Monica Hughes

monica hughes

How did you become the director of the Butler Longhorn Museum?

When I retired from NASA in 2005, I went totally stir crazy in just a week. I knew I needed to do something to keep myself from walking in circles. I was already serving on the board of the museum and they needed a director, so it made sense for me to resign from the board and become the director instead. While at NASA, I was over the artifacts that flew on the shuttle, so I already had experience with museum curator work. Plus I love history. My favorite quote is, “If you don’t know your past, then you have no idea where you are going.”


What did you do at NASA?

I worked there for 25 years and was in Astronaut Support Services. I assisted with everything from training and pre-flight with the astronauts to launch and landings back on earth. I supported the crews from the Soyuz mission to the launch of the space shuttle program. There were only a handful of women working at NASA when I started, mainly in secretarial positions, but when I retired it was totally different. I am very proud of the work I did there to help pave the way for other women. 

What were the astronauts like?

Very intelligent, always kind, and very respectful to everyone involved in the space program.

Favorite thing about living in League City?

We are a growing community, but there are still plenty of places to appreciate nature. 

Favorite League City restaurant?

Red River BBQ. 

What one or two words describe League City?

Family-oriented.

Favorite thing to do in League City?

Running the trails with my dog Bogart. 

The museum is officially reopening Jan. 5, 2019 after being severely damaged by Hurricane Harvey. What should people expect?

In addition to making repairs to the damage caused by all the flooding, we have given the museum a facelift. Folks will see a more modern and bright color palette, redesigned and rearranged exhibits, and more photos and information about the Butler family. The Butlers are an integral part of our City’s history. League City developed around the Butler Ranch and Cattle Station, and Milby Butler played a crucial role in saving the iconic Texas Longhorn from extinction. We already had a soft “reopen” of the museum in late November and everyone who has stopped by so far for a tour has been extremely complimentary. The official re-opening ceremony will be on Saturday, January 5, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Entry to the museum will be free that day, but we will be accepting donations.