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Home | Tag Archives: el paso museum of history

Tag Archives: el paso museum of history

TxDoT’s Historic Preservation Program Celebrates El Paso Cultural Heritage

The Texas Department of Transportation historic preservation program is partnering with the El Paso Museum of History and the El Paso Public Library for a celebration of El Paso’s cultural heritage.

Their community event, ‘Festival Voces de El Paso’, will commemorate National Hispanic Heritage Month and will offer educational hands-on activities for people of all ages.

“El Paso has such a rich cultural history,” said Rebekah Dobrasko, Historic Preservation Specialist for TxDOT’s Historical Studies Branch. “We are thrilled to partner with the community to highlight things that make El Paso so special through history lectures, arts and crafts and programming.”

TxDOT will be distributing information about one of El Paso’s oldest neighborhoods, Chihuahuita.

The neighborhood, nestled along the border, is considered the oldest in El Paso. TxDOT’s historians worked with Chihuahuita residents to develop an educational booklet and poster that documents the neighborhood’s rich history. The booklet is one way that TxDOT can preserve the stories of the past and share them with future generations.

“This free festival has been specially created to bring people together to experience the history of El Paso and its diverse residents,” added Dobrasko.

Via a news release, TxDoT added: “TxDOT’s historic preservation specialists are part of a larger environmental program that looks at how projects might impact the natural and cultural environment before roads are constructed…whether TxDOT is building a new bridge, repairing damaged roadway after a natural disaster or creating safer intersections, its teams of historians, archeologists and environmental scientists ensure that progress considers the preservation and conservation of the state’s resources.”

‘Festival Voces de El Paso’ will have activities at both the El Paso Museum of History and the main branch of the El Paso Public Library Saturday, September 22 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

The event is free and open to the public.

City Proposes Integrating Mexican American Cultural Center into Downtown Library

On Tuesday, officials with the City of El Paso announced that they are considering integrating the Mexican American Cultural Center (MACC) into a 40,000 square foot wing of the Main Library located within the Downtown Arts District.

Via a news release, officials said the site proposed by the City of El Paso for the MACC “offers twice the amount of programmable space than the Abraham Chavez Theater at half the cost.”

“Main Libraries 100 years ago served a different function as the only choice in town. Cities throughout the country have taken the opportunity to re-imagine prime real estate/ architectural assets by incorporating new complimentary program opportunities and cultural assets into their library systems. The additional programming the MACC will provide will enhance our Library services while allowing the City to maximize its resources,” said Dionne Mack, Deputy City Manager, Public Safety and Support Services.

City staff began searching for an alternate location at Council’s request in late 2017. Council members will consider the alternate location for the signature bond project at its meeting on September 18, 2018.

“The plans for siting the MACC in the addition to the Main Branch presents incredible opportunities to amplify programming and services we offer to the community. Amenities like a broadcasting studio, archive reading rooms and teaching kitchens represent cutting edge practices that libraries across the U.S. are incorporating to engage new audiences,” said Mark Pumphrey, Library Director.

The City is hosting an open house on Thursday, September 13, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the El Paso Museum of History (510 N. Santa Fe) where the public can view preliminary ideas and concepts for the Mexican American Culture Center.

Included in the Tuesday news  release were the city’s reasons for the new, alternate site, including:

  • The alternate location doubles the usable space for the MACC compared to the 20,000 square feet that would have been available in the Abraham Chavez Theatre proposal. This option allows for a world-class cultural center that incorporates all the amenities and programs recommended by the public through extensive outreach efforts conducted over a period of five years.
  • The expanded space also allows for a programmable rooftop space, culinary experiences and a broadcast studio – all at less than half the cost of the Chavez site.
  • The MACC would also have access to the Chavez for larger theater productions when needed.
  • Co-locating the MACC at the Main Library will transform existing library offerings for 21st century-services.
  • The Main Library will retain its original 60,000 square foot building while receiving upgrades and reconfiguration to ensure all current services, including the children’s reading area, are maintained and even enhanced.

