Blog Archives

April 17 in San Antonio history…

1917 – World War I
The San Antonio Light reports that German spies are at work in San Antonio and have been carrying on their activities for an undetermined period, compiling all the data obtainable which might be of use or advantage to alien enemies. Federal officers have asked the aid of Chief of Police Lancaster and his men in running down these German agents, some of whom are said to be reservists of the German army and all in the employ of the imperial German government.

1920penneys_1920
J.C. Penney opens their first San Antonio store at 305 W. Commerce Street downtown (right).

1981
Rev. Martin Luther King, Sr., father of the slain civil rights leader, speaks in the Grand Ballroom of the Marriott Hotel here.  The event also features singer Jessy Dixon and is a fundraiser for United Ministries.

January 18 in San Antonio history…

1886
Leopold Wolfson buys the White Elephant Saloon to expand his dry goods business.   The building is destroyed on Oct. 1, 2011 in a fire.

1920
The deed to transfer the Kampmann property at 4th and Avenue E to the Scottish Rite Masons of San Antonio has been filed with a consideration set at $65,000 in cash.  Plans are to erect a temple on the site.

1976
The votes have been counted in yesterday’s election and San Antonio voters have rejected, by a four-to-one margin,  a 129-acre “supermall” to be located over the Edwards Aquifer at Loop 1604. Owners of the shopping mall site said they will file suit Monday contesting the legality of the election.

June 19 in San Antonio history…

1920
Capt. John W. Sansom, former Union soldier, Texas Ranger and the first sheriff of Kendall County, dies at his residence at 1102 N. Flores Street here in San Antonio.

1954
By a 5 to 2 vote, the San Antonio City Council votes to ban people of color from municipal swimming pools.  At the same session, however, racial barriers are dropped at city golf courses and tennis courts.  The two councilmen who voted against the segregation ordinance were Emil Sherlen and Henry B. Gonzalez.

1994
Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey’s extra-spectacular 200-year anniversary show is in town!  Today’s afternoon performance benefits the Hertzberg Circus Museum. For just $40 (and $30 for kids), you get lunch at the circus, a menagerie tour, door prize drawings and VIP seats for the 1 p.m. show.

April 16 in San Antonio history…

1920
Baseball season begins in San Antonio against the Beaumont Exporters.  Last year’s San Antonio Bronchos are now known as the San Antonio Bears.  Play ball!

1980
Work is progressing on the strengthening of Olmos Dam as construction crews tie reinforced steel bars crisscrossing each other on the south side of the dam.  A new roadway is also being constructed at ground level to replace the road formerly atop the dam.

1990
Officials from Opryland USA and USAA officially announce that the name of the planned $100 million, 201-acre musical theme park to be located in northwest San Antonio will be called Fiesta Texas.

April 17 in San Antonio history…

1920penneys_1920
J.C. Penney opens their first San Antonio store at 305 W. Commerce Street downtown (right).

1968
The restaurant in the Tower of the Americas opens for business.

1984
Between 12,000 and 15,000 people are expected to attend the Computer & Office Systems Expo ’84, which opened today at the Convention Center.  The big draw is expected to be Apple Computer Inc.’s new Macintosh Computer and IBM’s new image-document handler.  The show will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and will run for three days.  It was opened this morning by Mayor Pro-tem Maria Berriozabal who proclaimed this week “Computer and Office Systems Week.”

March 25 in San Antonio history…

1838
The city limits are fixed at “one league in every direction from the city church (San Fernando).”

1920
The Boston Red Sox blank the New York Giants, 3-0, in a preseason game here.  San Antonians Ross Youngs and Frank Snyder were both on the field for the Giants in this game.

1939
Two months after she was forbidden to sing at Constitution Hall in Washington D. C. because of her race, contralto Marian Anderson performs a concert in Municipal Auditorium.   Fifteen days later, on Easter Sunday, she performs a concert at the base of the Lincoln Memorial at the request of First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt.  The concert is broadcast across the country.

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.

1932
The new Central Catholic High School is dedicated.

April 17 in San Antonio history…

1920penneys_1920
J.C. Penney opens their first San Antonio store at 305 W. Commerce Street downtown (right).

1985
Clarissa Davis of John Jay High School, one of the most sought-after high school basketball recruits in city history, ends months of suspense and signs a letter of intent to play for the University of Texas Longhorns.

March 25 in San Antonio history…

1920
The Boston Red Sox blank the New York Giants, 3-0, in a preseason game here.  San Antonians Ross Youngs and Frank Snyder were both on the field for the Giants in this game.

1924mae_west
Mae West appeared in a vaudeville program at the [old] Majestic (right).

1995
Van Halen and Collective Soul play the last concert in Convention Center Arena.

December 29 in San Antonio history…

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

1920
George W. Brackenridge, 88, retired financier and holder of extensive properties in Texas and elsewhere, died at his Fern Ridge home near San Antonio.  He left an estate worth approximately $3 million.

1945
Benny Goodman and his Orchestra, featuring vocalist Liza Morrow, performs a concert in Municipal Auditorium.