A Brief History of the French Legation in Austin
A brief discussion of the history surrounding Austin's oldest recorded residence. From its construction during Austin's earliest days to the present, the hilltop upon which the French Legation sits has witnessed the growth of Austin from a city of log cabins to a modern metropolis.
This discussion will outline France's decision to recognize Texas as an independent nation, summarize the drama that accompanied the charge d'affairs Alphonse Dubois to the new capital city, and outline the history of the home from the mid 19th century to the 21st century.
Our discussion will also include recent changes to the French Legation, now under the management of the Texas Historical Commission, and the site's connection to the East Austin community that grew up around the site.
About our speaker:
Kyle Walker currently serves as the Outreach Specialist at the French Legation State Historic site in Austin Texas, now managed by the Texas Historical Commission. He is a recent graduate from the Public History program at Texas State University, having graduated in the fall of 2020. Kyle earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin in Anthropology and Geography. As an undergraduate, he participated in archaeological field schools in central Texas and central America while also interning with the Texas Historical Commission’s Archaeology Division where he assisted in cataloging artifacts from the shipwreck of the LaBelle and conducting research for Presidio La Bahia in Goliad.
Before enrolling at Texas State, he worked for five years with the Texas State Preservation Board in Austin at historic sites such as the Texas State Capitol, the Capitol Visitors Center in the Old Land Office, the Texas Governor’s Mansion and the Texas State Cemetery. As a graduate student his studies coincided with his previous work experience, focusing on local and community history, historic preservation, museum management, exhibit design, digital history and material culture.
As outreach specialist at the French Legation, his duties include reaching out to neighboring heritage institutions across the city of Austin, community organizations and neighbors of the site to reestablish the French Legation’s relationship with the greater Austin community and form new partnerships to highlight not only the history of the site but of the city of Austin. He also manages the French Legation’s social media accounts. You can find his work on the French Legation State Historic Site’s facebook page and Instagram account at frenchlegationshs.
6:50am - Coffee & Networking
7:10am - Breakfast Buffet
7:25am - Introductions & Announcements
7:50am - Speaker Introduction
8:20am - Q&A
8:30am - Have a wonderful Wednesday!
Directions and Parking
Breakfast Fees & Policy