Blog Archives

April 18 in San Antonio history…

1918 – World War I
A secret society of patriotic and red-blooded Americans is being quietly but effectively organized in San Antonio under the name of the League to Suppress Disloyalty.  It is an organization that proposes to do just what its name implies and it is intimated the pro-German in this community who has any regard for his own safety and welfare will do well to “keep his mouth shut” and not disclose his sentiments.

Archbishop Drossaerts rededicates San Jose Mission as a sacred edifice.  Restored to its original form of 160 years ago, the mission will be reblessed to compensate for the time it lay in ruins.

Underground parking came a step nearer reality today, when the city council instructed Mayor Gus Mauermann to advertise for bids at four business district locations.  The facilities are in the vicinity of or under Alamo Plaza, Travis Park, Main Plaza and La Villita.


April 4 in San Antonio history…

1918 – World War I
Rodman Law, daredevil balloonist and aeronaut, now attached to the Fifth Aero Squadron, Kelly Field, jumped from a height of 2,500 feet at noon today and landed safely on the flying field, Kelly No. 2.  Mr. Law went up in the plane with Edward Stinson, one of the most skilled instructors at Kelly Field and negotiated the jump with the aid of a parachute.

Alamo Drive-In opens on Austin Highway (right).

The South Texas Nuclear Plant (officially known as South Texas Project Electric Generating Station), the first nuclear plant in Texas, begins producing power.  The city of San Antonio owns a 40% stake in the plant, located near Bay City.

March 20 in San Antonio history…

1918 – World War I
First Lieut. Walter J. Johnson of Jersey City, N. J., a flying instructor at Kelly Field, is killed instantly in an airplane accident this morning.

The Mission Broadcasting company of San Antonio today asked the Federal Communications Commission for permission to change the frequency of radio station KONO from 1400 to 860 kilocycles and to increase the power from 250 watts to 1000 watts at night and 5,000 watts during the day.  (The change would not take effect until August 30, 1948)

British band Queen makes their first and only appearance in San Antonio at Municipal Auditorium with Brownsville Station and Al Stewart opening.

December 13 in San Antonio history…

The Express, published by August Siemering and his new partner, W.B. Moore, first appears as a daily afternoon paper. A subscription costs $16 a year. They continue to publish the weekly Express as a “family newspaper” for $5 a year.

1917 – World War I
Of the 160 petitions for citizenship that have been filed with Deputy Clerk I. A. Campbell for action at this term of the Federal Court, 87 will have to be postponed because of conflict with section 2171 of the revised statutes of the United States, which states that “no alien who is a native citizen or subject or a denizen of any country, state or sovereign with which the United States is at war at the time of his application shall then he permitted to become a citizen.”

Ella Fitzgerald and Dizzy Gillespie perform in concert in Municipal Auditorium.  The concert of the two now-legendary African-American jazz artists is unfortunately advertised “for whites only.” (right)

September 26 in San Antonio history…

1917 – World War I
Plans for inaugurating the system of intensive instruction scheduled for the national army, Nineteenth division, Camp Travis, are going rapidly forward. Practically all details are worked out, and in fact the elementary training the recruits are receiving is in line with the system which later will be put into operation. Special attention is being given at this time to plans for opening the division schools, where the men will be trained in the various methods of warfare. Each of these schools will be in charge of a brigadier general as an instructor and they will open directly after the arrival early in October of the remainder of the division.

More than six inches of rain falls in twelve hours in San Antonio, causing major flooding.  Water reached the fifty-foot level at Olmos Dam, only ten feet from the top.  Six people are killed and property damage is estimated at $8 million. ($88 million in 2010 dollars.)

President Truman visits San Antonio on a whirlwind campaign tour.  He speaks briefly at the Alamo: “This,” he said, “is one of the historic monuments of the world, a monument to heroism, a monument to the tight for liberty all over the world. My one ambition is to see a peacefully happy world.” That was all.

September 13 in San Antonio history…

Eighty irate San Antonio retail grocers today were on record as condemning the OPA and approving the closing of every butcher shop in Texas until meat in abundance is obtainable.

Hemisfair Arena hosts a concert with Tommy James and the Shondells, Houston-based The Clique, and local favorites The Yellow Payges.

Pope John Paul II visits San Antonio and gives a Mass for an estimated 350,000 people in Westover Hills on the site of what is today Stevens High School.  He also visits Plaza Guadalupe, Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish, San Fernando Cathedral and Municipal Auditorium. (photo courtesy of the San Antonio Express-News)

March 20 in San Antonio history…

1917 – World War I
The United Kingdom offers asylum to the family of Czar Nicholas II of Russia, after his recent abdication on March 15.

The Mission Broadcasting company of San Antonio today asked the Federal Communications Commission for permission to change the frequency of radio station KONO from 1400 to 860 kilocycles and to increase the power from 250 watts to 1000 watts at night and 5,000 watts during the day.  (The change would not take effect until August 30, 1948)

Damian Garcia (right), along with two others, scale the walls of the Alamo and raise a red flag in defiance of the symbol of Texas revolution and the “theft of Mexican land.”  They were members of the  of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA.

February 22 in San Antonio history…

A proclamation signed by Mayor Brown, County Judge Davis and President Franz C. Groos, of the Chamber of Commerce, is as follows: “In appreciation of the distinguished services rendered this republic by that great soldier and patriot, Major General Frederick Funston, and as an expression of the high esteem and love felt for him by citizens of every rank in San Antonio, we, the undersigned, call a memorial meeting in his honor, to be held at Beethoven Hall on Saturday. February 24 at 3 p.m.  All citizens of San Antonio and members of the army are invited to participate.’’

A San Antonian waited in line two hours at the Federal Building to pay his income tax but balked when a seaman attemped to fingerprint him and enlist him in the Navy. He was in the wrong line.

1946Tex Ritter at the Texas Theater, 1946.
Tex Ritter appears in a stage show at the Texas Theater (right).


February 10 in San Antonio history…

A resolution is passed by city council to donate 40 acres of ground to the military on the eastern  portion of the city, on the site of the government corral near the present site of the post.  By this  grant, San Antonio won the military from Austin.

When Sgt. A. F. Farrar jumped from a disabled Dodd Field plane, the form-fitting, back-type parachute designed by Master Sgt. E. H. Nichols, Brooks Field, received its first emergency test and proved highly successful.

The oldest man to ever be drafted appears to be Alex Krisch of 120 E. Cypress Street.  He just received his discharge at Ft. Sam Houston and was 45 years and five months old at the time of his induction in September 1942.

January 26 in San Antonio history…

Will Rogers visits San Antonio.

Work was begun this week on a $500,000 enlargment program at Sears, Roebuck & Co. on Romana Plaza (now the site of the downtown Central Library.)

Tony Bennett performs at the Majestic Theater.