On this page you will find all of the information you need for a pleasant visit to the Costumes of the Americas Museum, a museum that houses one of the largest collections of authentic North, Central and South American indigenous clothing and accessories in the world. Costumes from some of the Caribbean countries are also included in this collection.
The Costumes of the Americas Museum is located in the Mitte Cultural Education Center near downtown Brownsville, Texas.
Costumes of the Americas Museum
#5 Dean Porter Park
501 Ringgold Street
Brownsville, Texas 78520
Costumes of the Americas Museum
P.O. Box 3790
Brownsville, Texas 78523
Sunday - 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Monday - Closed during the school year
Monday - 12 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Spring Break & Summer Hours
Tuesday through Saturday - 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
$2.00 per person
Children 10 and under are free.
Free Community Nights - Every last Thursday of the month!
Coming South on U.S. 77/83, take the 6th Street exit. Veer to the right, traveling along 6th Street towards the Gladys Porter Zoo. Turn right onto Ringgold Street and make a 2nd right turn on Dean Porter Drive. Enter the second gated entrance to the left from Dean Porter Drive. Follow the park road until it dead ends at the resaca. Turn left and follow the park road to the Mitte Cultural Education Center which houses both the Costumes of the Americas Museum and the Children's Museum of Brownsville. The entrance to the Costumes of the Americas Museum faces the Dean Porter Park Plaza Fountain.
The Costumes of the Americas Museum retains a traveling collection in order to stage costume revues (for a fee) for local academic functions as well as for private viewings to organizations or other interested parties. Contact the Museum for details.
Private tours (in English and Spanish) that feature a guided overview of the Museum's current exhibit are available upon request. Please contact the Museum for details and reservations.
For more information, contact us at:
Costumes of the Americas Museum and Pan American Round Table 1 proudly commended Charro Days, Inc. for its seventy-five year promotion of respect and esteem for the magnificent traditional costumes of Mexico and the culture they represent. To help commemorate this history, the "Regional Costumes of Mexico" was produced. This 59 page book has over 65 full-color photographs of everyday, fiesta, and gala costumes representing the 31 states in Mexico along with the Distrito Federal. The price for this book is $10.00. You can purchase it at the Museum or by contacting us by email, mail, or by telephone.
We hope you will come and visit
The Costumes of the Americas Museum!
Welcome to the Costumes of the Americas Museum Website!
The Tzotzil men from Huistan in the Mexican state of Chiapas wear an extraordinary costume. The pants are an adaptation of an ancient loincloth. Four webs of fabric are sewn together with no leg separation. Men step into this tube, grab the front hem, and fold it to the waist. Then, they pull the back up through the legs. The whole thing is then held together with a long red sash.
The village of San Mateo Ixtatán is located along the Guatemalan border with Mexico. The villagers are called "the weavers of the world". The womens' blouses, or huipiles, are particularly spectacular. The one shown features a sunburst design that is embroidered with a bone needle on four layers of cotton manta. This design is an important Mayan symbol representing the life giving powers of the sun's light and heat.
This costume is from the Caribbean country of Haiti. The blouse is made of white cotton and buttons down the front. The print skirt is gathered at the waist and has lace insets at the hem - made to look like a petticoat peeking through. The hat is most interesting. It sits on a tall stove pipe covered with the same fabric as the skirt. A straw hat sits on top for shade and coolness.
PARAGUAY’S traditional party dress is made of Ñandutí Lace. The forms and techniques used in making Ñanduti lace were likely influenced by the lacework of Canary Islanders who immigrated to Paraguay. The lace is made with a needle and thread that is woven in a web shape. In fact, the word Ñandutí, means"web" in the native language of the Guarani Indians in Paraguay. It is the Guarani women who first incorporated geometric designs, stars or typical Paraguayan flowers like the jasmine into the patterns of the lace.