West Texas A&M University

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Panhandle Plains Historical Museum Exhibit Dates

PPHM Exhibits and Events


Bivins Gallery
Continuing through 2016

Since its inception in 1921, the Panhandle-Plains Historical Society has preserved American Indian material cultural artifacts and art objects. While numerous donors added to the Society's Native American collection over the previous eighty-two years, Susan J. Allen deserves special recognition in light of both the sheer numbers of objects she gave and their overall high quality. Through the efforts of Harold D. Bugbee--whom she met at Taos--Susan Janney Allen of Haverford, Pennsylvania, gave her American Indian collection in memory of her parents, Samuel L. and Sarah H. Allen of Philadelphia. In 1934, Allen decided to lend some of her collection for exhibition at the Museum writing to Harold Bugbee in April: "[I] feel quite sure you can make a very attractive and worthwhile display, that will appeal to the average visitor, and also be of educational value, too." Later that year Allen began donating her collection to the Society, and after subsequent gifts, by 1941 the Susan J. Allen Collection came to number over 2,000 objects. This includes some 250 of the finest baskets in the Society's collection (and in any public collection in the United States), beadwork, pottery, paintings, silver, and katsina dolls.


Harrington Gallery
March 1, 2014 – August15, 2015

As part of the Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum’s “Women of the West” series of five exhibitions that will celebrate women of the west through art, artifacts and stories of the past, Gems of the Plains will showcase the vital roles women have played in the settlement and ongoing development of the Panhandle-Plains region and the larger American West. Women faced many challenges as they moved to a wild territory, changed the homes and lifestyles they had known for so long, or fought to change their own lives with the times that moved upon them. Women of the West necessarily stand out from the stereotypical feminine figure in many ways. While they did not always take center stage, as this exhibition will show, women of the west often were and still are the driving force behind much of what drove/drives the West and the Panhandle-Plains region forward.


Alexander Gallery
Now – February 6, 2016

Since photographers first started making images of the Panhandle-Plains region, native animals and birds and hunting have been primary subjects for this medium.­ Mining its vast photographic collection, museum staff will assemble and present a group of often-unique photographic images of wildlife and hunting ranging from the mid-1870s through the late 1900s.­ These will include, for example, a photograph of the last wolf killed in Randall County, a six-toed specimen now mounted and on display in the Museum’s Natural History area.


Foran Family Galleries
May 30, 2015 –August 30, 2015

The exhibition and related book, George Catlin’s American Buffalo, explores Catlin’s representation of buffalo and their integration into the lives of Native Americans through forty original paintings by the artist.

The Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum is the only venue in Texas to host this exhibition, on display from May 30 - August 30, 2015.
George Catlin's American Buffalo is organized by the Smithsonian American Art Museum in collaboration with the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Generous support for the exhibition has been provided by Mary Anne and Richard W. Cree, and Lynn and Foster Friess. Additional support for the exhibition and the publication was provided by the William R. Kenan Jr. Endowment Fund and the Smithsonian Council for American Art. Support for Treasures to Go, the Museum's traveling exhibition program, comes from The C.F. Foundation, Atlanta, Georgia.


Museum-wide & at partner institutions
May 18, 2015 - August 7, 2015

Are you stay-cationing in the Panhandle this summer? Looking for fun and educational activities to get the family out of the house? If so, join us for a Culture Quest! PPHM is partnering for a second year with the Amarillo Museum of Art, the Amarillo Public Library, the Amarillo Zoo, the Amarillo Botanical Garden, the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame & Museum, the Canyon Area Library, and the Don Harrington Discovery Center to host an exciting area-wide scavenger hunt. Pick up your scavenger hunt form at any participating venue, solve the clues, earn the stamps, and explore the region! Complete the form and submit to any participating venue by August 7 to be entered into the Grand Prize drawing – a gift basket with exciting souvenirs from each location! For more information visit: www.panhandleplains.org or call 806.651.2242.



Tuesday Aug 4 - Friday Aug 7

The Education Department is eagerly anticipating the beginning of the summer visitor season. We are excited about continuing out popular summer museum programs on Monday, Thursday and Friday beginning on June 8th through August 7th.
Each Monday, Thursday and Friday, an education staff member will be available in People of the Plains, Art and Paleontology/Geology to discuss a different topic each week. People of the Plains will be the featured exhibition on Monday, Art on Thursday and Paleontology/Geology on Friday. Programs will last about 15 minutes and staff will be in the galleries from 10 am to noon. Visitors will have the opportunity to ask questions and complete an activity or craft to take home too!
Programs are free with paid museum admission and reservations aren’t required. Please contact Elaina Cunningham, Education Manager, at 651-2258 for questions about this program.



