San Jacinto Battleground and Battleship Texas State Historic Sites hold a significant responsibility to preserve the proud history of the State of Texas and the United States. To accomplish this, a master plan has been developed to assure the future of these historic sites. As the plan is implemented, the public will see many changes in what we hope will be one of the state's premier travel destinations.
The Battleship Texas Master Plan:
Developed through the cooperative efforts of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the Battleship Texas Foundation, a private, nonprofit organization. Without the continuing dedicated support of the BTF and the many volunteers, the battleship we see today would not be possible. The vision of the Master Plan is to provide visitors with an interactive museum experience and a step back in time based on professional interpretation against a backdrop of accurate historic restoration. The decision has been made to preserve the structural integrity of the ship, and an interpretive scope that will focus on the Texas' late World War II configuration and service, particularly during her operations in the Pacific from late 1944 through late 1945.
To bring the restored compartments to life for visitors and to satisfy the varied learning styles of the visitors, a combination of interpretative techniques will be utilized to provide a rich historical experience.
Plaques and audio self-guided tours will allow visitors to explore the ship at their own pace, while scheduled tours would provide a more in-depth learning opportunity. The trained living history interpreters in World War II uniforms will continue to be available throughout the year at special events to interact directly with the public.
Preparing for the Future of the Battleship Texas:
A project to create a new dry berth to provide a permanent home for the Battleship Texas was approved by voters in 2007 and funded by the 2009 Texas State Legislature. The $29 million project includes $25 million in voter approved bonds and a $4 million match by the Battleship Texas Foundation.
The San Jacinto Battleground Master Plan:
TPWD and the San Jacinto Museum of History Association, a private, not-for-profit organization operating the museum and supporting activities, have developed a master plan to assure the future of this historic site. Their vision is to:
- Preserve the historic site's significant cultural, historical and natural resources.
- Enhance interpretation.
- Achieve for the San Jacinto Battleground a level of public awareness comparable to that of the Alamo as premier historic site.
- Provide recreational opportunities compatible with the site's commemorative purpose.
- Provide a healthy and safe environment for visitors and staff.
The primary purpose of this historic site is to commemorate the 1836 Battle of San Jacinto. TPWD has been charged with the responsibility to preserve and interpret the battleground. A review of the master plan overall map will provide an excellent view of the following planned activities:
- Restore the battleground to its 1836 condition (to the extent feasible).
- Give every site element (battleground, monument, memorials, etc.) a prominent setting where conflicts with the main battleground are avoided and interpretation is enhanced.
- Construct a new museum/visitor Center and parking away from the battleground.
- Relocate support facilities and recreational elements away from the battleground.
- Provide more access to the water's edge with nature trails and walkways.
- Control erosion along the water's edge.
- Minimize vehicular traffic on the battleground.
Marsh Restoration and Boardwalk:
- 1,210-foot trail and boardwalk
- Interpretative signs anticipated
- ADA accessible
The federal government is pitching in to help TPWD's efforts to restore the wetlands around the historic San Jacinto Battleground.