Texas Historical and Literary Blogs

Texas Historical and Literary Blogs


An Annotated, Categorized Blogliography for 2008


The Illustrated Version is available by email attachment


A monographic issue of Will's Texana Monthly, volume 3, August 2008

A mono-thematic issue on Texas blogs - Compiled by Will Howard





Will's  History, Literature, and Reference Blogs

Architectural Preservation & Appreciation

Book Agents, Editors, Publicists, Consultants, and Their Ilk

Book Reading Clubs & Book Companions

Book Reviews & News

Classroom Experiments

Commercial Expressions

Culturally Convergent with Historical or Literary Interests

Historical Interests & Projects

Historical Museums

Historical Organizations

History via Newspapers

Literate Writers

Literate Naturalists

Literary Organizations

Oozing Toward Politics

Blog Cousins, The Fort Worth Museum Anomalies

Favorites, Bookmarks, and Subscriptions to Feeds

Starting a Blog



Will's Texana

Houston, Texas










Below, please find 100 blogs "about" Texas history or literature in 17 categories.


What is a BLOG?  A blog is an internet site with one distinguishing trait, besides being fresh, interactive, and available by subscription (usually free).  Its structure is usually vertical, meaning, whatever you add is stacked on top of what you last added, pancake-wise.  A blog is also called an electronic diary or journal or a log – a web log.   Additions (new files, called postings) to a blog are usually regarding something fresh, sort of like news.  Blogs usually don't allow the opportunity to add new postings between the old postings.  Readers can leave public "Comments" to the postings. 


CHANGE.  In some cases, blogs have replaced the older "forum," "bulletin board," and "listserv" formats.  Usually one person does most of the postings, but several individuals can be authorized to post directly, without prior editorial mediation. Newsletters may be replaced in some cases, as the articles can be posted individually as each is ready or most timely.  In other cases a newsletter is e-mailed as usual, except there is no "content," only url links to blog postings.  In a separate hybrid case, it seems that an organization can open a small, free website (a façade) and populate that website with url links to blog postings stored on that separate blog site.  And in that case the website is VERY easy to change because postings are dramatically easy to change while the linked url can remain the same.


ITEMS in the list.  Blog search engines were used, e.g., blogsearch, technorati, blogcatalog, webcrawler, Syndic8, and bloglines.   A dozen RSS formula feeds were monitored for about two months.  Libraries were queried via email reference questions.  Lastly, the Archives and Local History Roundtable of the Texas Library Association was queried.  A few blogs were added by each method.   The primary criterion was Texas content, although in the literary selections, I wavered and occasionally fudged.  And finally, I broke down and added a few civil political blogs.  Certainly, gaping holes are apparent to knowledgeable readers; kindly inform me of such, please.


FUTURE use.  Blogs may offer, beyond freshness, some serious use for searchers of historical and literary information.  The value seems to rest in a blog's (1) clear definition of purpose and (2) useful or attractive information, whether narrative, graphic, or connective to other websites, and (3) adequately frequent to keep a regular clientele.  Long posts are less frequently read, except by the committed.  Attention to graphics grows.  Audio and video may soon follow, but those may require more time and effort on the blogger's part. 


Rebecca Blood's 2000 history of the blog concludes "We are being pummeled by a deluge of data and unless we create time and spaces in which to reflect, we will be left with only our reactions.  I strongly believe in the power of weblogs to transform both writers and readers from 'audience' to 'public' and from 'consumer' to 'creator.'  Weblogs are no panacea for the crippling effects of a media-saturated culture, but I believe they are one antidote." 1 


Blogs move you from passive to active. 


Will Howard, August 2008:   willstexana { a t } yahoo.com


And special thanks to Stephanie Barko, Norman Alston, Cowtown Pattie, and the reference library staffers in San Antonio (anonymous), Dallas (Steve Gaither), and El Paso (Priscilla Pineda), for their guidance by turning up obscure but good sites and turning me away from lesser sites.


[1] Rebecca Blood. "Weblogs: A History and Perspective", Rebecca's Pocket. 07 September 2000. 25 October 2006. <http://www.rebeccablood.net/essays/weblog_history.html>. 



*               *                *




Will's History, Literature, and

Reference Bibliography




Texas Bookshelf


Texana book reviews, author interviews.  The Bookshelf originated from reviews in Will's Texana Monthly reviews, but is now considerably supplemented beyond the WTM.  By Will Howard in Houston.



Texas Parlor


Texana historical, literary, and contemporary bibliographical notes & observations, broad ranging in interest, most not duplicated in the WTM.  All sorts of stuff, much useful to the general public, librarians, archivists, museum staffers, historians and writers, is filed in the Parlor.  By Will Howard, his first one.



Young Texas Reader


Texana for the youngest readers through teenage - books, media, websites, news, originally based on Will's Texana Monthly reviews, news, and notes, but now considerably supplemented beyond the WTM.  For the professional and the public. By Will Howard




Architectural Preservation

& Appreciation



Norman Alston Architects http://alstonarchitects.typepad.com/norman_alston_architects/

"Architecture / Planning / Historic Preservation / Cultural Resource Management."  Alston's a decades-experienced architectural preservationist in Dallas with knowledge beyond the Trinity.  His postings are dependable and tasteful.


The Bunny Bungalow http://www.thebunnybungalow.com/ 

"A Life Less Ordinary in a Tiny Texas Bungalow."  About Me begins: "I love houses and every element that makes each place into a home: family, friends, food, music, art, books, design, flowers, housekeeping, the neighborhood and the stories behind all of it. I have lived in Germany during the American Occupation and after…."  A very nice citizen's gesture toward the care and appreciation of her home and its surrounding historic Houston Heights neighborhood.  Rather comfortable, warm and pleasant.  The house's decorative touches are attractive.  By Annie Sitton.



Fort Worthology  http://fortworthology.com/

"Promoting development and urban living in Fort Worth"  Primarily a development concern but with some preservation aspects.



