The Surprising History of Midland, TX
Midland is a small city in the Western part of Texas. Although it is primarily known for being a center for the oil industry in Texas, there is a lot more to the city than meets the eye. People often overlook it, writing it off as one of the state’s “drive-by” towns, but it actually boasts a rich and rather surprising history, which makes this town worth a visit.
The City Was Originally Called “Midway”
This is because it is about halfway between the major cities of El Paso and Fort Worth. When the Texas Pacific Railroad first laid down tracks in Texas, they began at El Paso and made their way to Fort Worth. Originally starting as a train station halfway between the two cities, the city eventually blossomed around the station as a flourishing railroad and ranching town. Eventually, the name was changed once their economy began to grow in their own right with the discovery that the city was a rich location for oil around the time of WWI.
Midland, TX is Nicknamed “The Tall City”
Midland, TX is well-known for its skyline, which, in the flat Texas landscape, can be seen from miles away in surrounding areas. This impressive skyline has given it the simple, yet effective, nickname “The Tall City.” But this isn’t the only nickname that the city has boasted. In fact, it has had dozens of nicknames since being founded in 1881, including “The Queen City of the Prairie,” and “The Switzerland of the Desert.” As you can probably guess, these nicknames proved to be a little too long and obscure, and “The Tall City” is the one that stood the test of time.
Midland Was Home to First Lady Laura Bush and Presidents George and George W. Bush
Midland is proud to be the hometown of First Lady Laura Bush as well as the former home of Presidents George and George W. Bush, and the family has made a huge impact on the city. They have a lot of resources dedicated to the former Presidents and First Lady, including a museum, and George W. Bush’s restored childhood home, which is open for tours. The childhood home is also the headquarters for the Laura Bush Literacy Program, which aims to help children of all ages improve their reading skills and find a passion in reading. While none of the Bush family lives in Midland currently, it is safe to say that their having resided there in the past has made a great mark on the history of the city.
Small towns all across America boast rich histories that we may never read about in textbooks, and Midland, TX is definitely one of them. A small city with a big past, what was originally just a notable halfway point between El Paso and Fort Worth has since developed into a city with a thriving oil economy, a monument to two former presidents, and many residents proud to call it home.
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