Blog Archives

June 2 in San Antonio history…

1928
The largest artesian well ever opened in the downtown district of San Antonio gushed forth water estimated at 3,500 gallons per minute onto College Street yesterday when the Dingman Drilling company, boring on the site where the new Majestic theater is to be built, reached a depth of 794 feet.  The well will be used for the cooling system of the theater and for the water supply for the office building.

1934
Officials announced completion of a federally-financed restoration job on San Antonio’s San Jose mission.

1963
The Westfall branch library opens.

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March 13 in San Antonio history…

1884
The Vaudeville Theater, closed by police after the shooting of Ben Thompson and King Fisher two days ago, was reopened. Few people attended, however.

1934
After reading how John Dillinger escaped from an Illinois jail, a San Antonio prisoner changed clothers with a cellmate and tried to bluff his way out as a visitor. Guards recognized him.

1989
The space shuttle Discovery flight STS-29, the third flight since the Challenger disaster, lifts off from Cape Canaveral with San Antonio native Col. John E. Blaha (right) as the pilot.  Blaha would also pilot STS-33 later that same year.

November 17 in San Antonio history…

1934
Lyndon B. Johnson marries Claudia Alta “Lady Bird” Taylor at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in San Antonio. LBJ didn’t have a wedding band for her and had asked Dan Quill, friend and Postmaster of San Antonio, to get one. Quill bought a wedding band at the nearby Sears, Roebuck & Co. for $2.50.  (The Sears store was located in what is now called the Tower Life Building.) After the wedding, they had dinner at the St. Anthony Hotel and spent their wedding night at the Plaza Hotel.

1978
The now-infamous “Star Wars Holiday Special” airs on KENS Channel 5 from 7-9 p.m.  The TV guide description:  “The cast of ‘Star Wars’ and an array of guest stars join together to help the Wookie [sic] Chewbacca reach his home planet in time for Life Day.”

2006
The first Tundra rolls off the assembly line in San Antonio’s new Toyota plant.

September 28 in San Antonio history…

World War I – 1918
The Fourth Liberty War Bond drive begins, offering $6 million in bonds at 4.25 percent.  The maturity date was Oct. 15, 1938.

1934
Cab Calloway and his New York Cotton Club entertainers open a week’s engagement at the Majestic Theater.

1989
Joe Alston, right, who played “Captain Gus” from 1953 to 1979 on the long-running KENS-TV kid’s show, passes away at his home in Pipe Creek at the age of 71.  Ba-ding bing!

August 16 in San Antonio history…

1918
A man arrested yesterday for the burglary of a little West Commerce grocery store three weeks ago will have to stand trial before a jury in the Thirty-seventh District Court based on a single fingerprint on a broken window pane. It is the first case based upon a fingerprint, without any other evidence, recorded in Bexar County and the third of its kind in Texas.

1934
Donald “Donnie” Roan Dunagan is born in San Antonio.  Mr. Dunagan served 25 years in the U.S. Marine Corps and was promoted 13 times in 21 years, retiring with the rank of Major.  He was the Marine Corp’s youngest drill instructor.  He also served three tours in Vietnam and earned the Purple Heart three times and the Bronze Star. However, you may know him as the voice of Walt Disney’s “Bambi.”

1977
San Antonians mourned the death of singer Elvis Presley, who died at age 42 at his home, Graceland, in Memphis, Tennessee.

July 16 in San Antonio history…

1918 – World War I
San Antonio aviator Edgar Tobin shoots down two German fighter planes over Vieville, France for which he receives the Distinguished Flying Cross:
The Distinguished Service Cross is presented to Edgar Gardner Tobin, First Lieutenant (Air Service), U.S. Army, for extraordinary heroism in action near Vieville, France, July 16, 1918. While leading a patrol of three machines in the region of Vieville, First Lieutenant Tobin attacked an enemy formation of six single-seaters. He destroyed two himself and forced down a third out of control.

1934
Thirty San Antonio pecan shellers were working under police protection after a group of 50 labor agitators had tried unsuccessfully to make them strike.

1953
Parade fanfare and visits by Gov. Shivers and Hollywood stars will mark the world premiere of “The Man From the Alamo” at the Majestic Theater today.

July 13 in San Antonio history…

1880
The San Antonio Daily Herald newspaper ceases publication.

1918 – World War I
The Fatherless Children of France Committee in San Antonio establishes a booth in the St. Anthony Hotel selling items to raise funds for French babies orphaned by the war.

1934
Pvt. Ralph Watson chose Friday the 13th to make his 13th parachute jump at Kelly Field but the Kelly commander, Lt. Col. Henry B. Clagett, nixed his plan to push a parachuted black cat from the plane first.

May 27 in San Antonio history…

1918 – World War I
An attempt wil be made at Kelly Field during Decoration Day proceedings to catch a baseball thrown from an airplane and thus set a height record for catching dropped balls.  The record is now 555 feet.

1934
James V Allred, 34-year-old candidate for governor of Texas, visits San Antonio today to confer with campaign workers.

1977
Ray Charles plays Randy’s Rodeo.

September 11 in San Antonio history…

1917 – World War I
San Antonio, Houston, Fort Worth and Waco have been designated as Texas centers for the receiving of books to be forwarded to the soldiers in France.  The books are being gathered under the direction of the library war council of the American Library Association, which is seeking to raise $1,000,000 to equip libraries in the camps at home and abroad.  Books collected in San Antonio and Austin and adjacent territory will be forwarded to the Carnegie Library, San Antonio.

1934
The first F.H.A. loan was made in San Antonio with the federal government co-signing the note of E.K. Aszmann, 313 Regina.  The loan was for remodeling a bathroom.

1961
San Antonio was braced for the impact of heavy rains, flooding and high winds spawned by movement of Hurricane Carla onto Texas’ central coastline.

April 4 in San Antonio history…

1900
The Carnegie free library is to be located in this city, it was announced.

1934
San Antonio police announced today that they believe that Clyde Barrow and his notorious partners in crime have been in San Antonio in the last 24 hours.  A man who refused to reveal his identity told police he had positively seen Bonnie Parker driving a car on East Commerce street two days ago.  In the car with here, he said, was a man.  The informant was positive because he had known Miss Parker for many years in Dallas.

1968
San Antonians are shocked to learn of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Memphis, Tennessee.