Midland is a city in and the county seat of Midland County, Texas, United States, on theSouthern Plains of the state's western area. A small portion of the city extends into Martin County. At the 2010 census, the population of Midland was 111,147, and a 2013 estimate of 123,933 making it the twenty-fifth most populous city in the state of Texas. Due to the oil boom in Midland, certain officials have estimated the population to be hovering around 155,000 to 165,000. The population of the Midland metropolitan area, composed of Midland County, grew 4.6 percent to 151,662 between July 1, 2011, and July 1, 2012, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. It is the principal city of the Midland, TexasMetropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Midland County. The metropolitan area is also a component of the larger Midland−Odessa, Texas Combined Statistical Area, which had an estimated population of 295,987 on July 1, 2012. People in Midland are called Midlanders.
Midland was originally founded as the midway point between Fort Worth and El Paso on theTexas and Pacific Railroad in 1881. The city has received national recognition as the hometown of former First Lady Laura Bush, and the onetime home of former PresidentGeorge H. W. Bush, former President George W. Bush, and former First Lady Barbara Bush.
|City of Midland|
Downtown Midland in 2007
|Nickname(s): "The Tall City"|
|Motto: "Feel the Energy!"|
Location in the state of Texas
|Coordinates: 32°0′N 102°6′W|
Nicknamed "The Tall City," Midland has long been known for its downtown skyline. Most of downtown Midland’s major office buildings were built during a time of major Permian Basin oil and gas discoveries. The surge in energy prices in the mid-1980s set about a building boom for Downtown Midland. For many years, the 22-story Wilco Building in downtown Midland was the tallest building between Fort Worth andPhoenix. Today, Midland's tallest building is the 24-story Bank of America Building which stands at a height of 332 feet (101 m). Four buildings over 500 feet (150 m) tall were planned in the 1980s, including one designed by world famous architect I.M. Pei. The great Oil Bust of the mid-1980s killed any plans for future skyscrapers. A private development group was planning to build Energy Tower at City Center, which was proposed to stand at 870 feet tall with 59 floors (6 floors underground and 53 above). If it had been built, Energy Tower would have been Texas' 6th tallest building.
Another glimpse of downtown Midland.
Summit Building(center) with theWilco Building in the background.
The Petroleum Buildingwith Centennial Towerto the right.
Basic Energy Services Building
Doubletree Hotel in downtown Midland
Yucca Theater at the Petroleum Building
First Presbyterian Church in Midland
Another glimpse of downtown from Ohio Ave.
Midland College is home to the McCormick Gallery, located inside the Allison Fine Arts Building, on the college's main campus. Throughout the year, changing exhibits at the McCormick feature works of MC students and faculty, visiting artists, and juried exhibits. The Arts Council of Midland serves as the promotional and public relations vehicle to promote the arts and stimulate community participation and support. The McCormick is also home to the Studio 3600 Series, established in 2006 to "spotlight selected art students and provide them the opportunity to exhibit key works that identify the style they have crafted over a period of time."
The Midland-Odessa Symphony & Chorale (MOSC) has performed in the Permian Basin for over 45 years, and is the region's largest orchestral organization, presenting both Pops and Masterworks concerts throughout the year. Composed of professional musicians from the area as well as Lubbock, San Angelo and other surrounding cities, the MOSC also is home to three resident chamber ensembles, the Lone Star Brass, Permian Basin String Quartet and West Texas Winds. These ensembles are made up of principal musicians in the orchestra, who come to the area from across the United States.
The Chateau Club on Wall Street hosted some musical greats in the early seventies. Managed byD.M. Williams, Club Chateau's house band consisted of a line up of some of the nation's best known R&B artists from such well known singing groups as The Coasters, The Drifters, and The Shirelles. The band was led by blues great Johnny Heartsman. Heartsman was a master of the Hammond B3 organ, guitar, and flute. Local talent consisted of drummer Jeff Colvin and guitarist Larry Grubb. Heartsman hosted a Sunday afternoon jam session. It was one Sunday that young West Texan, Jay Boy Adams wandered in to the Sunday afternoon jam. Williams and Heartsman hired him on the spot. Adams was not yet twenty one. He remained as the regular guitar player and singer for the next two years. Adams will regularly credit his time with The Heartsman Trio as his learning ground and credit Heartsman as a major influence in his musical development.
The Midland Community Theatre (MCT) has been entertaining the Permian Basin since 1946 with musicals, comedies, dramas, mysteries, children's theatre and melodramas. MCT produces 15 shows each year in three performance spaces - Davis Theatre I (485 seats) and Mabee Theatre II (155 seats), located in the Cole Theatre, and the annual fundraiser Summer Mummers in the historic Yucca Theatre. MCT has an extensive education program, including the Pickwick Players (teen performance troupe), Theatre School programs and OutReach classes. MCT operates with a professional staff of 20 and depends upon the hard work and dedication of hundreds of volunteers in the Permian Basin to produce shows throughout the year. MCT is a member of the American Association of Community Theatre, and hosted the 2006 AACT International Theatrefest.
Twice each year, the Phyllis & Bob Cowan Performing Arts Series at Midland College presents free cultural and artistic performances of "international interest and scope to stimulate and inspire the Midland arts community," and entertain the community at-large. The series was endowed in 1999, and has since brought a diverse selection of entertainers to Midland, including Andre Watts, the Eroica Trio, the Moscow Boys Choir, the Flying Karamazov Brothers, thePreservation Hall Jazz Band, 3 Mo' Divas, Ballet Folklorico de Mexico de Amalia Hernandez and the Golden Dragon Acrobats of China.
Sitting on the southern edge of the Llano Estacado and located near the center of the Permian Basin oil fields, Midland's economy has long been focused on petroleum exploration and extraction. Providing more information about this industry is the Permian Basin Petroleum Museum, located on the outskirts of town near Interstate 20. The museum houses numerous displays on the history, science, and technology of oil and gas development. The Permian Basin Petroleum Museum houses a collection of race cars designed by Jim Hall, a long time Midland resident who pioneered the use of aerodynamic downforce in the design of Formula One cars.
Midland is also home to The Museum of the Southwest. The Museum features a collection of paintings by various members of the Taos Society of Artists and Karl Bodmer as well as engravings by John J. and John W. Audubon. Located within the same museum complex are the separate Children's Museum and the Marian W. Blakemore Planetarium. The Museum of the Southwest is housed in the Turner Mansion, the historic 1934 home of Fred and Juliette Turner.
Headquartered in Midland is the Commemorative Air Force (CAF). Associated with the CAF is theAmerican Airpower Heritage Museum. The museum, accredited by the American Alliance of Museums, displays and preserves World War II artifacts and memorabilia, as well as a collection of original WWII nose art panels. As part of the museum tour, visitors can see 14-20 aircraft on display in the CAF hangar. A research library and archives house a significant oral history collection and give the public access to the museum's information resources.
On display at the Midland County Historical Museum are reproductions of the "Midland Man," the skeleton of a Clovis female found near the city in 1953 . Analysis of the remains by Dr. Curtis R. McKinney using uranium-thorium analysis showed that the bones are 11,600 ± 800 years old. Presenting his findings at the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America in 1992, Dr. McKinney said, "[T]he Midland Woman was related to the earliest ancestors of every Indian who lives today, and she is very likely the only representative of those who created the Clovis cultures."