El Paso’s most historic home and El Paso’s only house museum
Capstone Productions Inc. announces the release of its latest heritage video, “Magoffin Home Update 2008,” now available on DVD. The 66-minute documentary explores the history and heritage of the adobe hacienda where Magoffin family members lived for more than a century. The new DVD incorporates the 2003 program “El Paso’s Magoffin Home,” and shows restorations to the Home that were added by the State of Texas in 2005.
Funding has been provided by the El Paso County Historical Commission and in part by Humanities Texas, the state partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities. “We have funded the Update of the original TV program because the State restored the Magoffin Home’s historic rooms to their original use by Joseph Magoffin, the Home’s builder and one of El Paso’s pioneers,” said Bernie Sargent, Chairman of the El Paso County Historical Commission. “The Home seen in the 2003 DVD was the look created in 1930 by Josephine Magoffin, the daughter of Joseph and Octavia Magoffin.”
“She modernized her parent’s home with utilities and changed the appearance and use of five of the Home’s historic rooms,” Sargent said. “Texas historians wanted the Magoffin Home to reflect the look of the 1890s when Joseph Magoffin was mayor of El Paso. We teamed up with Humanities Texas to fund the update of the DVD to show this Texas Historic Site as it is now.”
Production of the Update program was completed by El Paso’s Capstone Productions Inc. and is now in distribution. Magoffin Update program producer, Jackson Polk of Capstone Productions, also produced the 2003 program “El Paso’s Magoffin Home” on DVD. “In the original program, we documented the Home as it was decorated in 1930 by Josephine Magoffin Glasgow as she moved into the Home with her young family,” Polk said. In 2005, Texas historians decided to return the Home to the way it looked in 1898 when her parents lived there. The restoration included wall paper, carpets, ceilings, and the rearrangement of five rooms of original furniture. This new DVD incorporates all of the original TV program into this new DVD called “Magoffin Home Update 2008.”
“El Paso’s Magoffin Home” was produced on DVD in 2003 with funding from the El Paso County Historical Society, El Paso Electric Company, the Magoffin Companeros, and Capstone Productions Inc. The Update program provides schools and the general public with a teaching tool to understand this one-of-a-kind historic house museum that shows how the Magoffins lived when the wild frontier of El Paso was turned into a modern city. Joseph Magoffin was instrumental in this transformation of El Paso, and his 20-room adobe home, complete with most of the family’s original furniture, is now restored to look like it was when Joseph lived there.
A multi-cultural family with roots in Mexico and Ireland, the Magoffins were one of El Paso’s most influential pioneering families. Their adobe home, built in 1875, was El Paso’s social center until the early 1900s. “El Paso Magoffin’s Home” recreates a lavish party held in the homestead.
Guests in period dress arrive in horse-drawn carriages and enjoy an eight-course dinner. The program features a guided tour of the historic home and its original family furnishings. Viewers learn how adobe keeps homes cool in the summer and warm in the winter. The program also recounts local lore about the friendly spirits that are said to inhabit the home.
Today the Magoffin Home is a Texas State Historic Site operated by the Texas Historical Commission, but half a century ago, the home faced possible demolition. “El Paso’s Magoffin Home” tells how the last Magoffin to live in the homestead saved it, preserving an important piece of Texas and Southwest history for future generations.
The 2003 production called “El Paso’s Magoffin Home” is narrated by local TV personality Suzanne Michaels. The program is a co-production of Capstone Productions Inc. and the El Paso County Historical Society, which provided historical photos and information.
“Magoffin Home Update 2008” is produced by Jackson Polk, Capstone Productions Inc. and distributed by elpasogold.com . It is hosted by Magoffin Home docent Sharon Cowell.