The Museum of South Texas History welcomes historic naturalist Arturo Longoria for a book signing and presentation of “The Sand Sheet” on Sunday, Oct. 22 at 2 p.m. Joining the presentation is Victoria Cappadona, from the Cappadona Ranch.
Attendees will be able to sample their Cappadona Ranch mesquite bean products, including roasted-mesquite bean coffee and mesquite bean jellies. Longoria’s book and Cappadona Ranch products will be available for purchase at the Museum Store.
More than two million acres of sand, born and blown from an ancient sea beginning about ten thousand years ago, stretch across eight counties in deep South Texas. Known as the Coastal Sand Plain, the Texas Coastal Sand Sheet, or just the Sand Sheet, it is a region of few people and little rainfall. Among the dunes and dry, brown flats, only the hardiest shrubs and grasses provide habitat for the coyotes, quail and rattlesnakes that live here.
Longoria, whose cabin sits amid the sand scrub and desert motts of granjeno, brasil and mesquite, knows this land intimately. A student of bushcraft and natural history, Longoria found refuge in this remote and hostile country as he recovered from a rare illness. He weaves a story of beauty and survival in a land where the vastness of Texas’ storied ranches and rich oil fields serves as the backdrop for a steady migration of long distance “travelers,” who cross over the border and into “el desierto” at great peril.
“The Sand Sheet” is about a harsh and dangerous landscape that has nonetheless given sustenance and solace to a writer for whom the Sand Sheet became both his home and his inspiration.
Longoria is a writer and former journalist and teacher. He is the author of two award-winning books of non-fiction, “Adios to the Brushlands” and “Keepers of the Wilderness,” also published by Texas A&M University Press. Cappadona Ranch is locally run by the Cappadonna family in Linn, Texas, who use natural products from South Texas.
Sunday Speakers Series is included in the fee for regular museum admission. FRIENDS of the Museum are admitted free as a benefit of FRIENDship.
This program is made possible with generous support from the Carmen C. Guerra Endowment. Mrs. Guerra was deeply committed to supporting educational opportunities in the Rio Grande Valley. This named endowment was created at the museum by her family to honor her memory and to continue her commitment to providing opportunities for education to the community.
The Museum of South Texas History is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums. It is located in downtown Edinburg at 200 North Closner Boulevard on the Hidalgo County Courthouse square. Hours of operation are from 1 p.m.–5 p.m. Sunday and 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Tuesday–Saturday. Founded in 1967 as the Hidalgo County Historical Museum in the 1910 Hidalgo County Jail, the museum has grown over the decades through a series of expansions to occupy a full city block. In 2003 following the completion of a 22,500 square foot expansion, the museum was renamed the Museum of South Texas History to better reflect its regional scope.
Today, the museum preserves and presents the borderland heritage of South Texas and Northeastern Mexico through its permanent collection and the Margaret H. McAllen Memorial Archives and exhibits spanning prehistory through the 20th century. For more information about MOSTHistory, including becoming a Friend, visit: www.MOSTHistory.org or call (956) 383-6911.