10 Interesting Facts about the Alamo

You would find one of these following facts about the Alamo interesting and useful. The Alamo was originally known as the Mission San Antonio de Valero. It is a former Roman Catholic mission and fortress compound and the site of the Battle of the Alamo in 1836. Built by the Spanish Franciscan priest, Antonie de Olivares, and Payaya Indians, it forms of the present city of San Antonia, Texas, along with the Presidio San Antonia de Bexar and the Acequia Madre de Valero. To get to know more about this site, here are some other facts about the Alamo you might be interested in. 

Facts about the Alamo 1: Name

After the conversion to Christianity, in 1793, the mission was secularized and soon abandoned. Ten years later, it became a fortress housing the Mexican Army group, the Second Flying Company of San Carlos de Parras, who likely gave the mission the name Alamo.

Facts about the Alamo 2: First Stone and Reconstruction

The first stones were laid for a more permanent church building in 1744, however, the church, its tower and the sacristy collapsed in the late 1750s. Reconstruction began in 1758, with the new chapel located at the south end of the inner courtyard.

Facts about the Alamo - The Alamo

Facts about the Alamo – The Alamo

Facts about the Alamo 3: Misson Complex

In the 19th century, the mission complex became known as “the Alamo”. The name may have been derived from the grove of nearby cottonwood trees, known in Spanish as “alamo”.

Facts about the Alamo 4: Mexican War of Independence

During the Mexican War of Independence, parts of the mission frequently served as a political prison. Between 1806 and 1812 it served as San Antonio’s first hospital. Spanish records indicate that some renovations were made for this purpose, but no details were provided.

Facts about the Alamo - Main Building

Facts about the Alamo – Main Building

Facts about the Alamo 5: Further Military Use

Following the battle of the Alamo, one thousand Mexican soldiers, under General Juan Andrade, remained at the mission. For the next two months they repaired and fortified the complex, however no records remain of what improvements they made to the structure

Facts about the Alamo 6: Mercantile

The army abandoned the Alamo in 1876, when Fort Sam Houston was established in San Antonio. About that time, the Church sold the convent to Honore Grenet, who added a new two-story wood building to the complex. Grenet used the convent and the new building for a wholesale grocery business.

Facts about the Alamo - Alamo Mission

Facts about the Alamo – Alamo Mission

Facts about the Alamo 7: Modern Use

As of 2002, the Alamo welcomed over four million visitors each year, making it one of the most popular historic sites in the United States. Visitors may tour the chapel, as well as the Long Barracks, which contains a small museum with paintings, weapons, and other artifacts from the era of the Texas Revolution.

Facts about the Alamo 8: Annual Operating Budget

The site has an annual operating budget of $6 million, primarily funded through sales in the gift store. In 2009 the DRT commissioned the first land survey of the Alamo by Westar Alamo Land Surveyors, Inc. which was signed by Registered Professional Land Surveyor Jose A. Trevino in November 2009.

Facts about the Alamo - Alamo Mission Sign

Facts about the Alamo – Alamo Mission Sign

Facts about the Alamo 9: Soldiers

The Texan commander of the Alamo Battle, Lt. Col. William Barrett Travis, asked for assistance from both the Texas and U.S. governments, but nobody responded. Only 32 rangers from nearby Gonzales, Texas, came to the defenders’ aid and all were eventually killed in the battle. Many of the soldiers had lived in Texas for only a short time, lured by the prospect of free land.

Facts about the Alamo 10: Visiting

The Alamo is open to the public every day except Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Entry is free of charge, though the museum takes donations. History talks are given every half hour at the main entrance, but because of the number of visitors, walking tours are not provided.

Facts about the Alamo - Alamo Entrance

Facts about the Alamo – Alamo Entrance

Hope you would find those Alamo facts really interesting and useful for your additional reading.

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