Museums

Galveston's rich history on display.

Galveston's early days are peppered with characters such as explorer, Cabeza de Vaca and infamous pirate, Jean Lafitte along with a robust history of immigration (Galveston was once the second-largest immigration station in the country behind Ellis Island).

pictured: 1895 Moody Mansion.

Popular Galveston Museums
Museums

Experience the epic story of Texas and the American West! The Bryan Museum is located in the 1895 Galveston Orphans Home, and houses one of the world’s largest collections of historical artifacts, documents, and artwork relating to Texas and the American West. The collection spans more than 12,000 years, with pieces ranging from ancient Native American cultural artifacts to twenty-first-century objects. The adventure of history comes alive at The Bryan Museum.

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The Texas Seaport Museum & ELISSA

During the mid-nineteenth century, Galveston emerged as an international city, with migrants coming from around the world. Its port bustled, becoming one of the busiest in the nation and leading the world in cotton exports. The Texas Seaport Museum showcases that history.

Elissa at dusk
1877 Tall Ship ELISSA at the Texas Seaport Museum.

What’s more, the museum is also home to the tall ship, ELISSA. The ELISSA is a Floating National Landmark and one of America’s Treasurers, according to the National Trust for Historic Preservation. When guests visit the museum, they can explore the decks of the floating landmark and imagine a time when such ships dominated the world’s oceans.


Museums

Opened in 1997, the Ocean Star Offshore Drilling Rig & Museum lets guests enjoy learning about real operating offshore oil rigs by touring one. The Ocean Star is a retired jack-up drilling rig that operated in the Gulf of Mexico from 1969 to 1984 and drilled over 200 wells. The museum boasts three floors of models, exhibits, equipment, and interactive displays related to offshore exploration and drilling. Plan a visit to the Ocean Star Offshore Drilling & Rig Museum or learn about the numerous programs the museum hosts, such as Family Day, Scout Workshops and overnight programs!

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Galveston Railroad Museum

Taking guests back to a time when the world traveled by rail, the Galveston Railroad Museum is dedicated to preserving the past. In the permanent exhibits, visitors can explore steam engines, locomotives, passenger cars (including dining and sleeping cars), freight cars, and so much more. The museum also features a recreation of the Gulf, Colorado, and Santa Fe Depot with thirty-one plaster statues in early 1930s dress, each statue telling a story of Galveston railroading history.

Railroad museum train

Galveston Arts Center

Feeling artsy? The Galveston Arts Center, located on the Strand, supports contemporary visual art through exhibitions and a variety of educational events. The center offers a number of rotating exhibits throughout the year, plus educational opportunities such as printmaking workshops, art clubs for kids and teens, and access to its ceramics studio. The center also hosts regular Art Walks. Guests can explore downtown Galveston and enjoy one-of-a-kind art while visiting studio spaces, local businesses, and other non-profit art spaces.

Historic Homes & Buildings

Visit this iconic landmark to get a closer look into Galveston's history. This notable Victorian venue and the Galveston Historical Foundation offer educators and students the opportunity for a variety of educational field trips focusing on history, math, and science.

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Historic Homes & Buildings

Restored in 1895, this Galveston landmark was originally the home of one of the country's wealthiest people in the 1950s, W.L. Moody, Jr. The property is still full of original family memorabilia and is available for rent for private parties and events.

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2618 Broadway Avenue J
Galveston, Texas 77550