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The Alamo and Fort Sam Houston

The Alamo, which is famous for its heroic defense against the Mexicans by Travis and his men, is situated in San Antonio, Texas, and is the point of pilgrimage annually for many hundreds of the visitors to the southwestern part of the United States. On the outskirts of San Antonio is the modern great military plant. Fort Sam Houston, the Alamo’s lusty successor. The Alamo, as late as 1870, was used for military purposes by the United States government, but of recent years it has been preserved purely as a monument to those brave men who lost their lives in it fighting bravely to the last a battle which they knew to be hopeless from the first. Upon the front of the building has been placed an inscription which reads, “Thermopylae had its messenger of defeat. The Alamo had none.” The building, itself, is a low structure of the familiar Spanish mission type, and its main walls, though constructed in 1744, are almost as solid today as when new. The chapel of the Alamo bears the date 1757, but this was of later building than the rest of the place. The city of San Antonio owes its foundation to the establishment in 1715 by Spain of the mission of San Antonio de Valero, which in accordance with the custom of that country combined priestly enterprise with military prerogative. The Alamo was a quadrangular, central court structure built to house the troops of Spain and to sound the call to worship. It was acquired by Mexico with the rest of the Spanish possessions when this southern neighbor of the United...

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