Historical Midland: Landmarks and Sites You Can’t Miss

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Skyscrapers, oil, natural gas, famous actors, and presidents. Midland, Texas, has them all. It’s not exceptionally old, and it got its name because it’s the halfway mark between El Paso and Fort Worth. Nowadays, it’s nicknamed “The Tall City” for its lofty skyline.

Midland is in West Texas in the Permian Basin and is Midland County’s county seat. It is one of the country’s top oil producers, and the city’s economy is primarily built on the petroleum industry. It has a semi-arid climate, but the city also experiences a few cold bouts during the winter.

Midland. Texas. USA on a map. - Texas View

About Midland Texas

Midland was founded as a railway stop on the Texas and Pacific Railway in June 1881 and was initially known as Midway Station. It turns out that there were too many Midways in Texas, so when the town was given its own post office in 1884, it renamed itself Midland.

By 1890 it was one of the most significant cattle shipping centers. Midland is now the nucleus of a 12-county Hereford cattle ranching region.

The massive Permian Basin is rich in oil, natural gas, potassium, salt, and anhydrite, and Midland developed into its financial and trade center.

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The city’s economy has always rested on the health of the oil business. The discovery of oil in the Permian Basin in 1923 resulted in Midland becoming the administration hub of the West Texas oil fields. Although Midland thrives on the oil business, it has grown into a regional distribution and telecommunication hub.

Facts About Midland Texas

The bare bones (which we will flesh out later) of Midland, Texas, can be summed up by the following facts:

  • Situated in the Permian Basin in West Texas, 31.9973°N, 102.0779°W
  • County: Midland County
  • Land area: 71.5 square miles, with 71.3 square miles made up of land and 0,2 square miles of water
  • Population size: 140931 in the city, 176605 in the greater area
  • Climate: Semi-arid, with an average temperature of 78.5°F
  • Crime: Midland’s crime index is 17 (100 indicates safest places)

What’s Midland Texas Known For?

Midland’s biggest claim to fame is the oil business. Thousands of people have flocked to the city to work in the industry since the discovery of oil in the 1920s. The Permian Basin supplies almost 20% of the USA’s gas and oil.

Midland is known as “The Tall City,” with the name arising from the tall downtown skyline. The vast oil industry has built many high-rise buildings. However, the Bank of America wins the prize for the tallest building between Phoenix and Fort Worth. It is 24 stories high, measuring 332 feet, and was built in 1978.

Until the Bank of America was built, the 22-story Wilco building had that honor, reaching a height of 308 feet. It had held the title since 1958.

In the last few years, Movoto Real Estate voted Midland the second-best city to live in Texas. MSN Money also rated it as the city with the second-fastest growth and the top income per capita in the country.

People From Midland Texas

A host of famous people hail from Midland, Texas, including many baseball and basketball players, and also the following:

  • Former First Lady Laura Bush
  • Former Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush
  • Woody Harrelson, actor
  • Tommy Lee Jones, actor
  • Jessica McClure (Baby Jessica, the infant rescued after falling down a well)
  • Raymond Benson, author continuing the Ian Fleming James Bond series
  • Larry L. King, author
  • Bob Fu, pastor
  • Jim Hall, race car designer and driver
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Where Is Midland Texas?

Midland is located in West Texas in the Permian Basin, on the southerly edge of the High Plains.

Cities And Towns Nearby Midland Texas

These are the cities and towns closest to Midland, showing the distance away from it.

Odessa18.5 miles
Stanton20.5 miles
Goldsmith29.7 miles
Andrews34 miles
Juarez, Mexico257.3 miles
El Paso257.6 miles
Fort Worth283.3 miles
Lubbock110.1 miles
San Antonio278.4 miles
Cities And Towns Nearby Midland Texas

Layout Of Midland Texas

Midland is the twenty-seventh largest community in Texas, consisting of 36 constituent suburbs. Midland is set out in a grid enveloped by Loop 250 and I-20. It has many parks dotted around the city. The city center is the business hub of Midland.

