For a wide range of technological applications the need for optically transparent, monolithic, mesoporous silicates is readily apparent. Potential areas of utility include filtration,catalysis, and optoelectronics among many others. This laboratory has previously reported on the synthesis of such materials that are formed through the addition of tetramethoxysilane to a liquid crystal solution of hexanol, cetylpyridinium chloride, and 0.2 M hydrochloric acid, and our investigation into the properties of these materials is a continuing process. We have achieved defect and fracture free material of suitable size (0.5 cm x 3 cm diameter disks) via supercritical drying of the silicate under ethanol or CO2. The dried materials are remarkably similar to ordinary glass in strength, texture, and clarity. They possess pore volumes of ca. 1.0 cm3/g, with BET surface areas >1000 m2/g. We can re-infiltrate the dried monolith with hydroxyethylacrylate, a photo-polymerizable monomer, to create an inorganic/organic nanocomposite. There is fracturing upon re-infiltration, but preliminary tests show that the polymerization proceeds despite the mechanical failure. These findings suggest many possible applications for these unique nanocomposites.