Texas Highways

By: Frank Lively and Jack Lowry

Type: General Entry

Published: January 1, 1996

Texas Highways magazine was founded in 1953 when the name of the Texas Highway Department employee publication, Maintenance and Construction Bulletin, was changed with the November issue. The magazine, published by the Information and Statistics Division of the Texas Highway Department (now the Texas Department of Transportation), carried articles about highway design, construction, and maintenance, with some information about employees' awards and retirements. When the Texas legislature passed a bill in 1959 authorizing the state to promote tourism, the name of the Information and Statistics Division was changed to Travel and Information Division. Tom Taylor, division director, had the responsibility to provide travel literature to help promote tourism in Texas. In 1962 Taylor appointed Frank Lively editor of Texas Highways. During the next few years Lively added features of general interest with an emphasis on historical places and events. In 1970 he recommended that Texas produce a travel magazine and outlined plans for converting Texas Highways to a travel publication. In May 1974 Texas Highways became a magazine for the general public. In 1975 the Texas legislature adopted a resolution that proclaimed Texas Highways the official state travel publication. By early 1987 total circulation had grown to 400,000; in 1995 subscribers lived in every state and more than 100 countries. In 2006 the circulation was about 223,000. The magazine's purpose is to encourage recreational travel and to tell the Texas story to readers around the world. Texas Highways publishes articles on a wide range of subjects, including tourist attractions; historic events, individuals, and structures; ethnic groups; state and national parks; cooking and recipes; the state's major agricultural enterprises; and folklore and festivals. The magazine emphasizes historical subjects, conservation, and life in the state and has built its reputation on four-color scenic photography. The April issue usually contains sixteen pages of wildflower photographs, with a special emphasis on bluebonnets. Since 1988 one issue has been devoted to a single theme, such as fall travel, the ethnic groups of Texas, scenic drives, and national parks. After Frank Lively retired in 1990, Tommie Pinkard was appointed editor. Two years later, Jack Lowry succeeded her as editor. In 2009 the managing editor was Jill Lawless. Texas Highways is published monthly in Austin and is a member of the International Regional Magazine Association.

  • Journalism
  • Writers, Authors, Publications, and Literature
  • Publications, Journals, and Magazines

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Frank Lively and Jack Lowry, “Texas Highways,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed August 17, 2022, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/texas-highways.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

January 1, 1996