Historic Bridge Foundation

 http://historicbridgefoundation.com/  "The Historical Bridge Foundation was organized in 1998 to advocate for the preservation of our cultural and engineering landmarks - monuments to the people and communities that built them." With an unexpected Texas strength, in categorized format. 


San Antonio Daily Photo http://sanantoniodailyphoto.blogspot.com/ 

"...a photo a day (or so) from deep in the heart of Texas."  Not strictly preservationist, more appreciation. Many or most have interesting architectural settings, often old stuff.  By Dietrich and Shorty.


Saving the Past for Tomorrow http://galvestonhistory.blogspot.com/ 

"Saving the Past for Tomorrow" …"Showcasing the rich architectural history of Galveston, Texas"  About Me: "The Galveston Historical Foundation's Preservation Resource Center Committee helps manage a library of information about Galveston's historic architecture and neighborhoods."


Villa Finale http://villafinale.wordpress.com/ 

Authors, Sandra Smith,  Sylvia Hohenshelt,  Christopher Roddy, and Meg Nowack. The Villa is a National Historic Trust site in San Antonio. 




The Preservation Blog


It "serves as a collection of "mini-blogs" that present articles and news items in a wide variety of topics under the umbrella of historic and cultural resource preservation.  Our aim is to build a public repository of articles/notices/releases on a wide variety of topics of value to the preservation community, including restoration techniques, the historic nomination process, museum exhibitions and news, preservation legislation, historic travel and heritage trip ideas, and endangered or threatened historic sites and homes."  By Preservation.com  - occasionally, some Texas matter is treated.


Preservation Nation http://blogs.nationaltrust.org/preservationnation/

"Historic preservation new, networking, and know-how."  Searching for "Texas" brought only three hits.  By the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  Other National Trust for Historic Preservation Blogs include Preservation in the News  Show Me the Money: Federal Grant Opportunities  and  Time Tells




Book Agents, Editors,

Publicists, Consultants, etc.



Not all, maybe most, below do not necessarily traffic in Texana, but they are a part of the general fabric of literary Texas.


Authors' Assistant   http://theauthorsassistant.blogspot.com/  

Stephanie Barko's Literary Publicist blog – "Stephanie Barko and Mindy Reed in Austin- Stephanie is a Literary Publicist specializing in nonfiction and historical fiction. A native Texan, Stephanie particularly enjoys marketing Texana and working with Western authors. Her clients include authors under contract with traditional publishers, emerging authors, independently published writers, and small presses. Mindy Reed founded The Authors' Assistant in 1995. She provides editing, ghostwriting, research, and indexing to authors and publishers. Mindy is also a librarian and an English instructor."


Cynsations   http://cynthialeitichsmith.blogspot.com/ 

"interviews, reading recommendations, publishing information, literacy advocacy, writer resources, news in children's and young adult literature" By Cynthia Leitich Smith, author of fiction for young readers; faculty member at the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA program in Writing for Children and Young Adults. YA author and critic based in Austin.



Phenix & Phenix Literary Publicists   http://phenixpublicity.blogspot.com/

"Phenix & Phenix Literary Publicists is a full-service literary publicity firm that specializes in serving the unique publicity needs of authors and major publishing houses. Founded in 1994, P&P has publicized nearly 30 bestsellers and has implemented successful publicity campaigns for books across every major genre." For more detailed information, please visit http://www.phenixpublicity.com .


Straight from Hel http://www.straightfromhel.blogspot.com/  

"Ideas may be heaven-sent, but these words come straight from Hel," Helen that is.  Primarily for the writer, often with Texas connected entries. Helen Ginger, about herself:  "I'm a freelance editor, book consultant, and writer. I teach public speaking as well as writing and marketing workshops. In addition, my free ezine, Doing It Write!, which goes out to subscribers around the globe, is now in its ninth year of publication. I'm also an Owner/Partner and the Women's Marketing Director for Legends In Our Own Minds®. And years ago, I was a mermaid, complete with shimmery tail."


Sylvia Dickey Smith http://sylviadickeysmith.blogspot.com/ 

Primarily for writers, with some Texas flavor. "STORYCATCHER: I believe stories connect us to our past and inspire us for the future. That stories reflect life's lessons and connect us one to the other. They humanize us, reflect our joys, our passions, our sadness, our spiritual path. Stories create a civilization and hold it together. They provide full-spectrum color in an otherwise black and white world."




Book Reading Clubs

& Book Companions


The Pulpwood Queens are a delight you must enjoy.  The other blogs evidence a wavelet in professional book public relations, alternative publishing, or companionable message dissemination.




Pulpwood Queen Book Club Blog  http://www.pulpwoodqueen.com/ 

Not usually Texana, but, hey, "where tiaras are mandatory and reading good books is the RULE!"  Just ask Kathy Patrick.  If they're doing it in Jefferson, well, they're probably doing it in Atlanta, Ore City, Marshall, and a lotsa other places too.  We defer to the Queens, they've gone interstate.


Courage in Patience http://courageinpatience.blogspot.com/ 

"a story of hope for those who have endured abuse" with characters via a composite of the author's students in Mesquite.  By Author Beth Fehlbaum


Social Media Newsroom  http://joeoconnell.socialmediapower.com/ 

"for Evacuation Plan: a novel from the hospice"  By Joe O'Connell.


Texas Strangers http://texasstrangers.blogspot.com/

"News, information and sneak peeks about the comic book series TEXAS STRANGERS, published by Image Comics."  Apparently in abeyance since April, 2008


Texas Pulp Writer http://texaspulpwriter.blogspot.com/

"Texas Pulp Writer is the online home of the fiction of Scott D. Parker."  About me: "I am a technical writer living in Houston, TX. This blog has evolved into my research into crime fiction and where my writings will fit within the broad pantheon of crime fiction. My professional goal is to be a published author and storyteller, writing my own books for a living. Also, I would like to help put Houston on the crime fiction/noir fiction map."  Scott's writing a novel Justice in H-Town.


