A new exhibit, “On the Run: Currency, Credit and Capitals of the
Republic of Texas,” is now on display at the Texas Capitol Visitors
Center in Austin through June 22, 2014.
The financial history of Texas when it was its own independent
nation sounds like it could be written today, with budget shortfalls,
government gridlock and a national credit crisis.
The display, curated by James P. Bevill, author of The Paper
Republic: The Struggle for Money, Credit and Independence in the
Republic of Texas, includes more than 80 money-related
documents, the majority of them from private collectors.
The exhibit arranges the pieces largely in chronological order to
trace the economic, political and social history of Texas from the
revolution through the annexation by the United States in 1846.
Bevill said the exhibit was “brought together by a handful of
private collectors and with loans of material from the John N. Rowe
III Collection of Texas Currency at the DeGolyer Library at Southern
Methodist University, the University of Houston – Special Collections
Library and the American Numismatic Association.”
He said the exhibit uses numismatics “to tell the economic story in
a way that had not been done before. Each case has a theme which is
summarized in a storyboard panel illustrated with graphics, along with
a narrative on the state of the government at that point in time. The
narrative describes the attempts to finance the war effort and later
sustain its independence with an empty treasury.”
Admission to Texas currency exhibit and all other exhibits at the
Capitol Visitors Center is free.
The Texas Capitol Visitors Center is located on the southeast corner
of the Capitol Grounds and is housed in the historic General Land
Office Building, which was completed in 1857.
To contact the visitors center, telephone 512-305-8400 or visit its