LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - A unique exhibit is now on display at the National Ranching Heritage Center in Lubbock. Folks may be surprised to find an automobile in the center, but that's what the exhibit focuses on.
The Ford Model T was used by many farmers and ranchers for work and to get around, but this one also has a very local connection. It's a touring edition, bought in 1923 by Victor Smith in Alpine, Texas.
The Ford has only had two owners in that time, Smith and his son Harlan. Harlan donated the vehicle to the Ranching Heritage Center in November, and that's when the curator learned about the local connection.
"Because of his father's interest in archeology, he came to be friends with William Holden of Holden Hall, and the two of them were responsible for forming the West Texas Archeological Society together," Robert Tidwell said.
At one point, the Model T accounted for half of the auto sales in North America, and you can imagine folks put it to some very creative uses.
"Cars were turned into mobile chapels. There was actually a photograph of a Texas couple who made one of the earliest RV's out of theirs," Tidwell said.
If you'd like to check out the exhibit for yourself it's free. Just stop by the National Ranching Heritage Center just east of 4th Street and Indiana Avenue.
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