Musings of a Museum Fanatic: Institute of Texan Cultures

8.09.2016

Institute of Texan Cultures

During our visit to San Antonio I wanted to make sure we visited unique San Antonio museums, which I definitely accomplished when we visited the Buckhorn Museum. The other museum I really wanted to make sure that we went to was the Institute of Texan Cultures. Being that my family emigrated to Texas the cultural heritage of Texas has always been in my mind. This Smithsonian Affiliate museum is a fascinating way to spend your afternoon or an entire day. 



The exhibit starts off with the pre-history of Texas and moves into the indigenous peoples of Texas.




Below are the six flags of Texas ... Spain, France, Mexico, Texas, Confederates States of America and the United States.



Next the exhibit moves into the different cultural and ethnic groups that settled in Texas. This is really where the meat of the exhibit is. There was so much interesting and neat information we probably could have spent all day there. Realizing about an hour and half into our visit that we were only a third of the way through we decided to skim through and really read what we were most interested in. Kevin and I are both readers when it comes to museum exhibits so we would have read the whole day!




I really enjoyed reading about certain groups like the Tejanos, it's a term I've heard used a number of times because of my Texas connections but never really knew what exactly it meant. Kevin very much enjoyed the interactive parts of the exhibit.




I'm always a big fan of exhibit components that immerse you and really allow you to feel the history. The store Kevin was in and the sharecropper cabin were just two of those types of components that the Institute of Texan Cultures had, there were a number of others throughout the exhibit.



I was very excited to see the Wendish part of the exhibit! My grandmother's family is Wendish. For more explanation of what that means check out the Texas Wendish Heritage website. One of the one parts that always stuck out to me about the Wends was their wedding dresses. They would wear black wedding dresses signifying that they were in for a hard life. Very uplifting!




My grandfather's family came to Texas from Sicily so I definitely spent more time in that section as well. I loved how in every section it wasn't just the overall story of the Italians in Texas, there were so many individual stories. Those are the stories that you really enjoy reading.






The Institute of Texan Cultures was a great museum to visit during our trip to San Antonio. I really enjoyed learning more not only about my own Texas family heritage but about the history and culture of Texas and how it's evolved. Be sure to add this one to your San Antonio to do list!

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