Sacred Places

The Alamo

Remember the Alamo!

How many people know the story of the Alamo?  I didn’t  until I painted it and looked up its history. It was a Mission Church for less time than it was an Army fort and garrison.

Its history starts when an existing Spanish mission was moved to the San Antonio area in 1718 and to its present location in 1724; the foundation was laid in 1744. The Mission was designed to teach indigenous people how to farm, do blacksmithing, carpentry, weaving and all the tasks necessary for a Spanish village.

Times changed.  By 1793 the Mission was secularized and turned over to local control.  A year later, both the French and the Americans coveted the area.  The Spanish military moved back in and turned the second story into the first hospital in Texas. The Texans took control in 1835 as more Americans  moved in to the area.   Santa Ana and his men arrived in 1836 to retake the former mission and establish control.  The battle of the Alamo lasted 90 minutes.  Women and children were spared; 200 America soldiers died, among them Davy Crockett and Jim Bowie.

But the tide had turned.  The United States dominated Texas and the military retook the Alamo.  When a plan came out to demolish the Alamo to build a warehouse, the military decided to repair the Alamo instead.  They filled in arches, added windows and a pitched roof.  It was the first roof for the building. To disguise the roof, a prominent architect designed the  distinguished curved top.

But don’t just take my word for it. . .Visit it yourself the next time you are in San Antonio.  A group of dedicated volunteers can tell you the whole story. ..