Blog Archives

April 18 in San Antonio history…

1917 – World War I
“Judging from the splendor of the opening events San Antonio’s Fiesta San Jacinto deserves far greater fame than it has yet achieved.’’ said Maj. Gen. John J. Pershing, commander of the Southern Department, this morning. “It is a revelation to me for I never dreamed It was such a magnificent affair. It deserves to rank with the Mardi Gras at New Orleans and will surpass it when it becomes better known. If the climax to the Fiesta is as wonderful as the opening events seem to justify, and I hear it is, people should come many miles to see it.”

1927
Archbishop Robert J. Drossaerts rededicates San Jose Mission as a sacred edifice. Restored to its original lines of 160 years ago, the mission will be reblessed to compensate for the time it lay in ruins.

1947
Mission Stadium and Ballpark opened and the first Texas league game was played there.

April 1 in San Antonio history…

1945
The Kansas City Monarchs of the Negro League, battle Charlie “Cholly” Engle’s All-Star team in a 14-inning thriller that ends up being called as a 4-4 tie.  The Monarchs had to catch a bus for Houston.  The Monarchs have a new shortstop by the name of Jackie Robinson who, unfortunately, has a double error in the seventh inning, allowing the All-Stars to score the tying run.

1947air-conditioned buses
The San Antonio Transit Company begins putting into service their new fleet of 50 air-conditioned city buses.  The Alamo city is the first city in the world to have air-conditioned metropolitan buses.  They even offer free rides on a downtown loop between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

1952
The name of the producers of Pearl beer has been officially changed from San Antonio Brewing Association to Pearl Brewing Company, according to Datus E. Proper, vice-president and general manager.

1996
Longtime San Antonio grocers Centeno Supermarkets files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

February 27 in San Antonio history…

1795
Jose Antonio Navarro is born on this day in San Antonio.

1887225px-Edwin_Booth_Hamlet_1870
Edwin Booth, brother to John Wilkes, performs Richelieu and Hamlet at the Grand Opera House.  (Booth, dressed as Hamlet, right)

1947
“It’s A Wonderful Life” debuts at the Majestic Theater, two months and six days after its national premiere.

January 22 in San Antonio history…

1925
The State Legislature prepared to end Bexar County’s “five-minute divorce” system.

1933
Only in chasing criminals or in answering emergency calls will radio patrol cars be allowed to exceed a speed limit of 25 miles per hour in the future, according to an order issued today by Chief of Police Owen Kilday.

1947
“It’s A Joke, Son!,” the new film featuring Kenny Delmar as Senator Claghorn (the inspiration for the animated character Foghorn Leghorn) premieres at the Aztec Theater with in-person appearances from cast members Una Merkel and June Lockhart (later a star on TV shows “Lassie” and “Lost in Space.”)

1973
Former President Lyndon B. Johnson is transported by airplane from his Johnson City ranch to Brooke Army General Hospital where he is pronounced dead on arrival.

January 19 in San Antonio history…

1947
The long and bitter days and nights in Japanese prison camps were the subject for good-humored retrospect at a party honoring ex-prisoners of war of Bataan, held tonight by General Jonathan Wainwright, Fourth Army commander at his Fort Sam Houston headquarters.  Piece de resistance of the meal was “rice a la prison camp” – a rice soup served in tin pails and cups, reminiscent of the slim daily fare in the Japanese POW camps.

1958
San Antonio oilman-scientist Tom Slick said today it is “entirely possible” a Russian scientist’s claim he spotted two “Abominable Snowmen” is true.  Last year Slick led an expedition in which he photographed tracks believed to have been made by the elusive Himalayan creatures.

1982
Debbie Reynolds performs at the Majestic Theater for the Performing Arts.

January 4 in San Antonio history…

1833
San Antonian William Tobin equaled William Tell’s achievement by shooting an apple off the cranium of Thomson Green of New York – a close friend.  The distance was thirty feet.

1892
The large advertising board on the bank of the river in Bowen’s Central Garden has fallen into the river and is obstructing the channel.

1947alamo_bowl
After a three-day delay due to icy conditions, the Alamo Bowl (right) is played in Alamo Stadium:  Hardin Simmons 20, Denver 0. Game only draws a crowd of 3,730 spectators. The temperature never gets above 26 degrees.

 

January 3 in San Antonio history…

1947rigby
The San Antonio Junior College has announced plans for a 14-building campus if it obtains the arsenal site from government officials in July. Plans submitted show many of the buildings now being used by the government can be transferred to school use in one week.

1964
A month before their appearance on the Ed Sullivan show, the Beatles are shown on American television for the first time – on the Jack Paar Show at 9 p.m. on WOAI Channel 4.

1974
Gymnast Cathy Rigby debuts as Peter Pan in a World Premiere engagement at Convention Center Arena.

December 28 in San Antonio history…

1945
Army officials have declared the river walk, the beautified section of the river downtown, off limits to all military personnel between the hours of midnight and 6 a.m.

1977
Nationally syndicated columnist Heloise (real name Katherine Eloise Bowles) passes away at the downtown Baptist Hospital at age 58.  Her daughter, Ponce Heloise Cruse will take over her “Hints from Heloise” column.

2000
Montgomery Ward announced today that they are filing for bankruptcy and closing their doors after 128 years.  The company was founded in Chicago in 1872 and was the first mail-order catalog business.  The catalog was discontinued in 1985, but the stores remained. The shutdowns will leave large vacancies at four San Antonio malls:  McCreless, Windsor Park, Crossroads (Wonderland) and Westlakes.  [Those mall stores would all close in March 2001.]

 

December 27 in San Antonio history…

1897
Bad roads prohibited wagons from bringing Christmas turkeys to San Antonio.  This resulted in many families having to do without the traditional Christmas bird this season.

1927
A candle burning at the altar of the Chapel of Miracles, 113 Ruiz street, set fire to the interior of the little church this morning and caused considerable damage before firemen extinguished the blaze.

1947
Despite being undersized and trailing at halftime, Class 2A Brackenridge High School defeats Dallas Highland Park, 22-13, in front of 24,795 fans at Alamo Stadium to win the city’s first UIL state football championship.

December 20 in San Antonio history…

1886
The Grand Opera House  has its grand opening.  The Grand Opera House (later Grand Theatre) was built in 1886 and for many years was the best theatre in San Antonio. It was located at 303 Alamo Plaza. It stayed in business until the 1930′s when it closed. The Grand was razed in 1954 to make way for H. L. Green Dept. Store.

1947
The Randolph field Ramblers, from San Antonio, despite the efforts of former West Point Stars “Doc” Blanchard and Arnold Tucker, lose a 24-19 football thriller to the Mexican Intercollegiate All-Star team today in the inauguration of Mexico’s Silver Bowl.

2006
Santikos multiplex Palladium 20-screen & IMAX theater holds soft opening.