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2014

Digitization of rare maps helps Save Texas History

November 18, 2014
(AUSTIN)—Christmas came early at the historic Archives of the Texas General Land Office with a gift Texans worldwide will be eager to share. A private collection of some of the oldest and rarest maps of Texas is now available to the public, thanks to a unique digitization project with Houston map collectors...more


‘We might be speaking French today instead of English'

September 15, 2014
(AUSTIN)—Putting pieces of the past together: it’s what historians do. And that’s precisely what happened when a million-plus fragments were recovered from a 300-year-old shipwreck along the Texas Coast and reassembled – the subject of a session at this year’s Save Te...more


Ferguson, like Perry, charged with misapplying veto power

September 02, 2014
(AUSTIN)—The governor of Texas faces charges for misapplying his veto power and makes national headlines. Though that may sound like recent news, it’s not. It’s front page material from nearly a hundred years ago. Like Texas Gov. Rick Perry, Gov. James E. “Pa” Ferguso...more


Phil Collins donates massive collection to the Alamo

Phil Collins donates massive collection to the Alamo

June 26, 2014
((Austin, Texas) )—THE ALAMO, Texas – The largest known private collection of artifacts from the Texas Revolution and the Battle of the Alamo has come home. Today, former Genesis drummer, Oscar winner, multiple Grammy Award winner and Texana collector Phil Collins joined Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patter...more


Standing Their Ground: Tejanos at the Alamo

February 19, 2014
((AUSTIN, Texas))—Due largely to popular culture from a bygone era, the Battle of the Alamo is often depicted as a racial conflict between Anglos and Hispanics.  But, of course, the truth is more revealing.  This spring the story of the Alamo siege and battle is cast in a new light.  For t...more


2013

Holiday map sales Save Texas History

November 20, 2013
(AUSTIN, Texas)—Texas is so big that even Santa needs a map – or three.  Historical maps posted on the Texas General Land Office website make quick, easy gifts for anyone who loves the Lone Star State and its colorful past. But best of all, proceeds from the sales preserve historic documents and...more


Alamo will not go under UN control

October 30, 2013
(AUSTIN)—Despite spectacular and erroneous reports to the contrary, the Alamo is not being turned over to the United Nations — or anyone else for that matter. Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson today attempted once again to let Texans know that if the Alamo and the other Spanish missions in S...more


Federal shutdown doesn’t affect the Alamo

October 03, 2013
(AUSTIN)—Despite a slapdash and erroneous online news report, the Alamo remains open for business during the partial shutdown of the federal government.  “This is a good example of why things that matter most to Texans — like the Alamo — remain Texan, just like the Chr...more


Patterson sends reinforcements to the Alamo

September 04, 2013
(AUSTIN)—Two years after lawmakers turned the Alamo over to the Texas General Land Office, big changes at the state’s top tourist attraction have reinforced the Shrine of Texas Liberty, both financially and culturally. The state’s oldest agency took over stewardship of the Alamo on Sept....more


New Alamo exhibit details birth of Spanish Texas

New Alamo exhibit details birth of Spanish Texas

August 26, 2013
(SAN ANTONIO)—Today, the Alamo and the Texas General Land Office announced the long-awaited follow-up to the highly successful Travis Letter exhibit with an exhibition of rare, original Spanish documents dating back to the foundation of the Alamo, and the mission system in San Antonio, in the 1700s.&#160...more


Travis Letter TV ad takes two Telly Awards

Travis Letter TV ad takes two Telly Awards

August 12, 2013
(AUSTIN)—William Barret Travis’ “Victory or Death” letter drew record crowds to the Alamo this spring, and a Texas General Land Office public service announcement heralding its return just won two Telly Awards — the premiere honor for outstanding local, regional and c...more


Watch 'The Alamo' at the Alamo

July 24, 2013
(SAN ANTONIO)—A free outdoor screening of the major film release “The Alamo” is set for 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 17, at the Alamo in San Antonio. No, not at the dine-in movie house of the same name, but at the Alamo itself – specifically, on the lawn behind the mission. The public i...more


Spend a Saturday myth-busting at the Alamo

July 10, 2013
(SAN ANTONIO)—Contrary to Texas folklore, the battle of the Alamo was not fought on the coldest winter on record. Nor was the army comprised of all non-conscripted, civilian volunteers. And did you know that there were over 20 survivors of the siege — not zero as commonly reported? These and other myth...more


