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Larry McMurtry Literary Landmark

Archer Public Library

Archer City, Texas

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A new national Literary Landmark honoring Texas author Larry McMurtry was unveiled in a special dedication ceremony made possible by the Archer Public Library in Archer City on Friday, November 18, 2022.

The culmination of an evening of special events included a panel discussion with award-winning historian and author Stephen Harrigan and acclaimed author and nonfiction writer Beverly Lowry. There was also a screening of episodes from the Lonesome Dove television miniseries. The landmark plaque was unveiled at the Royal Theater during the event.

"Larry McMurtry was one of Texas' greatest authors, and I was thrilled when I found out he would be recognized with a Literary Landmark in his honor,” said Gretchen Abernathy-Kuck, Director of Archer Public Library. “His witty and honest depiction of life in our great state is a gift to all Texans and anyone who loves stories of life in the west."

McMurtry was a Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist, essayist, screenwriter, and antiquarian bookseller from Archer City. He authored over 50 written works, examining American life from the 19th century frontier to contemporary small-town Texas and capturing the essence of place and time with craft, wit, and unforgettable characters. Many of his works, such as The Last Picture Show and Lonesome Dove, were adapted for motion picture and television, earning him multiple film awards alongside his numerous literary honors. After the event, the McMurtry landmark will be installed at the Archer Public Library.

Literary Landmarks are special places located across the country that attract tourists, book lovers, and history buffs to educate the public about important literary works and history. In 2020, there were only five Literary Landmark sites designated in our great and vast state. The Texas Center for the Book launched a campaign to double the number of landmarks in Texas. The Center sought nominations from libraries, historical associations, Chambers of Commerce, educational institutions, museums, and literary societies, among others.

The five new Texas sites were approved by United for Libraries, the national organization that administers the program, and all are made possible by funding from the Summerlee Foundation of Dallas, covering application fees, foundry-made Literary Landmark plaques, and programming led by local institutions to create awareness of the sites’ importance to the state’s literary heritage. Read about all of the new Literary Landmarks at www.tsl.texas.gov/literarylandmark.

Page last modified: November 20, 2023