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About TMS

What is Texarkana USA?

Founded in 1873 Texarkana is a community located on the border between Arkansas and Texas. There are technically two Texarkanas: Texarkana, Arkansas and Texarkana, Texas, but local citizens simply refer to the community as Texarkana USA. Among some of the unique features of this bordertown are a Post Office building, Federal Court and train station that straddle the state line.

What is the Texarkana Museums System?

A group of local citizens established the Texarkana Historical Society in 1966.  In an effort to preserve Texarkana’s unique history, the group began collecting  archival materials. In 1971, the Society opened the Texarkana Historical Museum, now the Museum of Regional History. The new Museum was opened in the historic Offenhauser Insurance building, the oldest surviving brick building in Texarkana. 

The collections expanded to include regional and Caddo artifacts and information. The Museum of Regional History includes a vast collection of research materials and photographs available to the public by appointment.

In 1985, the Society obtained the Draughon-Moore "Ace of Clubs" House, which is a unique octagonal house built in 1885.  The house was restored and opened for public tours in 1987.

In 1990, Discovery Place Children's Museum opened in the old Bryce's Cafeteria building.  Discovery Place is a hands-on museum of science, history, and human perception.  It also houses traveling exhibits, a fifty-seat video theater, and a classroom. 

2010 saw the addition of a fourth property to the TMS collection, its first on the Arkansas side. The historic Patrick J. Ahern home in the heart of the Quality Hill Historic District was donated by the family and is currently undergoing restoration.

To reflect its expanded mission, the Society changed its name to the Texarkana Museums System in 1993.  The organization received accreditation from the American Association of Museums in 1991. 

All three museums continue to serve Texarkana and the Ark-La-Tex through regular exhibits, public programs, educational events, and preservation efforts.

For more information, please visit us at www.texarkanamuseums.org.

What is the "Ark-La-Tex?"

The Ark-La-Tex refers to Southwest Arkansas (Ark), Northwest, Louisiana (La) and Northeast Texas (Tex). This is the region served by the Texarkana Museums System. Texarkana is located on the border between Arkansas and Texas and about 70 miles from the Louisiana border.