“The proposed site is primed for success dovetailing with so many public and private developments taking place in the Downtown Arts District. We can’t wait for a permanent facility to showcase the breadth and vitality of Mexican American cultural production,” said Tracey Jerome, Director of the City’s Museum and Cultural Affairs Department.

According to city officials, from the “earliest stages of planning in 2014, seeking shared space for the MACC was something City leadership and consultants felt made the most sense, given the budget of the MACC and the ambitious programming MCAD envisioned.”

“Selecting the Main Library returns to this model and will create a dynamic experience for visitors to the Arts District. Additionally, close proximity to the El Paso Museum of History, the El Paso Museum of Art, ArtSpace El Paso and the site of the future El Paso Children’s Museum will help facilitate easy collaboration and partnerships,” officials added.

The Tuesday afternoon release from the city goes on to say that, “although the City was not able to reach an agreement with the Mexican American Cultural Institute (MACI) to manage the MACC, leadership continued to work with MACI’s leadership to include them in the project.”

“As the plans to locate the MACC at the Library solidified, the City shared these plans with MACI’s leadership. They were in support of the project’s new direction. The City had continued to work with MACI to forge a relationship that would provide ongoing support for the MACC; however, they were unable to come together on an agreement that would be beneficial to both parties.”

The MACC is one of three signature projects approved by voters as part of the 2012 Quality of Life Bond.

El Paso Museum of History’s New Exhibit Features Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas-El Paso Branch

The El Paso Museum of History invites the public to view the new Circle of Giants exhibition, Economy in Action: Centennial Commemoration of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, El Paso Branch.

The ninth exhibit, that opens Friday, August 31, in the Circle of Giants recognizes the 100-year anniversary of the El Paso Branch, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

“As El Paso and its economy grew, the El Paso Branch, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas played a significant part in helping our community become what it is today,” said Museums and Cultural Affairs Department Director Tracey Jerome. ”It is an honor to include this institution in our Circle of Giants at the El Paso Museum of History.”

The display includes items on loan from the Federal Reserve in Dallas as well as other artifacts from the Museum’s collections.

Via a news release officials with the museum shared:

“The El Paso Branch, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas opened its doors in 1918. Since then, this institution has served the financial institutions of our region and has represented the economy of the U.S. – Mexico border. The branch fills an important role in the economy of West Texas and Southern New Mexico. Through relationships with stakeholders, the El Paso Branch, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas helps support monetary policy decisions and works to improve economic understanding and basic financial education.”

The Wall of Giants is an annual project of the El Paso Museum of History, which honors a person, entity, location, or event that has had an ongoing impact on the city. A community group called the Circle of Giants chooses the honorees.

The exhibition features a large graphics wall honoring a chosen individual, group, or institution and a timeline history.

The exhibit is free and open to the public through February 2019.

City of El Paso Appoints Director to Lead El Paso Museum of History

Friday morning, the City of El Paso and the Museums and Cultural Affairs Department (MCAD) announced that Dr. Vladimir Von Tsurikov had been selected as the new Director of the El Paso Museum of History.

MCAD selected Dr. von Tsurikov following an extensive national recruitment and vetting process which included community stakeholders. He will begin his new role as Director, El Paso Museum of History at the end of August.

“Dr. Von Tsurikov has a strong background in history and archiving—but what really impressed stakeholders involved in the search process was his work in building strong teams at museums and engaging new audiences,” said Museums and Cultural Affairs Department Director Tracey Jerome.

Dr. Von Tsurikov comes to El Paso from the Museum of Russian Art in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he served as Director and President since 2014. As Director and President, he introduced successful growth strategies that attracted new constituencies and grew membership by 75 percent.

Additionally, Dr. Von Tsurikov broadened the donor base, diversified educational programming and built the museum’s national and international reputation. Dr. Von Tsurikov also built a strong team of more than 60 volunteers and a dozen docents allowing the museum to build new audiences and attract different demographics to exhibitions and events.

“We look forward to welcoming Dr. von Tsurikov to the El Paso Museum of History.  We are confident that his experience and knowledge will enhance and grow our relationships across our cultural communities locally, regionally and internationally,” said Economic Development & Tourism Deputy City Manager Cary Westin.

