Our Story

Museum founders Paul Schexnayder and Becky Schexnayder Owens conceived of the Bayou Teche Museum in 1992. With the help of Alfred “Smitty” Landry, they formed the nonprofit New Iberia Museum Foundation. Over time, many dedicated board members, elected officials, and volunteers made it possible to open the museum’s doors in 2010. It is through our community’s generous spirit that the rich area is showcased to visitors from around the world, and its history and culture preserved for generations to come.

    Bayou Teche

    Our Future

    In 2011, the New Iberia Museum Foundation raised funds to purchase the adjacent building on the corner of East Main Street and Serret Alley. Soon after, resources were made available to replace the roof and restore the brick facade. We have now embarked on a capital campaign to fund the interior restoration. The building bears the name of local philanthropist, Donald “Doc” Voorhies, who generously provided seed money for the new wing. The multipurpose facility will house the Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco Exhibit. It will also provide a gathering space to engage and educate the public by preserving and sharing collections, stories and memories that define our identities, guide our futures and enrich the lives of our community. As storyteller, guardian and teacher, our hope is to engage visitors of all ages and educate them on the many forces that have shaped, and continue to shape, the people of the Bayou Teche region. Included in the new wing will be a multi-use education and activity area with the most up-to-date technology for presentations and lectures, open space for community gatherings and celebrations, rotating exhibits, oral history kiosks, a research library and archives and a balcony overlooking Main Street. If you’d like to make a financial donation to support the expansion, please contact us today.