Patterson opposes boxing promotion at Alamo Plaza

July 01, 2013
(AUSTIN)—A planned boxing promotion at Alamo Plaza Monday desecrates the Shrine of Texas Liberty, Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson said.  “This would not happen at Gettysburg. No one would even imagine holding such an event at the USS Arizona in Pearl Harbor,” Patterson s...more


Time to end 14-year Juneteenth delay

June 19, 2013
(AUSTIN)—Today, 148 years after African-Americans in Texas learned of their freedom under the Emancipation Proclamation, Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson once again called on state leaders to finally honor the Juneteenth anniversary at the seat of government. As a state Senator in 1997, Patterson was...more


THE TRAVIS LETTER LEAVES THE ALAMO

March 07, 2013
(THE ALAMO)—Once again, the William B. Travis "Victory or Death" letter is leaving the Alamo.  Unlike its first journey 177 years ago when the letter was meant to reach all Texans, the letter is now leaving public view for the confines of a guarded vault.  As it is placed on the big blue truc...more


Travis “Victory or Death” letter returns Friday

February 21, 2013
(AUSTIN)—Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson today announced viewers across the world will be able to witness the return of the iconic William Barret Travis "Victory or Death" letter to the Alamo starting Friday.  The arrival ceremony and exhibit at the Alamo will be carried live on the World W...more


Travis’ letter returns to Alamo with plenty of support

February 20, 2013
(AUSTIN)—Col. William Travis' plea for help at the Alamo may have been too late for him, but his "Victory or Death" letter's historic return Friday has marshaled broad support for the Alamo today.  "It is not surprising, but still fulfilling to see everyone fall in like this to celebrate the histor...more


Remember the Alamo — with a gift you can’t get anywhere else

February 05, 2013
(THE ALAMO, SAN ANTONIO)—The reimagined Alamo Gift Shop reopens at 9 a.m. Friday with dramatic flare, as a William Barret Travis reenactor slashes through the ceremonial ribbon with his sword.  Members of the media can get a sneak peak of the new store and its one-of-a-kind-Alamo merchandise Thursday afternoon...more


“See the Letter” Facebook photo contest now open

January 24, 2013
(AUSTIN)—When the brash, 26-year-old commander of the Alamo wrote his plea for help on February 24, 1836, he was clear about his chances for surviving the siege by Mexican troops under Santa Anna. But Col. William Barret Travis knew the power of his words. He chose them carefully and crafted a message that ...more


Travis’ “Victory or Death” letter returns Feb. 22

January 16, 2013
(AUSTIN)—William Barret Travis' famous "Victory or Death" letter will make its return to the Alamo at 4 p.m. Friday, February 22 for a grand celebration at Alamo Plaza.  This will be the first time it has been at the Alamo since it left with a courier on horseback under the cover of darkness during...more


2012

Texas General Land Office statement on Alamo Mission Chapter use of state property

December 28, 2012
(AUSTIN)—This week the Texas General Land Office and the Alamo Mission Chapter of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas (DRT) concluded discussions regarding the private entity's use of state property at the historic Alamo complex in San Antonio.  Granted authority over the Alamo in 2011, the Texa...more


Christmas map sales Save Texas History

November 26, 2012
(AUSTIN)—Archives staff members at the Texas General Land Office are as busy as elves this time of year, stuffing tubes with historic map reproductions and sending them off to good Texans all over the globe.  "Online sales in December earn more for Save Texas History than any other time of the year...more


Travis’ “Victory or Death” letter to return to the Alamo for first time

October 24, 2012
(AUSTIN)— The Texas State Library and Archives Commission voted today to allow the return of Col. Travis' "Victory or Death" letter to the Alamo in March for the 177th Anniversary of its writing. Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson, custodian of the Shrine of Texas Liberty, made the request for the hist...more


Change is coming to world-famous Alamo Gift Shop

September 26, 2012
(SAN ANTONIO)—After sitting in the shadow of the historic Alamo church for 76 years, the Alamo Gift Shop will finally be getting some long-awaited attention of its own.  On October 1, for the first time in history, a private company will begin operating the gift shop for the Cradle of Texas Liberty unde...more


Voices of Veterans™ exhibit ends Sept. 3

August 27, 2012
(AUSTIN)—Take the time to listen to an old veterans story while you still can, urges Jerry Patterson, chairman of the Texas Veterans Land Board.  The Voices of Veterans "Every Veteran has a Story to Tell" exhibit is in its final week at the Capitol Visitor's Center. The interactive, multi-media exh...more


Plans for Yankee invasion revealed!

