Singer Phil Collins finds new passion in the Alamo

SAN ANTONIO – Singer Phil Collins says his new “main thing” is the Alamo.

Collins, who said he has “hundreds” of cannonballs, documents and other artifacts from the Alamo, is in San Antonio this week in conjunction with the anniversary of the March 1836 battle.

The collector and history buff’s most prized item is a receipt signed by Alamo commander William Barret Travis for 32 head of cattle used to feed the Alamo defenders.

“Basically, now I’ve stopped being Phil Collins the singer. This has become what I do,” he said in an online story Tuesday for the San Antonio Express-News.

His interest began in his youth when he saw actor Fess Parker portray Davy Crockett.

The 58-year-old singer, whose hits include “In the Air Tonight” and “One More Night,” said he has passed on his appreciation for the Alamo lore to his five children, especially his youngest sons, ages 4 and 7.

“My youngest two, they can identify Travis, Crockett and Santa Anna when they see their pictures,” he said.

Collins narrated the introduction of a 13-minute “Alamo diorama light and sound show” at the History Shop by the Alamo.

He is scheduled to speak to the Alamo Defenders Descendants Association on Saturday.