Museum Services

Texas is home to more than 950 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:

  • Training
  • Resources
  • Consultations
  • Communications

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.


Seeking assistance with disaster preparedness and emergency response? View our online resources here. You can contact Museum Services at 512-463-6427 or 512-463-5921 for additional resources. You can also contact the National Heritage Responders at 202-661-8068 or TX-CERA at 669-237-2243 for expert guidance and on-site support.


Training

Free Webinar: Incorporating Transportation History into Exhibits
December 5, 2:00 p.m. CT
Kate Betz, Bullock Museum and Rebekah Dobrasko, TxDOT
Learn more and register now!

Free Webinar: Neurodiversity in Museums--Crafting Community for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Wednesday, January 15, 2:00 p.m. CT
Jackie Spainhour, Director, Hunter House Victorian Museum
Learn more and register now!

Free Webinar: Museum Relevance--Exhibitions for Social Justice
Thursday, January 23, 10:00 a.m. CT
Elena Gonzales, author, Exhibitions for Social Justice
Learn more and register now!

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.

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

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.

Fast
Facts

3 Trail Regions

have at least one history museum in every county.

More Fast Facts

What's New

Real Places 2020

Real Places
Preserving Historic Texas
2020 Conference
January 29-31, Austin

The Texas Historical Commission's fourth annual Real Places conference will feature several tours and workshops, 30+ sessions, and 70+ speakers from across the country. Museum-focused programming includes:

  • Remembering the Future, Reinventing the Past (Elizabeth Merritt, Center for the Future of Museums)
  • A Conversation with Elizabeth Merritt
  • Fund Development and Successful Storytelling (workshop)
  • Engaging a Cultural Continuum: The House Museum Transformed
  • Math + History = New Programming Possibilities
  • Reaching out Via the Airwaves: Is Podcasting Right for You?
  • Happening Now! Preparing Museums to Respond to Current Events
  • Straight from the Source: A Funders' Panel
  • Your Museum is a Gateway to Primary Resources for Educators
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 Real Places 2020