22 February 2015

virtual sketchcrawl: Texas Cotton Gin

Being unusually tired, I almost decided to skip this month's virtual sketchcrawl on Facebook. But Bill came home from a church workday with energy to burn. He told me to grab a sketchbook as he grabbed a book he's been reading and we took off for a drive, ending up in Burton, Texas.

We parked in the Texas Cotton Gin Museum parking lot where I had this view of the old gin. There's a better view on the other side with more building detail and lovely shades of rust on the tin siding, but the sun would have been right in my eyes, backlighting the building in shadow.

This cotton gin has been here since 1914  and now offers daily tours. During the annual festival, the 1925 Bessemer Type IV diesel oil engine runs again with demonstrations of all aspects of cotton   production.


  1. I always love your industrial sketches. What can you say about the Texas cotton industry? I'd like to understand more about cotton. You had it near your Wichita home and south central Kansas region has it, but it doesn't seem to thrive here. Does Texas still have it? I'd like to know it's strengths and weaknesses as a crop.

  2. Sorry I didn't get back with you until now --- we were at church, then ate out.

    I don't know too much regarding the cotton industry in this area other than seeing A LOT of it growing near us! Most land in our area is for cattle with some goats, sheep, and elk. But as we drive to College Station, there are miles and miles of various types of cotton, most much taller than seen in Kansas. Most of these fields are associated with Texas A & M, but we've seen evidence of private growers as well. During harvest season, you can see bits of "snow" along major highways, bits blown off the huge bales as trucks transport them. And the bales are enormous!!

    1. Those big bales cause problems, too. One of our distribution coops told me they have had workers contact our electrical lines as they load or unload these huge bales. It requires large machinery. I'll check out your museum link. Thanks!

  3. I can imagine the problems! Recently a local historic synagogue was moved from Brenham to Austin; rather than deal with lines, they cut the small building in 3 layers, to be put back together and restored later.


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