Texas Tough http://texastough.com/   

"Texas Touch: The Rise of a Prison Empire," a forthcoming book by Robert Perkinson


Tom's Fiddle http://tompsfiddle.blogspot.com/ 

"A True Texas Tale / The blog companion to the narrative nonfiction book about actual events. Unearthed from official archives, prison records, and newspapers throughout the Southwest comes this true, frontier tale of a reluctant desperado from Hill County, Texas in the late 19th century."


Worst Hard Times Book Talk http://worsthardtimes.blogspot.com/ 

"Egan, Timothy. The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co, 2006."  Postings spur off the recent book, includes Texana.  April is the blogger, who quotes ""Never doubt that you can change history. You already have." - Marge Piercy.



Book Reviews and News



Lone Star Blog  http://lonestarbooks.blogspot.com/

His bio begins: "Mike Cox writes books, reads books, reviews books and sells books.  He is the author of 13 non-fiction books including a study of Texas disasters, three books on the Texas Rangers, one collection historical stories, one true crime story, a biography, a memoir and three local histories, as well as numerous magazine articles, essays and introductions for other books. He has been an elected member of the Texas Institute of Letters since 1993."


Texas Bookshelf http://texasbookshelf.blogspot.com/  

Texana book reviews, author interviews.  The Bookshelf originated from reviews in Will's Texana Monthly reviews, but is now considerably supplemented beyond the WTM.  By Will Howard in Houston.



Texas Parlor  http://texasparlor.blogspot.com/   

Texana historical, literary, bibliographical notes & observations, broad ranging in interest, most not duplicated in the WTM.   All sorts of stuff, much useful to the general public, librarians, museum staffers, archivists, historians and writers is filed in the Parlor.  By Will Howard



Texas Pages Blog http://booksblog.guidelive.com/ 

"News about Texas writers, events, book reviews and more."  By Mike Merschel at Dallas Morning News – More general, cosmopolitan book news than just Texana, but frequently attests to the Dallas literati scene and beyond.  Altogether, the Pages is a nice, civil place to visit for rest, recuperation, good banter, and connection.  



Western Americana http://westernamericana.blogspot.com/

"History of the American West: History of the American West, which includes the fur trade, mining, missionary, ranching, cattle, Indians, transportation and farming frontiers."  Book reviews, occasional Texana. By Sue Schrems. "About Me:  I am an historian who writes about the American West. I am also an adjunct professor of history at Rose State College in Oklahoma City" in Norman.


  Western Fiction Review http://westernfictionreview.blogspot.com/ 

The WFR has included several Texana titles lately.  Self description: "For years and years I've been a reader - and collector - of western fiction. Sometime ago I was persuaded to write some brief thoughts about the books I'd read, which has lead to the creation of this blog, so these reviews can have a wider audience."  This is a United Kingdom perspective.


Young Texas Reader  http://youngtexasreader.blogspot.com/   

Texana for the youngest readers through teenage - books, media, websites, news, originally based on Will's Texana Monthly reviews, news, and notes, but now considerably supplemented beyond the WTM.  The YTR is for parents, the public, and the professional teacher, librarian, caretaker, and writer.   By Will Howard, author of Arthur's Austin ABC.




Classrooms Experiments



History Fair http://historyfair.blog.com/  Fort Worth ISD offers an interesting option


Miss Turbo's Texas History Class http://www.texashistory.blogspot.com/ in Groesbeck


Mr. Taylor's Texas History http://taylorstexashistory.blogspot.com/  in Lewisville  


Ms. Fleming / Texas History http://murchison.typepad.com/fleming/  in Austin


Mrs. Pierce's Texas History http://piercetexashistory.blogspot.com/  in Vernon


Texas History, The Rice School. http://txhistory.blogspot.com/  in Houston


History Blog http://weblogs.lib.uh.edu/history/

University of Houston, general history, some Texas


U.S. History with Dr. O http://hcchistory.blogspot.com/ 

Dr. Jaime Olivares, with a Texas history class included, Houston Community College


Javelina Journalism http://javelinajournalism.blogspot.com/

Dr. Manuel Flores, for his journalism students at TAMU-Kingsville and the South Texan student staffers




Commercial Expressions



Consortium Book Blog http://bookblog.typepad.com/texas_am_university_press/

Texas A & M University Press Distribution Consortium Blog, publisher notes on some of their issues


Cowtown.Com http://www.cowtown.com/

This blog was established last May.  Each weekly posting is a "Western Fiction Best Sellers" list of 10 titles.  So far, Texas was obvious in each list.  Position and movement are noted.  It's automated, with some awkwardness, as it includes All Quiet on the Western Front.  Possibly an Amazon production.





Culturally Convergent


Historical or Literary Aspects




 Big Apple http://www.barrypopik.com/ 

Barry Popik's observations on New York, Texas, and lesser ilk.  About Barry: "a contributor-consultant to the Oxford English Dictionary, Dictionary of American Regional English, Historical Dictionary of American Slang, and the Yale Dictionary of Quotations. Since 1990 he has also been a regular contributor to Gerald Cohen's Comments on Etymology. He is recognized as an expert on the origins of the terms Big Apple, Windy City, hot dog, and many other food terms, and he is an editor of the Oxford Companion to American Food and Drink. He posts commentary on Americanisms to the American Dialect Society email list, ADS-L, where he has over 7,000 archived posts since 1996. Barry lives in Texas, where he is a lawyer and writer."  In late 2006, he moved to Austin and, within the Big Apple, started his large "Lone Star State Dictionary" of words, phrases, slogans, nicknames, quotations, food terms, and more. His website provides relevant links and historical origins for each term.  He's a Texas culinary historian as well, but that's a different table.


Just east of eden http://justeastofeden.blogharbor.com/blog 

Syndic8 describes it as "Stories of interest about Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma and an occasional rambling about geology, history, travel and local culture."  A native Louisianan, now living in Oklahoma, with an eye on East Texas from time to time. See also http://www.ericwilder.com/



San Antonio Ghost Stories  http://blogs.mysanantonio.com/weblogs/ghoststories/

"Stories about things going bump in the night have been told around millions of Texas campfires, slumber parties, and printed collections for hundreds of years. No one needs to believe these stories to enjoy them or to pass them on, and none of these stories have ever harmed anyone."  By "Rhett Rushing is a native Texan, a proud Aggie, and a professional Folklorist.  Rhett taught Folklore at Indiana University and Texas State University before joining the Institute of Texan Cultures. He has been a member of the Texas Folklore Society for 25 years and was President of the Texas Folklore Society in 2005."  With an audio option.


