" The historic event, as most visitors to the city will already know, was the epic Siege and Battle of the Alamo. Nevertheless, those who look for the remains of the battlefield are often disappointed or mystified by what they find at 300 Alamo Plaza. With a little preparation, however, a visit to the Alamo can be a rewarding and educational experience.
The Alamo as it appears today represents nearly three hundred years of human activity. Founded by the Spanish in the late 18th century as Mission San Antonio de Valero, the compound has seen many uses. Following the closing of Valero in 1793, the land and buildings were occupied by the former mission converts. In 1803, Valero became a military barracks when the Second Flying Company of San Carlos de Parras took up quarters on the grounds. The military use continued after Mexico declared its independence from Spain in 1821. Valero (which local residents had begun to call the Alamo) played its most famous role as a Texan fort during the Texas Revolution. The heroic stand for liberty taken by the Alamo garrison insured that the site would forever be revered.
Revered, but not yet protected from destruction. Situated on the edge of San Antonio de Béxar, the Alamo was destined to be surrounded by the growing town. From 1847 until 1876 (excluding the years 1861-1865), the United States Army occupied the site as a Quartermaster Depot. Once the military moved to Government Hill - the post that would become Fort Sam Houston - commercial interests gained control of the property, establishing a general store on the grounds of the Alamo. Although the State of Texas purchased the church in 1883, the remaining original structure - the Long Barrack - remained in private hands. In 1903, the Daughters of the Republic of Texas acquired the Long Barrack and shortly thereafter turned the deed over to the State of Texas. The State Legislature, in turn, appointed the DRT custodians of the Alamo with instructions to maintain it as a memorial to those who died there in the defense of Texas liberty. Since 1905, the Alamo has been a Shrine to the Alamo Heroes."
It's not far from the hotel. The rain has held off a little longer. I went not really to SEE the ALAMO but to sit on this bench.
Under this amazing tree and remember back 29 years ago when Zeus and I adopted our baby girl. We flew down to San Antonio, four weeks after she was born. We met at the courthouse, with the foster mother and the agency.I remember watching the door and the moment this nice lady came through the door, holding this baby in a big red and white dress, my first thoughts were, "Why is she holding MY BABY." It had nothing to do with her being the foster Mom, more to do with me bonding immediately upon first sight with my daughter.
The foster mom handed her over with a sad smile. I learned later that they had wanted to adopt her too.
We signed the papers, shook hands all around then carried our Mary Elizabeth out of the building. We walked around slightly stunned and ended up at The Alamo.
We went in, not many tourists around at the end of January. The weather was warm, I changed our baby, removed the stiff formal dress and put her in her Pooh Bear pj's.
Zeus put on the baby carry-all, I slipped her in, belted the belt and off we went.
Other than the tree, the bench there was little that I truly remembered about The Alamo.
I went back today, sat on the bench and thought about how lucky we were. I thought about how lucky my daughter was that three woman had cared about her. One took the steps to make sure that she had a healthy baby, that it would have a good loving home because at this time in her life she couldn't provide that. The foster mom who adored her for a month, wrote down on a calendar, daily, every new growth development and her new mom. The one that knew from the moment they looked at each other, were meant to be together.
And, now, that young woman is a mother, herself. I am so proud of her.