Title: Professor's book chronicles history of Wichita Falls
Author: Lynn Walker
Publisher: Times Record News
Ken Hendrickson has captured the history of Wichita Falls in photographs. The chairman emeritus of the Midwestern State University history department authored a book titled "Wichita Falls." It's one in a series of volumes called "Images of America" from Arcadia Publishing.
Hendrickson, 73, said he met a representative of the company at a conference several months ago and the project took form.
The 128-page book contains 220 photographs that trace the history of the city from its earliest days in the 1870s to present. Hendrickson wrote an introduction, but the city's past is told through pictures, for which the author composed captions.
The history is depicted in the chronological order of the community's development.
Hendrickson drew largely from the photo collections of the Times Record News archives and the Lester Jones Collection housed at the Midwestern State University Museum of Art.
"The newspaper had a great collection; MSU had a great collection," Hendrickson said. "I had a lot of help from people who were interested."
Hendrickson's field of interest during 40 years as a college professor has been recent American history, from the Civil War to present. He also specializes in Texas history and said he has always had an interest in the city's past.
The task of researching photos gave him new perspective on local history, such as the land sale that marked the birth of Wichita Falls, the early oil boom years and life in the Great Depression.
Hendrickson, who still teaches "half time" at MSU, came to Wichita Falls from Iowa, but he has a comeback when anyone makes a point that he is not a native Texan.
"I explain I've lived longer in Texas than Sam Houston did."
The soft cover book sells for $21.99 and is available at Books-a-Million, Hastings, Turtle Creek Trading Company, some Walgreens stores, the MSU Museum of Art and the MSU bookstore. It can also be ordered online at www.arcadiapublishing.com.
Hendrickson will have a book signing 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday at MSU's Museum of Art, 2 Eureka Circle by Sikes Lake.
Kenneth E. Hendrickson Jr., Regents' and Hardin Distinguished Professor of American History, emeritus, has taught at Midwestern State University since 1970. He is a nationally known scholar with interests in state and local, as well as national, history. Images of America: Wichita Falls is his 12th book.