Guides > Finding Information in the Portal > Explore


If you do not have a specific search in mind and prefer to browse the contents of the Portal to Texas History, use Explore. It is a great way to get an overview of the Portal's extensive range of resources.

Start by selecting Explore from the upper right-hand corner of the Portal home page. Then choose the way you want to explore from the red navigation bar near the top of the screen.


Each broad explore area may contain hundreds or even thousands of items. After you select a subarea of interest, you can narrow results further by adding a keyword in the search box located above the list of items, or by selecting from the categories that appear on the left-hand side of the screen.

Explore by Locations

  • Use the map of Texas to find items associated with a particular county. As you move the cursor over a county, its name will appear; click to view the items.The range of shades of the counties correlates to the number of items. The darkly shaded counties have the most items and the lightly shaded counties have the fewest number of items.

  • If you do not know a specific county's location on the map, you can view an alphabetical list by clicking on the "List of Texas Counties" tab displayed above the Texas Map.

  • Choose the "Other U.S. States" or "Other Countries" tabs to view Texas history materials that have a connection to areas outside of Texas.

Explore by Subjects

Select from sixteen subject areas that allow you to view related materials at a glance, such as Architecture, Immigration, or Education.

Explore by Dates

  • Choose from fourteen different ranges that are based on significant historical periods in Texas history. Because the date ranges are thematic as well as chronological, some of the ranges overlap.

  • Create your own date range to explore items about, or created in, a particular era. Click on the "Choose Your Own Dates" tab located above the date ranges. Enter a date using the four-digit year.

Explore by Types

Discover items by resource types, such as artwork, photographs, newspapers, letters, maps, books or physical objects.

Explore by Partners

Scan a list of Partner institutions and individuals that contribute items to the Portal.

  • Find the items the Partner has contributed to the Portal by clicking on the Partner's name.

  • Learn more about the Partner by clicking on "About." You will find a description of the Partner, the collections it has contributed, its recent additions to the Portal, and its contact information.

  • Click on "Statistics" to learn how often the Partner's materials are used.

Explore by Collections

View a list of materials grouped around specific themes, such as the George Ranch Museum Collection, the Benson Latin American Collection, or the Neal Douglass Photography Collection.

  • Find all the items in the Collection by clicking on the name of the Collection.

  • Learn more about the Collection by clicking on "About." You will find a description of the collection, a list of the Partners that contribute to the collection, and the most recent additions to the collection.

  • Click on "Statistics" to learn how often the materials in the Collection are used.

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