Houston is a city rich in history. Once the capital city of the Republic of Texas, Houston is the largest city in the state and just to the east of downtown lies a monument that commemorates the battle victory that won Texas its independence from Mexico. The landmark is the San Jacinto Monument, and it marks the site of the Battle of San Jacinto, an historic fight that marked an important turning point in America’s past.
San Jacinto Monument
1 Monument Circle
La Porte, TX 77571
(281) 479-2421
www.tpwd.state.tx.us

Standing 567 feet in height, the San Jacinto Monument is the centerpiece of this historic area and its large size makes it difficult to miss. Guests will start their visit here and will often start with a few photographs of the grounds and the reflecting pool. But the real sight- seeing takes place at the top of the monument, in the observation room. An elevator ride takes guests to the top where they can look out from the enclosed space at the surrounding areas and the city of Houston. The space is tight, but the views are easily worth it.

San Jacinto Museum Of History

Once your sight-seeing is complete from the observation deck, it’s time to head back down to the base of the monument where you will find the San Jacinto Museum of History. Here, guests can learn more about the Republic of Texas and its founding. A short video captures the spirit of the Battle of San Jacinto and the men who helped win Texas its fight for independence. Back inside the museum, guests can learn about other heroes who were instrumental in the fight for Texas freedom and learn about the Mexican cultural influences that helped shape the state and its people. 

Albert And Ethel Herzstein Library

If historical books are something you love, then you certainly want to include a visit to the Albert and Ethel Herzstein Library. Enclosed within this small library are books that tell a story- a story of determination and ultimate victory. The books and manuscripts contained in the Albert and Ethel Herzstein Library are rare and great for those who want to read up and learn a little more about this place called Texas and the brave individuals who fought for freedom. The library is only open a few days of the week, but lovers of history should be sure to visit on days when they can browse through the books and soak up knowledge about Texas and its past.

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San Jacinto Battleground

This is where history was made. On April 21, 1836, General Sam Houston and his men took the Mexican troops by surprise, winning the decisive battle of San Jacinto and earning Texas its independence. Visitors can walk on the actual ground where history was made and there is even a walking tour guide that will take you on a 2.5 mile hike around the area, explaining what happened each step of the way. Educational and informative, a tour of the San Jacinto Battleground is like going back in time and reliving the experience.

USS Battleship Texas

Located close to the San Jacinto Monument and grounds, the USS Battleship Texas continues the tribute to Texans and the war effort. This large battleship was part of some of the most important battles in World War I and World War II and today it remains anchored next to the Houston Ship Channel and the San Jacinto Monument. Visitors can walk through the ship on their own or take part in a guided tour for a more formal history lesson. Walk on the battleship’s deck, seat yourself in the captain’s chair, and examine the living quarters where the men slept, ready to leap to attention when the need arose. The USS Battleship Texas is a tribute to the veterans of world war and it makes the perfect way to complete your visit to this historic destination just east of downtown Houston.

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Bryan Carey is a Houston, Texas resident with an avid interest in restaurants, dining, breweries, wineries, festivals, cultural events, museums, theatre, concerts, and other forms of entertainment. He has been writing about entertainment, travel, and related topics for more than fifteen years and has thousands of articles to his credit. His work can be found at Examiner.com.

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