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Saturday, March 5, 2011

Beaumont, Texas

Our next stop after leaving Houston was Beaumont, Texas. Beaumont is a city of about 120,000 some 85 miles to the east of Houston. Beaumont claims 19 museums, and their own convention website admits, "Our quirkiness is portrayed throughout these many museums."

We visited only the Texas Energy Museum and the Babe Didrikson Zaharias museum, but we drove past several others.

The Energy Museum is actually a museum of oil, oil exploration, oil transportation, oil companies and oil refining.

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Babe Didrikson Zaharias was was named the 10th Greatest North American Athlete of the 20th Century by ESPN, and the 9th Greatest Athlete of the 20th Century by the Associated Press.

Surprisingly, she is not very well known. A wonderful attendant at the museum told us several stories of her early years growing up in Beaumont. The museum exhibits include many mementos and trophies ranging from her Olympic medals to a set of her golf clubs
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A large painting of Didrikson Zaharias hangs in the museum and both replicas and actual copies of the U.S. Postage Stamp issued commemorating her life.
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A few of the other museums and landmarks in Beaumont that we drove by included the Thomas Edison Museum, the Fire Museum of Texas, home to a Texas-sized fire hydrant, and the McFaddin-Ward House.
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We also passed by the large St. Anthony Cathedral Basilica.

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