Surrendering The Alamo: The Sale to the State
After the fall of the Alamo in 1836, the church and buildings were largely abandoned. The government of the Republic returned the chapel to the Catholic Church, but after annexation, the U.S. Government claimed it again for military use. In the ensuing years, both U.S. and Confederate forces used the building to house quartermaster stores and munitions. The U.S. Army continued to lease the property until 1876.
Bishop John Claud Neraz's offer to sell the Alamo in 1882 was made to Frank W. Johnson, first president of the Texas Veterans' Association. He, in turn, passed the information on to the governor with a recommendation that the State purchase the building. On April 23, 1883, the Texas legislature passed an act authorizing the purchase of the Alamo. Money from the sale went to complete a new chancery building for the San Antonio diocese.