Galveston Historical Foundation will reopen its numerous attractions on Friday, September 1 with free admission from Friday through Monday to each, except its Harbor Tour & Dolphin Watch. All foundation sites weathered the storm relatively well and are undergoing cleanup efforts today and tomorrow. A full list of attractions and their hours are below.

“GHF wants to support our friends and members around the region and across Texas,” says Dwayne Jones, Galveston Historical Foundation’s Chief Executive Officer. “Our thoughts are with you as we know well the agony of recovery. This unprecedented disaster is challenging us all but we will return better and stronger. We are working at each site and location that we manage or own. For now, we have some flooding damage but where we do it’s repairable.”

Additionally, GHF is offering its resources and expertise to other cultural organizations impacted by Hurricane Harvey. The foundation’s work during Hurricane Ike and post-disaster included working with private remediation companies and FEMA. If any of GHF’s staff and resources can be of help, please contact the Foundation at


1892 Bishop’s Palace

1402 Broadway
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

Bishop’s Palace, also known as the Walter and Josephine Gresham House, is one of the island’s best known and most popular tourist attractions. Bishop’s Palace is recognized as one of the nation’s most important late 19th century Victorian residences. Nicholas Clayton, Texas’ most accomplished architect of the period, designed the house for the Gresham family. In 1921, Galvestonians raised money to buy the house for the Galveston-Houston Archdiocese to make it the home of Bishop Byrne. GHF purchased the property in 2013 from the Galveston-Houston Archdiocese. The foundation is the third owner of the property and assumed management in 2007. It welcomes over 65,000 local, national and international visitors each year.

1877 Tall Ship ELISSA & Texas Seaport Museum

Pier 22 & Harborside
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Last ticket sold at 4 p.m.

Named in 2005 by the Texas legislature as the Official Tall Ship of Texas, ELISSA is one of only three 19th-century iron square-riggers in the World that continues to sail. Built in 1877 in Aberdeen, Scotland, the iron-hulled vessel boasts a 90-year commercial history during which she carried a variety of cargoes to ports around the world, including Galveston. A National Historic Landmark and a fully functional sailing vessel, ELISSA has achieved a special place in history by sailing in the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.

Pier 21 Theater

Pier 21 and Harborside
Open Daily (showtimes below)

  • The Great Storm: 11 a.m., 12 p.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m., 3 p.m., and 5 p.m.
  • Galveston–Gateway on the Gulf: Thur. – Mon. at 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • The Pirate Island of Jean Laffite: 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.

Pier 21 theater showcases three different documentaries chronicling the early days of Galveston Island. Learn about The Great Storm of 1900, noted pirate Jean Laffite and Galveston’s incredible immigration story though the state of the art theater.

Seagull II Harbor Tour & Dolphin Watch

Pier 22 and Harborside
Daily at 11:30 a.m., 1 p.m., 2:30 p.m. and 4 p.m.
Please note: These tours are not available for free and are subject to the Port of Galveston’s opening of the bay. Please call 409-763-1877 before traveling to ensure tours are available.

See Galveston Harbor up close aboard Seagull II, Texas Seaport Museum’s 50-foot twin-engine motor vessel. Fast, stable and sheltered, she was built specifically for harbor sight-seeing excursions and education and is a perfect platform for waterborne experiential learning. The boat is U.S. Coast Guard certified and her operators are fully licensed and knowledgeable about the history and lore of her home waters. Seagull II offers soft drinks and bottled water for sale and has a comfortable main deck, sheltered from sun and rain. An open upper deck affords a full panorama of water and sky.


Galveston Historical Foundation (GHF) was formed as the Galveston Historical Society in 1871 and merged with a new organization formed in 1954 as a non-profit entity devoted to historic preservation and history in Galveston County. Over the last sixty years, GHF has expanded its mission to encompass community redevelopment, historic preservation advocacy, maritime preservation, coastal resiliency and stewardship of historic properties. GHF embraces a broader vision of history and architecture that encompasses advancements in environmental and natural sciences and their intersection with historic buildings and coastal life, and conceives of history as an engaging story of individual lives and experiences on Galveston Island from the 19th century to the present day.

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