Blog Archives

February 21 in San Antonio history…

1909
Alderman Lockwood objects to the suggestion that Avenue C and River Avenue be changed to Broadway.

1917
Maj. Gen. John J. Pershing was formally appointed commander of the Southern Department with headquarters at Ft. Sam Houston.  He succeeds Gen. Frederick Funston who died two days ago at the St. Anthony hotel.

1980
UTSA announces the creation of their intercollegiate athletic program.

February 20 in San Antonio history…

1917
The body of Gen. Frederick Funston lies in state at the Alamo from 4:30 p.m. until nightfall, when it is placed aboard a railroad car to be taken to the Presidio in San Francisco to be buried in the National Cemetery there.

1988rivercenter
RiverCenter Mall holds its grand opening festivities.

1990
The San Antonio Light reports that a local resident has a set of letters from the Joske’s building and has applied for a $7,000 grant from the Public Arts Committee of the San Antonio Fine Arts Commission to have them restored and placed on display under the South Alamo/Losoya Street bridge.

January 29 in San Antonio history…

1917
Robert B. Green opens to the public as the county hospital.

1938
The Majestic Theater features “The New Audioscopiks,” the second 3-D movie by Pete Smith, as a prelude to “Happy Landing,” the new film with Sonja Henie and Don Ameche.

1979
A traffic accident at at IH-10 and South New Braunfels at 12:06 a.m. is the first emergency reported to the 911 system.  San Antonio is the first metropolitan area in Texas to have the 911 emergency system.

January 17 in San Antonio history…

1917
Oysters are served at the annual alumni meeting of St. Mary’s College, thus beginning the tradition of Oyster Bake.

1920 – Prohibition begins
The Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution, declaring illegal the production, transport and sale of “intoxicating liquors,” (though not the consumption or private possession), takes effect at midnight.  It was ratified on January 16, 1919 and took effect one year later. It granted both the federal government and the states the power to enforce the ban by “appropriate legislation,” which was provided by the Volstead Act.

1937
City employees are being asked to sign “personal reports” pledging themselves to secure the voting support of their friends for the city administration in the May city elections.  Mayor C. K. Quin claims he does not want anyone working for him who is against him.

December 31 in San Antonio history…

1917
Responding to a call, Fire Chief William P. Bishop (right) is killed instantly when a pumping engine from Company No. 7 collides with his Locomobile auto, hurling it into Joske’s.  Lieut. Robert Koppelin is also killed.

1946
The Alamo Bowl, scheduled to pit the Hardin-Simmons Cowboys vs. the University of Denver Pioneers in Alamo Stadium, is postponed due to freezing temperatures and heavy ice. The game would eventually be played on January 4.

1993
47 years later, the Alamo Bowl is held again. The Cal Golden Bears defeat the Iowa Hawkeyes, 37-3, in the first Builder’s Square Alamo Bowl.

December 29 in San Antonio history…

1845
Texas becomes the 28th state admitted to the Union.

1917 
The San Antonio, Fredericksburg & Northern Railroad, recently sold at a receiver’s sale, has been purchased by a party of San Antonio capitalists, the company reorganized and new article of incorporation filed with the secretary of state at Austin.  The San Antonio, Fredericksburg and Northern Railroad was built about three years ago by R. A. Love, formerly of Kansas City, and extends through part of Kendall and Gillespie Counties, a distance of 23.9 miles, connecting the town of Fredericksburg with the San Antonio & Aransas Pass railroad.

1929
City Attorney Thomas D. Cobbs has been instructed by Mayor Chambers to draw up an ordinance calling for bids for reconstruction of the old Spanish Governor’s Palace.  Architect is Harvey Smith.

November 13 in San Antonio history…

1914
In one of the most sensational crimes in San Antonio history, Otto Koehler (right), the president and manager of the San Antonio Brewing Association (now known as the Pearl Brewery), was murdered by his mistress, Emma Burgemeister.

1917
Cadet Sidney J. Brooks crashes on a landing approach to Kelly Field No. 2.  He is the first San Antonian to lose his life during World War I.  Brooks had nearly completed his final pilot training flight when he apparently lost consciousness and crashed. An investigation revealed he might have had a bad reaction to a flu shot. Brooks Field, later Brooks Air Force Base, is named for him.

1963
A massive explosion at Medina Air Base shatters windows throughout San Antonio and is felt as far as Castroville, 17 miles away.

September 17 in San Antonio history…

1917
Beginning today, traffic policemen stationed on all important street crossings in the downtown district will cease to control traffic by means of their hands and arms. Instead the new signal devices will be in operation.

1918
Five negro soldiers of Company I, 24th United States Infantry, are hanged at daybreak on the Ft. Sam Houston military reservation, for crimes committed during the mutiny and riot of the third battalion of that regiment at Houston, Texas on the night of August 23, 1917.

1994
San Antonio’s annual weekend festival of jazz, Jazz’s Alive, features: Antonio Dionisio & MMR, Fort/Marmolejo Quintet, the Joel Dilley Group with Bett Butler, Sergio Lara & Joe Reyes, Beto y Los Fairlanes and the Rippingtons.

August 31 in San Antonio history…

1731
First recorded baptism in the parish of San Fernando, Ignacia Agustina Munoz y Morillo.

1917
The 103d Aero Squadron is organized at Kelly Field.  Its original complement included pilots from the disbanded Lafayette Escadrille and Lafayette Flying Corps.  San Antonian Edgar Tobin had six aerial victories as part of this unit during World War I.

1976
After 17 years of planning, battling and waiting, the end is in sight for completion of the North Freeway, now officially named the W.W. McAllister Freeway. The last section extends from Sandau Road on the south to north of Bitters Road on the north, a distance of some two or three miles. Construction on this final section should begin in five to six months and should be completed in about 18 months, according to Mal Steinberg, highway department consultant.

July 26 in San Antonio history…

1901
Firemen who saved the Maverick Bank Building from flames recently were treated to a Mexican supper last night by P. H. Swearingen, who has a drugstore on the first floor of the building.

1917
A Camp Kelly soldier was sentenced to seven year’s hard labor for saying “I don’t like that damned fellow, Wilson.”

1981
The first jazz mass ever celebrated at a Catholic church in this area – and possibly in the entire Southwest – is held in San Fernando Cathedral.  Jim Cullum and the Happy Jazz Band provided their interpretations of hymns and spirituals to a 7:30 p.m. service conducted by Father Louis White.