On the eve of the Civil War, Galveston was a jewel of the Gulf Coast—a booming city with a fine natural harbor and all the commerce and culture that attended it. Galveston was also home to the largest slave market west of New Orleans and a hotbed of secessionist sentiment. Once the war started, Galveston became the focus of Union efforts to take Texas, and Confederate efforts to defend it. Discover the role the Island City played during the war, including the dramatic Battle of Galveston.
The 150-year-old Hendley row in Galveston's historic Strand district FINALLY has a benefactor. A $1.9 million restoration project commenced recently, thanks to investment by one of Galveston's most civic-minded families, the Mitchells. The Hendley buildings played a significant role in the Civil War: the first Confederate canon shot in the 1863 Battle of Galveston was fired from the roof. The buildings are the oldest extant commercial structures on the island. (Interior and exterior photos.)