Originally built in 1850, Market Square opened as an open air market in 1852.  For the rest of the 19th century, many Brownsville residents bought their fresh foods from the many stalls found in the Square.  Even after being damaged by a hurricane in 1867, Market Square continued to operate as a market on the first floor and city offices on the second.  By the 1940s, the stalls had been closed in, turning Market Square into just another enclosed building downtown.


In early 2009, Market Square was leased to the Brownsville Historicial Association.  Thanks to the support of the Stillman Trust, Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation, and the City of Brownsville, Market Square became the home of BHA's collections and archives.


The vaults of Market Square house one of the largest South Texas photograph collections in the Rio Grande Valley.  Additionally, the archives are home to numerous documents include the Frank Cushman Piece Papers and the A.A. Champion Collection.


The collections houses fine art, historical costumes, furniture, sculpture, and the extensive Backal art collection.  Artists include Frederic Remington, Charles M. Russell, Armando Garcia Nunez, and Carlos Romero Orozco.

Summer Hours of Operation:

Tuesday through Friday: By Appointment Only

Saturday - Monday: CLOSED


Market Square is open to scholars, students and amature researchers by appointment.  Contact Market Square for more information or to set up an appointment.



In addition to the collections and archives, Market Square also houses the permenant exhibit, Into the Wild West, featuring the art of Frederic Remington and Charles Russell.


This collection was donated by the late Ben Edelstein.  Books on both artists are available at La Tienda Gift Shop.




Market Square



Monday - Thursday

First Hour: $150.00

Additional Hour: $50.00


Friday - Sunday

First Hour: $350.00

Additional Hour: $50.00




Monday - Thursday

Any four (4) hour rental between the hours of

5pm - 11pm is $800.00





Friday - Sunday

Any four (4) hour rental between the hours of

5pm - 11pm is $1300.00

All Market Square rentals must pay a $100.00 cleaning fee.  All evening and weekend day rentals require a $500.00 deposit to hold their reservation.  Weekday day rentals may have their deposit fee waived at the discretion of the Executive Director.  All evening rentals are subjected to a $300.00 charge for every hour that extends beyond the rental period.


A non-profit rental rate is available; please contact the Executive Director for more information.


Included in the rental fee are as follows:

• Main reception area, breezeway, bathrooms, and sidewalks immediately outside of the building

• Cleaning and preparation of the building (indoors and out) for event

• Building decorations, including small Market Square exhibit, lights, and large doors.


Tables, chairs and linens are not provided in the rental fee.


(Revised and effective 09/01/15)

The Brownsville Heritage Complex  |  1325 E. Washington Street  |  Brownsville, Texas 78520  |  P: 956.541.5560  |  F: 956.435.0028

© 2015 Brownsville Historical Association.  All rights reserved.