Among oldest settled areas of Texas, several hundred Anglo-Americans
established farms in 1820s on Mexican land grants. Town laid
out 1831, named "Billa de la Santissima Trinidad de la Libertad,"
quickly shortened to Liberty by English-speaking residents. William
B. Travis, Sam Houston, and David Burnet all practiced law in
Liberty. Three brothers from town died at the Alamo; some 50
Liberty citizens fought in Battle of San Jacinto in 1836, when
Texas won its independence.
Seat of Liberty County, town was a busy port when steamboats plied
the trinity River in the late 19th Century. Today a farming-ranching
community with substantial oil production dating from 1925.
- GERALDINE D. HUMPHREYS CULTURAL CENTER-Project of local
historical and arts groups, the center includes a museum, library,
and performing arts theater. Adjacent is Liberty Bell Tower,
replica of original Liberty Bell (Philadelphia, PA) famed in U.S.
history. Cast from original pattern in same molding pit by Whitchapel
Bell Foundry, London, England, that crafted the original bell.
But this one isn't cracked; it tolls on special occasions. 1710
Sam Houston St. in downtown Liberty; open Mon. -Thurs. 9 a.m.
- 6 p.m., Fri. 1-5 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. 409/336-8901.
- HISTORICAL SITES-Historical monuments and markers identify
abundant sites including Sam Houston's law office, blocks of original
Mexican town plat, and many old homes. for information about
drive-by views and visitor sites, stop at Liberty-Dayton Chamber
of Commerce, 1915 Trinity St., open 8 a.m. - noon, 1-5 p.m. Mon.
- Fri. 409/336-5736.
- SAM HOUSTON REGIONAL LIBRARY & RESEARCH CENTER-Historical
depository for the 10 counties originally carved form Atascosito-Liberty
district of the Republic of Mexico. Archives and displays show
development of region, artifacts, furniture, Jean Laffite's journals,
and 1826 census. It also contains the Texana collection of former
Governor Price Daniel.
Also on the grounds is the 1848 Gillard-Duncan Home and the
1883 Norman House, both restored with period furnishings.
The Center is open Mon. - Fri. 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.
- 4 p.m. Two miles north of Liberty on Texas 146, one mile west
on F.M. 1011. 409/336-8821.
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