East Texas Oil Museum hosting new exhibit exploring Galveston Island’s immigration gateway

Forgotten Gateway Exhibit

The East Texas Oil Museum at Kilgore College is hosting a new traveling exhibit, “Forgotten Gateway: Coming to America through Galveston Island.”

The exhibit, on display through June 15, explores how Galveston was a major gateway for immigration as the port of entry for hundreds of thousands of people coming to America from 1845 to 1924.

The exhibit is based on the major exhibition of the same name developed by The Bullock Texas State History Museum and guest-curated by Dr. Suzanne Seriff, independent museum curator and senior lecturer of anthropology at The University of Texas at Austin.

Forgotten Gateway considers the importance of place in the immigrant experience—tracing the history of Galveston Island as it changed from a small harborage for sailing vessels, to a major cosmopolitan steamship and railroad hub, and back to a nearly abandoned immigrant station.

The exhibit also explores universal themes of immigration including leaving home, encountering danger, confronting discrimination and navigating bureaucracy.

Forgotten Gateway is presented in partnership with Humanities Texas, the state affiliate for the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).

The East Texas Oil Museum is located at 1301 S. Henderson Blvd. (corner of Hwy. 259 and Ross Ave.) on the Kilgore College campus.

The museum is open from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Wednesdays – Saturdays. They’re closed closed on all major holidays.

Admission into the museum is $8 for adults, $5 for children 3-11 and Kilgore College students & employees. Children under 3 get in for free.

If you’re interested in making a tour reservation you can do so by visiting the museum’s website here.

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