Thursday, July 30, 2009

Battleship Texas

San Jacinto Monument is a 25 mile drive from the city of Houston, it houses a 570 foot tall memorial and USS Texas(BB-35) war ship. This memorial commemorates the battle of Texas, fought between Texas rebel army and Mexican army. Located along the Houston Ship Channel, is well known among the Ship watchers and Ship photographers. Houston being the energy capital of America, one can expect to see a lot of huge oil tankers and cruise ships from the Galveston harbour along the channel. This Time Lapse video gives a fair idea of the number of refineries along the Houston ship channel.

USS Texas served both in World war I and II. After being decommissioned from service in 1948 it has been converted into a floating museum. Improper maintenance and neglect turned USS Texas to a huge rusting wreck. It took a massive restoration programme during February 1990 to restore it to its glory of 1945.

USS Texas

USS BB-35 bell, inside the ship. Strikes of a ship's bell are used to indicate the hour aboard a ship and thereby to regulate the sailors' duty watches.

The bell

Being a battleship, USS Texas had massive fire power, which can be seen here.

Fire power

One of the passing oil tankers

Oil tanker

After roaming around the ship and catching a few massive takers pass by we headed to San Jacinto memorial, about a mile from the battleship. San Jacinto memorial has a massive 220 ton star symbolizing the "Lone Star" of Texas. This monument closely resembles the Washington Monument in Washington D.C.

Reflection pool

Visitors are allowed to the observation deck located 489 feet from the ground. The observation deck gives some really breathe taking views of Gulf of Mexico and the Ship channel. Also in front of the Monument we have a 1800x200 feet long reflection pool. Notice Battleship Texas?

A view of the refineries along the Houston Ship channel from the observation deck.

The memorial also houses a theatre, which plays a 20 minute movie about the battle Texas. We also have a Houston photo gallery depicting Houston in its various stages of development. Since all the photographs are copyrighted, we are not allowed to photograph inside the gallery.

Update: Oops! forgot to credit the photographer. Before I get sued for plagiarism! Photographs courtesy Tapo