If you are a fan of True Women, Janice Woods Windle’s 1994 bestselling novel about Texas women, war and adventure, then you know about Seguin, Texas.
If, however, you are not familiar with Seguin, you should definitely plan a visit. Located about 50 miles from Austin and 35 miles from San Antonio, it’s an easy day trip from either city.
Seguin is one of the oldest towns in Texas. Founded in 1838, it was named for Col. Juan N. Seguin, a Tejano who fought beside the Anglo settlers against the Mexican dictator Santa Anna.
Many places mentioned in Windle’s book can be seen as you drive around Seguin, such as the final resting place of Euphemia Texas Ashby King and the Male Academy where Euphemia and William’s sons attended school. Look for Book Tour signs or visit the True Women Virtual Tour web site to view an interactive map of book tour locations.
In 1997, the book was made into a movie starring Dana Delany and Angelina Jolie. I recently saw the movie for the first time and really enjoyed it. About the Movie: True Women on IMDb.com.
There are some really unusual rain spouts around town. The gargoyle spout is on the Texas Theatre building.
World’s Largest Pecan
As a tribute to the area’s important pecan industry, Seguin boasts that it is home to the world’s largest pecan. Well, I don’t know if that’s true, but the concrete pecan on the courthouse lawn is definitely big.
Seguin hosts an annual celebration called Pecan Fest Heritage Days, where “Seguin locals break out of their shells and throw one big party.” With heritage tours, arts and crafts, food, music, and more, it looks like lots of fun. For more information, visit the Pecan Fest web site.
Seguin is also home to Pape’s Nutcracker Museum, with “more than 8,000 examples from Germany, Austria, Italy, and India.”
I wonder if Pape’s has a nutcracker big enough to open the world’s largest pecan!
Here is a small sampling of the many interesting places to see in Seguin.
- Sebastopol House State Historic Site: A 1856 Greek Revival-style house, Sebastopol is significant as one of the best surviving examples of early concrete building in the Southwest. It is listed as a Registered Texas Historic Landmark and is in the National Register of Historic Places as a result of its unusual limecrete construction and its architectural style.
- Max Starcke Park/Guadalupe River: Built in 1937 on the banks of the Guadalupe River, this beautiful municipal park has small rolling hills, shady pecan trees, standard and miniature golf courses, playgrounds, picnic areas, volleyball and basketball. More information on TexasEscapes.com.
- Saffold Dam: Located in Max Starcke Park, Saffold Dam was originally a natural rock outcropping, which was typical of dams built in the late nineteenth century.
- Texas Theatre: Built in 1931, the building is now owned by the Seguin Preservation Society. It’s a beautiful building and renovation plans are underway. Texas Theatre page on Cinema Treasures.
- Conservation Society Buildings: Lots to see — including the Campbell-Hoermann Log Cabin (1850); the oldest standing Protestant church in Texas (1849); Los Nogales Museum, a pioneer home constructed of sun-baked adobe in 1849; and a Victorian dollhouse, built by German cabinetmaker Louis Dietz for Alice O’Brien, who had come to Seguin from New York City as an orphan train child.
More information about Seguin: