The enduring mystery of Stonehenge: who built it and why? How? And what on earth is it doing in Texas?
There are two places you can visit Stonehenge in Texas: one in Ingram and the other in Odessa. Texas is such a large state they must’ve figured: why not? (actually, the two attractions were developed independently of each other)
Ingram, Texas: Stonehenge II … and some Easter Island Heads
Stonehenge II was the first Stonehenge in Texas, being completed in the early 90’s by Al Shepperd and his neighbor, Doug Hill. Al got the idea from an unused slab of limestone left over from Doug’s patio project.
Rather than stick with the pricey limestone motif, Al went all out with plaster and graphite-covered metal mesh over steel frames, creating a decent replica, albeit somewhat smaller at only 60% the height of the real deal.
Al Shepperd was so delighted with the effect that he decided to add a couple of 13 foot tall Easter Island statues as well because … well, probably because that was easier than attempting a replica of the Parthenon.
Al passed on in 1994, leaving the property to his son, Al, who sold it in 2010. The new owners were not as excited about the attraction as Al and Doug and Al were, however, so the Hill Country Arts Foundation from the nearby town of Ingram bought the whole kit and kaboodle and hauled it to: 120 Point Theatre Rd S., in Ingram, where you are invited to drop in and see it.
Odessa, Texas: University of Texas of the Permian Basin Stonehenge
That’s right – this replica is all stone and boasts greater size and far more accurate dimensions than the other Stonehenge in Texas (sorry Al and Doug). It is still smaller than the one over yonder in Wiltshire, England, though. There’s no outdoing that, I suppose.
Each limestone slab in the UTPB Stonehenge weighs more than 20,000 pounds and it has proven to not only draw visitors from I-20 but also to aid students at the university in their studies of geology, mathematics, art, and art history.
Connie Edwards had so much fun making his version of Stonehenge in Texas that, in interviews, he said he’d be happy making monuments just like it everywhere. He’s married, though, so that’s not gonna happen: you’ll have to go to Preston Smith Road on the UTPB campus in Odessa to see the Edwards’ Stonehenge.
You don’t have to go to England to see Stonehenge, it would seem, but you sure as heck do have to come to Texas to receive the kind of warm hospitality and delicious, nutritious breakfasts served up by our member, Texas bed and breakfast inns. Whether you’re in Ingram, Odessa – or anywhere in Texas, for that matter – there’s bound to be a bed and breakfast nearby. Look ’em up – you’ll be glad you did.