Mysteries at Your Museum – It’s our 150th anniversary!!

by Larry Lydick Curator, Vanishing Texana Museum

2022 is the 150th anniversary of the founding of our community at its current location and the Vanishing Texana Museum spent much of 2021 preparing for Jacksonville’s Sesquicentennial celebration. The word “Sesquicentennial” can be troublesome to remember and even more difficult to say, so how did it come to be used?
According to our 1972 hard cover dictionary, the first part of the word, Sesqui, is a Gothic word that means “one and a half.” It’s listed as a compound word, so it is only used in concert with another word, like “centennial.”

The word centennial is used to mark the completion of 100 years. So, together, Sesquicentennial literally means “one hundred years plus a half.” The first recorded use of the term in the United States was in 1919 and described the 150th anniversary of the founding of the City of Baltimore, MD in 1769. Since that time it has been a popular term to describe a 150 year anniversary.
It turns out, the use of centenary and centennial for commemorations of anniversaries is relatively recent. In his 1755 acclaimed publication, A Dictionary of the English Language, Samuel Johnson only defined centenary as “the number of a hundred” as in “a centenary of years,” and Noah Webster in his 1828 dictionary later added centennial without the adding the “anniversary” meaning.

The City of Jacksonville has appointed a Sesquicentennial Committee to organize events for the community to join in celebrating our 150th birthday. Your Vanishing Texana Museum will be providing a historical perspective of the last 150 years along with exciting exhibits, many from local collectors. We hope you also have something that might bring back some precious memories of our community. If so, please stop by the museum or email us at The museum is open every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from 11-4. Admission is free at our 300 South Bolton location.