The Brownsville Historical Association houses a variety of collections, featuring: American and Mexican paintings, sculptures, artistic prints, drawings, photographs and decorative and folk art from Brownsville, South Texas, and Northern Mexico. The collection is especially rich in paper archives like, historic photographs, manuscripts, land grants, architectural drawings, and newspapers that are directly related to the history, heritage and culture of Brownsville and the surrounding region. Our extensive collection also includes 19th and 20th century furniture. Today, the collection is comprised of approximately 18,000 items starting with the first gifts from Chauncey Stillman during the conception of the Brownsville Historical Association’s first museum, the Stillman House. Over the years, our collection has grown through numerous acquisitions as well as significant gifts and purchases, including an 1872 Bladwin wood-burning, narrow gage railroad locomotive on loan to us by the City of Brownsville and a collection of casted bronze Fredrick Remington statues and paintings of Charles M. Russell gifted by Ben Edelstein.
The museums organize special exhibitions drawn from the permanent collection, the holdings of other museums and private collections. These exhibitions bring to Brownsville a wide variety of themes and styles, often accompanied by special programs. The Brownsville Historical Association continues to build and shape its collection to realize more fully and effectively its mission.