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:
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.
For the latest informaiton about COVID-19/coronavirus and museums, the American Alliance of Museums' comprehensive resource for museums is being regularly updated as more information becomes available. Many organizations are also offering free webinars on a variety of topics related to the pandemic.
Free Webinar—Organizational Practices: A Digital Repository's Perspective
Wednesday, April 22, 10:00 a.m. CT
Jake Mangum and Marcia McIntosh, Portal to Texas History, University of North Texas Libraries
Learn more and register now!
Free Webinar—Museums and Millennials: Tips for Successful Engagement
Wednesday, April 29, 10:00 a.m. CT
Jackie Spainhour, author, Museums and Millennials: Engaging the Coveted Patron Generation
Learn more and register now!
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.
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
- Professional ethics
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.
The number of students museums provide hands-on experiences to each year
Focusing on Visitors
AASLH Workshop: Focusing on Visitors
June 11-12, Dallas
Visitors are central to our work, but how strategic and thoughtful are we in how we communicate and interact with them? How can we do a better job of engaging visitors when it comes to developing programs and exhibits in our organizations? Keeping visitors at the forefront of our thinking, participants will explore a wide range of topics including audience types, program development and planning, developing/updating exhibits, marketing, evaluation, volunteer management and training, and collaboration. Case studies and interactive activities provide fun opportunities to engage with fellow participants and our host site. Attendees will leave the workshop with information, ideas, and materials they can take back to their organizations to adapt and apply.