Local Arrangements and Tours

Welcome to San Antonio!

The WHA Office is pleased to announce there will be 5 tours in San Antonio. Each tour provides guests with a unique perspective into the culture of San Antonio. We will be offering tours to the Institute of Texan Cultures Museum, a tour of the San Antonio Mission Trails, Pearl Brewery, a day trip to Fredericksburg, Texas, and a Mission to Market Square tour.  

Complete your Conference Registration now to reserve your spot on any one of our 2018 Tours! This can be done online, by mail, or with the assistance of the WHA Office. 

Please contact the WHA Office if you have any
questions regarding the upcoming tours: 



Local Arrangements Co-Chairs

Brian S Collier, University of Notre Dame

Billy Kiser, Texas A&M University-San Antonio

2018 Local Arrangements Committee

Angelica Docog, Institute of Texan Cultures, University of Texas at San Antonio 
Michael Duchemin, Briscoe Western Art Museum  
Francis Galan, Texas A&M University-San Antonio  
Gilberto Hinojosa, University of the Incarnate Word  
Todd Kerstetter, Texas Christian University  
Amy Porter, Texas A&M University-San Antonio  
Omar Valerio-Jimenez, University of Texas at San Antonio  
Teresa Van Hoy, St. Mary's University-San Antonio  
Edward Westermann, Texas A&M University-San Antonio  
Richard Bruce Winders, The Alamo

Institute of Texan Cultures Museum

Tour Guide: Angelica Docog

The Institute of Texan Cultures gives voice to the experiences of people from across the globe who call Texas home, providing insight into the past, present, and future.  The museum is a component of The University of Texas at San Antonio, and it plays a role in the university’s community engagement initiatives by developing quality, accessible resources for educators and lifelong learners on topics of cultural heritage. It strives to develop a rich and vibrant culture in the arts and humanities that will expand the community’s awareness and appreciation of Texas through an engaging series of exhibits and programs.  The museum has a formal affiliation agreement with the Smithsonian Institution and pursues a mandate as the state's center for multicultural education by investigating the ethnic and cultural history of Texas.  The Institute of Texan Cultures is located in downtown San Antonio on the UTSA HemisFair Campus, a short distance from the Alamo and the Riverwalk. The 182,000-square-foot complex features 65,000 square feet of exhibits and displays.  Participants will enjoy a short, guided walk (about one-half mile) through downtown San Antonio and HemisFair Park en route to the museum.

San Antonio Mission Trail

Tour Guides: Gilberto Hinojosa, Omar Valerio-Jimenez, Francis Galan

Beginning in the late 1600s, as French colonizers moved westward from Louisiana, Spain began to establish missions in the region that now comprises East and South Texas.  In 1718, along the San Antonio River, the Spanish built San Antonio de Valero and the presidio San Antonio de Béxar (the Alamo).  A year later, Fray Antonio Margil de Jesús established San José, and three more missions—Concepción, San Juan, and Espada—were subsequently built within a 15-mile stretch of the same river.  The missions experienced their most active period between the 1740s and 1780s, at which time Apache and Comanche hostilities put increasing pressure on the compounds and their sedentary Native populations.  By the early 1800s, residents of nearby San Antonio began dismantling the edifices and used the wood and stone to construct their own dwellings, but the parish churches remain in service to this day.

Pearl Brewery

Tour Guides: Amy Porter, Billy Kiser

The Pearl Brewing Company was established in 1881 on the banks of the San Antonio River.  It came under the leadership of Otto Koehler, president of the San Antonio Brewing Association, in 1902.  Koehler’s wife, Emma, succeeded him in that role following his death.  Pearl was among just five Texas breweries that survived Prohibition, doing so by bottling soft drinks, making ice, opening an auto shop, and running a dry cleaning operation on the premises.  In 1985, Pabst purchased the Pearl Brewery and by 2001 had transferred all production to Ft. Worth, where Pearl beer is now produced.  Since the brewery closed, the 22-acre complex has been repurposed into a multi-use urban complex that includes residences, restaurants, bars, shops, and a farmer’s market on weekends.  This professionally-guided brewery tour lasts about 1 ½ hours, and participants will have an equal amount of time afterwards to enjoy the many restaurants, bars, and shops at the Pearl District.

Fredericksburg, TX

Tour Guide: Ed Westermann

The National Museum of the Pacific War, located in the historic town of Fredericksburg in the scenic Texas Hill Country, bills itself as “the only institution in the U.S dedicated exclusively to telling the story of the Pacific and Asiatic Theaters in World War II” and ranks among the nation’s premier military museums.  The site occupies a six-acre campus in downtown Fredericksburg and includes the Memorial Courtyard, Plaza of Presidents, and Japanese Garden of Peace.  The 33,000-square-foot George H.W. Bush Gallery, opened in 2009, features 40 media installations, 900 artifacts in 97 climate-controlled cases, 15 macro-artifacts (airplanes and tanks), and thousands of photographs, all accompanied by interpretive signage explaining the history of the war.  The museum is administered through a special partnership between the Admiral Nimitz Foundation and the Texas Historical Commission.  Participants can choose to tour the museum during the allotted time frame (see schedule below), or to explore this historic German town (founded in 1846) and its famous shopping district, art galleries, breweries, and wineries. 


9:00 AM:  Depart Conference Hotel

10:45:  Arrive in Fredericksburg

11:00-12:30:  Lunch (On Your Own)

12:45-3:00:  Museum of the Pacific War

3:15:  Depart for San Antonio

5:00 PM:  Arrive at Conference Hotel

Mission to Market Walking Tour

Tour Guides: Students of St. Mary's University - San Antonio and Teresa Van Hoy

The “Mission to Market” tour emphasizes sites related to the Tejano history of San Antonio and will cover the short distance from The Alamo to Market Square. The tour begins at The Alamo, where St. Mary’s University alumnus Meagan Lozano will offer a special tour with remarks.  En route we will explore the history of bloodshed and secrets at La Villita, La Catedral de San Fernando, and Military Plaza, where Tejano independence fighters were executed in 1813.  One of the martyrs’ descendants, Anthony Delgado, who is also the head of “Los Bejareños” will join us there.  We’ll then visit the Plaza del Zacate and the memorial honoring Emma Tenayuca, “La Pasionaria.”  Finally, at the Mercado, participants can buy pan dulce and Mexican candies at “Mi Tierra” and view murals featuring prominent Hispanics and an altar commemorating the music artist Selena.  The tour ends here so that WHA visitors can leisurely listen to mariachis or enjoy a drink and traditional Tex-Mex. The Mercado also offers shopping and a museum. As a special feature, participants will have access to a newly-designed virtual tour—accessible via smartphone app—designed by St. Mary’s University Public History students.

Sponsors and Partners

The WHA is hosted on the campus of the University of Nebraska at Omaha and benefits from the generous support of the College of Arts and Sciences.

Western History Association | University of Nebraska at Omaha | Department of History | 6001 Dodge Street | Omaha, NE 68182 | 

| (402) 554-5999 | westernhistoryassociation@gmail.com

The Western History Association is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.