2018 National Congress - San Antonio, Texas

24 - 28 October 2018

"Come and Take It" - Honoring the Persistent, Dedicated, and Defiant Fighting Spirit of the Nation's Sea Services

The Gonzales or "Come and Take It" flag was designed and painted by Cynthia Burns and Evaline DeWitt and was allegedly used at the battle of Gonzales in October 1835. The flag may have been carried by  Stephen F. Austin 's volunteer army to the  siege of Bexar . From "The Handbook of Texas", Texas State Historical Association,  https://www.tshaonline.org/home/

The Gonzales or "Come and Take It" flag was designed and painted by Cynthia Burns and Evaline DeWitt and was allegedly used at the battle of Gonzales in October 1835. The flag may have been carried by Stephen F. Austin's volunteer army to the siege of Bexar. From "The Handbook of Texas", Texas State Historical Association, https://www.tshaonline.org/home/

Please view our 2018 NOUS Annual Congress Blog for additional information!

Information about our Author presenters - James HornfischerMarc Liebman, Don Kehn Jr., and Robert “Pete” Peterson.

Welcome to San Antonio!

The Texas Commandery is pleased to host the 2018 Naval Order of the United States Congress in beautiful San Antonio, Texas.  The Wyndham San Antonio Riverwalk has been selected for this Congress.   It is conveniently located along San Antonio’s spectacular Riverwalk.  It is within walking distance of the Alamo, Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, The Pearl Brewery Shopping Complex and El Mercado Marketplace.  The hotel is a short drive to historic San Antonio Missions, San Marcos Outlet Center and Sea World.  It is located just 8 miles from San Antonio International Airport.

Update on Congress Registration Fees and Special Events

The full Congress registration fee is $350 per person, and individual meal prices for non-registered guests are as reflected in the registration form.  Unfortunately, we are unable to accept any additional registrations for the optional events (Nimitz Museum, Briscoe Museum, and The Alamo).

The special Congress room rate is unfortunately no longer in effect. Please contact the hotel directly at 1-866-764-8536 to make reservations if you wish to stay at the Congress hotel.

If you require an accessible room, please call the hotel at 1-866-764-8536 to make your reservation for an accessible room.


About San Antonio

The Alamo Mission in San Antonio ("the Alamo") located in Downtown, is Texas' top tourist attraction. Because of the mission, San Antonio is often called the "Alamo City".  The River Walk, which meanders through the Downtown area, is the city's second-most-visited attraction, giving it the additional nickname of "River City." Extended an additional 13 miles between 2009–2013, the landscaped walking and bike path line the San Antonio River from the "Museum Reach" beginning in Brackenridge Park through downtown, "Downtown Reach", past the Blue Star's "Eagleland" to the "Mission Reach" ending near Loop 410 South past Mission Espada. Lined with numerous shops, bars, and restaurants, as well as the Arneson River Theater, this attraction is transformed into an impressive festival of lights during the Christmas and New Year holiday period (except for the Mission Reach), and is suffused with the local sounds of folklorico and flamenco music during the summer, particularly during celebrations such as the Fiesta Noche del Rio.

The Downtown Area also features San Fernando Cathedral, The Majestic Theatre, Hemisfair (home of the Tower of the Americas, and UTSA's Institute of Texan Cultures), La Villita, Market Square, the Spanish Governor's Palace, and the historic Menger Hotel. The Fairmount Hotel, built in 1906 and San Antonio's second oldest hotel, is in the Guinness World Records as one of the heaviest buildings ever moved intact. It was placed in its new location, three blocks south of the Alamo, over four days in 1985, and cost $650,000 to move.

San Antonio is home to the first museum of modern art in Texas, the McNay Art Museum. Other art institutions and museums include ArtPace, Blue Star Contemporary Art Center, the Briscoe Western Art Museum, Buckhorn Saloon & Museum (where visitors can experience something of the cowboy culture year round), San Antonio Museum of Art, formerly the Lonestar Brewery, Say Si (mentoring San Antonio artistic youth), the Southwest School of Art, Texas Rangers Museum, Texas Transportation Museum, the Witte Museum and the DoSeum. An outdoor display at North Star Mall features 40 foot (12 meters) tall cowboy boots.

