General Sam Houston has sat atop his horse, Saracen, at the entrance of Hermann Park at Montrose and Main streets since August 16, 1925. The bronze equestrian statue stands upon a gray granite arch constructed by Frank Teich. The inside of the arch has bronze plaques about Houston’s life and monument dedication information, and is covered with ceramic tiles. The circular plaza which surrounds the monument is paved with multi-colored marble tiles. General Sam Houston points toward the battlefield at San Jacinto where he and the Texas Army defeated the Mexican Army led by General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna which led to Texas’s independence. The Women’s Club of Houston commissioned the sculpture.
Enrico Filiberto Cerrachio created the sculpture of General Houston in 1924. Cerrachio was born in Italy on March 14, 1880. He attended the Institute Avellino. He immigrated to Houston in 1900, and became a U.S. citizen in 1905. Cerrachio worked mainly in bronze and marble. He created many sculptures of historical figures including Miriam A. Ferguson, the first woman governor of Texas, Vice President John Nance Garner, and Jesse H. Jones. Cerrachio worked in studios in both Houston and New York City, where he died on March 20, 1956.
Frank Teich was born in Lobenstein, Germany on September 22, 1856. He attended the University of Nuremberg. In 1878, Teich immigrated to the U.S. and came to Texas in 1883. Teich discovered a granite deposit in Llano and operated a quarry. He worked as a supervisor of granite cutters and inspector of the granite used in building the Texas State Capitol building. He also helped with the work on the Tarrant County Courthouse. In addition to the Sam Houston Monument, Teich also worked on numerous monuments throughout Texas. He died January 27, 1939, in Llano and is buried there.
In 1996, the Houston Municipal Art Commission took the responsibility of restoring and maintaining all Houston civic art. The Sam Houston Monument was the first project and the restoration was completed in September 1996. Also in 1996, Bunker Hill Elementary adopted the monument for conservation. The school raises money for its restoration and maintenance.