Groundbreaking For The New Stephen F. Austin Museum [VIDEO]

The groundbreaking for the new Stephen F. Austin Museum took place last Thursday across from the San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site.  This is the site for the newly proposed museum.  The groundbreaking hosted several special guests including State Senator Lois Kolkhorst, State Representative Leighton Schubert, former county judge Carolyn Bilski and many others.  The morning was very hot and humid and played havoc with our camera but, we got the whole event on video for you to watch below.  Here is the breakdown of the video for those who want to skip to a certain section:

00:00:00 – 00:03:27 – Introduction
00:03:27 – 00:07:30 – Texas Our Texas, sung by the 4th Grade of Austin Elementary
00:07:30 – 00:23:31 – John L Nau, III, Chairmen of the Texas Historical Commission
00:23:31 – 00:38:25 – Texas Senator Lois Kolkhorst
00:38:25 – 00:40:12 – Awards
00:40:12 – 00:43:46 – Ceremonial Groundbreaking



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Here is the press release from the Texas Historical Commission on the groundbreaking:


San Felipe, Texas––San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site, a Texas Historical Commission (THC) property, held a ceremonial groundbreaking and capital campaign kick-off Thursday, October 20, by announcing plans for a new museum and visitor amenities at the site.

“San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site, a colony founded by Stephen F. Austin in 1823, played a pivotal role in events leading up to the Texas Revolution. This dramatic story is not nearly as well known or understood as others in the chronicles of Texas history, including the Alamo and San Jacinto.  The new museum will change that by telling the story of this historic site,” said John L. Nau, III, THC Chairman.

State Sen. Lois Kolkhorst, State Rep. Leighton Schubert, THC Chairman John L. Nau, III and THC Executive Director Mark Wolfe were all on hand to address the visitors and discuss the future plans for the site.

To increase public understanding of the colony’s history and significance, the THC is developing a new museum along with an orientation center, exhibits, map plaza, outdoor interpretation, and education programs focused on the site’s history and archeology.

The Friends of the Texas Historical Commission officially launched their $12.5 million capital campaign today to fund these projects. The state has committed $5.2 million to this project, and the Texas Historical Commission is requesting an additional $2 million from the state in the biennium, leaving approximately $5.3 to be raised from philanthropy.

“The timing of this project is opportune, because San Felipe de Austin will celebrate the 200th anniversary of its founding in 2023, and Texas will celebrate its bicentennial in 2036,” Nau added.

San Felipe de Austin State Historic Site (SHS), one of 21 historic sites managed by The Texas Historical Commission, honors Stephen F. Austin and his early settlers to Mexican Texas and the events leading to Texas Independence. Located on the Brazos River, the site is near the heart of the original township of San Felipe de Austin, founded by Austin in 1823 as the headquarters of his colony. The site includes a bronze statue of Stephen F. Austin, a replica log cabin, and the Josey Store Visitors Center.

The new museum is slated to open in Spring 2018.  The site is open to the public Tuesday – Sunday, 9 a.m.–5 p.m. Admission is free.  More information is available at and 979-885-2181.