The five missions in the city, which are four found in the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park as well the Alamo, were named a UNESCO World Heritage Site on July 5, 2015. The San Antonio Missions became the 23rd U.S. site on the World Heritage List, which includes the Grand Canyon and the Statue of Liberty. It is the first site in the state of Texas. The new Mission Reach of the River Walk was completed in 2013, and created over 15 miles of biking, hiking, and paddling trails that connect the Missions to Downtown and the Broadway Corridor.

Other places of interest include the San Antonio Botanical Garden, Brackenridge Park, the Japanese Tea Gardens, the Sunken Garden Theater, The Woodlawn Theatre and the Majik Theatre, a children's educational theater.

San Antonio is home to one of the largest concentrations of military bases in the United States, and has become known as Military City, USA. The city is home to several active military installations: Lackland Air Force Base, Brooke Army Medical Center, Randolph Air Force Base, and Fort Sam Houston. The defense industry in San Antonio employs over 89,000 and provides a $5.25 billion impact to the city's economy.


2018 National Congress Schedule of Events


0730-1800    Optional Excursion National Museum of the Pacific War (Nimitz Museum), Fredericksburg, Texas


0800-1800    Registration Desk / Welcome

1030-1230    Optional Tour Briscoe Western Art Museum

Lunch (individually arranged)

1300-1345    Communications Committee

1400-1445    Membership and Retention Committee

1500-1545    Commandery Support Committee

1600-1645    Investment Committee

1600-1645    Foundation Board

1700-1745    Finance and Audit Committee

Dinner (individually arranged)

2100-2300    Hospitality Suite


0800-1700    Registration Desk

0800-0845    Historian General's Committee

0800-0845    Awards Committee

0900-0945    By-Law Constitution Committee

0900-0945    Site Committee

1000-1145    General Council

Lunch (individually arranged)

1330-1600    Optional Tour The Alamo

1800-2000    Commander General’s Reception

Dinner (individually arranged)

2100-2300    Hospitality Suite

FRIDAY 10/26

0700-0830    Continental Breakfast

0800-1200    Registration Desk

0830-0900    General Session – Opening Ceremonies

Administrative remarks by Congress Host

0900-0905    Credentials Committee Report

0905-0920    Commander General’s Report

0920-0935    Recorder General’s Report

0935-0950    Registrar General’s Report

0950-1000    BREAK

1000-1015    Membership Report

1015-1030    Commandery Support Report

1030-1045    Communications Report

1100-1200    Presentation by CAPT Robert “Pete” Peterson, USN (Ret), Navy SEAL
A SEAL Plank Owner’s Vietnam Experience, 1964 - 1975”

1230-1400    DSSA-SE/LCDR Lee Douglas Award Luncheon

1415-1420    General Session Reconvenes/Remarks 

1420-1520    Presentation by Mr. Don Kehn Jr., Author
"Be of Good Courage:  Asiatic Fleet four-pipers at Balikpapan, 1942"

1520-1550 Presentation by CWO3 Anthony Atwood, Miami Military Museum & Memorial
"This Old HQ... returning NAS Richmond to Service"

1550-1600    Administrative Remarks

Dinner individually arranged

2100-2300    Hospitality Suite  


0700-0830    Continental Breakfast 

0830-0840    General Session Reconvenes/ Remarks

0840-0900    Historian General Report 

0900-0915    Auditor General Report

0915-0930    National Investment Committee Report

0930-0945    National Finance Committee Report

0945-1000    BREAK

1000-1015    Awards Committee Report

1015-1030    Project Manager Report

1030-1045    Site Committee Report

1045-1100    President Naval Order Foundation Report

1115-1215    Presentation by CAPT Marc Liebman, USN (Ret), Author / Businessman
“Navy Combat SAR in Vietnam - An Untold Story”

1300-1430    ADM George Dewey / CG Medal and Certificate Awards Luncheon

1445-1450    General Session Reconvenes/ Remarks

1450-1550    Presentation by Mr. James Hornfischer, Author
“Endgame in the Pacific: 1944-1945”

1550-1600    General Sessions Ends/Final Remarks

1800-1900    DSSA Cocktail Reception

1900-2200    Distinguished Sea Service Award Banquet

2200    Congress officially concludes

2200-2400    Hospitality Suite