Sam Houston's headYou know you’ve always been curious but ended up just driving by.

On the way home from Houston Pride, we stopped off to see the Sam Houston monument along I-45 in Huntsville, about 70 miles north of Houston.

As a major general, Houston 1793–1863 won the Battle of San Jacinto, securing Texas independence. He’s the only American to be elected governor of two different states — Tennessee and Texas — and the only governor within a future Confederate state to oppose secession. When he refused to take an oath of allegiance to the Confederacy, he was removed from office by the Texas secession convention.

The statue has been standing there since 1994 and I never knew you could stop off and actually see it. Get off the exit before or after and take the service road to the welcome center. From there walk out along the Interstate and walk around big Sam — the second tallest monument in the state. (Could Dallas be outdone? By someone named Houston? No way. When the giraffe was erected in front of the Dallas Zoo, a tongue reaching upward was added so it would be taller than Sam).

Sam’s pretty impressive. I thought he’d been standing there a decade or two longer, but the inscription says 1994. But you really get a great view of him from the highway — the better view driving north. But I did get a picture of Houston’s ass, which can’t be seen from the Interstate.