Hazlewood Lecture Hall
June 20, 2015 10am-12pm

Looking for a fun activity for your young artists this summer? Join PPHM Education Staff for “George Catlin Art Day” where we will be making silhouette art and creating works inspired by our latest traveling exhibit “George Catlin’s American Buffalo”. This fascinating exhibition is on loan this summer from the Smithsonian American Art Museum. You will not want to miss the opportunity to celebrate this iconic look at the American Bison and the work of George Catlin. Program is free with museum admission.



Hazlewood Lecture Hall
July 18, 2015 11am

Continuing our “Summer of the Buffalo”, join PPHM as we welcome Caprock Canyons State Park Superintendent Donald Beard. Beard will discusses the past history of bison in North America and the Goodnight herd, the present state of the animals along with the future plans for the Charles Goodnight Bison Herd, the “Official Bison Herd of the State of Texas”. Program is free with museum admission.

July 21, 2015 10:30am-12:30pm

PPHM will be collaborating with the Canyon Area Library to “Stuff the Bus” for the Eveline Rivers Project, collecting school supplies for Canyon area students. Bring new school supplies and join PPHM education staff at the Canyon Area Library for a morning of fun activities. Participants who help to “Stuff the Bus” will receive coupons for discounted museum admission. For more information contact Amy Mitchell at amitchell@pphm.wtamu.edu or call 806.651.2242

Hazlewood Lecture Hall
August 15th 10am-12pm

Western inspired art and birthday cake are what you will find at PPHM on August 15 as we celebrate the birthday of artist Harold Dow Bugbee. Children and families can join us in Hazlewood Lecture Hall as we celebrate Bugbee by creating a western inspired art work, and then enjoy a piece of birthday cake. While here, view PPHM’s extensive collection of Bugbee works, and complete a scavenger hunt for objects in the museum’s recreation of Bugbee’s studio. Program is free with regular museum admission. For more information about this event or other programs, please contact Amy Mitchell at amitchell@pphm.wtamu.edu or call 806-651-2242.



Foran Family Galleries
September 12, 2015 –January 30, 2016

Spurred by the 2001 publication of Larry Len Petersons seminal book, Philip R. Goodwin: Americas Sporting & Wildlife Artist, and PPHMs acquisition of a Goodwin watercolor in 2007, PPHM staff sought to secure an exhibition of Goodwin's work.



Friday, September 19th

9:30 am- 12:00pm

Celebrate the September 17, 1787, signingof the Constitution with activities relating to thedocument that formed our nation. Sponsored inpart by West Texas A&M University, this programfeatures demonstrations and activities that highlight our Constitution and voting rights. This program will feature activities for children grades 3-7. Students will also have the opportunity to hear a lively debate by WTAMU professors. The event is $3 per student; teachers and chaperones are free. For reservations or more information please contact Elaina Cunningham at 806-651-2258.



Thursday Sep 24
5:30 PM - 8:00 PM

The Panhandle-Plains Historical Society's 94th annual business meeting with State of the Museum address by Executive Director Guy C. Vanderpool.­ Directly following the meeting PPHM members can enjoy refreshments and talk to the curators of the newest exhibitions.



Saturday Oct 3rd, Saturday Oct 10th

See panhandleplains.org for details




Friday October 16th

9:30 am - 12:00pm

Featuring guest speakers, demonstrations and hands-on activities like corn grinding and cord-marked pottery, this event is one of the most popular student activities of the year. The lessons connect students to the human past through discovery. Students learn how archaeologists study the past and how to investigate like a real  archaeologist. Reservations are required; to reserve a place contact Elaina Cunningham at ecunningham@pphm.wtamu.edu or (806) 651-2258. Cost is $3.00 per child. Teachers, parents and chaperones are free.



Friday November 13th 


Join PPHM for a fun evening of crafts and draught samples. You won't want to miss this one.  More details coming soon



Friday, December 4, 2015 ­­­­­­­­­ ­­ 6:00-9:00 pm
Saturday, December 5, 2015 ­­­­ 1:00-5:00 pm
PPHM's annual free event celebrates the holiday season with music, role players, storytellers and kids crafts.