The Overland Trail Museum in Fort Davis is in the home of Nick Mersfelder, a native of Bavaria who came to the area in the early 1880s. He was soldier, ranger, barber, justice of the peace, coroner, photographer, Odd Fellow, cattleman, financier, and musician.
A book about his life, which is available at the Museum on Fort Street in Fort Davis, says Mersfelder's life's motives as, "to make money, to help his fellowmen, and to enjoy life as he went along. This room, which is pictured in a old photograph in the book, shows it filled with his musical instruments.
The Overland Trail Museum is a great place to view artifacts of early life in Jeff Davis County, from saddles to clothing and handwork, historical documents and photos.
This is one of the few times we'll show highway signs on this blog, because frankly so many beautiful places in the region are completely untouched by man. We're in the frontier!
But this view of Sierra Blanca is so pretty in the evening light. You can see the view yourself, from the picnic area on eastbound I-10. Besides, you need the rest from the freeway...and an excuse to get off the road and enjoy the pure mountain air.
Down there, in the middle ground of this photo, is the original route of the Butterfield Overland Mail, a stagecoach making the first transcontinental mail delivery in 1858. The route runs through the current Guadalupe Mountains National Park (pictured here), Hueco Tanks State Historic Site, and the El Paso airport.
A year after the service was established, it was rerouted to the south and ran through Fort Davis and just south of Van Horn.
The Ysleta Mission of El Paso County is the oldest continuously active parish in the state of Texas, and the community of Ysleta is the oldest town in Texas, first established after the 1680 Pueblo Revolt.
The Ysleta del Sur Pueblo was founded in 1682. This building lasted until a disastrous flood in 174o. In late 1851, the present building was established.
YES! The Guadalupe Mountains National Park is widely known as having true fall color, and hikers flock to the McKittrick Canyon Trail this time of year. The best time for viewing is traditionally the latter half of October and sometimes early November.
But the McKittrick Canyon Trail isn't the only place in the park where one can experience color. These photos were taken this year on Saturday, October 4, and the maples were just starting to turn a brilliant and beautiful red!
At the north end of Guadalupe Mountains National Park, Dog Canyon awaits the visitor. It is a secluded and forested canyon at 6,300 feet, and gets its name from the now-extirpated black-tailed prairie dogs that were once numerous in the area.
In honor of its many, many sunny days, El Paso has placed artist-made "suns" all over town. Here's another one from outside the El Paso Museum of History in the downtown area. The milagros are votive offerings to a favorite saint as a reminder of the petitioner's particular need, or they are offered to the saint in thanks for a prayer answered.