Stephen F. Austin, known as the Father of Texas, greets you as you enter the Texas Frontier Gallery. Austin was a successful empresario or entrepreneur who helped settle Texas with the permission of the Mexican government. But in time, many of the new colonists wanted independence from Mexico and fought against Antonio Lopez de Santa Ana and his army beginning in 1835. Santa Ana overwhelmed the Texians at the Alamo and then Goliad but lost at the Battle of San Jacinto in 1836. Texas became independent from Mexico and the Republic of Texas was born with Sam Houston as its president. The room is anchored by a fascinating, hand-crafted diorama with 2000 soldiers, depicting in great detail the Battle of San Jacinto.