Later this month, William Barret Travis' handwritten plea for help for the defenders of the Alamo will return to the shrine of Texas liberty for the first time since it was written almost 177 years ago.
But in order to make the symbolic building suitable for the unique piece of Texas history, certain steps had to be taken. Windows have been blacked out, climate control has been ramped up and curtains will be used to protect Travis’ letter.
The letter was penned on Feb. 24, 1836 when Lt. Col. William Travis was under siege at the Alamo. His letter called on the people of Texas and all Americans to come to mission's aide.
"It was asking for help, it was the ‘victory or death’ and now the letter is coming back home to the Alamo,” Alamo administrator Melinda Navarro said. "We have been preparing for several months and we are now just getting a little closer to that moment when the Travis letter will arrive."
Visitors will exit through tents that will block the sun's damaging rays, into a renewed gift shop that is now home to exclusive Alamo merchandise--including items related to the Travis letter.
"You will be able to take something home about the Travis letter whether it's a copy of the letter, t-shirt, chocolate," Navarro said. "This is what supports the Alamo, this is where we make all of our money. The majority of our money is from here."
The Travis letter will be on display at the Alamo beginning February 23 through March 7th. The newly appointed gift shop opens Friday.
You can learn more about the exhibition online at TravisLetter.com.