Stephen F. Austin State Park, in Austin County, was deeded by the San Felipe de Austin Corporation in 1940, and the park was opened to the public the same year.
The park is located on the Brazos River, near the old ferry site and a part of the Commercio Plaza de San Felipe, just a few miles from the site of the township of San Felipe, the seat of government of the Anglo-American colonies in Texas. It was here Stephen F. Austin, the "Father of Texas," brought the first 297 families to colonize Texas under a contract with the Mexican government. From 1824 to 1836, San Felipe de Austin was the social, economic and political center, as well as the capital of the American colonies in Texas. Due to the many historic events that occurred here, the community became known as the "Cradle of Texas Liberty." Also, the conventions of 1832 and 1833 and the Consultation of 1835 were held here. These meetings eventually led to the Texas Declaration of Independence. San Felipe was the home of Austin and other famous early Texans, as well as the home of Texas' first Anglo newspaper (the Texas Gazette, founded in 1829), the postal system of Texas origination, and the beginning of the Texas Rangers.