Tag Archives: RiverWalk

Two San Antonio Places to See Besides The Alamo

13 Apr

I love going to museums, especially museums I have not yet been to visit.  I have been to San Antonio many times, so did not need to see the Alamo again. Therefore, during my recent trip to San Antonio at the end of February, I was excited to visit two museums that were new to me thanks to two different friends who live there. 

First, I went to the Holocaust Memorial Museum of San Antonio that is housed in the Jewish Community Center.  A dear friend of mine, whose mother was a survivor, volunteers at the museum to share her mother’s story.  Before she knew I would be in town, she agreed to speak to a group of middle school students from a local Catholic school.  She invited me to hear her talk.

I was interested in going.  I knew my friend’s mother and I knew a little bit about her story because it is unusual.  Both she and her mother were together throughout the war, and both survived their concentration camp experience. My friend was also one of four women in Texas who worked to make Holocaust education a part of the Texas official school curriculum.

The Museum, which opened in 2000, is small but well thought out.  The main permanent exhibit tells the story of the Shoah through photos and films, maps, and personal items. Another part shows the USA response to the Shoah.  Finally, there is a room with photos of San Antonio residents who were survivors, including my friends mother.

Watching my friend speak and learning so much more about what happened to her mother and grandmother, really touched my heart.  You wonder how someone who spent her teen years as a slave laborer, who almost lost her life several times, who saw such evil, could ever become normal and raise children in the USA. But she did.

I recommend going to the museum.  It is worth the short time it would take to walk around and read the exhibits.  If you can, plan in advance to schedule a docent led tour, that would be even better. The museum is free and open to the public. Hours are Monday to Friday, 9 am – 3 pm. And Sunday’s 1 -4 pm.

My second San Antonio Museum was much more Texas oriented.  Other friends of mine picked me up at my hotel and took me to the Briscoe Western Art Museum, which is located right along the River Walk.  It is named for former Texas Governor Dolph Briscoe, Jr. You can actually see his office furniture in the museum.

The museum brochure points out that Western art is a unique American art form.  It Is!  I loved the spurs and saddles.  Some were absolutely beautiful.  I was excited to see all the different spurs, which were made in different states.  Seeing the one from Kansas was fun!

The paintings and sculptures were also interesting.  The western scenes and Native America art is both inside the museum and part of an outdoor sculpture garden that you should not miss. There are also sculptures along the River Walk just outside that entrance to the Musuem. I also enjoyed the gallery that was devoted to the art of women in the Ruth Bowers Women of the West Gallery.

The building itself is wonderful, once the home of San Antonio’s first public library. I loved the ornate ceiling and actually took several photos just of it!

This is also a small museum that you can visit and see all within a few hours.  It is open Thursday through Monday, 10 am – 5 pm. Children under 12 are free.  Adults are #14 and seniors $12.