S.P.P.D.F.T. http://texasflagsociety.blogspot.com/ 

Society for the Preservation and Proper Display of the Flag of Texas.  We hesitate to say more and to be found flying errant, except, tell us more.




Texana Review - Podcasts http://texanareview.typepad.com/posts/


"...of, for and about the Lone Star State" by Ed Blackburn, is excellent and dependable, now being produced out of San Angelo.  The Review is a delightful combination of history, literature, and occasionally touts  the benefits of wind energy and West Texas in genera,  without losing his eye for a few good things to say about East Texas.  It's got a good character and a friendly personality to boot!  Good sound, good selections, good text.



Texas Bob http://www.texasbob.com/blog/

About Bob:  "I'm 5th generation Texan and Webmaster of TexasBob.com. I've been around the world but Texas is the place for me. I love Texas History because it is close enough to touch and sometimes even smell."  Bob, gently raises cane in Katy, and is interested in high school stadiums. (Katy does have good football.)  He says that maybe he should rename his blog ""The Texas Trinity: Windmills, Bluebonnets, and Barbed Wire."  Bob also rides as Webmaster on the Salt Grass Trail http://www.saltgrasstrailwagon.com/ and other such congregations.


Texas Highways Magazine Blog http://blog.texashighways.com/ 

Bloggers include staffers Charles Lohrmann, Jill Lawless, Lori Moffatt, Jane Wu, Kirsti Harms, Marty Lange, Nola McKey and Lois M. Rodriguez.   The usual congenial TH fare focused on travel ways and occasionally sauntering more toward history than literature.



Texas Road Trip Destination Guide http://trtdg.com/  

"Texas places worth the drive."  The About statement begins: "Sometimes I write about travel and eclectic destinations in Texas. This site is a collection of interesting destinations. What makes a destination interesting? For starters it might have a little history. Attractions that stand the test of time tend to be interesting on multiple levels. They become part of the history and culture of a place, and so they are also engaging on multiple levels. Old isn't the single criteria for interesting though. …"  by Sam Fenstermacher.




Historical Interests & Projects



Antiquity Texas http://antiquitytexas.wordpress.com/ 

About Me: "Los Texanos is pleased to welcome you to Antiquity Texas, an 1800's role playing sim in the Antiquty Community of Victorian Sims and ruled under the gracious hand  of the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Antiquity.  Feel free to explore these new lands.  In Antiquity Texas you will find relaxing parks to sit and relax, historical information on texas in the Alamo building and shopping in the Grand Texas Capital Building. If you have any problems, please feel free to IM Jacon Cortes or Pixapao Xeno and we will get back to you as soon as possible. Please take time to visit the rest of Antiquity, explore its parks and the various activities set up throughout the community. Again, welcome to Texas Antiquity and enjoy your visit."  Sincerely, Pixapao Xeno, President of Texas, Tocho Cortes, General of the Texas Army, Jacon Cortes, Texas Attorney General"

Abilene and Taylor County, Texas History Podcasts: 


The January 11, 2007 entry begins "What this is all about … I have been thinking about this small web site, the blog, the podcast, why anyone would care.  Most importantly, why would I want to spend anytime at all working on something like this when I have so many other things going on in my life? It has been very cold here in Abilene for a few weeks now.  In Texas time that is equivalent to a year and a half of cold.  It's just not something we're used to around here.  As we move from one cold day to another, I am struck by how difficult the winter of 1878 must have been for those early settlers that attempted to start the town of Eagle Colony, how distressing it must have been to live in the cold of that winter, to watch some of the children die, and to continue on despite the hardships."  The entry continues, but go there and finish it yourself, read the sentiment supporting the otherwise audible podcasts, http://abilenetexashistory.com/2007/01/11/what-this-is-all-about/#more-10


Alamo Sentry: Victor or Death http://www.alamosentry.com/

By Wade Dillon, Victoria Reynolds, Dale in Austin, Jeffrey Dane, and Sarah the Virginian.  "About The Sentry:  Alamo Sentry was created back in 2003 and is dedicated to the popular culture of the Alamo, as well as its history. The purpose of this website and message board community is for all of those with a passion or interest in the subject to gather and discuss the many films, legends, facts, and controversies that revolve around the Shrine of Texas Independence. This is a place where all voices and opinions may be heard. And most importantly, for us all to "Remember the Alamo!"


Blog for Ellis County History http://blogforelliscountytexashistory.blogspot.com/ 

About himself: "My name is Barry Bailey.  I've been living in Ellis County pretty much since 1974. I grew up in Ovilla, Texas.  My Dad, Ralph Wayne Bailey, was Mayor of Ovilla for a short time. I went to Red Oak High School.  I did go off and on to college at ESTU and Mountain View.  I'm the manager of Action Pawn in Ennis, Texas.  My hope is to get interaction between people with knowledge of Ellis County, Texas so I can get unknown information. I hope I can also surprise people on the rich history of Ellis County.  I just really love old stories and history in general.  So I figured why travel far away to experience history when there is history right in my own county that is rich and intriguing."



Glenn's Texas History Blog http://www.rimrockpress.com/blog/

"Here you will find postings of Texas history topics as well as book reviews and Mexican border news.  I am Glenn Justice, managing editor of Rimrock Press.  I research, write, and publish books and articles on Texas history.  Although my focus is Big Bend and Mexican history, I offer this open forum as an open effort to discuss Texas history in general outside the usual trappings and agendas of the academic world.  I invite you to post your Texas history and research questions and look forward to online discussions."


