A to Z Texas: Old Rip – Famed Horny Toad of Eastland County

April 17, 2013
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Eastland County Courthouse, home of Old Rip (photo by Tui Snider)

Horned Lizard Buried Alive in Eastland, Texas While the average horny toad has a lifespan of five to ten years, there is an old wive’s tale that – like Rip Van Winkle – they can live for 100 years in hibernation. On July 29, 1897 a county clerk in Eastland, Texas named Ernest E. Wood…

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A to Z Texas: N is for Chuck Norris

April 15, 2013
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The mustache on this inflatable cowboy reminds me of Chuck Norris (photo by Tui Snider)

Chuck Norris – an Honorary Texan Although the famous martial artist and action film actor Carlos Ray (a.k.a. Chuck) Norris was born in Oklahoma, starring in the TV series, Walker, Texas Ranger¬†has earned him honorary Texan citizenship. After all, the show ran from 1993 through 2001, and every single one of its 203 episodes were…

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A to Z Texas: M is for the Munster Mansion

April 14, 2013
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Munster Mansion replica in Waxahachie, Texas (photo by Tui Snider)

Munster Mansion Replica in Waxahachie, Texas While there is no official address for, “1313 Mockingbird Lane,” in Waxahachie, Texas, there is one fantastic looking replica of the Munster family home where, in 2001, Sandra and Charles McKee built a replica of the house depicted in the classic TV sitcom. Since it’s a fictional house, the…

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A to Z Texas: 2nd Longest Burning Light Bulb in the World

April 13, 2013
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There's a famous light bulb in the Fort Worth Stockyards in Texas (photo by Tui Snider)

The Eternal Light of Fort Worth, Texas Fort Worth, Texas is home to the second longest lasting light bulb in the world. Nicknamed the “Eternal Light,” this legendary light bulb has been burning since September 21, 1908. That’s nearly 105 years! Now on view at the Fort Worth Stockyards Museum, where it is protected from…

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A to Z Texas: K is for Kolaches

April 12, 2013
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Cute toddler in a traditional Czech costume (photo by Tui Snider)

What is a Kolache? Kolaches are a Czech pastry consisting of a light sweet dough filled with fruit that immigrants introduced to Texas when they settled here in the 1850′s. The word kolache comes from kolae, which is the Czech word for, “cake.” While traditional kolaches are filled with fruit and jam, the Texan style…

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A to Z Texas: J is for Jesus in Cowboy Boots

April 11, 2013
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Jesus in Cowboy Boots in Paris, Texas (photo by Tui Snider)

Quirky Statue in Paris, Texas After mentioning Paris, Texas recently in the post A to Z Texas: E is for Eiffel Tower I’m bringing up that little burg again because it’s home to a quirky statue known locally as the, “Jesus in cowboy boots.” This statue is actually the 20 foot tall grave marker honoring…

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A to Z Texas: I is for Idioms

April 10, 2013
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Dr Pepper is a common sight in Texas (photo by Tui Snider)

Texan Accents Vary I love how accents and slang vary throughout the USA, so, for me, that aspect of moving to Texas has been a real treat. Of course, since Texas is such a big place, there is no one official Texan accent. Think for a moment of how different Tommie Lee Jones, Billy Bob…

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A to Z Texas: H is for the Healing Water of Mineral Wells

April 9, 2013
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Baker Hotel in Mineral Wells, Texas (photo by Tui Snider)

Weird Tasting Water Has Healing Properties In the 1880′s, Judge James Alvis Lynch and his wife, Armenia, moved to north Texas and dug a well. At first, the couple was afraid to drink from it because the water tasted odd. After seeing that their livestock thrived, however, the pair began drinking from the well, too.…

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A to Z Texas: G is for German Dialect

April 8, 2013
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Sure, he looks like Elvis, but he might speak Texas German (photo by Tui Snider)

German Culture is Part of Texas For some reason, when people speak of immigrants to the USA, New York’s Ellis Island gets all the press. We tend to overlook the fact that the port of Galveston in Texas brought many newcomers to our country, as well. Starting in the 1830′s, for instance, tens of thousands…

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