May 11, 2011

Hometown Flavor - A Field Trip Into the Past

While Lubbock boasts several attractions that herald its farming and ranching traditions-one that stands out as a must see is the National Ranching Heritage Center museum and historical park. The NHRC hosts thirty eight structures that have been relocated from some of the West’s most well known ranches onto the NHRC land. The structures reveal the evolution of ranch life from the late 1700’s through the early 1900’s. Each building is a testament to its unique geographical area of origin and to the creative practical use of raw materials that were used in the day of their build.

Along the path of the self paced tour you will see a clear evolution of time and history as the tour begins with the crudest of minimalistic shelters progressing to a more refined if not luxurious home. Each building is authentically restored with each painstakingly numbered piece reassembled at the NHRC Park where great effort is made to keep furnishings and artifacts as authentic as possible (one of my very favorite aspects of the whole experience.) I find that I am more interested in the furnishings, tools and artifacts than I am the structures – what fun it is to imagine weaving by the light of a burning fire and oil lamps or cooking over an open fire while the weather howls just outside the door. Over the years I have been several times to this wonderful museum of time gone by and now my daughter and I go annually – what a fabulous resource to teach generations about the life and hardships of those that came before us.

Hedwig's Hill Dogtrot House
A dogtrot house consists of two log cabins under one roof with a breezeway in the middle. The breezeway provided a cooler covered are for sitting and perhaps even more importantly- pulled cooler air into the living quarters.

"What fun it is to imagine weaving by the light of a burning fire and oil lamps."

Jowell House
Built in defense of Indian attack - this two story rock house was built with rifle slits placed on an angle to keep arrows from entering,inside a trap door leads with to the top floor so the family could climb up pulling the ladder with them to help keep them safe.

Jowell family cemetery

 Waggoner Ranch Commissary 

Dry goods inside the commissary

Furnishings and artifacts are kept as authentic as possible.

A baby's bed

 "Singer" sewing machine - I wonder how many clothes and quilts were sewn with this machine - isn't it beautiful?

A warm and functional kitchen