The Panhandle-Plains Historical Society began collecting materials relating to regional history in 1921. Most of the historical and archival items collected during the early years of the Society dated back only to the mid-1870s when Euro-Americans began settling the Panhandle-Plains area. The Society’s history collections now include a mix of special and everyday items reflecting not only the diverse life styles and occupations of the region’s settlers but also their collecting interests. While the majority of the collections relate to the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the numbers of objects from the mid- to late 20th century has significantly increased. Current collecting efforts are filling gaps and adding late 20th century artifacts to the collections.
The museum‘s clothing and textile collection, consisting of women’s clothing and accessories, men’s clothing and children’s and infants' items, as well as household textiles, quilts, pillows, southwestern woven textiles and other miscellaneous items, represents the social, cultural and economic history of the region.