Discover the Holiday Season at Candlelight Christmas

Dec 8th and 9th


Sam Houston State University

Sam Houston Normal Institute was created in 1879 by an act of the Texas Legislature “to elevate the standard of education throughout the State, by giving through instruction and special training to as many as possible to our present and future teachers.” The law detailed that two students from each senatorial district and six from the state at large would be admitted upon competitive examination whose tuition, board, lodging and laundry would be paid by the state. In return these students obligated themselves to teach in public schools of their respective districts for as many years as they received such aid. This policy lasted until 1910. Huntsville was chosen as the location on the site formerly occupied by Austin College. The name changed to Sam Houston State Teachers College in 1923, again in 1965 to Sam Houston State College and then again in 1969 to Sam Houston State University.

Information courtesy of Sam Houston State University and Texas State Historical Association. Photo below is of the first students and faculty from the Catalogue of the Sam Houston Normal Institute, 1879-1880 from the University Archives at Sam Houston State University.