Texas Heritage Museum at Hill College receives national recognition with accreditation from the American Alliance of Museums

  Jessyca Brown
  Thursday, October 5, 2023 9:49 AM
  Texas Heritage Museum

Hillsboro, TX

This summer, Hill College’s Texas Heritage Museum achieved accreditation by the American Alliance of Museums (AAM), the highest national recognition afforded the nation’s museums. Accreditation signifies excellence to the museum and cultural communities as well as government organizations, funders, and other agencies.

The accreditation process is rigorous, it requires a great deal of time and dedication. The museum, specifically John Versluis, executive director and chief curator of the museum, has been working toward this goal for nearly 10 years, a fitting achievement for the college’s centennial anniversary.

“We are immensely proud that the Texas Heritage Museum has received accreditation from the American Alliance of Museums. This achievement marks an important milestone in the history of Hill College. This affirmation of accreditation represents our unyielding commitment to national standards and best practices of museums. Our museum staff and colleagues from across the Hill College community worked tirelessly to achieve this highest national recognition and look forward to continued success in the future,” said Versluis.

Alliance accreditation recognizes a museum’s commitment to excellence, accountability, high professional standards, and continued institutional improvement. Developed and sustained by museum professionals for 50 years, the Alliance’s accreditation program is the field’s primary vehicle for quality assurance, self-regulation, and public accountability. It strengthens the museum profession by promoting practices that enable leaders to make informed decisions, allocate resources wisely, and remain financially and ethically accountable in order to provide the best possible service to the public.

In addition to national recognition in the museum community, accreditation provides increased credibility with funders, donors, and lenders, and can be a valuable tool in lobbying support from local and state governments. It shows fulfillment for public trust obligations, fosters organizational development and improvement, and conveys to insurance agencies that the museum cares about its collection and reputation.

Of the nation’s estimated 33,000 museums, only 1,102 are currently accredited. The Texas Heritage Museum is one of only 53 museums accredited in the state out of an estimated 2,400 museums.

To earn accreditation a museum first must conduct a year of self-study, and then undergo a site visit by a team of peer reviewers. The Alliance’s Accreditation Commission, an independent and autonomous body of museum professionals, considers the self-study and visiting committee report to determine whether a museum should receive accreditation.

The Texas Heritage Museum serves an active role in the educational and service missions of Hill College and brings increasing national and international prestige to the college. The museum’s mission is to explore Texas and Texans during wartime and how those experiences affect us today. The museum is comprised of three divisions: the Galleries & Collection, the Historical Research Center, and the Hill College Press. It is also the home of the Official Texas State Medal of Honor Memorial to Native-Born Texans, which honors Audie Murphy, the most decorated soldier of World War II, and Samuel Dealey, the most decorated sailor of World War II, as well as other native Texans who demonstrated courage and character in times of war.


Currently on view

In celebration of the centennial anniversary of Hill College, the Texas Heritage Museum is currently featuring memorabilia from seven former students who were some of the first graduates of Hill Junior College.

Hill College Artifacts from the Texas Heritage Museum showcases items donated by alumni who attended the college between the 1920s and 1940s and is a testament to former students’ belief in the college and its importance to the community. It is on view through January 31, 2024.


Visitor information

The Texas Heritage Museum is located at 112 Lamar Drive, Hillsboro, Texas, 76645. It is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Mondays through Thursdays, and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., during Hill College fall and spring semesters. The Historical Research Center is open by appointment only. Please call 254.659.7750 for appointments and for more information about the museum.