Museum Of The Southwest : A Source Of Pride For The Midland Community

Museum Of The Southwest : A Source Of Pride For The Midland Community Main Photo

16 Nov 2021


The Museum of the Southwest in Midland, Texas was incorporated on September 25, 1965, after the Junior League of Midland voted to establish an art and science museum, and pledged support for the institution over five years. With the League's planning and the support of the people of Midland, the Museum opened in 1966.

Before it became the home of the Museum of the Southwest, the property and its buildings were the residences of Juliette and Fred Turner. Their home was designed in the Eclectic style,  combining elements and inspiration from Tudor, Georgian, Art Deco, American Colonial, Mediterranean, and other architectural styles into a harmonious and elegant contemporary design. The museum still features many of the unique fixtures and details that made it the showplace of Midland when it was completed. It was the first home in Midland to have a swimming pool and the grounds also featured a tennis court as well as stables for the Turner’s Derby-winning horses. The property was expanded in 1970 with the addition of the Thomas Gallery and in 1987 with the addition of the Lissa Noël Wagner Wing, which added much-needed exhibition space, collection storage, preparation, and art-handling spaces. A planetarium and a children’s museum were added in later years.

In September of 1988, the Turner Mansion and Stables were recognized as national historic landmarks and were listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 

The Museum of the Southwest in MidlandMDC:  Supporting The Museum & Its Activites

When it comes to nurturing communities and encouraging growth, the Midland Development Corporation is at the forefront of economic development activities in the area. In 2021, The MDC provided $75,000 to re-pave the Museum's parking lot, which also serves Midland Downtown Farmers' Market and the Haley Planetarium. The re-paving project, completed in fall 2021, enhances the Museum's campus, supports the entire Museum district, ensures the safety and security of the Museum's guests, and enhances wayfinding. By making strategic investments in Midland's cultural amenities, the MDC is dedicated to elevating the quality of life in Midland. 

The Fredda Turner Durham Children’s Museum Is Set To Reopen By 2022

Upon re-opening, this will be the only Children’s Museum within a radius of 300 miles. The revamped 8,000 square foot facility will allow significant expansion of the Museum’s high-demand arts activities and scheduled arts education programs.

Providing An Immersive Experience To The Visitor

The Museum of the Southwest in MidlandThere are few places you can visit, especially in West Texas that are home to beautiful historic grounds, a historic home, an interactive children’s museum, and a planetarium. The Museum is host to the Saturday Farmer’s Market, and regularly offers community events, concerts, and a range of children’s activities. The museum is also a host for premier weddings as one of the only truly historic event venues in Midland.

The Museum offers a wide variety of opportunities for all ages through exhibits, educational tours, special community events, and summer & spring activities for families. Some upcoming events include art exhibits of well-known artists, rotating fine art and sculpture permanent collections featuring southwestern art, textiles, and sculptures, etc. Art technique workshops by guest artists shall coincide with exhibitions at the art museum. There are professional development and inservices for educators in art, science, and general education. Home of the Blakemore Planetarium features regular dome shows and Science on a Sphere activities and tours.

Planning a visit to the Museum? Learn more here.

The Midland Development Corporation is here to assist you, your business and your family. Connect with us here to explore the many opportunities Midland has to offer you.