Heritage, 2011, Volume 4 Page: 24
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As one of Texas' oldest port cities,
Galveston is a significant contributor to
the state's historical narrative. The
island's pride in its legacy, coupled with
a strong preservation community, has
created a wide range of educational
resources for students, families, and his-
tory enthusiasts. Highlighted below are
a few examples of the opportunities
available to learn more about Galveston's
past. Please refer to individual websites
for information on scheduling and
costs for tours or programs.
The Galveston Historical Foun-
dation offers schools, private groups, or
individuals a variety of ways to discover
island history when visiting the organi-
zation's historic properties and facilities.
* Guided tours of GHF's Bishop's
Palace and the 1839 Michel B. Menard
House are easily arranged, and each
historic home represents two different
eras in Galveston history. The Michael
B. Menard house is the oldest surviving
home in the city and was built and
named for this Galveston founder and
signer of the Texas Declaration of
Independence. Bishop's Palace was
designed by Victorian-era architect,
Nicholas Clayton, and this historic
landmark is recognized as one of
America's premiere representations of
Gilded-Age extravagance. Other GHF
historic sites offering group tours are
the 1861 Custom House, 1859 Ashton
Villa, 1859 St. Joseph's Church, and
1880 Garten Verein.
* The Texas Seaport Museum, home
to the 1877 Tall Ship, Elissa, has several
programs that explore the nautical his-
tory of Galveston Harbor. On site,
school groups can tour the museum
and the 1877 Tall Ship, or in the class-
room, a Texas Seaport Museum pre-
senter will bring a Traveling Sea Chest
with objects and activities for student
learning. The Pier 21 Theater has regu-
larly scheduled showings of The Great
Storm, a documentary on what life was
like in Victorian-era Galveston before
and after the Hurricane of 1900 and
The Pirate Island of Jean Lafitte, a film
about the adventures of Galveston's
famous plunderer. For young people
interested in a more interactive experi-
ence, the museum offers "It's a Sailor's
Life," described as an overnight adven-
ture on board the Elissa. The curricu-
lum incorporates history, science, and
ecology as participants learn about
times past in this harbor community.
* Included in the Galveston Historical
Foundation's educational line-up is a
one-hour cemetery tour focusing on
marker symbolism, local history, and
the distinctive artwork of the memorial
monuments. Another option is that
educators can arrange for a guide to
board the school bus for a narrated driv-
ing tour of the city's historic sites and
places of interest.
24 TEXASHERITAGE I Volume 4 2011
TEACHING TEXAS HISTORY
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Texas Historical Foundation. Heritage, 2011, Volume 4, periodical, 2011; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth254223/m1/24/: accessed January 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas Historical Foundation.