Dr. von Tsurikov has published numerous articles and presented dozens of lectures in the United States and abroad. He has been published extensively and has served as a consultant on historical documentaries.

In 2018, Dr. von Tsurikov received the Silver Archer Award from the Russian Cultural Center in Washington, D.C., for promotion of Cultural Diplomacy. Dr. von Tsurikov previously served as Director of Archives and Library Services at Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary in Jordanville, New York, and as a project archivist at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution of War, Revolution and Peace.

Dr. Von Tsurikov holds a Ph.D. in Russian History from the Moscow Theological Academy, Sergiev Posad, Russia; an M. A. in Russian language and literature from Middlebury College, Middlebury, Vermont; and a B. Th. from Holy Trinity Orthodox Seminary, Jordanville, New York.

Museum of History Celebrates El Paso in the Movies

The El Paso Museum of History is celebrating El Paso and the Borderland’s place in Hollywood with the On Location: Making Movies in the Borderland exhibit.

The public is invited to view the exhibition, presented in conjunction with the Plaza Classic Film Fest, which highlights how Hollywood has turned El Paso’s desert and mountains into movie history.

Visitors can learn about El Pasoans who made their way to Hollywood and explore how filmmakers have used our city and the border as a background when filming. The exhibit spans 100 years of movie-making on the border and features shooting scripts, posters and lobby cards from movies such as Courage Under Fire, Glory Road, Aventurera, The Brave Bulls and other movies made in the El Paso-Juárez area.

“El Paso’s desert vistas have captured the imaginations of filmmakers from the early days of film. We are excited to showcase El Paso’s role in many feature films in this exhibition,” said Director of Museums and Cultural Affairs Tracey Jerome.

The Plaza Classic will be showing several films that feature El Paso including The Getaway, Committed, No Country for Old Men and Glory Road. The movie Amadeus, starring El Paso native and Oscar winner F. Murray Abraham, will also be screened as part of the festival.

The On Location: Making Movies in the Borderland exhibit is free and runs through October 28.

For more information, call the El Paso Museum of History at (915) 212-0320

Plaza Classic Film Festival, Museum of History Team Up for ‘On Location’ Exhibition

With its mountain vistas and vast desert landscapes, the El Paso-Ciudad Juarez region has fascinated filmmakers ever since the silent movie era. On Location: Making Movies in the Borderland, a new exhibition opening July 20 at the El Paso Museum of History, puts that into focus.

On Location, which will be on display through October 28 at the El Paso Museum of History, located at 501 North Santa Fe, marks the fourth annual collaboration between the El Paso Community Foundation Plaza Classic Film Festival, the world’s largest classic film festival, and the El Paso Museum of History.

On Location spans 100 years of movie-making on the border and features shooting scripts, posters and lobby cards from Courage Under Fire, Glory Road, Aventurera, The Brave Bulls and other movies made in the El Paso-Juarez area.

It also includes an Acme Film Projector used by silent film exhibitors and filmmakers Felix Padilla and Edmundo Padilla, items from the Juarez/Mexico City-based Calderon family of filmmakers, a copy of a letter Steve McQueen sent to Texas Gov.

Preston Smith at the conclusion of filming The Getaway in El Paso, and items from movies based on books by El Paso authors Tom Lea and Cormac McCarthy.

Additionally, University of Texas at El Paso English and theater professor Dr. Mimi Gladstein, a member of the El Paso Community Foundation board of directors, will present a free lecture, Adapting Tom Lea’s ‘The Brave Bulls’ to the Screen, at noon Sunday, August 5 at the museum.

City Museums Host Summer Camps

The Museums and Cultural Affairs Department is hosting summer camps at three of its museums; El Paso Museum of Art, El Paso Museum of History and El Paso Museum of Archaeology.

“We want to encourage our young people to access and use our museums, and our summer camps are fun ways they can explore archaeology, history or art,” said Director of the Museums and Cultural Affairs Department Tracey Jerome. “By providing opportunities like this, we can create a life-long love of our museums and help the youth in our community develop and explore their interests.”

