San Antonio Missions National Historical Park is a National Historical Park and part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, preserving four of the five Spanish border missions in San Antonio, Texas, USA. These outposts have been founded by Catholic religious orders to spread Christianity to local natives. Such missions were part of a colonization program that covers the Spanish southwest in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries.
From the north (upstream of the San Antonio River) to the south (downstream) the missions are located as follows: Mission Concepción, Mission San Jose, Mission San Juan and Mission Espada. The Espada Aqueduct, also part of the Park, is located east of Mission San Juan, across the river. The fifth (and best-known) mission in San Antonio, Alamo, is not part of the Park. It is located upstream of Mission Concepción, in central San Antonio, and is owned by the State of Texas. The Alamo was owned by the Daughters of the Republic of Texas until July 2015, when ownership was turned over to the Texas General Land Office. On 5 July 2015, the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park, together with the Alamo Mission in San Antonio, was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The park was originally established in 1975 as a Mission Parkway in the National Register of Historic Places, covering 84 different historic sites along the San Antonio River on the south side of the town of San Antonio. The National Historical Park was approved for this listing on 10 November 1978.
It was founded on 1 April 1983 and comprises many cultural sites and natural areas. Sections of the four missions are owned by the Archdiocese of San Antonio and still operate as active parishes. The control of the Alamo was assigned to the Daughters of the Republic of Texas (DRT) in 1905. In 2010, the Texas Attorney General’s office received a complaint that the DRT not only did not operate the facility, but also the funds allocated to its operation, and an investigation had begun.
San Antonio, Texas showcases these must-see museums you shouldn’t miss:
- San Antonio Missions National Historical Park
- San Antonio Museum of Art
- Spanish Governor’s Palace
- Edward Steves Homestead
These amazing museums are located just down the street from our location at 20770 U.S. Hwy 281 N #107. Stop by for a visit anytime!