The Alamo is certainly San Antonio’s most famous landmark, perhaps even the most famous building in Texas, because of its pivotal role in the 1836 Texas Revolution. But the Alamo was built over a century prior as Mission San Antonio de Valero, by Spanish settlers on the banks of the San Antonio River. Beginning in 1690, Spanish friars established missions in what is now East Texas as a buffer against the threat of French incursion into Spanish territory from Louisiana. The Alamo is a Texas state historic site, but nearby, four sister missions, all still working Catholic churches, are protected by the National Park Service as the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park.
This episode follows four people connected to the Missions: a stonemason, a historian, a descendant, and a former church administrator. Their stories comprise Michael Nye's "Four Voices" exhibit on display at Mission Concepción.