Officials added, “each camp offers age appropriate curriculum that is both fun and educational. The camps are a great opportunity to let young El Pasoans discover what the museums have to offer.”

Activities include learning about the tools and science used by archaeologists, exploring El Paso’s history, and creating masterpieces using different artistic mediums.

The El Paso Museum of Art summer classes start June 26. The El Paso Museum of Archaeology will host two sessions the week of June 19 and July 24. The El Paso Museum of History will host camps starting the week of July 10 through the week of August 7.

Summer camp prices vary by location and activity, and members at the respective museums will receive discounted tuition.

Participants in camps and classes at the El Paso Museum of History and the El Paso Museum of Art are also eligible to sign up for Sun Metro’s Kids on the Go program that provides free bus rides to area youth participating in cultural, educational or recreational activities during the summer.

More information on the Summer Camps is available on the events page of the El Paso Museums and Cultural Affairs Department website.

City Invites Residents to Spend Holidays at the Museums

The City of El Paso Museums and Cultural Affairs Department invites everyone to spend the holiday season visiting one of the City’s three museums; El Paso Museum of Art, El Paso Museum of History and the El Paso Museum Archaeology.

All three museums will be open regular hours through the winter holidays with free family-friendly exhibitions.  In observance of the Christmas and New Year’s holiday, all three museums will be closed on Monday, December 25, and Monday, January 1.

  • The El Paso Museum of Archaeology offers archery or atl-atl demonstrations on Saturday mornings. The trails around the museum are open for family-friendly hikes.

 

  • The El Paso Museum of History is hosting two free preservation workshops as part of the new exhibition, What We Brought. This exhibition explores what people brought with them when they relocated to El Paso. Visitors can learn how to preserve their family heirlooms during the special workshops. Visitors are encouraged to bring an item to preserve. The workshops are at 2 p.m. December 27 and at 5 p.m. December 28.

 

  • The El Paso Museum of Art has several free, ongoing exhibitions as well as drop-in activities during open studio hours from noon to 2 p.m. December 26 through 29. Each of the workshops are designed for visitors 4 years and older and features an art making activity tied to the museum’s current exhibitions.

Build It Family Workshop, Tuesday, December 26, build homes and buildings with LEGO bricks inspired by the exhibition, Frank Lloyd Wright: Architecture of the Interior.

Print It Family Workshop, Wednesday, December 27, discover the exhibition Gardens of Earthly and Unearthly Delights and create a watercolor monoprint using leaves and flower petals.

Make It Family Workshop, Thursday, December 28, Frank Lloyd Wright’s work was inspired by nature. See the exhibition, Frank Lloyd Wright: Architecture of the Interior and create your own stained glass window cling.

Paint It Family Workshop, Friday, December 20, make a watercolor masterpiece inspired by works from the exhibition, Tom Lea Watercolors and Washes

Wall of Giants Exhibition to Honor Saint Patrick Cathedral, Cathedral High School

The City of El Paso Museum of History invites the public to the latest Wall of Giants exhibition, First Steps: A Commemoration of Saint Patrick Cathedral and Cathedral High School, that opens at noon on August 20 at the El Paso Museum of History.

The eighth Wall of Giants installation recognizes the contribution that both institutions have made to the El Paso community. Saint Patrick Cathedral and Cathedral High School have been a central part of the lives of many El Pasoans since their founding.

“Saint Patrick Cathedral and Cathedral High School have a continuous mission of serving the El Paso community and building ties that bring both sides of our border closer,” said El Paso Museum of History Director David Grabitske.

“We are excited to share this piece of El Paso’s history as part of the Circle of Giants.”

The dedication of Saint Patrick Cathedral as the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of El Paso 100 years ago recognized the city’s growth and importance in relation to other western communities.

For the past 90 years, Cathedral High School has been providing an excellent education to young men in El Paso and Juarez that has prepared them for both academic and professional success. Cathedral’s alumni are recognized leaders in the city, state and nation.

The Wall of Giants is an annual project of the El Paso Museum of History, which honors a person, entity, location, or event that has had an ongoing impact on the city.