July 12, 2012
(AUSTIN)—By land and by sea, Federal troops invaded Texas four times during the War Between the States. They never once succeeded. Why and how Texas became one of just two southern states to succeed at fending off northern aggression is just one of the topics sure to fire debates and imaginations at the Thi...more


Friendswood 7th grader wins Texas Travels essay contest

June 25, 2012
(AUSTIN)—Westbrook Intermediate School's Kelly Sang, 12, is the Seventh Grade Grand Prize winner of the 2012 Texas Travels essay contest, sponsored by the Texas General Land Office's Save Texas History Program.  Kelly's action-packed essay tells the bloody story of how Bandera County got its name, ...more


Tyler 4th grader wins Texas Travels essay contest

June 25, 2012
(AUSTIN)—Caldwell Arts Academy's Quinn Boozer, 9, is the Fourth Grade Grand Prize winner of the 2012 Texas Travels essay contest, sponsored by the Texas General Land Office's Save Texas History Program.  Quinn's entry, an imagined journal, tells the story of Coronado's ill-fated quest for gold from...more


Texas General Land Office Names State Alamo Director

May 16, 2012
(SAN ANTONIO)—Jerry Patterson, Commissioner of the Texas General Land Office, today announced San Antonio resident Stephen Oswald has been named the first-ever State Director of the Alamo. In this position, Oswald will oversee daily operation and management of the Alamo by the Daughters of the Republic of Texas ...more


Treasures of Texas liberty on rare display at Alamo Friday

February 29, 2012
(AUSTIN)—An authentic Texas treasure will be put on rare public display Friday at the Alamo in celebration of Texas Independence Day.  Samuel Maverick's personal copy of the 1836 Declaration of Texas Independence - one of just 13 original copies - will be put on public display from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p...more


Alamo armed for Texas Independence Day

February 29, 2012
(AUSTIN)—A replica of the 18-pound cannon William Barret Travis answered Santa Anna's demand for surrender with makes a defiant return to the Alamo Friday in celebration of Texas Independence Day and the 176th anniversary of the Battle of the Alamo.  "This cannon is the very symbol of the Texians' ...more


2011

Help Santa Save Texas History this Christmas

December 01, 2011
(AUSTIN)—Santa Claus isn't widely known for his important role in Texas history, but no one else is doing more than him to help save it. Christmas map sales are now the biggest annual fundraiser for the conservation of historic maps and documents in the archives of the Texas General Land Office.  "...more


One-of-a-kind Texas State Veterans Home open for business

November 09, 2011
(AUSTIN)—Generations of veterans gathered today in Tyler to dedicate the newest and most down-home state veterans’ home in Texas. “Watkins-Logan-Garrison Texas State Veterans Home is a one-of-a-kind facility,” said Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson, chairman of the Vetera...more


Voices of Veterans™ exhibit opens on Veterans Day

October 31, 2011
(AUSTIN)—The Texas Veterans Land Board and chairman Jerry Patterson, will celebrate Veterans Day with the opening of a Voices of VeteransTM program exhibit at the Texas Capitol Visitors Center called "Every Veteran has a Story to Tell." The interactive, multimedia exhibit will open on Nov. 11 (11.11.11) at ...more


Texas history draws national audience

September 27, 2011
(AUSTIN)—One-hundred-seventy-five years after Texas' fight for independence from Mexico, the revolution will be televised. Today, Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson announced C-SPAN, the national public affairs network, will broadcast the second annual Save Texas History Symposium to be held this Satur...more


Historical artwork honors 175th anniversary of Texas

September 22, 2011
(AUSTIN)—The Texas General Land Office has turned to art to help preserve the history of Texas.  The oldest state agency commissioned notable Texana artist Gary Zaboly to create a special work of art to commemorate the 175th anniversary of the Texas Revolution. His vivid depiction of Texians at the...more


