The battle has been a crossroads in Texan history and remains so to this day. It is here that Spanish colonization first took hold. However, most visitors simply want to visit the place where a mere handful of brave defenders stood firm for thirteen days against the powerful army of General de Santa Anna. Their death remains as a symbol of bravery and courage to this day.
The official website, thealamo.org, provides detailed information on how visitors can get there. San Antonio is among the ten biggest cities in the United States and therefore boasts excellent air ports and motorways. Visitors can go by train, bus or air if they do not want to drive. The website can also be used to book personal tours. There is even a night tour available.
Even in this times of financial instability the site can still be visited free of charge. Individual donations, as well as the support from organizations such as the Texas General Land Office and The Daughters of the Republic of Texas ensure that site is well maintained and that operational cost is covered. The free entry policy ensures that anybody will be able to experience a visit to this unique and historic site.
No tour can be complete without a visit to the church in the center of the site. The building was originally intended to serve as the principal church of the mission, but it never was completed. It is here were some of the small band made the last stand. The church features flags depicting the countries of origin and the names of all the defenders. The building now serves as a shrine and visitors are required to remain respectful.
The Long Barrack Museum is also a must see. It is the oldest building on the site, dating back three hundred years. The most brutal of the 1936 fighting took place in this building after the outer walls were breached. The building is now home to a collection of fascinating exhibits named A Story Bigger Than Texas. Visitors can also view a film that provides an excellent introduction to the 1936 battle.
Visitors are required to behave in a manner that behooves a shrine to Texas liberty. Obscene or offensive clothing is not allowed. Cell phones and cameras may not be used in any of the buildings. Visitors are even required to talk in lowered voices and men may not enter whilst wearing a hat. Nobody may touch any exhibit or even the walls.
History often serves as a reminder of great deeds, extraordinary courage and self sacrifice. The Alamo is one such place where Texans, indeed all Americans can honor the efforts their forebears have made to ensure that they are at liberty today. Freedom always has a price and those that paid it deserve remembrance and honor.
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