Museum of Southern History

Civic & Community


Houston, Texas


8,000 sf

Project Features
  • 14-acre site
  • 8,000-sf museum
  • Conference center
  • Exhibit space
Established to bring a stronger sense of southern history to the Houston suburb, the museum replicates Poplar Forest, Thomas Jefferson’s Virginia summer retreat. The 8,000-sf museum includes a historical research library, large conference center, and 3,000 sf dedicated to traveling exhibits. Among the museum’s permanent displays are articles of historic women’s clothing, medical technology, the Secession Crisis, and Civil War relics. To replicate this Thomas Jefferson structure, the architect team conducted extensive historical research, paying particular attention to drawings and specifications during the construction documentation phase to ensure historic accuracy. Likewise, interior finishes and materials were chosen for their semblance to the original materials. To the extent possible, materials and fixtures were refurbished from antiques of the same period. The antique oak flooring was reclaimed from an 18th century Virginia plantation home, the door hardware is restored period hardware, the antique chandelier in the library was refurbished for electrical lighting, and the crown molding, chair rail, and baseboards are replicas of Poplar Forest.
Janis Brackett, AIA, LEED AP 713 426 7426
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Janis brings 24 years of experience and a dedication to the collaborative process to Kirksey's Community Projects Team. Besides her proven ability to keep projects in budget and on schedule, she is enthusiastic about developing relationships with her clients and seeing their ideas and goals become realized. Janis was the 2014 President of AIA Houston, the 2010 Chair of Gulf Coast Green, and also served on the Editorial Committee for GreenWorks Houston.