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THIS WEEK at I'd Rather B Birdin'
-photos of-

Meadowlark, Pintail Duck & more --

click on bird name[s] to view them
and read a bit of trivia about them!!
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Not All Treasure is Silver and Gold, Mate!

IN THE HISTORICAL section of the Museum in town, there are a few 'favorites' for me. I will get to that in a bit. But first a bit of history found under the museum's roof...

~"It was in 1519 that a Spanish explorer, Alonzo Alvarez de Piñeda, discovered Corpus Christi Bay. Three hundred years later, in 1838, a trading post was established overlooking Corpus Christi Bay and named Kinney's Trading Post, after its founder, Colonel Henry Lawrence Kinney. It was not until 1852 that the trading post became an incorporated city and was named Corpus Christi, meaning The Body of Christ"~ Which was celebrated over four centuries later...

That tidbit brings me to my all time favorite piece in a glass encased exhibit. The Queen's Gown!!! [photos below] annual jubilee held in the city! Initially a three-day celebration [now-a-days a week long celebration]. The discovery and naming of Corpus Christi Bay by the Spanish explorer, Alonzo Alvarez de Pineda, along with historical significance to pirates, was probably a good enough reason to instigate some celebration. The famed pirate, Jean Lafitte, often pillaged the ships here in our bay waters centuries infamous "Buccaneer", in more recent history, with most residents dressing up in pirate garb to participate in the merry-making...the event became known as "Buccaneer Days". Each year, a queen is crowned during the gala. The first Queen's Gown shown here is blue velvet, studded with faux jewels and sequins with a 10 foot train designed with hand stitched dragonflies and center bejeweled crown. The photos just don't do justice to the dazzling sparkle of it all!! I love it, but I wouldn't want to wear it...I bet it's HEAVY!! And the humidity and heat during "Buc Days"...uh-huh!! Not me. [front view of the dress, on the floor to the right of the dress, shows off the crown] Still, it's a favorite part of the 'history' of this area for me....the intricate work involved in the making of this treasured past always boggles my mind. The hours it had to have taken to hand stitch it all.

Then, another section I find fascinating is all about the French Explorer Ship, LaBelle, captained by Robert de La Salle.  A doomed ship lost in the Gulf [just miles from Corpus Christi in Matagorda Bay] and then, centuries later found and excavated in part...sharing treasures of the past in several of Texas's coast's museums.  One room in this vicinity is exhibiting several oil paintings of this bay and the ship.  I love the art work here also. There is a small art collection in a gallery off the main floor. [LaBelle depicted in art, seen above at beginning of post]

The entire history section housing artifacts all pertain to this area of the Coastal Bend.  From Ranching, diseases that devastated previous populations, the first doctor in our area, general stores, an antique gun/rifle/bayonet collection that will astound anyone with an interest in the history of fire arms, Native American lifestyles, ships' treasures of lost gold and silver, men and women portrayals of yesteryear....
...of course, the ranching 'industry' is a huge part of my area of Texas...The King's Ranch for one. Also, the Kenedy [spelling with ONE 'n'] ranch,  along with the matriarch, Petra Kenedy. She bore 12 children; adopting one child, making a family of 13 children. With her husband, Giffin, he too had a huge stake in this area, and worked along with the partnership of Richard King [King's Ranch] raising cattle, cotton and becoming millionaires and land holders of a seemingly endless part of this county and others in South Texas!! Besides the vast ranch land and house on the ranch, the Kenedy family also had a home in the city, on the bluff facing the Bay---

Mrs. Kenedy's Coach for traveling to and from the ranch...reaching Corpus Christi in two days' travel. Her initials P K were etched on the door

Oftentimes, her entourage would have several bodyguards on horseback...stagecoach robbers and a different kind of pirating came along with some seeking to rob them of their fortunes!!  Yessiree, all not all treasure is silver and gold....

Read more on the ship  LaBelle - Shipwreck
Read more on the area Matagorda Bay [where the ship's wreckage was found]
Read more on Jean LaFitte