The Office of History and Culture is the steward of the Courthouse-on-the-Square Museum and the Denton County Historical Park. Both sites are active hubs for educational development through the historical interpretation of our county’s story. Regularly rotating exhibits feature original content by our in-house designers. Exhibits are supported in part by funding from the City of Denton.
Team Spirit, A New Exhibit on the History of Public High Schools in Denton County
Opens September 8, 2023 Courthouse-on-the-Square Museum
The history of our local public high schools speaks to the influence that time and place has on us during these formative years. Each school has its own unique spirit that contributes to the character of Denton County. The triumphs and challenges of each generation, whether it be through academics, sports, or current events, shape the high school experience. Denton County takes great pride in the current and past student bodies and faculty who continue to demonstrate the growth and potential of our region.
This new exhibit features photographs and items throughout the decades that represent the high school experience in Denton County from academics to sports and everything in between. For Denton County alumni, consider it a homecoming celebration!
Making A Scene, An Exhibit on the Denton County Music Scene
September 8, 2022 – August 26, 2023
Take a musical journey through Denton’s legendary music scene in the new exhibit, Making a Scene, at the Courthouse-on-the-Square Museum. On view from September 8, 2022 to August 26, 2023, this exhibit features photographs, posters, and other items representing beloved artists, venues, and festivals over the decades that have played a vital role in putting Denton on the map, because when you think of Denton, you think music!
Music inevitably comes to mind when you think of Denton and the surrounding area. In 2008, Paste Magazine named the city of Denton the best music scene in the United States. From house shows to performance halls, generations of music lovers have cultivated what has become a legendary scene that crosses all genres. The artists, venues, festivals, and recording studios of our community have directly contributed to the evolution of music and the industry on a global scale. Music education programs in the area have attracted and produced talent that continues to reinvest in the local scene. The freedom to experiment and collaborate has created an iconic sound that is both eclectic and refined.
Form and Function
Opened September 10, 2021
Denton County’s rich clay soil has long provided the valuable source materials needed for making ceramics. Early settlers brought the knowledge and skill of producing utilitarian vessels to the area, creating one of the first industries in the county. As the industry developed, the potters began adorning their pieces with unique decorative elements, including glazes, markings, and distinctive forms. Their functional works set the groundwork for the expansion of ceramics into an art form that is present in Denton County today.
Century of Action: Women & The Vote
(Virtual Tour Now Streaming!)
On August 26, 1920, the 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified granting women the right to vote. For decades leading up to this achievement, women openly challenged the injustices they faced. Suffragist leaders realized to achieve reform they needed the power of the vote. Across the nation, women organized meetings and rallies and published literature to spread their message. They lobbied their local and state governments to gain the support of men in those positions. Beginning in the West, states slowly adopted voting rights for women paving the way for the passage of the federal amendment.
Ratification of the amendment was only the first step to equality. Across the country, women gathered at the polls to cast their ballots for the first time, yet states found ways to exclude individuals based on race and class. The fight for civil and equal rights carried on, creating opportunities for women to affect change. Reflecting on this complex history, these incredible feats have shaped this Century of Action.
This long-term exhibit can be found on the second floor of the Bayless-Selby House Museum in the Denton County Historical Park.
William C. McCormick, M.D. practiced medicine in Denton from 1962 until his death in 1999. Dr. McCormick received his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from North Texas State University and his medical degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. After serving several United States Air Force medical facilities, Dr. McCormick moved to Denton and opened his private practice in Internal Medicine in 1962. In 1995, he became Medical Director of Denton’s Flow Senior Health Center. Dr. McCormick began collecting vintage medical equipment in 1962. His medical artifacts came as a gift from patients and their families, from his fellow physicians, and from his own purchases.
The collection is on loan from Glenda McCormick, Dr. McCormick’s widow. The McCormick family is so proud to share this collection not only with the Denton County Museum, but also with everyone who visits. Bill was born in Denton and grew up here, so it certainly seems appropriate that his medical collection should be shared here, said Mrs. McCormick. The collection had previously been displayed at Medical City Denton.
40 For 40: Forty Artifacts for Forty Years of the Denton County Courthouse-on-the-Square Museum
In 1979, the Denton County Courthouse-on-the-Square Museum opened on the second floor in the former 16th District Courtroom. Over the years, the museum has acquired an impressive collection of Denton County history. From apple corers to zithers, the museum’s artifacts offer vignettes into the stories of our community. We are celebrating this milestone by showcasing a selection of 40 items from our collection