If there’s one thing Texans love it’s museums. There are hundreds of museums in the Lone Star State dedicated to everything from craters to art cars. And sometimes the best museums are the ones you never thought you’d ever set foot in. Here are seven of the most unique and quirky museums in Texas.
7. Frontier Times Museum
The Frontier Times Museum in Bandera has been open since 1933. That’s over 80 years of curating a hodgepodge of all the weird and wonderful items Texas has to offer. A two-headed goat, relics from the Old West — it’s all here.
6. Odessa Meteor Crater Museum
The Odessa Meteor Crater (located southwest of Odessa) is a meteor crater formed by a meteorite that fell in prehistoric times. Though the crater has largely been filled with West Texas dirt in the 60,000 plus years since the impact, the site is still worth a stop. The nearby museum even sells small fragments of the meteorite. Who could ask for a better memento?
5. Devil’s Rope Museum
If you think a museum all about barbwire sounds boring, you’ve never been to the Devil’s Rope Museum in McLean, Texas. The Panhandle museum explores the historic impact of barbwire on the west and displays an impressive variety of all the different types of barbwire and fencing tools. Come in as a novice and leave as a barbwire expert.
4. Texas Prison Museum
The Texas Prison Museum in Huntsville displays exhibits detailing the history of the Texas prison system, the lives of past inmates and the operations behind the walls. See artifacts from Texas’ most infamous inmates, from Clyde Barrow to the stars of the Texas Prison Rodeo. You can even explore a replica jail cell while you’re there.
3. National Museum of Funeral History
The National Museum of Funeral History in Houston would definitely win the award for Texas’ most morbid museum. But it’s also very educational. The museum holds the country’s largest collection of historic funeral service items. See antique caskets, casket carriages and learn about everything from presidential funerals to the history of embalming.
2. Art Car Museum
Sometimes a car is more than a car. It’s an expression of the driver. The Art Car Museum in Houston displays cars that have been transformed from vehicles to something else entirely. The cars on display are adorned with paint, jewels, sculptures–anything that makes them truly one-of-a-kind.
1. Toilet Seat Art Museum
Barney Smith has been making art from toilet seats for over 30 years now. And his unusual art form has become one of San Antonio’s most beloved attractions. The 95-year-old Smith has over 1,000 toilet seats on display at his Toilet Seat Art Museum. So what kind of art can you make from a toilet seat? There’s no limit if you’re Barney Smith. The museum features toilet seats adorned with one millions dollars of shredded cash, Star Wars figurines, PEZ dispensers and even a toilet seat that includes an actual piece of insulation from the Challenger space shuttle. Perhaps the best part of the museum is just visiting with Barney Smith, who has no shortage of stories to share as he shows you his artwork.