Spanish colonial artifacts shown for first time in museum exhibit

Jan. 14, 2012 at 5:04 p.m.
Updated Jan. 13, 2012 at 7:14 p.m.

The Museum of the Coastal Bend at Victoria College presents Nueva España, an exhibition of Spanish Colonial artifacts.

The exhibit opens to the public on Jan. 20.

Included in the exhibit is a private collection of artifacts on loan from James Woodrick, a private collector and former Victoria resident.

The Viceroyalty of Nueva España (New Spain) was established in 1521 following the Spanish conquest of the Aztec empire. At its greatest extent in 1795, New Spain included present-day Texas as well as much of the United States west of the Mississippi River and the Floridas.

The compelling story of Spain's early attempts to establish a presence in the untamed and harsh, yet incredibly beautiful coastal plains of Texas is told through these new exhibits.

Viewers will see personal items from the Spanish explorers such as a copper chocolate pot, cookware, religious medallions and pendants, rings and jewelry, thimbles, ficas, horse tack, sword blades, iron tools and lead seals.

Artifacts dating back to 1722 were excavated from Mission Espiritu Santo and Presidio La Bahia.

The museum's exhibit of the James Woodrick Collection of Spanish Colonial artifacts is the first public viewing of this collection.

Also featured are artifacts donated to the museum by private collectors and drawings by John Jarratt, a self-trained archeologist who, as early as 1930, laid the groundwork for several major Spanish colonial site studies in Victoria.

A number of Spanish Colonial artifacts have been replicated in sterling silver as medallions and pendants and are available for purchase in the museum's store.

Nueva España is offered at the Museum of the Coastal Bend in conjunction with the museum's core exhibits of early Coastal Bend history and heritage.

The Museum of the Coastal Bend is on the campus of Victoria College at the corner of East Red River and Ben Jordan streets.



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