Thursday, January 27, 2011

Volunteer Spotlight: Bob Payne

How long have you been volunteering with the WM?
Two years

What are your primary duties?
Courthouse Docent/Tour guide

How many hours per week do you usually volunteer? 
5 to 10 per week, sometimes more, lots more.

What type of training did you have? 
I attend all training offered by the Museum. I also have formal training as a briefing officer and public speaker.

How do you feel your work helps others?  
My orientation is towards history, I enjoy learning about history and teaching others about it. Especially the interesting and amusing elements of history which are not very well known. When people hear me talk about history, they usually smile a lot and that means they retain some of what they heard.

What do you enjoy most about WM?  
You can learn a lot about the History of Williamson County at the Museum. I also like working with the people who work and volunteer there.
What's unique about WM? 
I know of no other museum that reaches out to school children as much as The Williamson Museum. Also, it is small but is located in a great building in the center of town.

Personal information about yourself:
Native Texan, born in Big Spring, and raised on the Gulf Coast. Joined the navy in 1955 and served 25 years on active duty. Stationed all over the world at some very interesting places, I was directly involved in the Cuban Missile crisis at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba in 1963/64 and served with the US Marines in a combat role in Vietnam. Was responsible for building Top Secret Intelligence facilities in Florida, Hawaii, VietNam, and Guam. Was also a briefing officer in Washington, DC.

In retirement, I volunteer at the Veterans Affairs hospital in Temple, am active in the Veterans of Foreign Wars, (VFW), Habitat for Humanity, the Red Cross, and am Editor of the Naval Cryptologic Veterans Association (NCVA) newsmagazine CRYPTOLOG. I also sit on the Board of Directors of the NCVA. My hobby is golf, which I play as much as possible.

Married to Edith Payne, we have a son, Walter, who is in Real Estate in Austin and a daughter, Maria, who lives in Belton with my grandson, Robert.

Have you ever thought of volunteering at the Museum? It’s not just about giving tours. To sign up for February training, contact Celina Aguirre at or 512-943-1670.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Adopt An Artifact Campaign

A primary part of The Williamson Museum’s mission, and the job of the Curator & Registrar is to collect and preserve the history of Williamson County. Ideally, each artifact in our collection should be housed in an acid-free box, and wrapped in acid-free tissue paper. Other storage needs include new shelving in the storage areas, bags for storing small artifacts, numbering supplies (India ink, B-72 acryloid, and tags), padded hangers, acid-free folders, and gloves for handling artifacts.

Abby and I have been working to organize the limited space we have available in the collections storage area. By housing the artifacts in boxes with protective tissue paper, we can further protect them from the elements and ensure that they will still be around for generations to come. We can free up space on our shelves by stacking smaller boxes and change wasted space into valuable space for storage of more collections artifacts. The truth is that we never really stop collecting things, and we have to have make sure we can properly protect everything.

And the best part is- You can help!
Your tax-deductible donation to the Adopt an Artifact program will help pay for the care, maintenance, conservation, and storage of the Permanent Collection. You can name an item of your choice—a photograph, an antique tool, a piece of glass, an article of clothing. Or, you can let us decide for you. Your donation is used for the purchase of archival materials such as boxes, tissue paper, shelf lining, etc.

Any amount is welcome, and to show our appreciation, you will be listed in our next newsletter as a proud member of the Adopt an Artifact program. You can contact the museum for more information.


Thursday, January 6, 2011

Museum Volunteers Helped Make 2010 Holiday Events Historic

The Williamson Museum is very fortunate to have many talented and dedicated volunteers.  From decorating the Museum to toasting in the New Year it was a pleasure to have worked alongside some very special volunteers this Holiday Season.

A big Thank You to all our volunteers.   I can't wait to see what great things we will do together in 2011.  I have posted a pic below of some of our volunteers in action.


December 4, 2010 - Christmas Stroll Parade
Volunteers from left to right: Linda Turner, Olivia Denton (Linda's granddaughter),
Bob Brownfield, Bob Payne