Goins Family Musings http://cyndiesmusings.blogspot.com/

"Historical information and stories pertaining to Goins, Goyens, and Goings family."  An excellent family history blog with particular attention to William Goyens of Nacogdoches and his subsequently Redbone family, now spread out across the land. By Cyndie Goins Hoelscher and Evelyn Goins.


Historia de Texas http://historiadetexas.blogspot.com/

"Esta es una bitácora dedicada a la Historia de Texas.  Sus comentarios son bienvenidos."  Apparently dormant for the last year, but Rafael Serrano is still contactable expresses interest in continuing his work.


Houston Radio History


"A History of broadcasting in Houston and the surrounding area from before World War I, taken from newspaper accounts, official documents and interviews." By Bruce Williamson.  Statement of Purpose begins: "Discussions of the origins of radio in Texas usually recite developments and achievements in Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin and San Antonio while developments in the early years in Houston are often overlooked" and continues on.


Houston Voices  http://houstonhistory.com/blog1/ 

By anonymous.  Short historical glances, usually with a photograph.


Houstorian http://houstorian.wordpress.com/

"Houstorian is a collection of interesting tidbits about the history of Houston-related places, people, and events."


Lost Houston http://losthouston.wordpress.com/ 

"Lost Houston is a collection of photos of Houston-related buildings, businesses, and other places/things that have contributed to the city's uniqueness. Sadly, those tagged as "Lost" are no longer with us. But those tagged as "Endangered" might still be saved."


Mexia Blackcats 1959 http://mexiablackcats1959.blogspot.com/ 

"The UNofficial Blog of the Mexia (Texas) High School Graduating Class of 1959" - By Bill Crider, aka Sheriff Dan Rhodes.. Historical notes, Mexia High School class of 1959 and other years when the Cats were loose in the neighborhoods, then and now.



Red River Historian's Weblog  http://redriverhistorian.wordpress.com/

"Explorations in Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana"  The Red River Historian says," I love history - especially that which involves the Red River Valley between Texas and Oklahoma (loosely defined, of course). To that end, I teach history at a college, have my own site devoted to Red River history, and take WAY too many road trips. I love to photograph ghost towns and decrepit old buildings. I also like to ride my bike, day dream, read, live a simple life, and learn all I can about the Southern Plains Indians (especially the Kiowas).  /  My goal in life is to be creatively self-employed. And to move to a house that has a front porch."


Texas Cavalry Brigade http://www.geocities.com/sixtxcavrgtcsa/blog.html

"My site will discuss my findings of the Whitfield - Ross Texas Cavalry Brigade and address reader needs as to family."

Texas Guinan http://texasguinan.blogspot.com/ 

Dedicated to the Texan actress, "Born on 12 January 1884 in Waco, Mary Louise Cecilia "Texas" Guinan played a gun-slinger and rode bareback in silent films, took New York by storm in 1906, and earned a salary of $700,000 as a speakeasy hostess. Here are highlights from a life led at full speed until 5 November 1933. Meet TEXAS GUINAN!"  The blogger is a native New Yorker, imagine that.


Texas History & Genealogy Blog  http://texashistoryblog.blogspot.com/  

"Texas history, genealogy, photographs, articles, news and other features."  Teri is the blogger.


Texas History Page http://texas-history-page.blogspot.com/  "The Texas History Page is for people around the world who love Texas and Texas history."  By  K.K. Searle and Tom Green, two guys who know and do.






Historical Museums,

Libraries, & Archives




Blog Cabin Village http://logcabinvillage.blogspot.com/

"About Us... Log Cabin Village is a living history museum in Fort Worth, TX, devoted to the preservation of Texas heritage. Each of the 1800s structures, furnished with authentic artifacts, provides a vivid look at life in the nineteenth century frontier. The exhibits include a water-powered gristmill, a one-room schoolhouse, a blacksmith shop, an herb garden, and several log home settings. Historical interpreters depict the lifestyle of Texans in the mid to late 1800s."



Border Heritage Center http://bhcenter.blogspot.com/

A part of the El Paso Public Library, a tentative beginning.  To be encouraged, could lead other public libraries.  Contact Priscilla Pineda.  WH recommends the occasional posting of new acquisitions, images, and preservation efforts.



DRT Library Weblog http://drtlibrary.wordpress.com/ 

A new blog comes with experimental first steps from the Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library at the Alamo.  This also could prove interesting, could lead other special libraries.  WH recommends some pictorial work from older works, preservation efforts, and the continuation of posting of new acquisitions.


Dr Pepper Museum http://www.myspace.com/drpeppermuseum

 (select "View all blog entries")  Will's Texana doesn't really understand Myspacers,  but I guess they're enjoying themselves, in a pep-like fashion.



Museum of North Texas History and Wichita County Archives http://northtexashistory.texomacountry.com/  

Museum:  "Mission Statement: "To Collect, Preserve, exhibit and interpret the history of the North Texas area Wichita County. To inspire an interest in the past for the education and enrichment of people of all ages."  Vision Statement  "To provide a fun and entertaining experience in history for children and adults." (periodic podcasts) 




North Texas History Center (McKinney) http://northtexashistorycenter.blogspot.com/ 

"Mission Statement:  The North Texas History Center discovers, preserves, and shares our North Texas heritage with present and future generations through its museums and programs.  Vision Statement:  To be the leading historical resource in North Texas."  Kate and Sarah manage the blog.






Historical Organizations



5th Texas Cavalry Partisan Rangers  http://5thtexascavalrypartisanrangers.blogspot.com/

By Brent Harty.  This is a crew out of Southern Ohio.  Best value is the re-enactment photography.


Brownsville Culture http://brownsvilleculture.blogspot.com/   

"This blog is about the cultural arts programs of the Brownsville Historical Association. The BHA manages the Brownsville Heritage Complex, which consists of:  the Stillman House Museum, Brownsville Heritage Museum, Aiken Education Center, and Heritage Resource Center. Additionally, the BHA manages the Old City Cemetery Center."  A brand new blog by the Brownsville Historical Association, hosted by Eric and Gonzalo.


