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Institute of Texan Cultures
801 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.
San Antonio, TX 78205
(210) 458-2300
www.texancultures.com/
Institute of Texan Cultures

UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures | Find yourself here

Institute of Texan Cultures
Institute of Texan Cultures
Your visit to the Alamo showcased the spirit of Texas. What’s next? Learn about the people who made and make Texas what it is at Texas’ cultural history museum, the Institute of Texan Cultures. A few blocks away from the Alamo, a short walk from the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center and San Antonio River Walk, visitors can find this Texas institution chronicling the stories of cultures that came to Texas and made it their home.

For a modest $8 adult admission ($6 child), visitors can immerse themselves in the story of Texas, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday to Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. The latest information on exhibits and programs is available at TexanCultures.com and the museum has a Facebook presence and Twitter screen name (@TexanCultures). While there’s plenty to look at and read online, the in-person experience is much more powerful. It’s a museum about Texans: Who they are, what they do and how they live.

When people came to Texas, they brought music, food, clothing, language, sense of community, traditions and ways of doing things. “Culture” is the one word capturing all these ideas and it’s what this museum displays.

More than 20 cultures have spots on the exhibit floor and each left an indelible mark on the state. Spanish explored the land and founded the Missions. Chinese built the railroads. African-American soldiers mapped the Frontier. Germans brokered peace with the Comanche. Scottish bagpipes sounded on the morning the Alamo fell. Irish soldiers played “Come to the Bower” at the battle of San Jacinto. A man of French ancestry made the first military airplane flight at Ft. Sam Houston.

Institute of Texan Cultures
Institute of Texan Cultures
Along with artifacts from everyday Texans’ lives, exhibits include images and stories about people and families: Community leaders, business owners, doctors, educators, artists and more. While few stories make it to the history books, the truth is, everyday people do extraordinary things. It’s easy to find stories about Davy Crockett at the Alamo, but few know how Father Leopold Moczygemba’s letters to family in Poland brought hundreds of Poles to Texas.

People come to Texas every day, adding new chapters to the state’s narrative. Some cultures and ideas were just emerging in Texas when this museum opened. Traveling exhibit galleries and special events make sure these new aspects of Texas culture get recognized and shared. Whether showing an exhibit on the Sikhs, or looking at paintings from contemporary Texas artists, the Institute of Texan Cultures displays what it means to be Texan and it can show visitors their connection to the Lone Star State through a shared heritage.

While exhibits and artifacts can tell a lot about people and culture, the best way to learn is to experience it firsthand. That’s why, for 43 years, the museum has hosted the Texas Folklife Festival. In early June, usually the second weekend, the grounds welcome some 50,000 people to celebrate 40 cultures, represented by 250 organizations, 60 artisans, 30 food booths and six stages of music and dance.

This museum and its signature event introduced Texas to the Jamaican, Vietnamese, Korean, Nigerian Igbo, Guamanian and Ukrainian communities, plus so many more. It’s the event where a visitor can see the similarities and differences between Irish Reels, Scottish square dances and Appalachian clogging. It’s where an accordion can play Zydeco, Polka or Conjunto.

Beyond the story of the Alamo is the story of Texans, told by the Institute of Texan Cultures. It’s a story about people and the sum of their way of life.  It may not be the heart of Texas, but it certainly is the soul.

For more information, call 210-458-2300 or visit TexanCultures.com.

 

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Contact Information

Institute of Texan Cultures
801 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.
San Antonio, TX 78205
(210) 458-2300
www.texancultures.com/
Institute of Texan Cultures

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