Our latest newsletter, El Correo – Vol. V, No. 3 is now available.
Archive for November, 2014
El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic Trail Association is an advocacy group that seeks to protect the historic integrity of the trail, to educate the public about its significance, and to promote resource development, interpretation, and tourism along its path.
As a non-profit 501 (c)(3), our programs and projects for the trail are largely supported by donations from individuals and businesses. With your financial contribution we are able to run a host of programs such as our education program, Geographic Information Systems mapping program, resource protection program, and our signage program. Therefore, as the holidays approach, we would like to share with you ways you can help to support the association!
A good way to support the association, at no cost to you, is to do your online shopping at AmazonSmile. In doing so, you will have the same selection and price as traditional Amazon, but with the added benefit of 0.5% of your purchase going to the association at no additional cost. We also encourage you to share our AmazonSmile link with your family and friends, so that they can support the association while shopping too!
Much like AmazonSmile, iGive.com will donate a percentage of your sale to our organization at no cost to you. The difference is that when you shop at iGive.com, you will be able to shop with nearly 1,500 retailers who participate in the program and who donate to our cause at various rates! More so, with iGive.com you can install an application on your web-browser that will place an umbrella-like icon on your browser, so that anytime you visit a website that participates in iGive.com, you will be prompted to take advantage of the donation. It is an ingenious little tool that makes giving to the association extremely easy! Once again, please share this link with your family and friends so that they too can help support the organization.
Finally, we encourage you to give the gift of membership in our association for the holidays! There’s no easier way to share something with your family and friends that is so important to you, while encouraging them to become supporters themselves in the future!
All of these methods of supporting the association, plus a printable membership application, for those who would rather send a check than use a credit card online, can be found on our Pinterest page.
Thank you for your support!
The association has received a grant to conduct an archaeological survey of the site we have recently purchased. The survey will seek to determine if there are artifacts or other cultural remnants at the site. The tasks will include records searches, aerial imagery analysis, archaeological survey using a variety of identification techniques, and a National Register nomination for the site.
The work will begin before the end of the year and will conclude by June 2015. We hope you are as excited about this as we are and we encourage you to stay tuned for periodic updates on the activity.
There has been significant development in the form of hiking trails established along El Camino Real since early October. Since that time, three hiking trails have been signed with official NPS pedestrian signage.
The first officially signed NPS hiking trail on El Camino Real de los Tejas was established in Floresville, Texas on October 4, 2014. This three mile hiking trail is also the longest walkable segment of trail on the entire Camino! It follows a former railroad corridor that parallels the La Bahía Road portion of El Camino Real and it is a beautiful walk through the community!
Just shy of two weeks later, the second officially signed hiking trail on El Camino Real was established at the Medina River Greenway in San Antonio. The unveiling of the trail took place as part of our 10th anniversary celebration and the trail is a beautiful 0.5 mile stretch of paved path that follows the course of the Medina River! The trail allows visitors to experience a historic river crossing of the Medina known as the Paso de Dolores (commonly known as Applewhite Crossing), a rare jacal along the trail, which was part of the Pérez Rancho, and several trail swales adjacent to the path in the greenway. There are also excellent interpretive panels along the trail that provide detailed historic background about the location and its connection to the Camino.
Additionally, on October 18th, the 10th anniversary of the trail, Caddo Mounds State Historic Site unveiled its official pedestrian signage. The pedestrian signs at Caddo Mounds escort visitors by the mounds and a trail swale at the site, plus they have the unique distinction of illustrating the distances to areas of interest (Mexico City 1,110 miles to the southwest and Natchitoches 144 miles to the east).
And don’t forget, while not signed with NPS signage yet, Texas Parks and Wildlife sites such as McKinney Falls State Park and Mission Tejas State Park provide hiking opportunities along the Camino, as do Louisiana State Park sites such as Fort St. Jean Baptiste and Los Adaes.
As you can see, there are increasing opportunities to hike on various portions of El Camino Real. So, get out, go for a hike, and experience El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic Trail!
In conjunction with the 10th anniversary celebration of the trail, association representatives Steven Gonzales, Mary Joy Graham, and Dr. Lucile Estell released a book about the Camino via Arcadia Publishing!
The book is titled “El Camino Real de los Tejas” and it is the first non-technical publication that covers the entirety of the trail. For writing purposes, it was arranged in the same pattern as the association’s regions with the addition of information about the trail in Guerrero, Coahuila and introductory and concluding chapters. The work is a pictorial history of the trail that is composed of historic and contemporary photos, and it allows the reader to travel from one end of the trail to the other while visiting trail sites along the way.
Please join us in congratulating Steven, Joy, and Lucile in their accomplishment! And don’t forget to order your copy today!
El Camino Real de los Tejas National Historic Trail Association and the National Trails Intermountain Region of the National Park Service celebrated the 10th anniversary of the designation of El Camino Real as a National Historic Trail in San Antonio, Texas from October 16th – 18th. Sponsors for the event included the San Antonio River Authority, the San Antonio Conservation Society, the Alamo Area Council of Governments, Los Bexareños, the Hispanic Heritage Center of Texas, and others.
The event included a sign unveiling, the release of a book about the trail by Steven Gonzales, Joy Graham, and Dr. Lucile Estell, the release of the official map and guide for the trail by the NPS, a photographic exhibit of the trail, booths, presentations, and a tour of the trail through the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park.
The celebration kicked off on October 16th with the unveiling of the first-ever, official NPS pedestrian signage in San Antonio. The ceremony took place at the Medina River Greenway and was attended by former Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison and Bexar County Judge Nelson W. Wolff, both of whom spoke of their support for the development of the trail. Also in conjunction with the 10th anniversary, the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park placed site identification signs at all mission sites identifying them as part of El Camino Real de los Tejas NHT!
Speakers at Friday’s event presented on a wide range of topics about the Camino Real including presentations about Native Americans on the Camino Real, El Rancho de las Cabras, and Los Adaes as the first capital of Texas.
All in all, the event was a huge success that was enjoyed by many! We look forward to the next ten years and the many trail developments that will come with them!