Statement Regarding the City of San Antonio Permit Request

Sept. 22, 2020

The Texas Historical Commission (THC) denied a permit request from the City of San Antonio to relocate “Spirit of Sacrifice,” a 1936 cenotaph honoring Texian and Tejano soldiers who died at the 1836 Battle of the Alamo.

The final vote was 12 to two against the request, with one member abstaining.

The THC approves any work permit pertaining to State Antiquities Landmarks, which the Alamo was designated as in 1983. As part of the Alamo Master Plan project the THC has worked closely with the City of San Antonio, the Texas General Land Office and the Alamo Trust since 2016.  The THC has granted several Phase One permits involving sensitive archeological and other work done impacting the Long Barracks, Church and Valero Plaza.

The Alamo in San Antonio is an iconic symbol of bravery and sacrifice around the world, one of the nation’s most popular tourist attractions and part of the San Antonio Missions World Heritage Site. The request to move the Cenotaph generated significant interest and opinions, as would be expected given the prominence of the Alamo around the world. Thousands of Texans including many elected officials shared their thoughts regarding the proposal through letters, phone calls and emails, with 300+ providing comments across more than six hours of online testimony.

THC Chairman John Nau said, “The Commission recognizes the significance of this decision and the importance of the Alamo Master Plan to the future of our state’s most important historic site. The 15-member commission voted on this issue based on their individual determinations of what was in the best interest of Texas.”