Whether you're interested in family history, lifestyles of years gone by, fine art, or untamed nature, a visit to Greenville has just what you're looking for!
Audie Murphy/American Cotton Museum
A visit to the Audie Murphy/American Cotton Museum will introduce you to the diversity of the region's colorful past. Learn about inhabitants of the blackland prairie, and how they contributed to the unique soil that comprises the prairie today.
Learn about planting, growing, ginning, baling, spinning, and weaving cotton. Learn about famous personalities from Hunt County, such as Monty Stratton, White Sox major league pitcher.
Tour the Ende-Gaillard exhibit and experience the past, brought back to life through historic re-enactment.
The museum proudly displays a newly dedicated ten foot bronze statue of Hunt County native Audie L. Murphy, World War II's most decorated soldier. The Greenville Sesquicentennial Committee commissioned local sculptor Gordon Thomas to create the statue. The Audie Murphy Exhibit includes photos, biographies, uniforms, and military medals to tell the story of the sharecropper's son who left home to become a national hero.
Special features include a fossil & arrowhead collection, two working cotton gin models, Ende-Gaillard parlor vignette, Greenville National Bank exhibit, special temporary exhibits, photograph, and reference files.
The Audie Murphy/American Cotton Museum: Interstate 30, between Exits 95 and 94 B on the north service road. For more information, call 903-450-4502.
Hours: Tuesday-Saturday: 10-5. Admission.
Audie Murphy Exhibit
The Audie Murphy/American Cotton Museum houses a collection of Audie Murphy memorabilia including photographs, biographies, uniforms and reproductions of medals awarded to the country’s most decorated soldier. Murphy enlisted at the old Greenville Post Office on Lee Street.
Second Lieutenant Audie L. Murphy was awarded the Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest military award, on June 2, 1945. He was just 20 years old. His Medal of Honor citation credits Murphy with holding off two enemy rifle companies, single-handedly, for several hours near a village in eastern France. His 33 medals included three from France and one from Belgium.
At war’s end, Murphy went from the fields of battle to the giant screen, making more than 40 movies, including his own biography, To Hell and Back. The man who was a young hero also died young. He was killed in a plane crash at the age of 46.
The Audie Murphy/American Cotton Museum's exhibit featuring Greenville resident Monty Stratton, who became a national celebrity with the debut of MGM’s The Stratton Story in 1949, includes memorabilia from his pitching career as well as movie souvenirs.
Stratton, a pitcher for the Chicago White Sox, began his pitching career with an amateur league team in Van Alstyne, Texas, moving up to the White Sox in 1936. His major league pitching career ended in 1938 when, at the age of 26, Stratton lost his right leg in a hunting accident. He returned to the Sox as a pitching coach. In 1946, Stratton returned to the mound with an artificial leg, winning 18 games for the East Texas League Sherman-Denison Twins.
Jimmy Stewart starred as the 6’5” Stratton in Hollywood’s version of his life story. June Allyson played his wife, Ethel. Stratton served as technical advisor for the film, coaching Stewart on his pitching technique. The movie opened in Greenville with a gala parade with the Strattons and film star Allyson in the lead.
Stratton retired to Greenville, living here until his death in 1982.
Historic Downtown Greenville
Stroll along the route of Greenville's Historic Downtown Walking Tour for a glimpse at the everyday lives of the people who left their marks on the city throughout our history. Pick up a walking tour brochure and map from any of the friendly downtown merchants who offer out of the ordinary clothing, gifts, and antiques. Enjoy a specialty coffee or tea with dessert or sit down to an appetizing meal before saying good-bye to downtown Greenville's old-fashioned small town charm.
The Greenville Farmers Market in downtown Greenville offers an out-of-the-ordinary shopping experience. Choose from baskets of lush seasonal fruits and vegetables or browse the handmade items fashioned by local crafters. The Farmers Market is growing! Plans for special events keep the market hopping in spring and summer.
The Farmers Market is held at Market Square, between Washington and Lee Streets at Bois d'Arc Street.
Heritage Garden of Hunt County
Hunt County Master Gardeners created the Heritage Garden as a demonstration garden to showcase plant varieties recommended for this area by the Texas A&M University Extension Service. Plantings include Earth Kind roses and the Texas Superstar flowers and vegetables that perform well in north central Texas.
The garden also serves as a model for garden design and bed preparation and maintenance. The cottage-style permanent borders include perennial and annual flowers and decorative grasses. Trial beds test new varieties for adaptability to local growing conditions.
The Heritage Garden takes its inspiration from Victorian garden designs. The entrance steps are a legacy from the Victorian-era home that once stood on the garden site. Brick walkways were built from bricks salvaged from a downtown building.
Visitors are welcome to stroll through the Heritage Garden any time.
Heritage Garden of Hunt County: adjacent to Hunt County Extension Office, 2217 Washington St.
Researchers from across the country seek out the keys to their ancestry at the W. Walworth Harrison Public Library. A superior genealogy collection and local history references are geared to finding that elusive branch on the family tree. Expert help from reference librarians and frequent workshops research
W. Walworth Harrison Public Library: in Ja-Lu Park, 4807 Stonewall Street.
For more information Call 903-457-2992.
The Peace Garden in Forest Park Cemetery features the acclaimed larger than life bas relief sculpture "Peace in the World", featuring angels representing the world's varied ethnic groups. Five freestanding sculptured birds comprise "Peace in the Soul". The sculptures, created by Santa Fe artist Kirk Tatom, surround a garden space for peaceful contemplation.
Forest Park Cemetery: on Hwy 69 S. just south of the Fletcher Warren Civic Center
Mathews Prairie Nature Preserve
Mathews Prairie is a 100-acre native prairie meadow that has never been plowed. Part of the once vast (12 million acre) Texas Blackland Prairie, it's a little piece of wild America. Through an agreement with the Texas Nature Conservancy, it will remain that way.
The grasses and wildflowers that greeted early settlers still wave in the summer breezes. Native birds still feed on the seed-bearing grasses whose roots are anchored as much as 100 feet deep in the fertile blackland soil.
Birders and wildflower enthusiasts will enjoy a visit to the meadow. In fact, the sea of big bluestem and Indian grass waving in the wind is a treat for everyone.
To visit Mathews Prairie go 4.5 miles west from the intersection of US 69 and US 380 at SH 224 (west Lee St.). Turn north on FM 903, go 2.1 miles then turn west on CR 1116. Continue for 1.8 miles. A sign at the NE corner of CR 1119 and CR 1116 identifies the preserve. Parking is along the county roads.
More than 30 official Texas Historical Markers trace the history of Greenville buildings, VIPs, and events. Spend a day tracing the fascinating stories behind historic sites in the city. The Hunt County Historical Commission website includes subjects, locations, and complete marker inscriptions.