Dallas History Forum Blog: http://www.dallashistory.blogspot.com/ 

by Dallas Historical Society  "MISSION STATEMENT: The purpose of the Dallas Historical Society is to institute and encourage historical inquiry; to collect, preserve, and exhibit the material of history; and to spread historical information, especially concerning the city and county of Dallas and North Texas." "If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten." Rudyard Kipling



Medicine Mound Blog   http://www.medicinemound.com/blog.htm

"Preserving Rural Texas History through Education."  By the Downtown Medicine Mound Preservation Group


Mrs. Baird's Home http://mrsbairdshome.blogspot.com/  

"Documenting the home of Mrs. Ninia Lilla (Ninnie) Baird (of Mrs. Baird's Bread) and her family from 1910 to 1918"  The Purpose statement begins: "These pages will be used to collect and document information about the home of Mrs. Ninnie Baird and her family from 1910 until 1918. The documentation may be verbal, official documents, or photographs of the home. Because the Baird family rented and lived in the home between 1910, two years after Mrs. Baird's Bread was founded and 1918, when her first large bread factory opened on Sixth and Terrell, facts about the home are tough to locate. No tax or property records are to be found because the Bairds rented the home.  /  For the people that know Ninnie Baird lived in the little house at the corner of Cactus and Washington, it seems the fact should be common knowledge - that "everyone just knows," and it continues on.



Permian Historical Society http://permianhistoricalsociety.org/ 

Mission statement begins "Permian Historical Society is devoted to preserving the history of the Permian Basin of West Texas and Eastern New Mexico from the prehistoric to the modern. The organization is interested in the histories of ranching, farming, and petroleum, which were the early economies of the region. Other topics studied are histories of regional Native Americans and their cultures, of stage stops and railroads, of town and business developments, of women and families, of taverns and churches, and of good guys and outlaws."  PHS effectively uses the categorized, non-diary, blog format.

Texas Methodist History http://txmethhistory.blogspot.com/  

Weekly postings are by Texas United Methodist Historical Society on "This Week in History" and photographs from the archives. "It is the mission of the Commission on Archives and History:  1. to preserve the official records of the Texas Annual Conference.  2. to assist local churches preserve their own historical records  3. to provide a ministry of education and interpretation about the history of the Texas Annual Conference."  William C. Hardt, Chair




History via Newspaper Blogs




40 Years After http://blogs.chron.com/40yearsafter/ 

Historical Pop Culture, Rick Campbell with the Houston Chronicle, often Houston or Texas.  For example, re-imagine 1968 when the Harris County Clerk banned miniskirts.  40 Years is strong on photography.



Bayou City History http://blogs.chron.com/bayoucityhistory/ 

By J.R. Gonzales. "A blog about Houston's past."  Diverse commentary with photos from Chronicle and Post files, personal sources, Google Earth, etc.



 Lubbock Centennial History


 "Looking back at Lubbock's past" - A history blog by Russell Hill.   Interesting adaptation into a chronological presentation.  LCH is closely associated with the Avalanche-Journal.


El Paso Times "Tales from the Morgue" http://elpasotimes.typepad.com/morgue/ 

"El Paso history is never dead."  Trish Long is the El Paso Times Librarian.

"A newspaper morgue is where old story clippings are filed away. Trish will highlight some of the articles and photos she comes across."





Literate Writers



 Bill Crider's Pop Culture Magazine  http://billcrider.blogspot.com/ 

"I'm the author of the Sheriff Dan Rhodes series, among many other things. Check out my webpage at www.billcrider.com for all the scoop." WH – I detect that this guy's a mystery, writer that is, with awards to prove it.  His blog ranges as does the author's mind – governed generally by the well being of his cat.



Dac Crossley's Weblog   http://daccrossley.typepad.com/my_weblog/ 

South Texas fiction.  About Crossley: "Retired [college professor] in 1998, I began writing fiction, inspired by South Texas stories of Rangers and bandits, slow trains and fast horses, gunfights and getaways. … Author of Guns Across the Rio, historical fiction about Mexican bandits and Texas Rangers on the Rio Grande in 1915. Winner of a National Indie Award for 2008."



   Derimacasi Cumbali http://www.laddiemoore.blogspot.com/  

East Texan Moore works a good pen.  "Lad Moore is a writer in Texas, and has been published more than 400 times in print and on the Internet. His two short story collections, "Odie Dodie" and "Tailwind," are available at most national booksellers,and at Amazon.com. He currently writes for the Adams Media Anthologies, CrossWalk Magazine, and was recently published in "Chicken Soup for the Soul.""


Grackle Stew Stories  http://www.gracklestew.blogspot.com/   

"Dispatches from a Texas-Southern Native Daughter - Bits 'n bobs from native Texan author, poet, storyteller and artist.  I like writing about nature, sense of place and interesting characters I meet."  By Bobbi Chukran who teaches at the University of Dead Mules.


Jim Lee's Texas  http://jimleestexas.blogspot.com/ 

About Jim: "Jim Lee was born in Leeds, Alabama, when Herbert Hoover was president. He attended school in Alabama during at least three Roosevelt terms and was graduated from St. Andrew's School at Sewanee, Tennessee, when Truman was president. He served in the U.S. Navy under Truman and Eisenhower, was graduated from college and moved to Texas during Eisenhower's second administration. He taught English at the University of North Texas during the Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Reagan, Bush, and Clinton Years. He retired from UNT and moved to Fort Worth when George Bush, Jr. became president. Incidentally, he has three college diplomas signed by men of excellence--Frank Clement of Tennessee, and Big Jim Folsom and George Corley Wallace of Alabama. Top that if you can!"  Jim's been dormant for a while – taking care of things.

Joe M. O'Connell  http://joemoconnell.blogspot.com/

"Film, fiction and flailing about somewhere in Texas." About Me:  "I write columns about the Texas film industry for The Austin Chronicle and Dallas Morning News. My novel Evacuation Plan about life in a residential hospice was released in 2007. In my spare time, ahem, I also teach writing to graduate students at St. Edward's University and to undergrads at Austin Community College. But the biggest news in my life is the birth of my son Nicholas Drake. I'm enjoying singing (badly) to him, less so staying up all night and getting pooped on."


