Museum Services

Texas is home to more than 900 local history museums. Whether housed in a historic structure or a state-of-the-art new building, each one is dedicated to telling the story of a community’s unique history. Collectively, they preserve the real places and the real things that tell the whole story of Texas.

The Museum Services Program enables small history museums to better carry out their missions by helping them to increase their capacity for meeting professional standards. We do this by providing the following services at no cost:

  • Consultations
  • Training
  • Communication
  • Resources

To be included in the THC Atlas, a history museum must exhibit and interpret objects and stories in a structure designed for public visitation, on a regular schedule at least 120 days per year.



Museum Services and the Field Services Alliance are conducting a survey to better understand how we can improve the services and resources we provide to museums and other cultural service organizations. Please take a few minutes (less than ten) to complete the survey and let us know how you currently use our services. Additionally, please let us know what training and resources you will find useful in the next two years.

Consultations

Program staff can provide free, individualized assistance and support to museums in any aspect of museum operations, including but not limited to:

  • Starting, planning, or reorganizing a museum
  • Writing mission statements
  • Strategic planning
  • Disaster preparedness and recovery
  • Educational program development
  • Exhibit planning and design
  • Interpretation of collections
  • Board development and relations
  • Volunteer recruitment and training 
  • Special events
  • Marketing and social media
  • Collections care
  • Security
  • Fundraising
  • Professional ethics

Training

Free Webinar: Ages and Stages of a Museum Career
Thursday, June 27, 2:00 p.m. CT
Sarah Erdman, Founder, Cabinet of Curiosities LLC and Editor, The Care and Keeping of Museum Professionals
Learn more and register now!

Free Webinar: Incorporating AR/VR Technology Within Your Museum: A Behind the Scenes Look

Tuesday, July 30, 11:00 a.m. CT
Dani Marshall, Museum of Texas Tech University
Learn more and register now!

Workshop Series: Understanding Audiences and Visitors

July 9, 11, 15 and August 6, 8, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Various Locations
Learn more and register now!

Free Webinar: Insurance Basics for Historical Collections

Thursday, August 22, 10:00 a.m. CT
Joy Simpson, Higginbotham
Learn more and register now!

Free Webinar: Environmental Monitoring for Museums--The Basics
September 19, 10:00 a.m.
Stephanie Allen-Givens, The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza
Learn more and register now!

Communications

Check out the "Highlights" and "What’s New" sections below for announcements and current news from Museums Services.

Program staff sends email notices on timely information about current trends, available resources, upcoming grant deadlines, training opportunities, and other types of assistance. To be added to this email list, contact program staff.
 

 

Resources

The Helpful Resources page provides a number of downloadable resource lists, articles, and other useful information for museums. All previous Museum Services Webinars are archived and available to view at any time. The Connect and Learn page provides links to trainings hosted by other organizations and services, as well as listings of museum professional organizations. Grants and Fundraising offers resources for grant-writing, fundraising ideas, and an extensive list of grant opportunities relevant to museums in Texas.

 

Fast
Facts

59%

Of collecting institutions in the U.S. have had their collections damaged by light exposure

More Fast Facts

What's New

Workshop Series: Understanding Audiences and Visitors

Co-sponsored by the Texas Association of Museums (TAM), this series of one-day workshops, held across the state, will help participants learn how to collect visitor information, locate demographic research, identify overall demographic trends, and explore how to use that information to keep their museums relevant. These workshops will address ways to measure audiences, identify and target future audiences, and leverage free or low-cost resources for continual market scanning. Combining presentation with informal interaction, instructor Erin McClelland, an Austin-based independent museum specialist, will introduce participants to useful tools, including a simple spreadsheet design for tabulating data and audience profiles. Particularly appropriate for marketing and development staff, these workshops are designed for those responsible for interaction with visitors and audiences.

Workshops will run from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and will be held at the following dates and locations:

July 9, Lubbock
July 11, Waco
July 15, San Antonio
August 6, Denton
August 8, Beaumont


 $50 for TAM Individual Members, $25 for TAM Institutional Members, and $75 for non-members. The Texas Historical Commission is offering a limited number of sponsored spots in each workshop session at the Institutional Member rate, $25, to staff at small history museums who are not members of TAM. Click here to apply for a sponsored workshop spot. 

The Texas Historical Commission (THC) offers awards to recognize worthy accomplishments and exemplary leadership in the preservation of Texas’ heritage. - See more at: http://www.thc.texas.gov/awards#sthash.iNC3hcrG.dpuf
The Texas Historical Commission (THC) offers awards to recognize worthy accomplishments and exemplary leadership in the preservation of Texas’ heritage. - See more at: http://www.thc.texas.gov/awards#sthash.iNC3hcrG.dpuf
The Texas Historical Commission (THC) offers awards to recognize worthy accomplishments and exemplary leadership in the preservation of Texas’ heritage. - See more at: http://www.thc.texas.gov/awards#sthash.iNC3hcrG.dpuf

More About Workshop Series: Understanding Audiences and Visitors