Museums Join Forces to Honor Vets
Recently the Olney Heritage Museum (OHM) pulled resources from all over to build a unique exhibit to honor the U.S. Military. One source that came to the aid of the OHM was the Museum of North Texas History (MNTH), a member of the Regional Museum Network (RMN), of which the OHM is a member.
Madeline Calcote, Executive Director of MNTH and Leanne Ray, Curator of MNTH, first met with Ronnie Walker, Publisher and acting Editor of the Olney Enterprise, and learned how the OHM was looking for a little assistance with their military display in regards to needing more military uniforms.
Calcote and Ray where happy to help other members of the RMN and visited the OHM to help set up a portion of the exhibit with the loaned military uniforms. When asked about the MNTH, Calcote said, “We were founded in 2000, so we’ve been at our location at 720 Indiana Avenue for almost 20, well for 20 years, and we tell the history of North Texas, both Wichita Falls and the surrounding areas. We met Ronnie and Mrs. Perry through the Regional Museum network, which is a group put together by the Wichita Falls Alliance for Arts and Culture, and they reached out to us about loaning some of our military collection for the celebration for the parade and Fourth of July, and so we were happy to work with them, happy to come out here and visit the museum for the first time and so we’re excited to partner with them (OHM).”
Ray added, “As a curator, I’m responsible for all of the artifacts. I also give school tours, and do general modeling, a lot of that lately during COVID. One of the great things about them (OHM) asking us for military uniforms, is our first collection was actually the Bill English military collection. And he had been collecting military items for years and came up with too little space and not another place to move to about the time that our original board got the building to start a museum with no artifacts and so the two came together beautifully. We have six rooms of military memorabilia on display. And we have many other uniforms that we don’t have room to display. And so, when they (OHM) asked us for uniforms, we were excited to get some of our other uniforms out and putting them on display for them.”
The Regional Museum Network (RMN) is made up of 15 regional Museums of Archer, Baylor, Clay, Young, Wichita, and Wilbarger Counties. According to the RMN’s website, wichitafallsarts.org/regional-museum-network, “The collaborative learning project provides opportunities for members of the network to leverage the resources available through the Wichita Falls Alliance for Arts and Culture and other local, regional and national funding agencies. Participants in the network learn from a series of workshops and site visits that range from curriculum and grant writing to joint marketing efforts. Museums are able to tap into the pool of expertise available through a roster of consultants and museum professionals facilitated by The Wichita Falls Alliance for Arts and Culture. For more information about this program, please call (940)500-4453 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Olney Heritage Museum is located at 213 East Main Street in Olney, open Monday through Friday 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Some exceptions are made for visitors on the weekend by calling 940-564-5558. The Museum of North Texas History is located at 720 Indiana Avenue in Wichita Falls. MNTH can be reached at 940-332-7628.