Bastrop Ladies Reading Circle Celebrating 120 years

The Magazine Club was organized in Bastrop on September 15, 1897.  The study of literature was the purpose of the club.  Mrs. b.D. Orgain was elected the first president and served the first of her three two-year terms from 1897-1899.

The club grew rapidly and was renamed the Bastrop Ladies Reading Circle in 1900.  That year the ladies issued their first yearbook and studied American and English history, Othello, and contemporary literature.

For 120 years they have had numerous achievements which have enhanced life in bastrop for all. 

The exhibit opens Saturday, September 9th and is free of charge.

Carpe Diem

"Bastrop: Then and Now"

“Bastrop: Then and Now” is a student-led project out of the Colorado River Collegiate Academy – the early college high school program of the Bastrop Independent School District. Over the past school year, 58 freshman scholars discovered local history and culture by interviewing longtime residents to learn about their experiences growing up and living here over the past few decades. 


Much like National Public Radio’s StoryCorps, students interviewed and then examined the stories of Sandra Callahan, Gilbert Cervantes, Dock Jackson, Ken Kesselus, Philip Kost, Matthew Mix, Steve Murray, Bill Owens and Reid Sharp. With that information in mind, they followed up by conducting historical research to contextualize and provide an added layer of depth to those personal histories.


“It’s our hope that those who experience this exhibit will not only learn about the story of Bastrop as a community, but their own personal histories as well,” said Academy English teacher Manny Pina, who worked with Social Studies Research instructor Megan Brandon on the cross-curriculum project.


This project was made possible through a generous grant provided by the Bastrop Education Foundation and the support of Bastrop ISD.


The exhibit will be on display until August 31, 2017.

Come and Experience McDade Pottery!

Come Experience McDade Pottery!

A Critical Element of Bastrop Since the Pottery’s Inception in the Mid-19th Century 

A 6-Week Exhibit Opening Saturday, April 1.


BCHS is excited to announce its first ever guest-curator program featuring “Texas State of Clay: Past and Present” a six-week exhibit opening April 1 by guest curators, Melanie Shaw, Susan Hanft, and Marie Blazek of Bastrop Clay Arts. The presentation, built around the story of locally historic pottery, includes select and rare pieces from the McDade pottery collection of Lisa and J.J. Jackson.  


Join us Friday, May 5th from 6:30 – 7:30 pm and meet “Texas State of Clay" organizers, Susan Hanft, Marie Blazek and Melanie Shaw. ​The exhibit tells the story of ceramics in Central Texas both past and present.  Artwork from Billy Ray Mangham (sample piece pictured here), one of the founders of  Eye of the Dog Art Center, San Marcos, is featured in the exhibit.


The “Texas State of Clay: Past and Present” exhibit will be on display at the BCHS Museum & Visitor Center from Saturday, April 1 through Saturday, May 13. 


Follow the BCHS Museum and Visitor Center on Facebook to learn more about this exciting event!

Mother & Daughter Treasure: The Hand Fan Collection

In 1971, Miss Bob donated 139 hand fans to the Bastrop County Historical Society. Presented in the
Mother & Daughter Treasure - The Hand Fan Collection, exhibit is a sampling of the extraordinary

​In 1913, Miss Bob married Will Rogers, and they took up residence in her childhood home. It was in this
home that Scottie Chambliss Jenkins, Miss Bob's mother began collecting fans from all over the world,
gifts from friends who traveled abroad.

This wonderful collection will be exhibited in the Museum until March 20th! 

Rosenwald Schools Exhibit


To acknowledge and honor contributions made by German immigrants and their descendants to Bastrop County, the Bastrop County Historical Society presented Lone Star and Eagle: German Immigration to Texas, an exhibit on loan from Humanities Texas. The scope of the exhibit was broadened by the inclusion of artifacts provided by the Rockne Museum, Rockne, TX and select items from the Bastrop County Historical Society’s collection.  The content of this exhibit represented the history of early German settlers in New Braunfels, Fredericksburg, Sisterdale, Rockne and Bastrop, Texas.


Cynthia Ann and Quanah Parker Exhibit 

"A Woman OF Two Worlds and a Man IN Two Worlds”

Photo on display until July 6, 2015

“The Cynthia Ann and Quanah Parker Exhibit, A Woman OF Two Worlds and a Man IN Two Worlds.” is a traveling exhibit of rarely seen photos of Quanah and Cynthia Ann Parker. The photo exhibit will be on display at the Museum & Visitor Center until July 6.


Cynthia Ann and Quanah Parker are two important names in U.S. frontier history. Much can be learned from the dramatic story of these two courageous individuals. In 1836, a Comanche raiding party took Cynthia Ann from her family .Over the following years, she became wife to a Comanche chief and mother to children, including Quanah. After Cynthia Ann was taken back by Texas Rangers, Quanah became one of the most important Comanche leaders both in war and peace.


Over the past century, African American life, history and culture have become major forces in the United States — and the world. In 1915, few could have imagined that African Americans in music, art and literature would become appreciated by the global community. Fewer still could have predicted the prominence achieved by African Americans in shaping world politics, war, and diplomacy. In honor of this milestone, ASALH selected “A Century of Black Life, History, and Culture” as the 2015 National Black History theme.  In honor of Black History Month and the theme for 2015, BCHS has created an exhibit representing the past 100 years of black history in Bastrop County. For each quarter century, we profiled one individual whose life in some way impacted the course of black history within our county.


Included in the exhibit were the histories of early hispanic heroes and notable hispanics of Bastrop County: Eloy Perez (1926-1996), a popular musician; Paul Carlyle Bell (1886-1952), who established the Mexican Baptist Institute; Minerva Delgado Lopez, whose legal case ended segregation in Bastrop; and Porfino Salinas (1910-1973), one of Bastrop's best known artists. 

Please reload