Meet the Staff
Ray & Judy Richey
President and Curators
Ray is a native of Wichita Falls and did not think must about history until he and his wife, Judy, took a trip to Washington D.C. in 1980s. It was then their love for America, all that it was, is, and can be, became their passion. They begin collecting Civil War and Victorian Era artifacts. Ray's collection contains both Confederate and U.S. Military artifacts and Judy's collection of women's and children's dresses span the years of 1860 thru the turn of the century. The military collection is one of the largest private collections in the world and the dress collection is exquisite. After many years, they wanted to share their collections with the public in a first class museum. They also wanted everyone who visited to know of the personal sacrifice of a generation who lived during a most turbulent time of our nation's history. It is the desire for every visitor to pause and appreciate the cost of freedom and leave with a renewed sense of patriotism.
Ray is the President of the Board for the non-profit Texas Civil War Museum. Judy is the curator for the dress collection and Ray serves as curator and exhibit designer for the military collection and the Texas Confederate Museum collection.
She is a 7th generation Texan who grew up in a small, central Texas town and graduated from Baylor University with a BBS in Education. She attended graduate school at the University of North Texas where she received her certification in History. She taught in the Arlington ISD 16 years. After leaving the teaching field, she continued work in the education field as a Major Gifts Officer for Baylor University Development. She has served as Vice President of the Texas Historical Foundation, founding secretary of the Texas and Southwestern Collectors Association, and past president of the Texas Association of Museums Trustees, Senior Fellow for the Grady McWhiney Research Foundation and is Trustee Emeritus for the Texas Confederate Museum collection. She is a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Daughters of the Republic of Texas, United Daughters of the Confederacy, Dallas Southern Memorial and numerous history and museum associations. Cynthia is also a member of the First United Methodist Church of Fort Worth, Colleyville Chapter of the National Charity League, and is the mother of triplets.
John wears many hats at the TCWM. Some are infantry and some are artillery, but he also is the Resident Historian and works at the front desk. He is a human encyclopedia concerning the Civil War and will share his knowledge with the guests that come to the museum seeking such knowledge. John's family were some of the first residents in Euless, Texas and Northeast Tarrant County has always been his home. He is a member of the Sons of Confederate Veterans and the Sons of the American Revolution. He remembers talking with some of his grandfathers and uncles who fought in the war. He says he has been involved in the hobby since he fought at the Battle of Chickamauga--(but really since the Centennial Anniversary of the War Between the States.) John was recruited to work at the museum after retiring from the printing industry. One of his favorite things about being with the TCWM is getting to be the official book reviewer and reading the latest books coming from the printing presses. Look for Johnny Reb's reviews under the education tab.
Sherry Canada Bell
Sales Assistant, Magnolia Mercantile
Sherry is the Director of Volunteers at the Texas Civil War Museum. In the mornings you will also see her working the front desk. She is a native of Fort Worth and has spent the majority of her life travelling Civil War battlefields extensively. On occasion she would reenact the period as well. Working at the museum has allowed her to continue this interest and she enjoys visiting with guests who share their family stories and experiences.
Director of Sales
John Bell is a native of Gladewater, Texas and after a few years in North Carolina was glad to return to Texas upon retirement. He is a member of the Texas State Historical Association and National Rifle Association. John first became interested in the Civil War in a junior high history class and it led him to tracing his Confederate ancestors who served in the war. This passion naturally led him to reenacting which he began in 1987. John is a full time volunteer at the museum. Sometimes he will be helping in the gift shop, other times he can be found educating the students in the galleries or visiting with the guests about the exhibits. John enjoys hearing other people's stories who come to visit from all around the world.
Tour and School Reservation Coordinator/Sales Associate
Nancy joined our staff in 2011 and quickly became Reservations Coordinator. She will be working with the schools and bus tours to facilitate their visits. In addition, it will be her smiling face which first greets each guest at the museum as her duties also include being a sales associate and receptionist. Prior to joining the TCWM she was an administrative assistant in the business world. Nancy is a life-long Texan and native of Weatherford and mom to one son and daughter-in-law. Her hobbies include reading and singing in the church choir and taking care of her two “demonic” cats. What she enjoys most about working at the museum is meeting people from all over the world, its relaxed family atmosphere, and learning about the WBTS from our resident historian.
Facility and Operations Manager
Marcus is currently managing the facility and helping in all aspects of museum operations. He claims “this is one of the best ‘put together’ museums ever seen.”
Maybe because he helps the curator put it together, helps the front desk with visitors, helps the administration with their needs and works along side the gift shop operations.
Marcus is a Weatherford native and grew up learning Civil War history. Marcus graduated from Crown Southwest in 2010 with a Bachelors in youth ministries. When he is not working here he serves as Youth Director at Southwood Baptist Church in Fort Worth. Marcus is married to wife, Cayla, and they have a daughter, Brinley Sue.
His hobbies include collecting old Bibles and running. Marcus says the best thing about working here is helping the guests, and especially the children, to learn about history. That service is a blessing to him as well as everyone else.