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College of Optometry Records

Identifier: 2009-013

These records contain 2 boxes relating to the College of Optometry at the University of Houston. A significant portion of this material was given to the archives from the university Print Plant. Materials include newsletters, correspondence, event programs and flyers, administrative material, published material, course information, reports, patient forms, and stationary. Included in this collection is a series of taped interviews with well-known optometrists. The collection is arranged chronologically and alphabetically as necessary. Material ranges in date from the 1950s to 2001.


  • 1950-2009


Conditions Governing Access

Open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Special Collections owns the physical items in our collections, but copyright normally belongs to the creator of the materials or their heirs. The researcher has full responsibility for determining copyright status, obtaining permission to publish from copyright holders, and abiding by current copyright laws when publishing or displaying copies of Special Collections material in print or electronic form. For more information, consult the appropriate librarian. Reproduction decisions will be made by Special Collections staff on a case-by-case basis.


2.0 linear feet

Historical Information

The College of Optometry was established in 1952 by the Board of Regents as the result of a request from the Texas Optometric Association, which pledged to contribute $20,000 annually for operations. At the time of its establishment, the school was the only one in the South and the fifth in the nation to be established in connection with a university and with college entrance requirements. [1] Today, the school is one of only 17 optometry schools in the United States, and currently the only one in Texas. [2]

The College of Optometry, the University Eye Institute, and the Weston A. Petty Optometry Library are located in the J. Davis Armistead Building. Originally called the UH College of Optometry Building, constructed in 1976, the building changed names in 1993 to become the J. Davis Armistead Building in honor of Dr. Armistead’s dedication to the university and the profession. [3]

The teaching and research activities of the college are facilitated by the year-round operation of an outpatient clinic, the University Eye Institute, up-to-date research laboratories, an extensive library collection, a computer center, and instructional services. The College of Optometry offers the Doctor of Optometry (O.D.) degree and the Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in physiological optics. [4]


[1] Houston Post Article – “UH Optometry School Set Up; Professor Hired, February 20, 1952” (Box 1, folder 3)

[2] About UHCO, available from 12 August 2009.

[3] About UHCO, available from 12 August 2009.

[4] UH Through Time: Colleges, available from 12 August 2009.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated in 2009. Two folders of materials containing architectural plans were later added to the collection. Five folders recounting the history of the College of Optometry were transferred by Suzanne Ferimer at the Optometry Library, May 30, 2014, and later added to the collection.

Guide to the College of Optometry Records
Stephanie Malone, Karen Jordan, Toshia Miracle, Mikaela Selley, and Bobby Marlin
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Houston Libraries Special Collections Repository

University of Houston Libraries Special Collections
MD Anderson Library
4333 University Drive
Houston TX 77204-2000 USA