Museums & History
Dedicated May 27, 2002, to honor more than 2,000 veterans of Washington County serving in all wars. This memorial is a lasting tribute to the men and women of Washington County who have worn the uniforms of the United States military.
The Official Cotton Gin Museum of Texas keeps the legacy of cotton alive for all generations; open Tuesday-Saturday, 10am-4pm. Home of the 1914 Burton Farmers Gin – the oldest operating cotton gin in America; tours daily at 10 and 2.
Experience the saga of the Republic of Texas which, from 1836 to 1846, existed as a separate and independent nation. Through interactive exhibits, audio-visual presentations and educational programs, the Museum presents the experiences of ordinary Texans as well as extraordinary events. Award-winning exhibits provide a comprehensive and unparalleled look at the people and places that […]
Independence Historical Society offers tours of two of the earliest homes in Washington County, as well as a rural one-room schoolhouse. John P. Coles House provides an opportunity to experience Colonial Texas life. Free tours on selected March and April weekends; other times by appointment. Admission fee.
Tour Brenham’s oldest house. The 1843 Giddings-Wilkin House is beautifully decorated with many original furnishings. Then, stroll the veranda at the exquisitely restored Giddings Stone Mansion, built in 1869 and a prime example of 19th Century Texas architecture. Both properties are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Come stroll through past and present, visit more then 40 shops and spend time relaxing in “WiFi” hot spot. Recognized as a National Register District, Brenham’s Downtown buildings reflect the town’s early history and charm.
The Chappell Hill Historic District includes the restored Providence Baptist Church parsonage, the Museum displaying historical exhibits and the Swearingen folk art collection, the Rock Store, century-old churches, Masonic Cemetery, library and the oldest continually operating bank in America. Groups are invited for tours of the historic sites with advance reservation. If you are having […]
History lives thanks to the Burton Heritage Society! Formed in 1973, devoted members maintain and preserve the Burton Railroad Depot and Mt. Zion Historical Chapel.
On the west side of FM 50, ruins mark the site of the original Baylor University and its female department, one of the best places in the state to enjoy springtime bluebonnets. Adjacent to the John P. Coles homes, this park features picnic tables and a playground area. On the east side of FM 50 […]
This state-of-the-art American History museum tell the life and times of our nation’s 41st president. Exhibits include replicas of the White House Situation room, the White House Press room and on Oval Office where visitors can sit behind a replica of the president’s desk.
John Seward came to Texas in 1832 with his father, who was one of Stephen F. Austin’s first colonists, and began building his plantation home in 1850. Owned by family members since its foundation was laid, the gracious home displays many original furnishings. Grounds include log slave quarters and barns. Tours available by reservation.
Beneath Brenham streets is a State Archeological Landmark, a large system of historic cisterns. The cisterns were built in the late 1800’s to store rainwater for public fire fighting. Private cisterns were also abundant throughout early Washington County, used for bathing, drinking and cooking. Enjoy the Wild West story of why these cisterns were built. It’s […]
Fully restored, the carousel is one of eight that exist in Texas today and is the only example of a C.W. Parker carousel with Herschell-Spillman horses. Manufactured prior to 1910, it is housed in a unique 16-sided WPA building in the heart of Fireman’s Park.
Shakespeare Festival, 19th Century Folklife Christmas Reenactment, History Symposiums, Master Naturalists Public Programs, Antique Quilt Exhibits, and mid-19th century Historic Homes toured by appointment. Educational Conference Center and dormitory may be reserved for daytime meetings or overnight/weekend conferences.
This recently preserved, historic 1835 building in the center of Independence, is staffed by the Independence Historical Society. Hosts will provide Visitor information and help plan tours. Once called the “Adobe,” this house was built the same year the town of Independence was laid out and is probably the oldest structure still standing. It also […]
The corner stone of the Federal Building was laid on May 5, 1915 with a grand ceremony. Originally serving as the United States Post Office, this magnificent building, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, was eventually transformed into the museum you see today. The Brenham Heritage Museum is a local history […]
Founded in 1853, this country cemetery is the final resting place to many “Texians,” Confederate soldiers, local residents and the children and grandchildren of Alamo hero William B. Travis. Set on 4 1/4 acres, filled with beautiful trees throughout, the cemetery is open all year.
History buffs will not want to miss the chance to see over 120 historic markers, including where the Texas Declaration of Independence was signed, where Sam Houston was baptized, where a rare 1800’s cotton gin is preserved and still operates today, where picturesque churches are tucked away, where legendary Texas heroes are buried, and many […]
Explore the home of Anson Jones, the last president of the Republic of Texas. Experience sights, sounds and smells of this southern cotton plantation that features historic animal breeds and heirloom crops. Daily life on this working 1850’s farm comes alive as interpreters in period clothing demonstrate daily chores and skills. On the site of […]
The 293-acre park is located on the original town site of Washington, which served as the capital of the Republic of Texas. The complex features a state-of-the-art Visitors Center with hand-on interactive exhibits that walk visitors through the birth of a new nation – Texas. The Washington Emporium, located in the Visitor Center, is a […]