1839 Samuel May Williams Home


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This rare combination of Creole-plantation and New England architectural styles was built in 1838 for Samuel May Williams, secretary to Stephen F. Austin and founder of the Texas Navy.

Williams played an important role in early Texas history. The son of a ship captain, he was born on October 4, 1795, in Providence, Rhode Island. He learned the trades of bookkeeping and international commerce while employed by his uncle in Baltimore. After working in Buenos Aires and New Orleans, Williams arrived in Mexican Texas in 1822, settling in San Felipe de Austin. In 1838, Williams, along with Michel B. Menard and other early Texas businessmen, helped found the Galveston City Company. A year later the city of Galveston was incorporated. Other business ventures included a partnership with Thomas F. McKinney, resulting in a successful commission house and Texas' first bank.

Williams died on September 13, 1858, at the age of 63, without a will. The four surviving Williams children divided the property and sold the house to Philip Tucker. The Tucker family lived in the house until 1953, when it was sold to the Galveston Historical Foundation. The foundation restored the house and operated it as a house museum until 2007.


Hours of Operation
This is private residence, and not open to the public.