On March 11, 1836, Sam Houston, leader of Texas Revolutionary Forces, arrived here to organize the second volunteer army.
On March 13, he heard of the massacre of Alamo defenders and that the Mexican army was advancing toward Gonzales. He ordered the town burned so that the enemy might find no food or shelter upon their arrival. He then marched east, establishing his next camp at "Sam Houston Oak" (10 miles east). After several weeks of maneuvering his forces into an advantageous position, he led them to victory at San Jacinto on April 21.