Positives: eclectic collection of local artifacts; easy to find
Negative: restricted hours of operation, limited parking
If small town history interests you, the Somervell County Museum on the courthouse square in Glen Rose is for you!
This compact museum occupies a structure on the northeast corner of the square. A brief history posted outside the building reveals it's been repurposed many times across the years. It's been a movie theater, a butcher store, a residence, and more.
The first floor features three rooms filled with a wide variety of historical items, from arrowheads to vintage Edison phonographs. (Stairs leading to the second story were closed during our visit.)
My favorite exhibit was a cabinet containing a Coca-Cola bottle (circa 1953) from the Glen Rose bottling plant. As a child, I earned pocket change by returning discarded bottles for the refund money, and always enjoyed seeing the "home town" stamped on the bottom.
We also enjoyed the collection of photos and newspapers depicting ups and downs of the community...such as a surprise tornado in 1902 that followed the Paluxy River basin into town, destroying many businesses but leaving the nine-year-old courthouse intact.
At first glance, the place doesn't look like it contains much, but there is something different at seemingly every turn. You could spend as little or as long as desired. Our visit was cut short because they closed at 1:00 p.m. due to lack of volunteers.
We enjoyed looking at displays and appreciated the time invested in saving artifacts for future generations to see. No admission is charged but they do accept donations. A number of items are also available for purchase to support the effort. It's definitely worth a bit of your time to learn about the background of this small community and county. Not everything is "bigger in Texas"...which is okay. Small can be a good thing!
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