Blog Archives

August 12 in San Antonio history…

1922
Frost Bank moves into its new multistory “skyscraper” at the SW corner of Commerce and Flores streets (now the Municipal Plaza Building.)

1927
“Wings”, a silent World War I epic filmed in San Antonio, premieres in New York.  The movie stars Clara Bow and Buddy Rogers and features the (brief) film debut of Gary Cooper.  The next year, “Wings” will be the first film to win an Academy Award for Best Picture.

1953
Kelly’s gigantic C-99, heretofore known as the XC-99 will open a new area in its historic flights today when it takes off on its first intercontinental flight for Europe.

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July 27 in San Antonio history…

1918
Women are allowed to vote in the Democratic primary in Texas for the first time.  Candidate William P. Hobby for governor, Annie Webb Blanton for state superintendent of public instruction and other candidates favored by the women are victorious.

1927
Despite Department of Commerce rulings that Stinson Field is too small for a Class A municipal airport, Phil Wright, acting mayor, said he was going ahead with plans to clear the land there.

1953
Contruction of a gigantic hangar at Kelly Air Force Base, capable of housing 10 huge B-36 bombers simultaneously, will begin early in September.  According to reports here it will be the largest building in the world.

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.

June 4 in San Antonio history..

1918 – World War I
Plans for the enforcement of Provost General Crowder’s “work or fight” regulations, call on all citizens to report to the nearest local draft board names of men within the draft age who are habitually idle or who are employed non-productively.

1953
The city council and City Manager Reynolds Andricks in a closed meeting today virtually wiped out the library board, selected a new corporation court judge and picked a replacement member of the Fire and Police Civil Service Commission.  Veteran Chairman M. M. Harris, trustee of the library board for 33 years, got the axe.  He was scratched, reports indicated, because of a letter he wrote to Andricks in which the new administration was criticized.  That letter was introduced by Andricks at the session.

1968
Hemisfair celebrates “Ed White Day,” to commemorate the life of San Antonio astronaut Edward White Jr., killed in the Apollo I fire.  Mrs. White and her children, Bonnie and Eddie, participate in a ceremony and are given Hemisfair souvenirs.

November 30 in San Antonio history…

1953bing
B.B. King, along with Bill Harvey & his Orchestra, entertain at the Carver Library auditorium.

1977
“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 spccial 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.”

1986
Orchestral Manœuvres in the Dark, better known as OMD, performs in Laurie Auditorium with the Models opening.

November 23 in San Antonio history…

1917 – World War I
A Camp Travis soldier, who deserted on Nov. 2 after being demoted from sergeant to private, has been sentenced to ten years hard labor at the United States penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas.  He was arrested at the railroad station in Von Ormy, awaiting the train, with a ticket to Laredo.

1936
Legendary bluesman Robert Johnson records eight songs during the first of three recording sessions in San Antonio. The songs include “Sweet Home Chicago”, “I Believe I’ll Dust My Broom” and “Terraplane Blues.”

1953
The Municipal Auditorium features “Rhapsodies of 1954,” a triple-bill with former boxer “Sugar Ray” Robinson and Joe Scott, Count Basie and his Orchestra, and Billy Ward and the Dominoes.

 

January 25 in San Antonio history…

1925
St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Church announced plans for a new sanctuary at St. Mary’s and Ashby.

1953
Soldiers at Ft. Sam Houston have been advised not to hitchhike by Col. Glenn S. Finley, Deputy Post Commander. “There will be no signaling to passing  vehicles in any manner whatsoever by any army personnel whether they be standing or walking on the traveled portion of the roadways in the direction of traffic.  Hitchhiking or thumbing rides is out. It is unmilitary and brings discredit to the service.”

1995hard rock
The San Antonio Hard Rock Café (right) holds its grand opening celebration.

January 24 in San Antonio history…

1904
Firemen estimate losses at $200,000 in a fire which destroyed L. Wolfson’s clothing store on Main Plaza.  (It would be destroyed by fire again and for good on Oct. 1, 2011.)
(right, photo courtesy Maria Watson Pfeiffer)

1905
The State Legislature passes a bill to purchase the Alamo for a historic shrine for $65,000.

1953
Oscar Levant performs Gershwin’s “Concerto in F” and “Rhapsody in Blue” with the San Antonio Symphony at Municipal Auditorium.

December 31 in San Antonio history…

1946
The Alamo Bowl, scheduled to pit the Hardin-Simmons Cowboys vs. the University of Denver Pioneers in Alamo Stadium, is postponed due to freezing temperatures and heavy ice. The game would eventually be played on January 4.

1953
Ray Charles comes to San Antonio for the first time and plays the auditorium at the Carver Library.  He is second on a bill that features T-Bone Walker, Amos Milburn and Choker Campbell and his Orchestra.

1993
47 years later, the Alamo Bowl is held again. The Cal Golden Bears defeat the Iowa Hawkeyes, 37-3, in the first Builder’s Square Alamo Bowl.

 

December 12 in San Antonio history…

1907
Local toy dealers, heavily stocked for Christmas, have reassuringly reported that brutish Teddy bears have not replaced dolls as the object upon which little girls most like to shower their instinctive motherly love.  Doll sales are way up.

1927
San Antonio businessmen today met with city and county officials to launch a campaign to raise $500,000 by popular subscription so that a site for the new Air Corps flying center can be purchased outside San Antonio.

1953
San Antonio’s freeway engineer today charged the city planning department is attempting to force the state to follow an undesirable route on the Highway 87 freeway project.