The Textile Museum in Washington, D.C.

Prayer carpet; Turkey
Prayer carpet; Turkey, western Anatolia; Uşak; 18th century. The Textile Museum Collection R34.22.1. Acquired by George Hewitt Myers in 1925.

The Textile Museum in Washington, D.C., was originally founded in 1925 by George Hewitt Myers, an avid collector of textiles from around the world. Initially established as a private institution, the museum aimed to preserve and showcase textiles from various cultures and historical periods. Over the years, the museum expanded its collection through donations, acquisitions, and research expeditions.

For many years, the Textile Museum was located in a historic building in Washington, D.C. However, in 2013, the museum merged with the George Washington University Museum and relocated to a new, state-of-the-art facility on the university’s campus. The new museum building, named the George Washington University Museum and The Textile Museum, provides expanded exhibition space and enhanced facilities for preserving and studying the museum’s vast textile collection.

The Textile Museum’s collection includes a diverse array of textiles, spanning centuries and continents. Visitors can explore exhibits featuring textiles from Asia, Africa, the Americas, and Europe, showcasing various techniques such as weaving, embroidery, and dyeing. The museum also hosts educational programs, lectures, and workshops to engage visitors with the art and cultural significance of textiles.

The museum’s mission includes not only displaying beautiful and historically significant textiles but also fostering an understanding of their cultural and social contexts. Through its exhibitions and programs, the Textile Museum aims to promote appreciation for the rich diversity of textile traditions worldwide and the skills and artistry of the people who create them.