Artesia Museum and Art Center

Artesia-Museum-Moore_Ward_HouseThe Artesia Museum and Art Center is housed in the Moore-Ward House, which was built about 1906 and is an unusual example of a cobblestone facade. The museum came into being as a result of the 1968 bequest of the building by the S. S. Ward estate and the decision of the City of Artesia to support the museum as part of the city government. The Museum opened in 1970.

The museum focuses on the history of Artesia and its surrounding area which is known for oil and gas and dairy farming, and more recently, for its Federal Law Enforcement Training Center. At the museum, you’ll learn about these activities as well as stories about the nitroglycerine plant and local refineries. There is a children’s activity area. Behind, the Moore Ward House, there is a building that houses their collection of vehicles. The Museum has always had an active program of community activities, art shows and traveling exhibitions offered in the Art Annex, another old house next door. The activities and programs outgrew the Art Annex and it was torn down to make way for a new multi-use facility which opened in 2015.

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Address: 505 West Richardson Avenue, Artesia, NM 88210
Phone: 575-748-2390
Hours: 9:00–12:00 and 1:00–5:00, Tuesday–Friday; 1:00–5:00, Saturday
Website: http://artesianm.gov/154/Museum-Art-Center
Admission: No charge

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Lea County Museum

Lea_Co_Museum_SignThe Lea County Museum was created by the Lovington Women’s Club in 1969. That’s when the club purchased the Commercial Hotel, which was about to be razed. The Commercial Hotel was built in 1918 by a group of Lovington ranchers and businessmen. Since 1969, the Museum has acquired several more buildings — some, like the Baker School building were moved to their site. And others, are commercial buildings put to new use, like the Lister Building across the street from the Hotel. Continue reading

Dalley Windmill Museum

Windmills

The Dalley windmill collection built by Bill and Alta Dalley of Portales was taken over by the City of Portales in 2011 and includes over 80 examples of windmills dating from the mid-19th century to the late 20th century. Many of the windmills were used around the Portales area. Before the city took over the collection, it was housed in the Dalley’s yard. Here is a visitor’s description of the museum before the city took it over.

Address: On the County Fairgrounds, near the intersection of US70 and Lime Street in northeast Portales, visible from US70.
Website: http://www.newmexico.org/listing/?lid=21693
Hours: You can see the collection any time through the fence or when the Fairgrounds are open.
Admission: No admission.

Blackwater Draw Museums

Blackwater Draw

Blackwater Draw is a dry stream channel more than 85 miles long. The Black Water Draw Locality No. 1, a few miles outside of Portales, is one of the most significant and important Paleoindian archaeological sites in the Americas. The importance of Blackwater Draw was first recognized in 1929 by Ridgely Whiteman of Clovis, New Mexico. Early investigations at Blackwater Draw found evidence of early human occupation during the Late Pleistocene. This was when the Columbian mammoth, camel, horse, bison, sabertooth cat and the dire wolf roamed the region.

Blackwater Draw Museum

Blackwater-Draw-MuseumENMU owns and operates the Blackwater Draw Museum which opened to the public in 1969. The museum’s artifacts and displays illustrate life at the Blackwater Draw site during the Clovis period (more than 13,000 years ago) through the recent historic period.

Address: 42987 Highway 70, Portales, New Mexico 88130
Phone: 575-562-2202
Website: http://www.enmu.edu/services/museums/blackwater-draw/museum.shtml
Hours: Summer (Memorial Day through Labor Day): Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. Rest of the year: Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. The museum may be closed during major holidays.
Admission: Adults: $3. Seniors (age 60 plus): $2. Children under 16: $1. Children under 5: Free. The fourth Sunday of each month is a free day. Includes admission to the Blackwater Draw Site.

The Blackwater Draw Locality No. 1 Site

BWD_Site_1In addition to many early mammal species like mammoths and bisons, “fluted” points, spearheads, known as Clovis points, along with other stone and bone weapons and tools have been found at the site – some within the fossilized mammoth and bison bones. Since its discovery, the Blackwater Locality No. 1 Site (also known as the Clovis Site) has been a focal point for scientific investigations by academics and organizations across the nation. The Carnegie Institute, Smithsonian Institution, Academy of Natural Sciences, National Science Foundation, United States National Museum, National Geographic Society and more than a dozen major universities either have funded or participated in research at Blackwater Draw. Due to its tremendous long-term potential for additional research and to public interest, the site was incorporated into the National Register of Historic Places in 1982. More recently, it was declared a National Historic Landmark. There is a small visitor center at the site with exhibits and you can take a self-guided walk around to see the site that will take a few hours.

Address: 508 New Mexico 467, Portales, NM 88130
Phone: 575-356-5235
Website: http://www.enmu.edu/services/museums/blackwater-draw/locality.shtml
Blog: The Clovis Site
Site hours: Summer (Memorial Day through Labor Day): Every day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. April, May, September, and October: Weekends only, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. September and October, weekends only, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed November through March.

The Western Heritage Museum and Lea County Cowboy Hall of Fame

Wastern Heritage Museum - HobbsThe Western Heritage Museum and Lea County Cowboy Hall of Fame are on the New Mexico Junior College campus in Hobbs.

The Western Heritage Museum focuses on the history of Lea County and the neighboring area in northwestern Texas. It is a region where cowboys and oil-and-gas industry workers meet and mix. The museum includes exhibits showing life on the Llano Estacado from prehistoric times to the present. There is archaeology, ranching, cowboys, buffalo soldiers, and exhibits about the oil-and-gas industry. A restored Eclipse windmill recalls a time when windmills were used on ranches throughout the area.

The Lea County Cowboy Hall of Fame was founded in 1978. It features the many rodeo world champions who come from Lea County (more champions come from Lea County than any other county in the United States). In addition to memorials, many artifacts reflect aspects of the rodeo and cowboy life.

Address: 1 Thunderbird Circle, Hobbs, NM 88240
Phone: 575-492-2678
Email: themuseum@nmjc.edu
Hours: Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sunday, 1 to 5 p.m., Monday by appointment only
Website: http://www.nmjc.edu/museum/
Admission: Adults, $3; seniors 65 and older, $2; students $2, children 5 and under, free.

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