Visit the oldest public library in Texas!
If you’re looking for a bit of indoor peace and quiet during your stay in Galveston, or you want to delve deeper into the island’s history, consider stopping by the Rosenberg Library. It’s the oldest public library in continuous operation in Texas, dating to 1900, when it replaced the Galveston Mercantile Library, which opened in 1871. The Rosenberg Library is, of course, free and open to the public from 9:00am to 9:00pm Monday through Thursday, and from 9:00am to 6:00pm Friday and Saturday. It’s a great place to read a book, use a computer, or ask helpful librarians all your curious questions about Texas history!
Library Museum & History Center
Located inside the library, the Library Museum holds a wealth of artifacts from Galveston’s past. They maintain and exhibit items which tell the story of Galveston and the Republic of Texas, while curating the library’s fine arts collection. Other items of interest include the rare books collection, and a collection of Russian and Greek icons. Museum artifacts and paintings can be viewed all over the library, and especially in the four large gallery exhibits on the fourth floor.
The fourth floor is also home to the Galveston & Texas History Center, which holds the archives of many important people, businesses, and organizations in Galveston. The map collection includes a variety of maps of Texas, the Gulf of Mexico, and surrounding areas, dating from the 16th century to the present day. This is the place you absolutely must come if you are engaged in any sort of historical research about Galveston or Texas! It’s the best place anywhere to find the primary sources you need for your research.
Things To Do Nearby
While a library might not be everyone’s vacation destination, the Rosenberg Library is so centrally located that it’s easy to stop by here before or after you visit another place. Moody Mansion, Ashton Villa, and Bishop’s Palace are all nearby, and who knows? After touring the fine homes of the East End Historic District, you may just have some burning historical questions you need answered, and there’s no better place than the library for that!
You may also want to visit the nearby Bryan Museum for a broader overview of the history of Texas and the American West or check out the Galveston Railroad Museum to view things from that perspective. For those with kids who are less interested in the details of history, the Galveston Children’s Museum is also very close. Make it a kids’ day out, with a library story time, followed by a visit to the Children’s Museum!
2310 Sealy Street