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French Legation

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1842; 1880 additions; c. 1955 restoration. 802 San Marcos St.
  • (Photograph by Gerald Moorhead )

The home of Alphonse de Saligny, French ambassador to the Republic of Texas, is one of the earliest surviving properties in the city. Saligny purchased the twenty-one-acre property from Anson Jones, fourth president of the republic, for $1,000. Its hilltop location east of the town afforded a milder climate than the moist lowlands along the Colorado River. Now operating as a house museum, the Greek Revival, central-hall house reflects the early vernacular trends of Central Texas, yet its paired porch columns are an unusual design element. Originally containing four rooms, a cellar, an attic, and a porch, the house was enlarged in 1880 with a dining room, kitchen, and bathroom. The attic was converted to a bedroom and the dormers added. In 1945 the State of Texas purchased the property and a restoration overseen by the Daughters of the Republic of Texas was completed in 1955. A meeting facility was later constructed at the rear of the property.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "French Legation", [Austin, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

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