'Dawn at the Alamo' commemorates fall of Alamo 183 years later

Interactive living history programming, special events take place Wednesday

SAN ANTONIO – Wednesday marks 183 years since the final day of fighting in the Battle of the Alamo.

To commemorate the anniversary of the 1836 siege, the Alamo and the San Antonio Living History Association scheduled interactive living history programming along with special events at Alamo Plaza.

The "Dawn at the Alamo" describes events leading up to the morning of the battle. Two youth choirs performed following the program, which concluded with a musket volley.

"People remember it as a distant battle, but we want to hammer home the fact that this was a human event. This is to honor the men who gave up their lives on March 6, 1836," said Bruce Winders, a historian, who spoke at the event.

Winders said its important for people to remember that the lives were given for liberty, and that liberty is something that we can all still believe in.

"History isn’t just in the fact there is a connection between the past and the present with events. It's also with people's families. We continue on this and it becomes a part of their heritage, something they’re proud of," Winders said.

Forrest Byas, who is a descendent of Alamo defender Andrew Kent, attended the solemn ceremony to honor his distant relative.

"You feel his power, you feel the defenders here, you're honoring them," Byas said. "Then, when he answered (Col. William) Travis's famous letter for reinforcements, he was one of the immortal 32 who answered that letter and rode in to reinforce and defend the Alamo."

Here's a list of other events taking place on Wednesday:

9 a.m. – 4 p.m. | Living History 

Interact with live Living History demonstrations exploring the culture and artillery of frontier Texas.

10 a.m. | Commemoration Ceremony
This ceremony, presented in partnership with the Sons of the Republic of Texas, commemorates the 1836 Siege and Battle with guest speaker George Nelson, author of the Illustrated History of the Alamo.

2 – 3 p.m. | Commemoration Ceremony: Memorial Service for the Heroes of the Alamo
This program, presented in partnership with the Alamo Mission Chapter of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas, honors the heroes of the Alamo who valiantly fought and died on March 6, 1836. The ceremony features a performance by Fort Sam’s Own 323d Army Band and a roll call of the nations and states where each defender came from.

4 – 4:30 p.m. | Voices from the Past
A member of the Alamo garrison reads historic texts that describe what is happening at the Alamo during each day of the siege. 

6 – 7 p.m. | Commemoration Ceremony: Remember the Defenders
This poignant ceremony commemorates the lives of the 189 defenders that died on March 6, 1836 at the Battle of the Alamo and honors the sacrifice they and their families made in the name of Texas’ independence.

About the Authors:

Ben Spicer is a digital journalist who works the early morning shift for KSAT.

Max Massey is the GMSA weekend anchor and a general assignments reporter. Max has been live at some of the biggest national stories out of Texas in recent years, including the Sutherland Springs shooting, Hurricane Harvey and the manhunt for the Austin bomber. Outside of work, Max follows politics and sports, especially Penn State, his alma mater.