About The Texas Civil War Museum
The Texas Civil War Museum, with over 15,000 square feet of exhibits, is the largest Civil War museum west of the Mississippi River, located in White Settlement in Fort Worth.
The Texas Civil War Museum history
The Texas Civil War Museum opened in January 2006, founded by Texan oilman, Ray Richley. The mission of the museum was to collect and preserve objects relating to the history of the American Civil War and the role of Texas in the conflict.
Texas declared secession from the Union in February 1861, replacing its governor who refused to swear an oath to the Confederacy. Texas’ role was primarily in supplying soldiers and horses for the Confederate Army, until 1863, when the Union took control of the Mississippi and thus, supply.
The museum was built containing three galleries: the first displaying a Civil War collection that is primarily military, particularly highlighting flags; the second displays a large and well-preserved period dress collection; the third a collection from the United Daughters of the Confederacy Texas.
The museum combined the private collection of owner Richley, and the former Texas Confederate Museum, which closed in 1988 due to losing its location to the Capitol Visitors Centre.
When removing the Robert E. Lee statue, Dallas City Council considered lending it to the museum, however, ultimately decided against leasing the statue over concerns it would not be displayed with full context.
The Texas Civil War Museum today
The layout of the exhibits displays the Union on the North side of the building and the Confederacy to the South, further dividing the items into areas depicting infantry, artillery, cavalry, medical and naval artefacts, and there are storyboards aiming to provide both Union and Confederate perspectives. There is a 30 minute video at the beginning of the collection titled ‘Our Home Our Rights’ that retells the entry of Texas into the conflict.
If you arrive on the right day, you might also catch some of the Museum’s re-enactors dressed in Civil War costumes, presenting weapon handling and camp life, to help bring the era alive.
Getting to The Texas Civil War Museum
If driving from Arlington/Dallas East, take the I-30 westbound past downtown Fort Worth to 820 north; exit Silver Creek (exit 5B). The museum will be on your right and there is parking on-site. Via public transport from Fort Worth, get the line 002 bus to White Settlement before getting a taxi or walking 2 miles to the museum.