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Art and Archives postcard design

Art and Archives: Veronica Ceci at the Austin History Center, September 18, 2022 - January 8, 2023

This exhibit presents a selection of photographs, sketches, prints, archival materials, and artifacts documenting Austin artist Veronica Ceci's work on their public art projects Meander (2018) and Quinquagenary (2021). 

Austin Proud LogoPeople holding Austin banner at March on Austin on April 30, 1989

Austin Proud: A History of Pride Parades in Austin, 1971-2002, August 2022 - June 2023

This exhibit presents photographs, flyers, and clippings from the Austin History Center collections documenting the history of Austin's LGBTQ Pride parades and marches from 1971-2002.

Protests in Austin

Taking it to the Streets: A Visual History of Protest and Demonstration in Austin, July 31, 2018 - October 28, 2018

This exhibit presents a snapshot look at how the public confronted the political and social issues of their time. Diverse images from a variety of Austin History Center collections highlight Austin residents in their earnest efforts to create social change in their communities

Villager Newspaper

Our Community, Our Voice: Photographs from The Villager Newspaper, January 30, 2020 – May 22, 2022

This exhibit presents a selection of photographs from The Villager Newspaper Photograph Collection (AR.2001.002) that capture local community members in striking images, illustrating the vibrancy of Austin’s black population. Marching bands, community leaders, theater groups, protests, musicians, churches, and neighborhood groups portray life in black Austin through the decades.

Perlas banner

Perlas ng Austin (The Pearls of Austin)

This virtual exhibit was made in collaboration with the Austin Filipino-American Association (AFAA), Asian American Resource Center and the Austin History Center's Asian American Community Archives Program as a celebration of the Central Texas Filipino community.

St Edwards' University

Discovering Place: Images from the St. Edward’s University Documentary Photography Project, November 4, 2019 – January 19, 2020

The St. Edward's University Austin Documentary Photography Project is a partnership between St. Edward's University and the Austin History Center wherein students learned how to create visually engaging and intellectually challenging stories of the people and places of Austin. The partnership resulted in the St. Edward's University Austin Documentary Photography Project Collection (AR.2019.026), consisting primarily of digital photographs documenting various facets of the Austin area community as selected by the student photographers. 

Joe Ely Photos

Treat Me Like a Saturday Night: The Joe Ely Photographs from the Cindy Light Collection, July 30, 2019 – October 27, 2019

Cindy Light is an Austin-based photographer who shot many performances of Austin musicians such as Stevie Ray Vaughan, Joe Ely, and Doug Sahm as well as international acts such as Sting, Michael Jackson, and Paul McCartney. This exhibit highlights photos from her collection (AR.2019.016) that span 1986-1990 and primarily feature Joe Ely with bandmates David Grissom, Jimmy Pettit, and Davis McLarty who represent Ely’s late 1980s – early 1990s heyday. 

Bill Leissner Photos

Austin Icons of the 1980s: Selections from the Bill Leissner Photograph Collection, April 30, 2019 – July 21, 2019

In 2016 Bill Leissner began the process of digitizing his 100,000-image archive of Austin performance, politics, and social culture. This exhibit is the first result of these efforts – a brief selection of 16 images from his archive (AR.2019.004) representing icons of 1980s Austin, at least icons through the lens of his camera.

Vietnamese Austin

Vietnam to Austin: Restoring Community, February 21, 2009 - July 17, 2009

Explore the history, transition, and contributions of local Vietnamese Americans in Austin. This exhibit presents a selection of powerful personal stories and photographs from the orginal large-scale 2009 exhibition. 

Tune in to health

Tune In To Health: A Radio Program for Travis County Rural Schools, February 5, 2019 – April 21, 2019

This exhibit presents photograph selections from the Texas Extended School and Community Health Education Program Records (AR.2002.017) archived at the Austin History Center. The collection features over 200 black and white photographs from the 1949-1950 school year of the Healthy Living in Our County radio program, a public health education initiative tailored for Travis County rural school classrooms. The exhibit images provide a rare glimpse into these rural school communities, capturing student activity, school segregation, home living conditions, school infrastructure, and engagement with the Healthy Living in Our Country radio curriculum.

Lisa Davis Photos

We’ll Just Rock For Ourselves: Selections from the Lisa Davis Photograph Archive, April 24, 2018 – July 22, 2018

This exhibit presents selections from the Lisa Davis Photograph Archive (AR.2010.022). The exhibition focuses on Davis’s documentation of the lesbian music community in Austin during the early 1990s.

Travis County Negro Extension Service Collection

Clearing Stones Sowing Seeds: Photographs from the Travis County Negro Extension Service Collection, February 6, 2018 - April 15, 2018

This exhibit presents selections from the Travis County Negro Extension Service Photography Collection (AR.2000.025). The photographs, taken between 1940 and 1964, document the variety of services and educational programs offered by the Extension Service, including animal husbandry, crafts, domestic education, gardening and agriculture, and home improvement.

