Skip to main content

Waldo H. Rogers Family Papers

Identifier: MSS-214- BC

Scope and Content

The Rogers Papers include legal, professional, and personal documents relating to all of Waldo Rogers' life. The legal and business documents pertain to the cases Rogers tried or over which Rogers presided during his time on the bench in Albuquerque. Included are case notes (1933-1958), letters between Rogers and other lawyers and judges, and the records of a lawsuit filed against Rogers based on the undesired outcome of a court case (1959-1961). There is an extensive collection of newspaper articles about Rogers' life and career (1923-1960), a file of speeches given, manuscripts of legal articles, and a DVD of his inauguration as U.S. District Judge (1954). Similarly, there are records of Rogers' involvement with civic organizations in and around Albuquerque. These include documents and memorabilia of the Albuquerque Bar Association (1954-1963), American Judicature Society and Law Institute (1958-1963), School of American Research (1961-1962), and the Sons of the American Revolution (1935-1962).

Personal materials include hundreds of letters. Rogers kept onion skin copies of most letters he wrote and the originals of letters he received are often stapled to the responses. The letters were between Rogers and his father (A.T. Rogers), his mother (Helen M.), his wife (Dicksie ), his daughter (Helen Chaplin), and his grandchildren, 1925-1964. There are letters of congratulations, condolences, and thanks written by Rogers and sent to him by friends and admirers. Other materials include documents pertaining to Rogers' service in World War II and income tax forms.

Family letters and papers concerning Rogers' kidnapping, and warranty deeds of family property (1897-1906) are also included. There are unpublished biographies of Rogers and his grandfather, Henry L. Waldo. In addition, childhood mementos such as school notebooks, fraternity correspondence (Phi Gamma Delta), and romantic letters to and from future wife Dicksie Brown are included. Finally, there are two etchings included in the collection. One is of historian Charles F. Coan and the other is of W.B. [sic] Rogers. The origin of these etchings is not given.


  • 1895-1964

Language of Materials


Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication of CSWR material is allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for compliance with all copyright, privacy, and libel laws. Permission is required for publication or distribution.


Waldo Henry Rogers, attorney and judge, was born on May 17, 1908. He was son of Las Vegas, New Mexico, attorney A.T. Rogers and Helen M. Waldo, daughter of Henry L. Waldo, Supreme Court Justice of the Territory of New Mexico. Early in his life, Rogers was kidnapped by his uncle, William Rogers, and an accomplice. Rogers was taken from the family home when he was two years old and held for a ransom of $12,000. He was recovered unharmed and William Rogers and the accomplice were jailed for the crime. Rogers was educated in the public schools at Las Vegas and graduated from high school in 1925. He studied law at the University of Colorado, 1925-1931, and began his legal career shortly thereafter. He met his wife, Dicksie Brown at the University of Colorado and they were married in 1931. Dicksie died in 1961, and Rogers married Evelyn Johnson Trickett in January 1962.

Rogers had a distinguished law career based in Albuquerque, New Mexico. In 1931, he started as a junior lawyer in the Albuquerque law offices of former New Mexico Governor M.C. Mechem. He was Assistant District Attorney in Albuquerque from 1932-1939 and maintained a private practice during the 1930s through 1942 and again from 1947-1951, after service in the United States Army. Rogers became a member of the New Mexico judiciary in 1951, when he was appointed to the 2nd Judicial District (includes Bernalillo County). He was appointed United States District Judge in May 1954, a position he held until his death in 1964.

Rogers' legal career was interrupted by service in World War II. He volunteered for the infantry in April of 1942 and commissioned 2nd Lieutenant later that year. He went to Africa and Italy during the war, and was discharged with the rank of Captain in October 1945. The later years of Rogers' life were marked by poor health. He had respiratory problems and died of bronchial pneumonia on January 12, 1964, in Albuquerque.


11 boxes (5 cu. ft.) + 2 oversized maps


The Waldo H. Rogers Family Papers relate to the personal and professional life of Judge Waldo H. Rogers. Items in the collection reflect events and positions through Rogers' entire life. Some of documents in the collection pertain to Rogers' parents and grandparents.

Related Material

Albert T. Rogers Family Papers, 1871-1957 State Records Center and Archives, Santa Fe, New Mexico

Separated Material

Photographs transferred to the Waldo H. Rogers Photograph Collection include 91 photographs of members of the Rogers family and his ancestors.

Film and archival master DVD of Judge Rogers inauguration as U.S. District Judge stored in B3.
Finding Aid of the Waldo H. Rogers Family Papers, 1895-1964
Processed by Tad McIlwraith
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • June 28, 2004: PUBLIC "-//University of New Mexico::Center for Southwest Research//TEXT (US::NmU::MSS 214 BC::Waldo H. Rogers Family Papers)//EN" "nmu1mss214bc.sgml" converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).

Repository Details

Part of the UNM Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections Repository

University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections
University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque NM 87131