The Texas University of San Antonio (UTSA) Institute of Texan Cultures (ITC) is a museum and library located in Hemis Fair Park in downtown San Antonio, Texas. This serves as the state’s primary hub for multicultural education, offering exhibits, workshops and activities such as the Texas Folklife Festival, an annual celebration of the many ethnicities that make up the Texas community. It has been held annually since 1972.
A Brief History
The building, built by the Texas Legislature on May 27, 1965, originally served as the Texas Pavilion at HemisFair ‘ 68, before being transferred to the University of Texas System in 1969. In 1973, UTSA took administrative control of the museum. The government approved the Institute as a campus of the University of Texas in San Antonio in 1986. It’s part of the UTSA HemisFair Campus. It is situated in the vicinity of the Alamo and the River Walk.
The Institute of Texan Cultures, through its research, collections, exhibitions and events, acts as a platform for understanding and appreciation of Texas and Texans. The 182,000-square-foot (16,900 m2) building has 65,000-square-foot (6,000 m2) of digital exhibits and displays. The library on the third floor includes manuscripts, rare books, personal documents, more than 3 million historical photos and more than 700 oral histories.
Funding for the museum comes mainly from three sources: biennial legislative appropriations; exhibition floors and special event admissions; grants, donations and other locally raised funds, such as the renting of the museum’s facilities and the selling of its books, audiovisuals, library services and goods from the Museum Store. Major funding is provided by the Development Board of the Museum. The Texas Legislature cut the institute’s appropriations by 25% in 2011, leading the institute to rely more on private donations and corporate sponsorship.
Their Vision And Mission
At its heart, the Institute of Texan Cultures is a lesson in diversity and displays the significance and beauty of the many cultures that have come to Texas. This demonstrates the contributions that these cultures have made to the character of the community, through music and dance, food, stories and customs, religion, craftsmanship, and ways of life.
The museum is part of the University of Texas in San Antonio. This plays a role in community engagement programs at the university by providing quality, open tools for educators and lifelong learners on cultural heritage issues. This aims to build a rich and vibrant culture of the arts and humanities that will increase the community’s understanding and appreciation of Texas through an engaging series of exhibitions, programs and special events.
San Antonio, Texas showcases these must-see museums you shouldn’t miss:
These amazing museums are located just down the street from our location at 11440 Potranco Road, Suite 102. Stop by for a visit anytime!