texas history

Perry Indictment
8:04 am
Mon August 18, 2014

Meet James "Pa" Ferguson, the First Texas Governor to Face an Indictment

James "Pa"Ferguson was impeached in his second term after vetoing the University of Texas' entire budget.
Credit Wikimedia Commons

James “Pa” Ferguson was the 26th governor of Texas. He was the first and, for 97 years, was the only sitting Texas governor to have charges brought before him.

The indictment of Gov. Rick Perry on two felony counts has many invoking Pa Ferguson’s name and, while there are similarities in the accusations leveled against them – both were accused of withholding state money for political reasons – that’s where most of the similarities end.

KUT’s Jennifer Stayton spoke with Executive Director of the Briscoe Center for American History at U.T.-Austin Don Carleton about Ferguson’s indictment, his demeanor as governor and the similarities and differences in the charges faced by both governors.

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Texas
2:25 pm
Fri June 27, 2014

Interview: Remember the Alamo? Phil Collins Sure Does.

Rocker and Texas Revolution expert Phil Collins (r) talks with Texas Standard's David Brown in the Alamo.
Rhonda Fanning/Texas Standard

On Thursday, Phil Collins – the multi-million selling British singer, former Genesis drummer, and Texas history buff – returned to the Alamo with an offer: his entire collection of Alamo artifacts, valued in the millions of dollars.

In exchange? Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson, who oversees the management of the historic site, pledged to build a new structure to display the Collins collection, telling a more well-rounded story of the seminal 1836 battle at San Antonio de Bexar. 

In an exclusive conversation with the Texas Standard's David Brown – recorded in  the Alamo's sacristy – Collins talks about how his fascination with Texas' Independence story blossomed into an adult obsession. 

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Austin
7:43 pm
Tue May 20, 2014

This Downtown Austin Bridge Could Be Named A National Landmark

Ted Lee Eubanks http://www.tedleeeubanksphotography.com

An easy-to-miss bridge on W. Sixth Street could be added to the National Register of Historic Places. The West Sixth Street Bridge sits over Shoal Creek, between West Avenue and Wood Street (near Hut's Hamburgers). It was built by hand in 1887. 

"It doesn't look like much when you go over it, and people use it all the time." says Joanna Wolaver, executive director of the Shoal Creek Conservancy. "But if you take a minute to walk down the dirt path to the Shoal Creek trail, it's just gorgeous." 

Last Saturday, the Texas Historical Commission approved an application to recommend nomination of the bridge to the National Register of Historic Places. The U.S. Parks Service will have the final say and could decide by the fall. 

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History
5:13 pm
Fri February 22, 2013

Why This Travis County Tree Has Been Declared 'Famous'

Texas Forest Service

In Southeast Travis County, between Stassney Lane and McKinney Falls Parkway, is a tree that’s stood witness to history going back 300 years.

Old Baldy,” a 103-foot-tall bald-cypress in McKinney Falls State Park, was added this week to the “Famous Trees of Texas” registry, established by the Texas Forest Service.

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Texas
5:35 pm
Wed February 13, 2013

Photos: William Travis' 'Victory or Death' Letter Returns to Alamo

Travis signed his famous letter with "Victory or Death" in 1836
Tyler Pratt, KUT News

 

In 1836, William Barret Travis famously wrote “Victory or Death” in his appeal for more troops during the Battle of The Alamo. 177 years later, the iconic letter is returning to the Alamo for a brief exhibit later this month.

Currently, the letter is safely held at Austin’s Texas State Archives and Library Building, away from the harmful UV rays that have deteriorated its condition. 

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Education
12:57 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

In Report, University History Departments Face Scrutiny

University of Texas at Austin students pass by the Main Building on their way to and from classes.
Tamir Kalifa, Texas Tribune

At a press conference on Thursday afternoon, three conservative groups — the Texas Public Policy Foundation, the National Association of Scholars and the Texas Association of Scholars — will release a sure-to-be controversial report alleging that the University of Texas and Texas A&M University offer students "a less-than-comprehensive picture of history.”

The report’s rollout is part of a three-day policy orientation by the TPPF, an Austin-based think tank that has been tied to some of the state's most hotly-debated proposed higher education reforms. It signals a renewed push to reconsider the course offerings in the history departments of the state’s public universities, and particularly to boost the number of courses dedicated to the study Western Civilization.

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Texas
4:35 pm
Wed December 5, 2012

Texas Twang Fixin' To Ride Off Into The Sunset

Lyndon Johnson, then the vice president-elect, with a prize-winning Hereford bull on his ranch near Johnson City, Texas, in 1960. Linguists say the twang that has long been synonymous with Texans is fading.
AP

Originally published on Wed December 5, 2012 7:25 pm

When most people think of Texas — and what makes a Texan — one of the first things that might come to mind is the way Lyndon Johnson or the late Gov. Ann Richards spoke.

But these days, "talking Texan" sounds a whole lot different than it did just a few decades ago.

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Texas
3:02 pm
Wed October 24, 2012

Historic Letter Heads 'Home' to the Alamo

William B. Travis wrote the famous letter at the Alamo in 1836.
flickr.com/gilgamesh

For the first time since it was written more than 170 years ago, the Travis letter will return the Alamo.

The famous letter—known to many as the “victory or death” letter—was written by William B. Travis to request reinforcements at the Alamo.

The Texas State Library and Archives Commission has controlled access to the letter since the early 1900’s and it has only been loaned out and displayed a few times.

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Texas
4:44 pm
Fri March 23, 2012

Movable Jail One of Texas' 'Most Endangered' Landmarks

Clockwise, from left: San Marcos' Movable Jail, the Ritz Theater in Corpus Christi, and the William Pfluger House in Pflugerville

A movable jail cell that was originally constructed for the Hays County Jail is being called one of Texas’ most endangered historic places.

So says Preservation Texas, a private, non-profit historical society, announcing its 2012 list of Texas’ most endangered places at an annual summit at the Texas Capitol.

 The jail cell was built in the style of a log cabin. Preservation Texas notes:

The jail cell remained in use until 1925 as Kyle’s city jail and, later, was moved to the Texana Village at Aquarena Springs. Due to lack of funding, the jail cell along with other buildings and artifacts were removed from the Village.  At the eleventh hour, the jail cell was saved and moved to its current location in San Marcos.

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Texas
3:39 pm
Fri September 30, 2011

Texas History Symposium

The Save Texas History symposium will be held tomorrow from 8-5.
Photo by Erik Reyna for KUT News

The Texas General Land Office is holding a symposium tomorrow to celebrate the 175th anniversary of the state's independence from Mexico. Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson said the seven-year-old Save Texas History Program was created to educate Texans on the history of the state and to preserve historical documents in the General Land Office archives.

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