State Antiquities Landmarks (SALs) are designated by the Texas Historical Commission (THC) and receive legal protection under the Antiquities Code of Texas (the Code). The Code defines all cultural resources on non-federal public lands in the State of Texas as eligible to be designated as SALs. Historic buildings and other aboveground historic resources must be listed in the National Register of Historic Places before they can be designated as SALs, but archeological sites do not have the same prerequisite.
SAL designation does not mean that sites or buildings cannot be altered or destroyed. The land-owning agency must consult with the THC about such proposed actions through the permit process, and the THC will determine whether the work will be allowed.
Buildings designated as SALs are listed in the Texas Historic Sites Atlas. However, information about designated archeological sites is not available to the general public to protect the sites from vandalism and destruction.
Revisions to Chapter 26 Rules
On December 31, 2017, the Texas Historical Commission adopted revisions to the Rules of Practice and Procedure for the Antiquities Code of Texas, which govern project review and issuance of permits under the Antiquities Code. We encourage archeologists, architects, and state and local governments to review the review the current Chapter 26 rules. The amendments clarify the commission's role in evaluating unverified cemeteries, curation of artifacts, and review of work to historic buildings and structures. They also clarify the notification requirements and review procedures for political subdivisions of the state, such as cities, counties, and school districts. Detailed description of the changes was included in the August 18, 2017 issue of the Texas Register, available at the link below. Questions regarding the rules may be sent to Bill Martin for archeology and Lydia Woods-Boone for buildings and structures.
Updated Forms for Historic Buildings and Structures Permits
The forms for Historic Buildings and Structures Permits have a new look and updated content. Please visit our Forms page for the new permit application form, permit application instructions, and completion report form. Contact Lydia Woods-Boone with any questions regarding these forms.