9-year-old from The Woodlands wins Save Texas History essay contest

August 04, 2011
(AUSTIN)—Alonso de Pineda's 1517 expedition to Texas comes to life in 9-year-old Madeleine Smith's winning fourth-grade entry in the 2011 Save Texas History Texas Travels Essay Contest.  "I jumped into the surf, drew out my sword, and slashed the waves with my sword and claimed the land for the Kin...more


Save Texas History essay contest won by Moldavian

August 03, 2011
(AUSTIN)—The winning seventh-grade entry in the 2011 Save Texas History Texas Travels Essay Contest proves you don't need to be born in Texas to love its history.   Elena Ivanova, 12, took top honors with her vivid retelling of how 18 Texians stood down an army of 100 Mexican soldiers at t...more


Patterson meets with Alamo caretakers

Patterson meets with Alamo caretakers

July 25, 2011
(AUSTIN)—Jerry Patterson, Commissioner of the Texas General Land Office, met Monday with the leader of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas to discuss the future of the Alamo -  the "Cradle of Texas Liberty."  Karen R. Thompson, president general of the 8,000-member Daughters of the Repu...more


Long-lost letters shed new light on Texas Navy

March 01, 2011
(AUSTIN)—The Texas Navy was pressed into service in January 1836 - just months before the newborn Republic declared independence from Mexico. By August 1837 all four ships were lost, as was the reputation of the ragtag flotilla of privateers and U.S. Navy veterans.  But correspondence recently cull...more


Long-lost letters shed new light on Texas Navy

February 14, 2011
(AUSTIN)—The Texas Navy was pressed into service in January 1836 - just months before the newborn Republic declared independence from Mexico. By August 1837 all four ships were lost, as was the reputation of the ragtag flotilla of privateers and U.S. Navy veterans.  But correspondence recently cull...more


Save Texas History essay contest open to 4th and 7th graders

January 13, 2011
(AUSTIN)—Exploring the rich history of the Lone Star State is its own reward, but the Texas General Land Office's Save Texas History program is also offering fourth-and seventh-grade students a chance to win a fun-filled weekend in San Antonio - including round-trip airline tickets on Southwest Airlines...more


2010

Give the gift of Texas history for the holidays

December 03, 2010
(AUSTIN)—With the holiday gift-giving season upon us, Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson is once again urging Texans to give the gift of history.  Historic map reproductions from the archives of the Texas General Land Office are available for as little as $20. The colorful maps are rich with h...more


Patterson sends Pearl Harbor survivors back for anniversary memorial

December 01, 2010
(AUSTIN)—Two Texans who fought back the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor 69 years ago will soon be headed back for special memorial services, thanks to the Texas State Veterans Home in Temple where the old heroes live.  Once shipmates aboard the USS Phoenix, Albert Kamenicky and Ben Russell each wat...more


Patterson hosts seminar exploring Texas’ Spanish, Mexican roots

October 13, 2010
(AUSTIN)—Join the Texas General Land Office as it hosts the first ever Save Texas History Symposium Saturday, November 6 at the Stephen F. Austin State Office Building in Austin. This inaugural symposium, Discovering Spanish and Mexican Texas, will focus on the settlement of Texas before 1836.  "It...more


Patterson to help rededicate monument to Hood’s Texas Brigade

October 12, 2010
(AUSTIN)—Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson - flanked by the Texas Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans Mounted Color Guard - will help rededicate the Hood's Brigade Monument at the Texas Capitol at 2 p.m. Friday, Oct. 15.  The centennial celebration of the monument and the hard-fighti...more


Legendary land surveying papers donated to Texas General Land Office

September 29, 2010
(AUSTIN)—Beginning more than 120 years ago, Willis Day Twichell surveyed tens of millions of acres of public and private lands in West Texas. He laid out more than 40 towns and provided surveying work in 165 of 254 counties in Texas. The lands he surveyed included the boundary between Texas and New Mexico, ...more


Coppell seventh-grader’s essay to be published in Texas Historian

August 12, 2010
(AUSTIN)—Coppell Middle School student Ashley Dark already won a weekend get away for her family - including airline tickets and hotel accommodations - with her winning entry into the 2010 Save Texas History Texas Travels Essay Contest, sponsored by the Texas General Land Office.  Now, her essay ab...more