The honoree is chosen by a community group called the Circle of Giants. The exhibition features a large graphics wall honoring a chosen individual, group, or institution and a timeline history.

This display includes items from the cathedral and school that highlight their history and ties to the El Paso community as well as other artifacts from the Museum’s collections.

The free exhibition will be on display through February 2018.

Museum of History Celebrates History of Movie Theaters in El Paso

The El Paso Museum of History invites the community to a walking tour of South El Paso Street that highlights the history of El Paso’s movie theaters starting at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 27, in front of the Plaza Theatre.

“South El Paso Street has drastically changed over the years since El Pasoans watched films at theatres like The Estrella, The Colon and The Plaza. This photo exhibit gives visitors an opportunity to look back and see how the landscape of El Paso’s downtown has changed over the years,” said Assistant Director of Museums and Cultural Affairs Ben Fyffe.

The tour is part of a series of walking tours by the Museum of History that will be held the last Thursday of the month through September. The tours include discussions and stops at locations that were once classic El Paso theaters.

In addition, the El Paso Museum of History has partnered with the El Paso Community Foundation and the Plaza Classic Film Festival to highlight the history of El Paso’s movie places with the exhibit South El Paso Street: Broadway of the Southwest that is on display at the Museum of History.

The museum will host a series of history talks about El Paso’s classic movie theaters, as well as a family play day with a movie theme.

For more information and for schedule of activities, visit the El Paso Museum of History’s website or call (915) 212-0320.

El Paso Museum of History Lecture Series Begins Thursday

The El Paso Museum of History invites the public to attend a new lecture series, Focus on Perspectives, with the honorable Consul of Spain in El Paso, Martha Vera.

Vera will combine the importance of dance and music in her life, life after her near-death experience, the importance of history both personal and regional, and working toward community enrichment locally and globally.

She has lived a life of music, dance, business and community enrichment. Dancing since the age of four, she studied under Ingeborg Heuser in Ballet El Paso and Oskar Antunez with Ballet Chrysalis.

Vera is an avid Argentine tango dancer and a Coloratura Soprano.

Vera holds a Master’s degree in biology and biochemistry, serves as the Honorary Consul of Spain in El Paso, is President of the board for Pro Musica, and is a member of the board for the World Affairs Council.

Focus on Perspectives is a free, once-a-month lecture series sponsored in part by a grant from Humanities Texas and by the El Paso Museum of History. Humanities Texas is the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

The Museum of History will host additional Focus on Perspectives lectures monthly through October. Upcoming speakers are include; Author Dave Gutierrez on August 10; Author Daniel Chacon on September 14; and Author Cristina Palmer on October 10.

Vera’s lecture starts at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 13 at the museum which is located at 510 North Santa Fe Street in Downtown El Paso.

For more information on the free Focus on Perspectives lecture series and to R.S.V.P., call the El Paso Museum of History at(915) 212-3161.

Director for El Paso Museum of History Selected

The City of El Paso and the Museums and Cultural Affairs Department (MCAD) is pleased to announce Dr. David Grabitske has been selected as the new Director of the El Paso Museum of History.

“We are excited to have David join our leadership team. His knowledge and experience will be instrumental as we continue to grow and enhance our programming and exhibits at the Museum of History,” said Museums and Cultural Affairs Department Director Tracey Jerome.

Dr. Grabitske comes to the El Paso Museum of History from the Minnesota Historical Society in St. Paul, Minn. where he served as the State History Services Manager since 2007.

While at the Historical Society, Dr. Grabitske increased fundraising; enhanced collection management; and grew public programs attendance. He is nationally recognized in his field, is a sought after presenter and served on several national boards.

Dr. Grabitske is also a published author who wrote and co-authored four books and has published 117 scholarly articles. His 2012 book, Building Museums: A Handbook For Small and Midsize Organziations, was nominated for a 2013 Minnesota Book Award.

Dr. Grabitske holds a Doctor of Business Administration and a Master of Public and Nonprofit Administration from Metropolitan State University in St. Paul, Minneapolis. He received a Bachelor of Science in History from Minnesota State University.

