Blog Archives

February 14 in San Antonio history…

Second lieutenant and future President Dwight D. Eisenhower, stationed at Ft. Sam Houston,  proposes to Mamie Doud.  She accepts.

San Antonio’s Klan #31 branch of the Ku Klux Klan donates $15 to Second Baptist Church, an African-American congregation, toward their expansion fundraising goal of $5,000.  Rev. I. H. Kelley is dismissed for accepting the money.

The Irish now-supergroup U2 (right) makes their first appearance in San Antonio, playing at Cardi’s – a briefly renamed Randy’s Rodeo, promoting their current album “October.”  Tickets were $4. (Photo by Al Rendon)


November 30 in San Antonio history…

Former Ziegfeld Girl, Martha Mansfield), as Agatha Warren, is burned severely while filming the movie The Warrens of Virginia in Brackenridge Park. She is rushed to Physicians and Surgeons Hospital where she dies.  It is determined that a match, carelessly tossed by a cast member, ignited her costume.

“Bing Crosby’s Merrie Olde Christmas” airs on KENS Channel 5 at 8 p.m. after “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”  Crosby recorded the Christmas special a little over a month before his death on Oct. 14, 1977.  The highlight of the show is his duet with David Bowie on “Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy.”

UTSA make its intercollegiate basketball debut against the defending SWC Champion Arkansas Razorbacks in Convention Center Arena.  The Razorbacks crush the Roadrunners, 71-42.  “It wasn’t something we can be proud of but it’s a start,” says UTSA coach Don Eddy after the game.

November 10 in San Antonio history

The entire west block of Military Plaza, including the Fashion Theater (right), is consumed by fire.

1918 – World War I
It is believed that German surrender is imminent and the armistice will be signed as soon as the courier returns to Marshal Foch’s headquarters from the German Army headquarters.  He has been held up by the German failure to abide by the cease-fire order from the French.

Actress and former Ziegfeld Girl, Martha Mansfield, makes an appearance at the Empire Theatre.  She is in San Antonio filming “The Warrens of Virginia” in Brackenridge Park.

October 13 in San Antonio history…

1918 – World War I
The demand for the San Antonio Light is so great, due to the news of a possible German surrender in the near future, that many Sunday newspapers are sold without the usual comics and supplements which were printed two days earlier.  The editors of the Light apologize and ask for understanding.

The circus is in town!  Ringling Bros. – Barnum & Bailey circus makes its annual visit to the Alamo City.

The Ace in the Hole band, featuring singer George Strait, plays their first concert – just up the road at Cheatham Street Warehouse in San Marcos.

August 20 in San Antonio history…

The Battle of Medina:  “La Noche Triste” in San Antonio.  Scenes of desolation.  Mexican General Arredondo enters the city in triumph.  700 citizens are imprisoned in Alamo courtyards;  300 in one large poorly ventilated granary room on Main Plaza.  14 die in one night.  Women are imprisoned in La Quinta.  Daily executions are held in Military Plaza.

1918 – World War I
Married women will hereafter be permitted to secure positions to public schools of the city as the result of the action taken today at a meeting of the San Antonio School Board.  The action was taken as a “war time necessity” with the provision that each applicant be passed upon individually.

River Avenue between Grand and Houston streets is changed to Broadway Avenue.


August 11 in San Antonio history…

The second radio station in San Antonio, WCAR, begins broadcasting from 324 N. Navarro St.  It is later renamed KTSA (which stands for Kum TSan Antonio). (License date 5/9/22)

Station Officer Levi Stowe reported to headquarters that a cross, 16 feet high and with a cross arm of 10 feet, was burned at the foot of Fairview Avenue, four blocks east of S. Presa.

Mother and daughter duo Naomi and Wynonna Judd make their first San Antonio appearance at Texas Dance Hall.

November 17 in San Antonio history…

1917 – World War I
With Thanksgiving drawing near, all eyes have been turned to the football game to be played between the 90th Division from Camp Travis and the All-Kelly Field team, representing the aviation section of the army.  This game, which is expected to be one of the most interesting ever staged in San Antonio, will be played at 2:30 o’clock on Thanksgiving Day.

San Antonio hosts its first intercollegiate football game at Schwab Field between the St. Edward’s University Saints and the Hillbillies of Daniel Baker College of Brownwood.  St. Edward’s rolls over Daniel Baker, 48-0.

Tennis pros Althea Gibson and Karol Fageros play a 45-minute exhibition tennis match at halftime of the Harlem Globetrotters game vs. the Baltimore Rockets at Alamo Stadium gymnasium.

November 14 in San Antonio history…

1917 – World War I
The San Antonio Light reports that the funeral for Sidney Brooks (right), cadet aviator at Kelly Field No. 2, will be held at the home of his parents, Judge and Mrs. S. J. Brooks, 225 Crofton Avenue, tomorrow at 3 o’clock.  At that time, the flag at Kelly Field will be placed at half-mast in honor of the young aviator.  A military band will be provided and the coffin, draped in an American flag, will be carried to the cemetery on a caisson.

Harry Houdini escapes from a locked crate on the stage of (old) Majestic Theater.

The Brackenridge Park skyride was opened to the public.


November 13 in San Antonio history…

Staacke Brothers advertises that no mechanical ability is required to operate a motorcar – ‘We will teach you to drive like an expert in a few minutes.”

World War I – 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.

Ground is broken for the new Westfall Branch Library where Vance Jackson meets the expressway.  Mayor Walter W. McAllister, library trustees and City Council members participate in the groundbreaking ceremonies.  The library is to be construced for a cost of $88,900.


August 13 in San Antonio history…

Police Chief A. O. Van Riper and Traffic Capt. T. O. Miller supervised the inauguration of San Antonio’s new traffic light system, installed on Houston Street.

For a full hour, three times daily and uninterrupted except for 15 minutes of cowboy music, the commercial use of television is being demonstrated on the fourth floor of Joske’s – the first display of television in the state of Texas (right).  Some of the spectators have made inquiries about the cost of the television machines and if they are for sale.  They can be purchased for about $350 ($3,793.95 in 2016 dollars!) and stored in the attic until television is here to stay.

The Dallas Cowboys play their first game in the state of Texas right here in San Antonio – an exhibition game in Alamo Stadium against the newly relocated (from Chicago) St. Louis Cardinals.  The Cardinals, featuring Texas Aggies John David Crow &  Bobby Joe Conrad, win, 20-13.