Rumors were swirling Wednesday that the United Nations will be taking control of the Alamo.
The controversy started after the city released its October newsletter, which said, “San Antonio has the opportunity for its five Spanish Colonial Missions to be nominated to be the first United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization World Heritage site in the State of Texas and the 22nd World Heritage designation in the United States.”
Bloggers claimed that the designation would turn control of the Alamo over to the United Nations, and the Texas flag would be replaced with the UN’s flag.
That is not true.
The designation would allow the city to fly the UNESCO World Heritage Site flag, which is different from the UN flag, at the Missions if officials chose to.
It would not be required.
“Despite spectacular and erroneous reports to the contrary, the Alamo is not being turned over to the United Nations — or anyone else for that matter,” read a press release from the Texas General Land Office.
Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson called the rumors “horse hockey.”
“Some folks might think that getting on this list means the UN has some sort of influence at the Alamo. Those folks must not be from around here,” Patterson said. “The people of Texas own the Alamo now and in the future. Nothing is going to change that.”
The designation would add the Missions to a list of the world’s most historic places, which includes the Taj Mahal, Statue of Liberty, and the Great Wall of China.
Residents said a flag or plaque denoting the Missions’ designation as heritage sites would be a point of pride.
“When (tourists) come to San Antonio, they can come to the Missions and the Alamo and they'll already know what it’s all about,” said Hector Roca.
“Why wouldn’t we want to highlight and share our heritage, our culture, our history?” said city tour guide Robert Ramos.