The El Paso Museum of History exists for the educational benefit of the community and visitors. It promotes the understanding and significance of the rich, multicultural and multinational history of the border region known as the Pass of the North.

He will begin his new role as El Paso Museum Director at the end of July.

The MCAD selected Dr. Grabitske following an extensive recruitment and vetting process that included community stakeholders.

Downtown El Paso sends Summer off with Multiple Events Saturday

The City of El Paso Museums and Cultural Affairs Department and the El Paso Public Library invite the public to take advantage of several free family-friendly activities in Downtown El Paso on Saturday, August 20.

The Downtown Art and Farmers Market is great place where families can pick up locally grown produce or homemade jams and jellies from market vendors. Kids can also work on back-to-school themed arts and crafts with one of the market-teaching artists. The market is located on Anthony Street and is open on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The El Paso Museum of Art, located at 1 Arts Festival Plaza, invites families to learn about Mexican folk-art traditions through the Museum’s retablos collection. From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. visitors can be the first to play the new EPMA Retablo Loteria and listen to mariachi music provided by Mariachi Azetca from El Dorado High School and Los Gavilanes from Socorro High School.

Children ages 6 to 14 can head to the Creation Lab to create their entry for the 20th Anniversary Children’s Drawing Contest, Este es mi México (Let’s Draw about Mexican Music and Traditions). Refreshments will also be provided.

The El Paso Museum of History invites visitors to learn about the Woman’s Club of El Paso while making arts and crafts from the border region. Activities will be from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at the museum located at 510 N. Santa Fe. There will also be a guided tour of A ‘Giant’ Story: When Hollywood Came to West Texas at 11 a.m.

The El Paso Public Library will host an end of summer party at its main branch, 501 N. Oregon. Starting at11 a.m. visitors can play classic video games with Empire of Gaming or enjoy an obstacle course, water balloons and more. There will also be a scratch art workshop for adults at 2 p.m.

El Paso Museum of History opens “A ‘Giant’ Story” Exhibit Thursday

The El Paso Museum of History is honored to work with the El Paso Community Foundation and the Plaza Classic Film Festival to host A ‘Giant’ Story: When Hollywood Came to West Texas that opens to the public on Thursday, July 28.

A ‘Giant’ Story will include costumes worn by Elizabeth Taylor, James Dean and Rock Hudson on loan from the Warner Bros. Corporate Archive and photos, production art and documents from the George Stevens Collection at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

It also will feature photos and other memorabilia from the collections of El Pasoan Wally Cech, who worked as a waitress on the Marfa shoot, and Nancy Hamilton, who covered the premiere for the El Paso Times.

“The El Paso Museum of History is thrilled to continue our partnership with the El Paso Community Foundation and the Plaza Classic Film Festival to provide insight into this film which directly touched so many in our community,” said Interim Director of the El Paso Museum of History Ben Fyffe.

Based on the Edna Ferber best-seller, Giant chronicles a quarter century in the life of rancher Bick Benedict (Hudson) and his Eastern-bred wife Leslie (Taylor), the advent of big oil and racial relations between Anglos and Mexican-Americans.

Tours, lectures and screenings of related films, including Texas filmmaker Hector Galan’s 2015 documentary, Children of Giant, will be part of the Giant celebration.

The free exhibit runs through September 18. For more information, call the Museum of History at 212-0320 or visithttp://history.elpasotexas.gov/

Museum of History Hosts Buffalo Soldier Talk

The El Paso Museum of History invites the public to learn more about buffalo soldiers with a discussion from Dr. John Langellier who wrote, Fighting for Uncle Sam: Buffalo Soldiers in the Frontier Army, at 3 p.m. on Sunday, July 24.

Buffalo Soldiers have been a part of the military history of the southwest primarily protecting settlers on their westward journey. On July 28, 1866, the United States Congress voted on the Army Reorganization Act that created six regiments manned by black soldiers.

Many of these soldiers earned their freedom through service in the Union forces during the Civil War. In time, these men came to be known as buffalo soldiers

Dr. Langellier’s book is available for purchase at the Museum Gift Store, and he will be available for signings.

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