The Texas Panhandle and North Texas

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The Texas Panhandle

North Texas

The Texas Panhandle

The Texas Panhandle’s culture revolves around its vast plains, rural scenes, and strong winds.

a color photograph of a bronze sculpture in Lubbock, Texas depicting humorist Will Rogers on his horse SoapsudsThis sculpture depicts humorist Will Rogers on his horse Soapsuds. It is located within the Texas Technological College Historical District in Lubbock, Texas, circa 1950s. Dean Evans collection, 2006/267-784.

Geological features such as Palo Duro Canyon State Park, Llano Estacado, and the Canadian River provide contrast to the large grazing pastures and agricultural fields. At Palo Duro Canyon State Park, the nation’s second largest canyon, visitors can hike its many trails and watch an outdoor screening of the musical TEXAS in the summer.  

Since the region borders New Mexico to the west and Oklahoma to the north and east, many travelers enter and exit Texas through the Panhandle. Countless road trippers have seen the region through Historic Route 66 and its modern equivalent Interstate 40. Along the route, travelers can expect to see windmills and newer wind turbines as part of the Route 66 Wind energy project.

The Panhandle is sparsely populated – only Lubbock and Amarillo have populations over 25,000 people. Lubbock is home to Texas Tech University and is also the birthplace of 1950s singer/songwriter Buddy Holly. Amarillo’s Polk Street provides an anchor to the city’s downtown district.

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North Texas

a color photograph of Big Tex, enormous statue at the Texas State Fair groundsBIG TEX – World’s Tallest Cowboy, circa 1958. Dean Evans collection, 2006/267-295.

North Texas combines western heritage with modern amenities.  

The arrival of the railroad in the 1870s to the area led to the creation of many cattle-related industries. The population, both human and livestock, boomed. At the Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District, visitors can experience the ‘Old West’ replete with brick streets lined with historic buildings and storefronts. Visitors can also see the Fort Worth Herd, a twice-daily cattle drive down Exchange Avenue.

Held annually in Dallas, the State Fair of Texas highlights the mantra “every thing is bigger in Texas.” At the fair, visitors can ride the Texas State Ferris Wheel, the largest in North America, or meet Big Tex who greets visitors with open arms. Even sports loom large during the fair. At the Cotton Bowl, the University of Texas and the University of Oklahoma face off in the Red River Shootout.

Ennis, south of Dallas, is designated the Official Bluebonnet City of Texas. The town boasts more than 40 miles of trails and an annual festival dedicated to the state’s flower.

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Items in this Exhibit

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Palo Duro Canyon State Scenic Park brochure, circa 1960s-1970s. Texas Panhandle Heritage Foundation collection, 2-22/991.

Greetings from GLEN ROSE, TEX. – For Health and Pleasure, 1945. Postcards of Texas from Norman Erickson, 1961/008-169.

Polk Street, South from 3rd Street, Amarillo, 1915. Postcards of Texas from Norman Erickson, 1961/008-3.

Lobby, Westbrook Hotel, Fort Worth, 1913. Postcards of Texas from Norman Erickson, 1961/008-127.

City Park Dam, Fort Worth, Texas, 1909. Postcards of Texas from Norman Erickson, 1961/008-133.

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“EXTRA! Having a good time in Muleshoe, Texas,” 1915. Postcards of Texas from Norman Erickson, 1961/008-217.

Cowboys ready to start, 1907. Postcards of Texas from Norman Erickson, 1961/008-292.

Goats and Pigs in a thousand acre alfafa filed, in North Texas, undated. Postcards of Texas from Norman Erickson, 1961/008-293.

Texas Centennial Celebration Stamps, 1936. Texas Centennial Commission, 4-16/117.

“Buffalo,” undated. R. Niles Graham collection, 1964/306-1258.

"Texas Longhorns. We are happy to be from Texas,” undated. R. Niles Graham collection, 1964/306-1273.

"I’m a little bull but I can ‘steer’ you right. Come on down to Texas and see my big brother,” undated. R. Niles Graham collection, 1964/306-1288.

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Lubbock, Texas July 4, 1902, postmarked 1909. Permian Historical Association Postcards, 1965/054-3.

“Polk Street, Amarillo, Texas: Looking North from Tenth Avenue,” circa 1950s. Texas Cities Postcard collection, 1972/011-2.

Main Street, looking east. Dallas Texas, undated. Texas Cities Postcard collection, 1972/011-14.

The Esplanade and Reflection Basin at Night, Texas Centennial Exposition, Dallas, circa 1936. Texas Cities Postcard collection, 1972/011-29.

A field of Blue Bonnets, 1936. Photographic Postcards of Texas, 1976/001-14.

Semi-monthly arrival of Homeseekers, Amarillo, Tex., 1908. James B. and Della Seay collection, 2015/056-2.

Jewelry Store of L.P. Davis, 7th Main St., Fort Worth, Texas, undated. Postcards of Texas from Norman Erickson, 1961/008-135.

Texas Official Highway Travel Map, 1958. Texas Documents collection, H 1473.7 H537 1958.

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Page last modified: May 20, 2016