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FIELD TRIP! Explore Texas history firsthand with your kids at the San Jacinto Monument

San Jacinto Monument
San Jacinto Monument (Copyright 2012 San Jacinto Museum of History)

This article first appeared on jillbjarvis.com. Click here to view the article in its original format.

School is a little different this year… so each week we’re posting an idea for a Houston-area (socially distanced, parent led) field trip. In each post, we have some resources to read before your trip, details on each stop and parking/driving instructions.

In this trip, go to the spot where Texas won its independence. Go to the San Jacinto Battleground, the spot where Santa Anna was captured, the San Jacinto Monument and the San Jacinto Museum!

(Thank you Heather for the ideas!)

Resources:

Explore:

On April 21, 1836, during Texas' war for independence from Mexico, the Texas militia under Sam Houston launched a surprise attack against the forces of Mexican General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna at the Battle of San Jacinto.

In exchange for his freedom, Santa Anna signed a treaty recognizing Texas' independence.

Here in Houston, we can go to the battleground, the spot where Santa Anna was captured, the monument and the museum!

San Jacinto Monument3523 Independence Pkwy, La Porte, TX 77571

The San Jacinto Monument was constructed as a memorial to all those who fought to win the independence of Texas. It is the tallest masonry column in the world.

The site is open with some restrictions.

San Jacinto Museum3523 Independence Pkwy, La Porte, TX 77571

The museum is at the base of the San Jacinto Monument. The Museum' s collection spans more than four centuries of early Texas history, from the beginnings of European activity in the New World through Texas as a state in the United States.

San Jacinto Battleground3523 Independence Pkwy, La Porte, TX 77571

The Battle of San Jacinto was fought at this site on April 21, 1836. Learn all about the battle, and how it changed US history, HERE.

Capture Site of General Santa AnnaHighway 225 at Shaver Street

A short drive from the San Jacinto Monument is the spot where Santa Anna was captured on April 22, 1836.

Now there is a historical marker located next to the Pasadena Paper Mill front gate, facing the Houston Ship Channel.

There is not a lot to see here, but you can imagine Santa Anna being found hiding in the grass, dressed as a common foot soldier!

Vince’s Bridge 505 N Richey St, Pasadena, TX 77506

Vince’s Bridge was a wooden bridge that was destroyed by Texas armed forces.

It was located on the most likely route of escape for Santa Anna and the Mexican army. The burning of Vince’s Bridge helped prevent his soldiers from reaching the safety of nearby reinforcements.

Today there is a historical marker on the side of the road. There is not a lot to see, but you can appreciate the significance of the spot!

Drive/Park:

The monument, museum and battlefield are all in the same spot. You can park for free in the lot.

The other spots are just historical markers along the side of the road.

For the Santa Anna capture spot, take the traffic circle on the south side of the Washburn Tunnel. Take the Pasadena Paper Mill entrance road on the right side of the Tunnel. The marker is on the right after the road turns to the left towards the entrance gate of the Mill.

While you are there, take the Washburn Tunnel. It’s a two-lane underwater roadway connecting Galena Park and Pasadena and it is the south’s largest and first toll-free vehicular tunnel.