UNDER THE BIG RED ROOF
Citizens of the Danish community of Danevang, many of them descendants of the original one hundred families who settled the region in the late 1800’s, decided they needed a museum to archive and exhibit the objects and artifacts that tell the unique story of Danish immigrants in Texas. By 2001, the community had a finished, six thousand square foot building designed to reflect a traditional Danish barn complete with a bright red roof. Inside, exhibits reflect the daily lives of Danish pioneers and feature a thorough exploration of agricultural crops and farming techniques and equipment, all elements instrumental in shaping the occupations of most of the community’s members. Other exhibits reflect on the community’s country of origin – Denmark – and how the early citizens of Danevang relied on these cultural connections to raise families, celebrate holidays, and redefine who they were in a Texas at the turn of the 19th century. The museum’s exhibit on Danish Vikings is a favorite of visitors who enjoy both the romance and reality of history. The museum has also encouraged descendants of Danevang to contribute to the museum’s offerings by providing exhibition space for individuals and families to display their own history, allowing them to design, construct, and install exhibits that reveal their personal stories and explore their family heritage. Participating families change each year, uncovering new stories and artifacts for display.