This elegant three-story mansion, located in the King William Historic District on the east bank of the San Antonio River, was built in 1876 for Edward Steves, founder of the Steves Lumber Company. Alfred Giles, prominent San Antonio architect, is thought to be the designer of the ashlar limestone structure which features a concave mansard roof with decorative iron cresting characteristic of the French Second Empire and the Italian Villa styles.
Mr. and Mrs. Curtis Vaughan donated the property to the San Antonio Conservation Society in 1952 in memory of her grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Edward Steves, and her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Albert Steves. The Steves Homestead has been maintained as a historic house museum since 1954 .
Traditionally, Steves’ fathers expected their sons to assume leadership roles in the community, while today that expectation extends also to the daughters. Through the decades Steves family members have served on various boards of directors and been actively involved with the Order of the Alamo, Fiesta Commission and the Texas Cavaliers. In 2004, fourth generation descendant Edward Steves was President of the Fiesta Commission; his brother Sam Steves reigned over the Fiesta River Parade as King Antonio for the Texas Cavaliers. Throughout the Twentieth Century many other family members participated in the Coronation. Seven Steves have served as President of the Order of the Alamo.
The San Antonio Conservation Society dedicates this exhibit to the memory of Patricia Galt Steves
We wish to thank Michaele and Victoria Haynes and the Witte Museum for assistance with the exhibit.
The River House
The River House is a one-story brick structure located at the rear of the Steves Homestead property that housed one of the early natatoriums, or inside swimming pools, in San Antonio. The brick-lined pool was filled by an artesian well located on the property. Local tradition relates that Mrs. Steves swam every day at two o’clock no matter what the weather. Flooring now covers the pool, and the interior provides a meeting room for Society and Foundation activities.
The Servants Quarters/Visitor Center
Part of the original Steves Homestead Complex, the Servants Quarters building was built around 1877. This building housed the gardener and the stable boy who worked for the Steves family. It was restored in 1983-84 with the help of a grant from the Texas Historical Commission. The Servants Quarters building is now being used as a Visitors Center, where tickets are sold and tours originate.
The Steves Carriage House
This two-story frame and stone building, built in 1875, was used for storage during the construction of the Steves Homestead. Restoration of the Carriage House began in August, 1976 and completed in November, 1977, with a matching grant from the U.S. Department of Interior administered by the Texas Historical Commission.
*NOTE: We will be closed Friday, April 27, 2018, for Battle of Flowers. We will re-open Saturday, April 28th, at 10am during the King William Fair.*
The Edward Steves Homestead is open daily from 10:00 am to 3:30 pm with last tour entry at 3:00 pm.
Notice: During the month of April, Fiesta Coronation attire worn by the Steves’ descendants are on exhibit throughout the home. Prices for tours below are for the duration of the exhibit.
Self-guided Tours: Tour the house at your own pace and on your own schedule!
Seniors 65+, active military, students: $7.50
Children under 12: Free
Guided Tours: Let our museum attendants transport you back in time with a more in-depth tour of the home and the family who built it.
Seniors 65+, active military, students: $12.50
Children under 12: Free
Other Tours And Special Events
For other tour options, please contact the Visitors Center at 210-227-9160.
To book a group tour or special event, please contact the Society’s headquarters at 210-224-6163.