Judy's Stew http://judys-stew.blogspot.com/ 

After six decades, and sixty books, Judy Alter's stew is substantially filling and flavored with experienced overtones.  About Me: "I am almost seventy, the grandmother of seven children, the mother of four. I'm also the author of about 60 books, the majority were written for 3rd- and 4th-graders. I've written fiction for adults and young adults, articles, essays, book reviews. I do a monthly column on Texas Writers for the Dallas Morning News. In 2005 Western Writers of America gave me their Owen Wister Award for Lifetime Achievement. I'm the director of TCU Press in Fort Worth. I also like to entertain and cook for guests and I'm a homeowner with a garden, a cat, and a dog, a churchgoer and a volunteer, and fortunate enough to have many many good friends."


Molcie's Literary Corner http://molcielou.blogspot.com/ 

"A blog created by Charles Rodenberger to update Lou's progress with her ovarian cancer and for a place to discuss her literary contributions and my comments on books."  About Me:  "I am a retired engineering professor and still teach Sunday School at the Cross Plains FUMC."


Myth & Mystery  http://rickriordan.blogspot.com/ 

By Rick Riordan.  About Rick: "Rick Riordan is the New York Times bestselling author of eleven novels. His adult mystery novels feature Tres Navarre, a San Antonio private investigator. His fantasy series for children features Percy Jackson, a modern-day son of the Greek god Poseidon."



Scott D Parker http://scottdparker.blogspot.com/ 

"Parker is the author of TREASON AT HANFORD: A Harry Truman Mystery and JUSTICE IN H-TOWN, both award-winning manuscripts. In this blog, he discusses his writings, crime and mystery fiction, the writing process, the business of writing, books, films, music, and works in progress."




Literate Naturalists



El Llanero http://sibleycenter.blogspot.com/  

"a journal of the Llano Estacado." By Burr Williams and Pancho.  Burr says, "About Me:  I love the Llano Estacado, a huge plateau in west Texas. At the Sibley Nature Center we teach about the plants, animals, and history of the region. We also teach about drought-adaptive horticulture. We have 50 acres of mesquite brushland, a pond, and a small pocket forest. We give programs within 200 miles of Midland, Texas, do biological surveys for landowners, design outdoor learning gardens, design nature trails and brochures, and much more. I write a column for the Midland Reporter Telegram, published each Wednesday. I have a private arboretum of over 700 species of drought-adapted plants."


Journals of an Amateur Naturalist http://naturejournals.blogspot.com/ 

By Jace Stansbury.  As an amateur Jace's pretty good.  (In comparison, Will's naturalist skills include digging in the creek bed sand with his big toe and chasing crawdads under the railroad bridge.)

Nature Writers of Texas http://texasnature.blogspot.com/ 

"The best nature writing from the newspaper, magazine, blog and book authors of the Lone Star State."  Group is composed of several writers, but RoWauer's writings are posted the most, letting his long observant eye guide his hand.


Passport to Texas Radio Series http://passporttotexas.org/ 

Texas Parks & Wildlife Dept. –  Radio scripts and Audio/Sound – About: "We view our series partly as an educational venue to help you understand nature and the outdoors. But it's also an enjoyable and entertaining way to bring the outdoors indoors. / When you're stuck in rush hour traffic, we try to bring in a little fresh air and open space. We can't actually get you out of gridlock physically, but hopefully we can transport you mentally to places with green grass and blue sky through sounds and words, if only for a little while."  Postings are tucked into the calendar.


San Gabriel River of Texas http://sgrivertexas.blogspot.com/ 

"A blog focusing on the ecology and history of the San Gabriel River of central Texas"  By Ben Pierce, "I am Professor of Biology and holder of the Lillian Nelson Pratt Chair at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas. I teach genetics, evolution, and a course called A River Runs through It, the Ecology and History of the San Gabriel River."  Phyllis Dolich does a lot of the posting; she seems to have seen a few flowers, leaves, and stalks.




Literary Organizations



Cimmerian  http://www.thecimmerian.com/  

An e-journal presented via blog format on Texan Robert E. Howard, Conan the Barbarian.  Will says, that if you don't know Conan, then you must be an Arnoldian philistine. Is Conan the prototype super-Texan?



SAWG Blog:  http://www.sawgblog.blogspot.com/

Official blog of the San Antonio Writers Guild


SHLW Literary Notes http://slhwnotes.blogspot.com/

"SLHW Literary Notes is published by the Society of Latino and Hispanic Writers of San Antonio. The purpose of the Society is to inspire the professional interests of career-focused Latino/Hispanic writers through networking and support."






Oozing Toward Politics



Slowly the compiler oozed toward politics.  This small collection (out of about a million political blogs) includes blogs that flicker between politics and intelligence and the literate frame of mind.  They're less rant and cant, more discipline and occasional grace.  They're not adverse to connecting modern life to the past.  It's a pleasant collection to read.  And easy on the side-wise neck muscles.  Readers may recognize that across the blogsphere there are about twice as many Democratic blogs as Republican.  Hey, I'm just reporting this stuff.  Between Ribbed Elephants and Yellow Dog Donkeys, I often choose the Obdurant Oxen.


B and B http://pmbryant.typepad.com/

"From the Texas Hill Country:   Science, Politics, Birds, and more."  "Politics remains a prominent focus of this blog--in particular, environmental and public lands issues.   It is also now a forum for my science and birding writings, as well as occasional posts on random subjects." A nice mixture of interests, she must have a real life.

Burnt Orange Report  http://www.burntorangereport.com/

The Report is fully political, unlike most of this category's other entries.  But, the Report ranges broadly with attempts of honest contextualizing.  More conversation, less spew.


Millard Fillmore's Bathtub http://timpanogos.wordpress.com/ 

"Striving of accuracy in history, economics, geography, education and a little science."  By Ed Darrell.  Ed's not shy and is generous in sharing his edged opinions, often enough laced with history or allusions there unto.  He just splashes around in the tub of current thought.



