Old Jail Art Museum
A jewel of a town square and art museum at the old jail. Accessible
collection of authentic pioneer dwellings, tools and equipment including
processing pots from the old Ledbetter's Salt Works.
Points of Interest
Shackelford County Court House, built in 1883-84
Old Jail Art Center, on Second Street one block east of the courthouse,
permanent exhibits include works of Giacomo Manzu, John Marin, Charles
Umlauf, Louise Nevelson, Henry Moore, Amedeo Modigliani, Pablo Picasso,
and examples of Chinese art from the Han, Wei, Sui, Tang and Ming Dynasties.
Housed in a restored county jail (c. 1878). Open Tuesday-Saturday from
10-5, Sunday fro 2-5.
Ledbetter Picket House, 700 Railroad Street, restored frontier dog-run
cabin built of slender upright poles (pickets), with rustic period furnishings.
Open daily from 8-5.
Matthews Memorial Presbyterian Church, built in 1898 and housing one
of the finest pipe organs in West Texas.
Old MKT Depot, Central and Main Streets, seves as chamber of commerce
office, community center and exhibit area for local handicrats. Open
Georgia Monument, at South Main and South First Streets, erected in
1976 to honor the Georgia Battalion that volunteered in Texas's war
for independence in 1836. Most were killed in the Goliad massacre.
April: 3rd Saturday, Polo on the Prairie; Discover Albany Day.
June: the last two weekends, Fort Griffin Fandangle, presented
by more than 200 townfolk, in an outdoor musical pageant depicting area
history. The production is noted for its live longhorn herd on stage,
a steam train, a calliope, an overland stage and team of mules, and
an opening parade of flag-bearing riders on horseback.
September: 3rd Saturday, City-wide garage sale
October: 3rd Saturday, Cowboy Days
November: Matthews Memorial Presbyterian Church Bazaar; Holiday
December: Albany Nativity, in even years
Albany Motor Inn, 915-762-2451
Ann's (B&B), 915-762-2451
Foreman's Cottage (B&B), Musselman Ranch, 915-762-2224
Hereford Motel, Hwy 80 W, 915-762-2451
The Lodge, 915-762-3205
Old Nail House Inn (B&B), 915-762-2928
Virginia's (B&B), 915-762-2013
Fort Griffin General Merchandise Restaurant, Hwy 80 W, 915-762-9034
Halberts Country Emporium, 211 S. Main St., 915-762-2977
High Lonesome Cafe, 915-762-2511
Lone Star Eatery, 915-762-2932
Albany News, 915-762-2201
Griffin Flat, 915-762-2009
Halbert's Country Emporium, 915-762-2977
Lynch Line, 915-762-2212
Main Street Mercantile, 915-762-3030
Outlaws Trading Post, 915-762-2687
Ranch Rags, 915-762-3000
House of Embroidery, 915-762-3073
A panoramic view of 1885 Albany
From the book, A Texas Frontier, by Ty Cashion
The following road trip article is from the web site, Great
American Trails Company.
February 27, 2001
The people of Albany have created a vibrant, optimistic, growing local
economy that has discovered one eternal truth: the best way to look
forward is to look back on the past, and to focus on what brought human
inhabitants here to begin within short, to look back to the land.
Albany is well-provided for in this regard. Shackelford County is home
to several ranches that easily exceed or even double the 20,000-acre
mark, and it is the birthplace of a man who grew to typify the best
things about the west, a man whose presence still resonates three years
after his untimely death at the youth of 98. Spanning the last century,
Watt Matthews spoke for the value of persistence, for the value of intelligent
and progressive range management, for the value of long-term profit
over short-term gain, and for the value of people.
Albany is a charming, charming town, and not in that slicked-over,
professionally marketed manner so familiar to anyone whos been
sentenced to do time in Sedona or Jackson Hole. The town storefronts
have adopted a common style and design. There was no federal grant,
no grass-roots movement to make the town look a certain way, and no
complex set of sign ordinances that forced the resistant to comply.
People in Albany were simply proud of their town, and reached into their
own hip pockets to make that pride a visual, tangible thing.
Tradition and local pride, then, belong deep down into the grain of
Albany. Unsurprisingly, the banner that faltered with the passing of
Watt Matthews has been picked up and placed at the vanguard, where it
properly belongs, by the people who own and operate Stasneys Cook
Ranch. No place in Texas better typifies the progression of virgin range
to longhorn range to fenced range to oil fortune and onwards to nature
Nature tourism? The owners have skillfully pointed the vast ranch onto
a course that utilizes considerable natural resources for a multiplicity
of purposes. Hunting, of course, is one. The new twist, however, focuses
on birding, wildlife watching and photography, as well as mountain biking.
With strikingly memorable nesting species such as Painted Bunting and
Scissor-tailed Flycatcher, a host of resident and seasonal sparrows,
creeks and stock tanks that provide critical water resources for migrants
and insect life, your visit to the ranch will more than satisfy an appetite
for proximity with nature.
In addition to wildlife tours that provide numerous encounters with
the mammals common to this part of Texas, photographic blinds on the
property also let viewers get close enough to obtain full-frame, magazine-quality
images of the wildlife. Youll have the choice of a comfortable
stay in the spacious ranch lodge or the choice of a commodious cabin
with handicapped access and room interiors.
Bringing nature tourism and its adherents into the strongholds of Texas
ranch country is hardly as radical as it sounds. The concerns of responsible
huntersthat healthy wildlife requires healthy habitatworks
hand in glove with the concerns of nature enthusiasts.
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