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First state museum in Texas opens

April
14
1933

On this day in 1933, the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum, the first state museum in Texas, opened in Canyon. The museum was an outgrowth of the Panhandle-Plains Historical Society, founded in 1921 by faculty and students of West Texas State Teachers College, and is a cooperative effort between the society, which owns and controls the collections, and the State of Texas, which provides and maintains the facilities through West Texas A&M University and the Texas A&M University Board of Regents. In addition to its major anthropology, geology, paleontology, and natural history collections, the museum has extensive materials on the ranching industry, the Plains Indians, and the oil and gas industry, and galleries devoted to American and European art with an emphasis on such Texas artists as Frank Reaugh and Harold Bugbee.

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