Helpful Resources

Click on the links below to find resources related to the following subjects. Additional resources on any topic are available by contacting Museum Services staff. Many of the free webinars in our archives also address these topics.

Administration and Planning

Alternatives to Starting a Museum
The Art of Relevance
Basic Readings for the Small Museum
Code of Ethics for Museums
Developing a Mission Statement
History Relevance
Hotel Occupancy Tax Toolkit
How Can History-Focused Organizations Invest in Stability
How to Build an Effective Nonprofit Board
Laws of Texas Pertaining to Museums
Mission and Institutional Planning
Running a Museum: A Practical Handbook
The Participatory Museum
Protecting African American Historic Places in Texas: A Legal Community Toolkit
Starting a Museum Resources
Strategic Planning Resources
Texas Commission on the Arts Tools for Results Toolkit
What's Next? A Guide to Museum Transitions and Closures and a Supplement for Texas Museums
Which Museum Assessment Program is Right for My Museum? and 13 Tips to Expedite the Museum Accreditation Process

Collections Care

Active Collections
American Institute for Conservation
Benson Ford Research Center Care, Storage, and Handling of Objects 
Canadian Conservation Institute
Cleaning the Museum without Damage
Collections Management Policy Toolkit
Connecting to Collection Care
Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts
Conservation Online
Create a Cornerstone for Good Collections Management
Found in Collections: A Reference Guide for Reconciling Undocumented Objects in Historical Museums
Library of Congress
Museum Textile Services Resources
National Park Service’s Conserve O Gram Technical Leaflet Series
National Park Service’s Museum Handbook
National Park Service's Preservation Breifs
Northeast Document Conservation Center
Northern States Conservation Center
PastPerfect YouTube Channel
Planning Your RE-ORG Project
Preservation Glossary
Smithsonian Museum Conservation Institute
Sustaining Places

Community Engagement

Community Issue Exhibition Toolkit
Community Ties: Understanding What Attaches People to the Places Where They Live
Designing for Engagement: Five Steps for Co-Creating Exhibits and Programs with Your Communities
How Museums Are Reaching Out to Their Local Communities
Museums Need Collections and Connections
Rural America Placemaking Toolkit
Stretch Your Operational Wings: Tools for Assertive Engagement
Towards a More Community-Centered Museum
Why Museums Should Be Proud Polling Sites

COVID-19 Pandemic

10 Museum Tips for Connecting with Community During COVID-19
AASLH COVID-19 Resources
AAM COVID-19 Resources and Information for the Museum Field
Caring for Heritage Collections During the COVID-19 Pandemic
COVID Update: Fall 2021
Governor's Strike Force to Open Texas
IMLS COVID-19 Resources for Libraries and Museums
Impact of COVID-19 on People in the Museum Field
Maintaining Financial Stability in a Crisis
NTHP Resources in Response to the Coronavirus
Reopening Archives, Libraries, and Museums Toolkit for Museums
Vaccines and US: Cultural Organizations for Community Health

Consultants and Vendors

Museum Consultants Working in Texas
Ethical Contracting: Is Your Museum Doing It?
Hiring a Conservation Professional
Proxy Researcher List from the Archivists of Central Texas
Suppliers of Preservation and Conservation Materials
Ten Questions to Ask a Conservator
Using a Museum Consultant 
Working with Independent Museum Professionals
Writing Better RFPs

Disaster and Emergency Planning and Response

Seeking immediate assistance with disaster preparedness or emergency response? Contact the National Heritage Responders at 202-661-8068 or TX-CERA at 669-237-2243 for expert guidance and on-site support.

Disaster Checklists and Planning:
Developing a Disaster Preparedness/Emergency Response Plan
Disaster Plan Template for Museums
Disaster Preparedeness and Emergency Response Plans for Small Museums
dPlan™ (NEDCC)
Emergency! If You're First
Emergency Drying Procedures for Water Damaged Collections
Emergency Preparedness Checklist for Museums
Facilities Risk Assessment for Museums
Location Risk Assessment for Museums
Preparation For a Hurricane 
Salvage Priorities for Museums
Texas Division of Emergency Management Disaster Recovery Resources

Disaster Articles and Resources:
Disaster Preparedness Activity
Disaster Preparedness and Recovery Resources
Emergency Collections Assessment Program
Emergency Response and Salvage Mobile App
Field Guide to Emergency Response
Heritage Emergency National Task Force
How Libraries Can Prepare for Natural Disasters and Preserve Community History
Museum and Cultural Heritage Industry Workplace Program
National Heritage Responders
Northeast Document Conservation Center 
Resources for Hurricane Response and Recovery
Salvage of Water-Damaged Collections 
Texas Cultural Emergency Resource Alliance
Texas Hurricane Center
Texas Disaster Preparedness
Webinar: Introduction to Emergency Preparedness and Risk Assessments
Webinar: Exercising Your Disaster Response Plan

Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion

Accessibility and Disability Micro-Learning Series
Accessibility Excellence Project
ADA Resources for Museums, Arts, and Cultural Institutions
ADA Update: A Primer for Small Business
Audiences and Inclusion: A Primer for Cultivating More Inclusive Attitudes Among the Public
Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion Definitions
A Call For Gender Equity in the Museum Workplace
The Empathetic Museum
Gender Equity in Museums Movement (GEMM)
How to Make Your Museum More Accessible on a Shoestring Budget
How to Make Your Presentations and Meetings Accessible to All
The Incluseum
Inclusive Digital Interactives: Best Practices + Research
The Inclusive Historian's Handbook
Inclusion for Effectiveness and Sustainability
LGBTQ Welcoming Guidelines for Museums
Maintaining Accessibility in Museums
Museum Hue
Museum as Site for Social Action
Reaching Out to Customers with Disabilities
Social Justice and Museums Resource List
Transgender Inclusion

Education, Interpretation, and Public Programs

Conflict De-Escalation and Bystander Intervention
Essential Reading for Museum Educators
Excellence in Practice: Museum Education Principles and Standards
Gallery Text at the V&A: A Ten Point Guide
History, the Past, and Public Culture: Results from a National Survey
Interpretation Standards
Lessons Learned from Five Decades of Experience in Visitor Studies
Making Evaluation Practices Work in Real Time
Monument Lab Field Trip
Museum Learning Hub
Tour Toolkit: Developing an Inclusive Tour
Why Field Trips Matter

Exhibition Development

Basic Guidelines for the Preservation of Historic Artifacts
Collections Care Resources
Collections Management Resources
Design for Accessibility
Exhibit Development and Design Workbook
Light Level Recommendations
A Quick Guide for the Preservation of Historic Artifacts
Smithsonian Guidelines for Accessible Exhibition Design
Smithsonian Guide to Interpretive Writing for Exhibitions
Textile Resource List

Grants and Fundraising

See the Grants and Fundraising page and download the Grant Funding and Assistance for History Museums guide. 


Blue Avocado
Board Source
Legal Guide to Forming a Nonprofit Association in Texas
Mission Capital
Nonprofit Quarterly
Propel Nonprofits
Texas Association of Nonprofit Organizations
Texas C-Bar
Texas Secretary of State

Social Media

The Biggest Mistake We See Museums Making on Facebook Ads
Going Viral, The Right Way
ICOM Social Media Guidelines
Instagram for Nonprofits: The Ultimate Guide
Articles on Museum Marketing
Seven Broad Statements That May or May Not Help Your Museum to Do a Bit Better at Social Media
Simple Ways Museums Can Use Content Marketing to Engage Their Audiences
Sixteen Tips for Creating a Small Museum YouTube Series
Small Museums are Stealing the Show on TikTok
Social Media Strategy for the National Archives
Three Ways Your Museum Should Be Using Instagram
The 5 Most Important Social Media Trends to Watch for in 2021
The Ultimate Social Media Guide for Museums


Are You Sustainable: A Self-Directed Assessment Tool
Before You Open it: A Checklist for Planning New Museums in Historic Buildings
Characteristics of Unsustainable Organizations
If it is Time to Close: Considerations for Dissolving an Organization
Summerlee Commission's Study on the Sustainability of History Organizations
Sustaining History Through Best Practices and New Approaches
Why History is Difficult to Sustain


10 Must-Haves for Well-Crafted Volunteer Job Description
American Association for Museum Volunteers
Centering Untapped Communities in Your Volunteer Strategy
Cultivating Shared Leadership with Docents and Staff
DEAI Definitions and Best Practices for Volunteer Programs
Designing a Museum Volunteer Program
Difficult Conversations with Volunteers
How a New Era of Volunteer Programs is Embracing Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion
How to Set Up a Volunteer Handbook that Fosters Engagement
Keeping Volunteers: A Guide to Retention
Museums and Equity: Volunteers
National Docent Symposium Council
Standards and Best Practices for Museum Volunteer Programs
Volunteers Get Burnout Too—But You Can Help Prevent It

Information developed by other organizations and individuals, and shared by the Texas Historical Commission, does not necessarily reflect the views of the THC and its staff.