Everyone who has visited a museum, and all who have not, will be forever grateful if they read this new book named below.
Texas novelist and journalist Allan C. Kimball has explored the state’s museums and landscape. He picked his favorite museums, including 23 from South Texas.
Kimball named his just-out book “TEXAS MUSEUMS OF DISCOVERY.”
This book is a bargain at $5.95, and I read every word. You can find this book at Barnes & Noble book stores and other book stores. This excellent book made me remember my dad or grandfather driving me to some of the old museums, from 1940 to many years later.
This year Kimball finished his labor of museum love to excite and expand more knowledge of Texas museums. He remains able to claim Texas as the biggest and best museum state.
In San Antonio, seven top-class museums were selected. Nearly all were great ones like the Alamo, the San Antonio Museum of Art, the Witte Museum and other nationally known powerhouses.
Yet the Lower Rio Grande Valley managed to get five museums recognized in it. That is a great number and honor, considering that only one out of five museums received the honor of being statewide choices.
I counted 267 who made it, leaving some 1,333 disappointed Texas museums to consider demanding they will be included in the next printing. Perhaps every museum in Texas will be in books for all in the future. Don’t expect the whole herd to stampede at once.
Edinburg’s Museum of South Texas History held the top Rio Grande Valley honor being noted on 15 lines, far more than the others in the Valley.
“Why go?” began Edinburg’s big sample of this special honor.
The book’s presentation about the Museum of South Texas History in Edinburg says, “Few places in the United States offer the kind of blended culture the Rio Grande Valley does, and this museum provides a look at that heritage. The Rio Grande is the primary focus here as indicated by three of the main exhibits—River Frontier, River Highway and River Crossroads.
“Artifacts and multi-media presentations abound. Take a gander at prehistoric fossils, steamboat artifacts, Spanish treasures and battlefield items.
“Listen to conjunto music. Walk on the bow of a steamship. Visit a railroad station.
“Watch historic films. Outside you can visit a 1910 era jail with rotating exhibits on the ground floor and a second-floor exhibit honoring Freddie Gonzales, a local Medal of Honor winner for his service in Vietnam.
“Beyond the jail are a park area with sculpture, a windmill, tank and water pump, and a walking trail with native plants.”
These other Valley museums deserve state-wide recognition too. Brownsville’s Museum of Fine Art and the Rio Grande Wing of the Commemorative Air Force Museum are the two from Brownsville named, both certainly deserving it.
McAllen’s International Museum of Art and Science is filled with educational displays of art and natural science with a hands-on children’s area and a theater. The Museum of Port Isabel is a complex of three museums, telling the story of the scenic end of Texas, including wrecks at sea and the largest artifacts from the Mexican War.
Everyone who goes to museums learns something, and this story should inspire more people to attend, learn and enjoy the lasting effects of going to a good museum. If you don’t believe it, try just one of the 267 great museums named in the book. Others of the 1,333 museums that didn’t make it this time also can teach you a lot. Every museum will teach you painlessly with something you don’t know and much you can learn.