Family portrait of the Lung family

Early Chinese Families of Austin

Asian American families who ended up in Austin built a life for themselves by opening up businesses and immersing themselves into the community. All of their hard work paved the way for future immigrants and Asian Americans who settled down in Austin.

Fehr and Granger

Fehr and Granger: Austin Modernists

An exhibit of photographs documenting the works of Mid-Century architects Arthur Fehr and Charles Granger.

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PICB 19746

Backwards in High Heels: Getting Women Elected, 1842-1990

This exhibition is the Austin History Center’s look at the local women who have played a significant part in politics in Texas’ capital city.

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PICB 07214

O. Henry in Austin

In 2010 the AHC partnered with the Texas General Land Office and the State Preservation Board to create an online collection of O. Henry materials at the Portal to Texas History. The collection includes photographs, original manuscript material, first printings of many of his short stories, and scans of some of his collected works.

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PICA 01442

Austin Public Library Jubilee: 75 Years of Building Community

The Austin Public Library celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2001. The exhibit traced the history of the Austin Public Library from its humble beginnings in a small upstairs room on Congress Avenue in 1926 all the way up to present day. The full exhibit was on display May 4-October 28, 2001.

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PICA 18441

Train Tracks: A Journey on Austin's Railways

A gallery of photographs takes you on a journey on Austin's original railways.

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PICB 02905

Defining Legacies: For the Love of Austin

This exhibit tells the stories of people whose legacies helped define Austin--from the end of the Civil War to the more recent impact of a few noteworthy citizens. In this exhibit, we pay homage to just a few of those individuals whose activities are documented in the archives of the Austin History Center.

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PICA 02672

Austin's Creeks

The Austin History Center, in association with the City of Austin's Watershed Protection Department, presents a tribute to Austin's creeks, originally on display September 7-November 22, 1999. This exhibit presents the story of Austin's creeks and their place in Austin's life and livelihood.

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PICA 19600

Wings Over Austin: The History of Austin Aviation

This is an exhibit that follows the flight path of our city's aviation story, from the city's first airplane landing through the transformation of Bergstrom Air Force Base into the new Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. The complete exhibit was at the Austin History Center May 10-August 29, 1999.

Austin Treasures

Austin Treasures is made up of ten separate exhibits on differing themes.  Originally created through the Texas State Library and Archives Commission's TexTreasures Grant program in 2001, they have been preserved in their original state and reflect the Web design esthetics and capabilities of their time. The following exhibits comprise Austin Treasures:

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PICA 00331

Austin Beginnings

Austin's history has been filled with events great and small, significant and trivial, historic and amusing. All have contributed to building the city that is first in our hearts. Finding these milestones is one of the pleasures of conducting research in the Austin History Center.

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PICH 00696

Lost Victorian Austin

In the early 1970s, just as the historic preservation movement was flowering throughout the nation, Austin lost three significant Victorian-style houses in the central downtown area: the Butler House, the Houghton House, and the Hunnicutt House.

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PICB 13189

Jane McCallum/Suffrage Movement

Drawing on materials from the Jane McCallum Papers (AR.E.004), this exhibit looks at the work of the Austin Suffrage Association and women who played key roles in the movement.

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PICA 27170

Red Points and Ration Cards

An exhibit exploring life in Austin during World War II when Austin was known as a "Home Away from Home" for over 20,000 military personnel and their families. Austinites found ways to entertain the troops as they came into the city each weekend from nearby Camp Gary, Fort Hood, Camp Swift, and Bergstrom Field. Join us  for a look at life in Austin during World War II.

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PICA 20591

Just Outside Austin

This exhibit explores the rural areas surrounding Austin, including North, Northeast, East, West and Northwest areas of Travis County, Pflugerville, Manor, Sprinkle, Hunters Bend, Manchaca, and Wheatville.


Capitol Views

Originally created to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Capitol in 1988, this exhibit depicts the history that led up to the need for a new Capitol building, the construction, the celebration of the completion, and the building as a place of work and decision making.

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PICA 09283

Green Growth

The exhibit "Green Growth" profiles some of the individuals and organizations that have given of themselves for the enhancement of Austin's natural beauty, and the public and private spaces that they have enhanced.

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PICA 02442

Austin Streets

 This exhibit looks at some of Austin's major streets over time and provides the origins of many street names.

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PICA 15506

Austin at Work

A look through the photo files of the Austin History Center helps illustrate some of the changes over time in working life of Austinites.

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PICA 02628

Hyde Park

This exhibit celebrates Hyde Park, portraying life in the streetcar era when doors were never locked and did not need to be. These photographs offer a portal through which viewers can step back in time to experience for themselves life on the avenues.