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Rafael Sr. and Virginia Galvan Family papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: Coll-118
The Rafael Sr. and Virginia Galvan family papers contain a variety of materials, including photographs, audiovisual materials, papers of various family members, printed documents, clippings, and posters. The family photographs consist of approximately 317 images that date from the early 1900s through the 1990s and reflect many activities of the family over generations, organizations they belonged to, and especially events and musical groups at the Galvan Ballroom. These items form an important visual resource for South Texas Mexican American history.


  • 1890s-2000s


Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Use

This material is made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. Copyright law. The user assumes full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to taking precautions against infringement of copyright and respecting the publication rights of reproduced materials. All rights are reserved and retained regardless of current or future development or laws that may apply to fair use standards. Any materials used should be fully credited with their source according to the example given in the Preferred Citation note. Requests for assistance with citations and images of publication quality should be directed to


7 Linear Feet

Biographical / Historical

Rafael, Sr. and Virginia Reyes Galvan were two of the most prominent Hispanic community figures in Corpus Christi of their time. Their former residence, the Galvan House, was a center of local community life; it is now part of Corpus Christi's Heritage Park and is considered one of the city's most historic domestic structures. Businessman, civic leader, a founder of LULAC, and a Corpus Christi Mexican American policeman during the early 20th century, Rafael Galvan, Sr. (1887-1966) was a force in civic affairs. Among his many endeavors, in 1949 he constructed and opened the Galvan Ballroom, which became a focal point of social life for residents of Corpus Christi. The Galvans had several children, including Ralph, Jr., Eddie, and Robert, and Sam, who became accomplished musicians and had an impact on the musical development of their region.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift; 1994. Gift: 1997.