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Texas Plains Trail Region

Participant in the Texas Historical Commission's
Texas Heritage Trails Program

Wellington


Wellington Post Office, Photo by Rick Vanderpool

Six miles north of Wellington, in the Collingsworth Pioneer Park, visitors today can camp and picnic where Comanche Chief Quanah Parker and other native groups once pitched their tepees.  Commemorating that connection is the park’s giant sculptural arrow, one of many planted in the ground along the region’s Quanah Parker Trail.

Located in the park is a kiosk built with some of the framework of the US 83 truss bridge that once spanned the Salt Fork of Red River. The interpretive panels outline the history of Collingsworth County, truss bridge construction, the plunge of Bonnie and Clyde into the river, and the historic crossing. The park is also home to a state historical marker recalling the day when Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow crashed their car into the river. The famed outlaws kidnapped two responding lawmen, but left behind a clip from Clyde’s gun and a glove from Bonnie’s right hand—items on display today at the Collingsworth County Museum. Museum exhibits highlight Native American cultures alongside artifacts from early agricultural and ranching days.

The museum overlooks brick streets and the 1931 Classical Revival–style Collingsworth County Courthouse.  Other downtown attractions include an Ozark Trail monument (marking a historic roadway), the Wellington Ritz Theatre (a restored 1929 movie theater offering movies and live music), and the Wellington post office (home of a 1940 mural by Bernard P. Arnest depicting early settlers).

Nine miles east of Wellington on State Route 203 is a surviving 1939 truss bridge spanning the Salt Fork of Red River.


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