Three Questions with Paul Christensen
Three Questions is an initiative to share the value that our faculty, students, and others in the UNT community derive from using the Unique Collections at UNT Libraries.
How important are Unique Collections in your teaching, learning or research?
In 2010, my wife and I moved to Palacios and the Texas Gulf Coast. We purchased a commercial building built just after the town was founded, in 1909. After restoring the structure we wanted to explore the history, since all we had heard were rumors. About the same time, the local library had arranged with the UNT Digital Projects Unit to scan the past issues of the Palacios Beacon newspaper from 1911 to 1965. The issues would appear in the Portal to Texas History and be key word searchable. The past issues of the Beacon proved to be invaluable to our research. The information we discovered allowed us to locate the name of the original builder of the building. In addition, we were able to discover the names of various tenants as well as events related to the building. Our research eventually led to the State of Texas selecting the structure as a Registered Texas Historic Landmark (RTHL), a status which might not have been possible without access to the Portal to Texas History.
How have Unique Collections changed the way you approach your research, teaching or learning?
The Portal is the first source I use besides Google. It is quite responsive and user friendly. I appreciate the definition quality of the scans. I recently discovered a 32 page Historic and Progress Edition of the Palacios Beacon from October 19, 1939. I was able to download each page as a high resolution 1500x1969 graphic file. Because of the high scan quality we were able to re-create the special 1939 Historical Edition of the Beacon assembling an 11” x 17” tabloid pdf which was printed and bound. The commemorative edition was used as a gift to the Publisher of the Beacon for his Father’s support of the scanning project.
What do you want others to know about your research?
My wife and I are simple history and architecture enthusiasts. We are blessed to be living in such a great city as Palacios and to be living in a building with so much history.
Paul Christensen and his wife Donna founded Omega Productions in March of 1973. The Company specializes in live concert television specials, as well as live concert CD recordings. Omega also provides live event production and consulting services to the Entertainment and Sports Industries.
The Christensens co-produce all their projects working as a team… an approach they believe is responsible for the success of 48 years of marriage and 43+ years of award winning production excellence. The Christensens live south of Houston on the Texas Gulf Coast.
During the company’s 43+ year history, Paul Christensen and his wife Donna and their staff have worked with over 300 of the best known personalities in the business: comedy stars such as Bob Hope, Steve Allen, Jack Lemmon and David Brenner; Broadway legends like Ben Vereen, Tommy Tune, Lena Horne and Chita Rivera; film artists Michael Keaton, Charlton Heston, Jimmy Stewart and Dennis Quaid and music legends like Ray Charles, Jerry Lee Lewis, Fats Domino, Carl Perkins and Johnny Cash.
Their work has crossed all lines of music… from the jazz of Ramsey Lewis, Dizzy Gillespie, Michael Franks and Al Jarreau; the rock of U2, Van Halen, Little Feat and Neil Young; the country of Reba McEntire, Carrie Underwood, George Jones and Garth Brooks; the blues of B.B. King, Buddy Guy, Bobbie Blue Bland and Robert Cray; the R&B and funk sounds of The Neville Brothers, The Meters, The Commodores and Johnnie Taylor, to the gospel sounds of Kirk Franklin, Donnie McClurkin, Fred Hammond and the Mississippi Mass Choir.