This week, we visited the Spindletop/Gladys City Boomtown Museum out by Lamar University. If you’ve never visited this museum, we highly recommend it! It was such an important place and the blowing of the Lucas Gusher (pictured) was instrumental in the foundation of the Southeast Texas economy. Learning about the history of the area we live in is both interesting and important.
The museum grounds feature a model village – much like the original town of Gladys City might have been. There is a garage and stable (which doubles as the mortuary), an ironworks, mercantile with the owner’s apartment overhead, post office, photography studio, ice cream parlor, drug store, general store, barber/dental office, saloon, land office and more to come if the construction of a new building is any indication.
It was really fun walking through and seeing products in the display cases – soaps, washing detergent, clothing, pottery – everything that a family or farmer might need. It was also odd to see how things have changed – how much progress we’ve made over the years.
If you’re looking for lesson plans that revolve around the Spindletop/Gladys City/Lucas Gusher, here are some things that might help:
- Patillo Higgins: http://library.thinkquest.org/J0112442/higgins.html
- Petroleum Lesson Plan: http://www.msnucleus.org/membership/html/jh/earth/petroleum/jhpetroleum.pdf
- http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Texas-History-Oil-Boom ($10.00)