One of over 200 historical markers on the island, this marker highlights the beginning of the Galveston Historical Foundation originally named the Galveston Historical Society in 1871. The marker was erected in 2002 by the Texas Historical Commission.
“In 1871, twelve men formed the Galveston Historical Society to preserve the history of Texas by collecting important documents. The group and its archive grew, but in 1880, the secretary died, telling no one where to find the collection. In 1885, the Society found it and placed it in the care of Phillip C. Tucker, Jr., and his son. Interest in the group waned, but in 1894, new energy led to its reorganization as the Texas Historical Society. New members included Rabbi Henry Cohen and Elbridge G. Littlejohn, as well as several women. They began storing the collection, most of which had been salvaged after Galveston’s tragic 1900 storm, at the Rosenberg Library in 1906. In 1931, they gave the library full ownership.”
“After several inactive years, the Society was resurrected in 1942 under its old name and turned to preserving historic landmarks, publishing a booklet in 1951 of the island’s significant homes. In 1954, one of those homes, the 1830s Williams-Tucker House, was threatened. The Society, unable by its charter to acquire property, formed a new group, the Galveston Historical Foundation, which purchased the home and restored it. In 1958, the two groups merged as the Galveston Historical Foundation. Over the next 50 years, the group saved buildings and helped establish historic districts, including The Strand, one of the largest extant Victorian business districts in the South.”
“After celebrating its 130th year in 2001, the nationally acclaimed Foundation continues its leadership role in revitalization, museum operation, education, property management and preservation advocacy. (2006)”