The Bryan Museum is elated to announce the celebration of a most significant and historic event. The 200th year anniversary of the settlement of Texas and the West by Moses Austin and later his son, Stephen F. Austin.  This will mark the bicentennial year in which Austin received the authorization to bring colonists to a land the Spanish called Tejas.  This was the crowning moment that propelled America towards the reality of manifest destiny and ultimately extending America’s reach from sea to shining sea.

The occasion to honor this historical achievement will open on December 20 and will feature important artifacts associated with Moses and Stevens visionary efforts to bring colonists to Texas.  A centerpiece of the exhibit will be maps which inspired Austin’s efforts to produce the first accurate map of the interior of that unsettled and wild part of America we now call Texas.  It will also include later additions of Austin‘s map and maps before his that were sources for his final product.  Many of these maps have never been available for public viewing.  The exhibit will feature maps from other map makers beginning in the 1500s and continuing to 1845 which is the date of the last edition of Austin’s remarkable mapping talents.

This exhibit will be a rare display of the maps that were a necessary asset for those wishing to fulfill their ambition to seek their fortune in the West and a visual story, expressed by a fascinating collection of exceptionally rare maps and artifacts.  Importantly, this event will pay homage to an almost totally neglected historical occurrence by other institutions – the 200th year of the colonization of the western part of the United States, the acquisition of which truly made America great.