VERNON, TX (KAUZ) - If you like history, you are in for a treat. It does not matter where you are from, you can relate to the Wilbarger County Historical Museum. If you have ever lived in Wilbarger County the man who runs the place may know who you are, or can find something out about you.
Preston Cary is a walking encyclopedia.
We asked him if he know how many pieces he has in his museum.
"Until we get into the hundreds of thousands, I don't know. I've got a lot. I'm gonna say, I'm pretty close to half of it now. I could fill this building again. It's crazy, but i could fill it again," says Preston Cary.
Cary is a connoisseur of sorts. He's spent a lot of his life in search of history. Some of it was kind of dirty.
"I've gone to estate sales and asked them if they had any Vernon memorabilia and they said, 'oh we threw that stuff in the dumpster', and I said you don't mind if I climb in your dumpster do you? Because, I'm gonna go find it," says Cary.
He has everything in a small space. He can take you back to the days that there were no paved streets in Vernon. To the days of the Roy Orbison complete with old 45s and 78s. Even ones you can sit and listen to in a record room straight out of the 50s.
There is entirely too much for us to mention about what he has on display. But I can mention, the building is the old Wilbarger County Jail, dating back to the early 1900s.
For Cary it has been a passion of garage sales, estate sales, and digs. He's even found a few prize pieces with his metal detector.
"During my research in the paper work I had, I could figure out where businesses used to be and then go hunt the lots," Cary told us.
You could call it an obsession or a passion, even an addiction for Preston Cary. He said it's all worth it and, he's going to keep right on working to get more room and put more up all for one reason.
"I have a lot of the younger generations come through here, and they're amazed at different things. They want to know," said Cary. "So we'll just keep doing our thing."
Preston Cary is amazing. In the video you see how many things are in this place. He can tell you something about everything there. It is fascinating and worth the free price of admission. The museum runs off donations. If you visit, feel free to drop some cash in his donation jar. He's spent almost a lifetime putting it all together.
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