- 191 Presidio Rd.
- Menard, Texas
Hours & Fees
Daily 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Presidio San Sabá, originally known as Presidio San Luis de las Amarillas, was constructed in April of 1757 by a Spanish force led by Captain Don Diego Ortiz Parilla. The presidio, which was subsidized by the Spanish crown, had a threefold purpose: to protect the nearby Mission Santa Cruz de San Sabá, to assess the validity of rumors of rich silver deposits in the area, and to guard the Spanish frontier against the threat of Indian encroachment. Both in physical size and number of troops, the Presidio was the largest and most important military installation in Texas for its time. The fort's companion site of the Mission Santa Cruz de San Sabá was built a few miles downstream.
The presidio and its accompanying mission were the first place that Europeans in Texas came into conflict with the Comanche Indians and found that Plains Indians, mounted on Spanish horses and armed with French guns, constituted a fighting force superior to that of the Spanish colonials. The course of history was changed at the Mission and Presidio; eventually, the Spanish withdrew from the frontier creating other lines of defense along the Rio Grande.
Several archaeological digs have been conducted at this historic site and it has undergone significant restoration work. The site includes a covered pavilion with restroom facilities. Enjoy a picnic lunch or dinner on site and enjoy the beautiful surroundings while pondering what life would have been like as a Spanish soldier on the frontier!
Read more about San Luis de las Amarillas Presidio in the Handbook of Texas Online.