Time is on your side at the Southwest Museum of Clocks & Watches
The Southwest Museum of Clocks & Watches in Lockhart has plenty of time. They can kill it, but can't destroy it. They can waste it, but can't change it. The museum walls are covered in beautifully crafted antique clocks. Each timepiece is a timeless work of art.
The collection, which includes a 1790 clock organ once owned by P.T. Barnum, started innocently for Gene Galbraith. After 20 years of teaching at Crockett High School, he retired and opened an antique shop with his wife. Gene found that ornate clocks weren't worth much when they didn't work.
So, Gene enrolled in a five-year clock repair apprenticeship, and hung out his shingle in Austin. He was working as a freelance church choir director in Lockhart, when a member mentioned that the county was looking for someone to refurbish the clock overlooking the town square.
Fixing courthouse clocks has led to fame, if not fortune, for Gene. He's lauded as the man in Texas to restore century-old clock mechanisms. So far he and his crew have refurbished 13 historic courthouse clocks.
The Southwest Museum of Clocks & Watches is at 101 E. San Antonio in Lockhart, across the street from the Caldwell County Courthouse. It is the only museum in Texas with a working tower clock with the mechanism visible. Visitors are welcome to see it on Saturdays, 10am to 4pm. For more information, call 512/658-3853 or go to www.swmuseumofclocks.org.
1,160th in a series. Collect them all. Day Trips, Vol. 2, a book of "Day Trips," is available for $8.95, plus $3.05 for shipping, handling, and tax. Mail to: Day Trips, PO Box 33284, South Austin, TX 78704.