Santa Rita Oil and History Day at The Railway Museum of San Angelo
The 3rd Annual Santa Rita Day at the Railway Museum is this Saturday!
In 1900 folks in San Angelo found out that an international railroad was planning to go through West Texas. While the Santa Fe RR came to the town in 1888, San Angelo was basically the end of that line in this part of Texas.
The foresight of the San Angelo Citizens Committee which was formed to entice the new The Kansas City, Mexico and Orient Railroad through San Angelo paid off big for the city especially in 1923. The first oil well in West Texas and New Mexico, Santa Rita #1, gushed into being May 28, 1923 just 140 feet from the KCM&O track.
On June 10, 1923 the KCM&O RR ran a special train from San Angelo to the site of the well in time for the group of over 1000 people to see the well gush in just like old Faithfull at 3 pm. The site of this well on State University land is responsible for the enormous UT and Texas A&M Permanent University Funds that are currently valued at over 14 billion dollars not including the value of the land.
To Celebrate the event which lead to over 40 oil companies locating in San Angelo making the City the first Oil Capital of West Texas the Railway Museum of San Angelo is hosting the 3rd annual Santa Rita History Day from 10 AM to 4 PM this Saturday, June 7th, at 703 S. Chadbourne St.
Vendors with craft items will add to the celebration. Marvin Kelsey and several groups of musicians will be playing throughout the day to add to the fun.
During the day you and your family can tour the Railway Museum and see several new exhibits about the start of San Angelo’s and West Texas’s rich history and the importance the Railroad and Oil played in the developing the area. You can also tour through the museum’s Caboose and two Train Engines on the siding across from the 1910 Historic Depot. The Museum’s 1938 Railroad Motor Car will be on display along with two other different motor cars that are owned by Museum Volunteer’s. Many photos and information about Santa Rita #1 and the town that grew up around it, Texon, will be featured including a 14 foot panoramic photo of Texon in its heyday.
At the height of the 20's and 30's oil boom it was said that a train of tank cars filled with crude oil would roll through San Angelo every hour. Today Oil is again playing a major roll in the increase of several hundred cars a week in Rail traffic. Texas Pacifico the Operator of the local track will be bringing equipment for display.
The whole family will enjoy Santa Rita Oil and History Day 10 am to 4 pm at the Railway Museum 703 S. Chadbourne, San Angelo, TX
For more information check the Museum web site www.railwaymuseumsanangelo.homestead.com
or call David Wood 325-657-4880