Panhandle Poetry and Other Thoughts http://panhandlepoet.blogspot.com/ 

Chris McClure's interesting combination of poetics and polemics.  Chris rides the range, ranges the tide.  He also blogs "Common Sense Agriculture," "Conservation and Energy" and "Panhandle's Perspective."


 The Texas Observer Blog  http://www.texasobserver.org/blog/ 

"The Latest on Texas Politics, News, and Culture."  From their high-horse in Austin, the Observers poke around in the gall-durndest things.  They've been at it for over 50 years.


Texas Scribbler http://texasscribbler.com/ 

"Thus and sundry from a retired, at home Dad." By Dick Stanley – although primarily political, the Scribbler gets into Texas history and letters some most months.  About Me begins: ""Retired Texas newspaperman (politics, crime, science, medicine, technology), married father of one child, antique rose gardener, self-publisher, and Vietnam combat veteran (MACV, I Corps, 1969)" and more.  He's written the volume Leaving the Alamo, Texas Stories after Vietnam, concerned about our troops, and lists the Handbook of Texas as one of his quick links.


Texas Trifles http://www.texastrifles.blogspot.com/ 

By Cowtown Pattie. About CP: "Now that is the way to write--peppery and to the point. Mush-and-milk journalism gives me the fan-tods." -  Mark Twain in "Journalism in Tennessee."   "Square-shooter, round-booter, attitude-totin' North Texas Woman.  Raised four more jes' like me - almost.  A babe of the 50's, a child of the 60's, a teen of the 70's, and a woman of the ages. Thrice married - yes, the last is a charm. I don't tolerate ignorance, nor rudeness, so mind your manners and we'll get along fine."  She lives where the West begins, and that's not Elm Street.



Blog Cousins

The Western Water in Fort Worth



I noticed that the Amon Carter has a blog.  I noticed that several other FW museums might be using an adapted blog template.  Please, Pattie, check the water there, and let me know the deal, okay?


Amon Carter Museum Blog http://www.cartermuseum.org/blog  Most of the entries are not Texana, but the imagery, often Western, is a pleasant visit.  The Podcasts are lagniappe.   The captions for the images may seem like short and may seem like little throw-away lines, but actually they carry quiet essences.  And sometimes they talk and talk they way folks talk about their kids.  They're that way in Fort Worth.


Grace Museum


Presentation of periodical Artifacts, as whole issue and as separate pages, appears to be blog-like


Kimbell Art Museum


Several pages may be an adapted blog. 


Sid Richardson Museum


May be an adapted blog format.












On most computer home or start pages connected to the internet, you have the option of making a list of "Favorite" websites, also called "Bookmarks," for quick access.


To make a selection, first I simply open a blog I like, and click the Favorites button.  On my computer, the Favorites option opens, and you have a question "Do you want to add a Favorite?"  I click that one.  That box disappears and another appears asking if I wish to add the specific website of interest; I click yes. That box disappears and my selection has been added to my list of Favorites.  At that point the website's url address is in my Favorites or Bookmarks list.




RSS is an internet method of asking that something (updates) be sent to you on a regular basis – daily or weekly – not usually though email, although that is possible in some cases.  RSS stands for "really simple syndication," like newspapers form a syndicate to gather and share information.  It's like your Bookmarked websites, but different.  It's mostly for blogs and news services.


One day I noticed an RSS or Atom feed line symbol, I forget which (there are actually several syndication providers) on a blog of interest.  I clicked the RSS symbol and drew back in wonder.  A screen appeared with a query asking if I wanted to subscribe.   I froze; what did that imply?  Being a Texan raised on Pecos Bill, I was brave and clicked "yes."  Nothing happened.  I inspected my internet homepage and saw nothing new.  A couple of weeks later, I noticed two little, golden stars on my homepage.  I really do not recall if they'd been there before or if they were new.  (As it turns out one of the stars opened my Favorites list and another opened my RSS subscription list).  Anyway, I clicked one, and low and behold, there appeared the name of the blog to which I'd requested RSS subscription a fortnight earlier.  I clicked on it and there appeared the blog postings made in the days since I'd subscribed.  How neat!  It's like getting a newspaper on the lawn by subscription, except it's free.







Do you have a personal interest in Texas history, literature, and contemporary life?  Could your museum use a little umphing?  Wouldn't your historic architectural structure's public image and appreciation be enhanced by a blog?  Do you want for your organization, institution, or governmental unit a FREE, SIMPLE, and EASY TO UPDATE web presence? 


Select a provider, start a practice blog on a topic unrelated to your intentions.  Compare providers for a week or so.  Some are Blogger, Word Press, and Typepad.


I prefer Blogger at https://www.blogger.com/start .  Blogger is free and widely used (it's a Google offering).  Blogger has a search box for whatever you wish to search within the blog, allows you to assign labels as subjects or keywords (like in a library catalog), permits multiple authorship, permits you to post by email, and has multiple side panel options.  Oh, and if you decide to kill your blog, during the experimental stage maybe, Blogger makes it very easy. 


To start a blog, as my mother.  All you need is an email address, a password, and a display name (this becomes your name in your About Me box), a title name for your blog, the title can also serve as part of your url address, e.g., http://KitchenGingham.blogspot.com .   Most providers enable you to set up your blog in about 5 minutes.  At that point you can begin posting.  You'll probably wish to customize your blog a bit, taking about 15 minutes.  If you'd like to start a blog using Blogger, ask my mother for a few tips at http://KitchenGingham.blogspot.com .     



Will Howard 12618 Ashcroft, Houston Tx 77035 Cell:832-633-0595 Home:713-728-1981
Publisher, Wills Texana Monthly, subscribe at: willstexana { a t } yahoo.com
Host, Texas Parlor, a blog at http://texasparlor.blogspot.com/
Host, Texas Bookshelf, a blog at http://texasbookshelf.blogspot.com/
Host, Young Texas Reader, a blog at http://youngtexasreader.blogspot.com/  
Who is Will Howard? http://texasparlor.blogspot.com/2006/07/who-is-will-howard-texas-bibliographer.html