracle.

Archivist's note

© Copyright 2019 Cushing Library. All rights reserved.

Access points

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Accession area