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History comes to life for former student, AJHS history class

When a French ship called La Belle wrecked during a storm in 1684, Alvarado was still a couple hundred years away from being founded.

On Wednesday a group of seventh graders at Alvarado Junior High School had the opportunity to hear from a former Alvarado student who worked on the ship’s reassembly.

Sheldon Smith, a 2013 Alvarado High School graduate currently studying at the University of Texas, is a member of the Archaeological Society at UT and applied to work on the project through the Bob Bullock Museum in Austin.

Smith talked about the experience through a video conference with one of Amanda Bailey’s Texas History classes. After explaining what he did for the project, students riddled Smith with questions about everything from how heavy the wood was to what was used to put the ship back together.

More about the project can be found at the Bob Bullock Museum’s website at