Galveston Historical Foundation

Galveston Historic Walking Tours

Galveston Island’s rich history comes alive in these special guided walking tours. These tours are led by one of Texas’s best-known writer-historians, James L. Haley, author of the biography Sam Houston, and the popular Passionate Nation: The Epic History of Texas.

Tours are $25 per person and held at 10 a.m. (Broadway Beauties) and 2 p.m. (Sacred Places). Available dates are listed on the links below. Please wear comfortable walking shoes, and bring water and snacks as needed. Check-in starts 15 minutes before the tour. Reservations are non-refundable. These experiences are led by an authorized representative of Galveston Historical Foundation, and feature authentic and researched stories and histories.

BROADWAY BEAUTIESBroadway Beauties Walking TourStroll by twenty of Galveston’s most elegant mansions as we learn about their families, their impact on the city, and how a small group of gifted architects shaped the Galveston we know today. From the Moody Mansion on the west to the iconic Bishop’s Palace on the east and back, little detours will reveal hidden gems that few people know to look for.


SACRED PLACESSacred Places Walking TourVisit a dozen of the most historic places of worship in the downtown area, as we learn the history of those denominations and their clergy, from Sumner Bacon, the first Presbyterian missionary in Texas who was denied a preaching license because he was illiterate, to Rabbi Henry Cohen, who funneled thousands of Jewish refugees into the American Midwest.


ABOUT JIM HALEY | The author of 25 books, James L. Haley is one of the best-known chroniclers of Texas history. Most notable is his long-standing biography, Sam Houston, and his 600-page history of Texas, Passionate Nation. Among several prizes he has won the Western Writers of America Spur Award twice, and the Texas Historical Commission Book Award twice. He is a fellow of the Texas State Historical Association and a member of the Texas Institute of Letters. He is most proud of his tenure as a tour guide at the Texas State Capitol, where he often got in trouble for telling more history than he was supposed to.


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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Amy McCarty
Amy McCarty
1 month ago

Love this idea! We have plans to be in Galveston in June, but unfortunately, not on one of the scheduled weekends. Hope you have a good response to these tours!

24 days ago

Am I correct in understanding that the Broadway Beauties tour does not include admission to either Bishop’s Palace or Moody Mansion?

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