Best Areas In Midland Texas

  • Crestgate
  • Highland Park/Claydesta Plaza
  • Ridge road/S Lamesa Rd
  • Skyline Terrace West/Trinity West
  • Melody Acres/Meadowview
  • Polo Park/Saddle Club South
  • Grassland Estates
  • Green Tree North/Midland Country Club Estates
  • Spraberry
  • Greenwood

High-income families typically reside in the northwestern parts of the city. At the same time, the lower-income group tends to live on the eastern side of Midland.

Getting About Midland Texas

Midland’s primary modes of transport are by car, bus, and airplane.


Most people own cars, and those working in the oil industry tend to spend a lot of time driving around. Besides the I-20, some highways lead from Midland to Andrews, Fort Stockton, San Angelo, and Lubbock.


Greyhound serves the Midland area, and its bus station is located on Front Street near the downtown area.

EZRider buses provide affordable access to most parts of the city. There are stops close to most shopping centers and hotels. The main bus station is behind the Midland Center downtown, and there is a parking area there for bus users.


Midland International Air and Space Port serves the city and is situated between Midland and Odessa. United Express, American Eagle, and Southwest Airlines provide services from this airport.

Midland Airpark sits northeast of the city and provides general aviation services.

What To Do In Midland Texas

Midland has much to offer travelers and locals looking for something to do and has world-class cultural centers, festivals, and parks to visit.

  • Wagner Noël Performing Arts Center
  • Yucca Theater
  • Permian Basin Petroleum Museum
  • George W. Bush Childhood Home
  • Balmorhea State Park
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Wagner Noël Performing Arts Center

This $81-million center is home to the Midland-Odessa Symphony and Chorale, Midland Festival Ballet shows, Broadway in the Basin, Live on Stage Permian Basin, and the University Music department.

Yucca Theater

The Yucca theater puts on Summer Mummers and several plays during the year.

Permian Basin Petroleum Museum

It’s an interactive museum built on 40 acres that takes tourists on a step-by-step guided tour of the historical search for oil.

George W. Bush Childhood Home

The one-time home of the former Bush presidents has been opened to the public to preserve the history of one of the great American families.

Balmorhea State Park

Midland is just two hours’ drive to the Balmorhea State Park, where one finds the largest spring-fed pool in the world.

Where To Eat

  • TNT Donuts
  • Murray’s Delicatessen
  • Caramba’s Spanish Inn
  • Venezia
  • Luigi’s Italian Restaurant
  • The King & I
  • Wall Street Bar and Grill

Where To Stay

  • Doubletree by Hilton Midland Plaza
  • Fairfield Inn
  • Homewood Suites by Hilton
  • Sleep Inn & Suites Midland West
  • Hampton Inn Midland South

Midland FAQs

Is Midland Texas A Good Place To Live?

Midland is a great place to live with its suburban feel, high employment rates, and highest income per capita.

Is Midland Texas Safe?

There is less crime in Midland than in some of the bigger cities, and violent crime is not prevalent. Safety can become an issue in heavy rainstorms, as the streets tend to flood easily and cars have been washed away.

Is Midland Texas Worth Visiting?

Midland has myriad cultural centers and experiences, including libraries, galleries, performing arts centers, and museums. There are attractions for every type of tourist to visit.

5 Things You Need to Know About Midland Texas - Living in Midland Texas


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Christian Linden Texas View Headshot 3 - Texas View
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Christian Linden is a seasoned writer and contributor at Texas View, specializing in topics that resonate with the Texan community. With over a decade of experience in journalism, Christian brings a wealth of knowledge in local politics, culture, and lifestyle. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Communications from the University of Texas. When he's not writing, Christian enjoys spending weekends traveling across Texas with his family, exploring everything from bustling cities to serene landscapes.

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