Some folks refer to the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum in Canyon, Texas as "the Smithsonian...with a Texas accent". (When you visit their website, click on the vignettes on the opening splash photo for a special video introduction.) Top-notch exhibits and an award-winning educational program will get your students excited about prehistoric geology, Texas tribes, the
Explore the history of petroleum science and engineering at the Texas Energy Museum in Beaumont, Texas. Talking robotic characters will be your guides as you learn about the formation of oil and how geologists find it and hear the story of the first oil well drilling. Your students will discover the beginnings of the Texas oil industry, exploration, production and refining through
The Audie Murphy American Cotton Museum in Greenville, Texas presents the history of Hunt County, particularly emphasizing the impact of the cotton industry and hometown military hero, Audie Murphy. You can visit on your own or call ahead for a school tour emphasizing either the Texas cotton industry or military history (World War I through Vietnam).
Okay, time for a true confession. As much as I love history, when a friend invited my kids and I to come with her family on a field trip to a cotton gin, I accepted under duress only to be polite. I harbored the expectation that it would be the most boring history field trip in...well, in history. Boy, was I wrong! :) The kids were fascinated to learn what a huge impact cotton had
If there's one thing we've got a lot of in Texas, it's WIND, and the pioneers quickly learned to harness it. Not like Pecos Bill harnessed the tornado--the American Wind Power Center and Museum in Lubbock, Texas is a much tamer ride, but quite an adventure in its own way. You can stroll through on your own or call ahead for an guided educational tour. Whichever you choose, be sure
If you're looking for an educational Texas History field trip near Houston--one where the kids can get involved and come home with lots of stories--you can hardly do better than the George Ranch Historical Park in Richmond, Texas. They sorta specialize in hands-on education and host a slew of events throughout the school year and during holidays to help your students experience
Sometimes you come across a quirky, out-of-the-way place that turns out to be well worth the stop. The Devil's Rope Museum in McLean, Texas (open March through October) is that kind of place. A whole museum dedicated to the invention and history of barbed wire--and believe me, you would never believe how many types and uses of barbed wire there are! If you're a
Do you love cowboys and homes on the range? You'll find both at the National Ranching Heritage Center on the Texas Tech campus in Lubbock, Texas. You can take a virtual tour here, but don't stop there! The National Ranching Heritage Center hosts the Summer Stampede in June, summer youth camps, a wonderful open house at Christmas, and a host of fine exhibits throughout the year.
There's so much to see and do at the Palo Duro Canyon State Park in Canyon, Texas! You can camp, hike, ride horseback, and hear ranger's tell about the wildlife in the area, the tragic Battle of Palo Duro or the rugged home of Charles Goodnight. You can camp in tents, campers or cabins, cook over an open fire, and much s'mores while gazing at the vast, starry sky. Or you can