Blog Archives

December 27 in San Antonio history…

1919
G. T. Lewis, rural route mail carrier, filed suit today against a wagon driver who would not pull over for Lewis’s automobile.  He held the center of the road for six or seven miles.  After Lewis was finally able to pass, he got out of his car to confront the wagon driver, who pulled a shotgun, cocked it and ordered Lewis to stand back.  He is charged with obstructing and delaying U.S. Mail and assaulting a carrier in the discharge of his duty.

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.

1953
New Light Baptist Church features a festival of gospel singing groups, including the Gospel Harmonizers, New Hope Gospel Singers, King’s Harmonizers, Mt. Sinai Trio, Mt. Rose Gospel Singers, Jefferson, Newton, Jefferson, Wade and Wilson singers of New Light Baptist, The Cleary Sisters, Starlight singers, Floresville Chorus, Spiritual Five of Jourdanton, Glorified Voices, Harmonizing Five, Mt. Olive, the New Sisters, Evangelist Singers, Brooks Gospel singers, the San Antonio District Chorus, St. Luke Methodist chorus, Mt. Olive Spiritual Singers, Charlottes (of Austin), Silver Light Singers (of Houston), The Gospel Travelers (of Seguin) and the Soul Stirrers – with their 22-year old lead singer Sam Cooke.

November 25 in San Antonio history…

1857
The San Antonio Fire Company is established on this date, A. A. Lockwood, chief.

1953
Sen. Lyndon B. Johnson cited 2,100 Jefferson High School students as “trustees of freedom” in a San Antonio speech keyed to Thanksgiving. He said he was thankful for the youth of the land.

1963
Rep. Henry B. Gonzalez, D-Texas, has issued a call to the Texas Municipal Police Officers Association to raise funds for the family of police officer J. D. Tippitt, killed in Dallas. Gonzalez who is an honorary member of the association, sent communications to other members in an effort “to make sure that this family is not forgotten.”

October 1 in San Antonio history…

1953
After one day, the city water conservation ordinance is rescinded.  The ordinance, setting up alternate lawn watering days for even and odd numbered houses, drew criticism from both a city official and a water board executive.  City Manager Ralph Winton said that the ordinance “wastes more water than it saves.”

1971bexar_hotel
Demolition begins on the Jefferson Hotel (right) at the corner of E. Houston and Jefferson streets. The property will become a surface parking lot which will be leased to Allright Parking, Inc.  The Jefferson Hotel was constructed in 1879 as the Bexar Hotel, which was considered one of the finest in the city at the turn of the century.  All but the street level of the hotel has been condemned since 1946.  The demolition will force five businesses to find new locations:  Parisian Ladies’ Shop, Kay’s Fine Linens, Allen Shoes, the Jefferson Café and Russell Stover Candies. (photo from the UTSA Photo Archives)

2011
The Wolfson Building at Main and Commerce burns for a second time (January 24, 1904) and is completely destroyed.   Flames also damage the first seven floors of the adjacent Riverview Towers.

June 11 in San Antonio history…

1936
President Franklin D. Roosevelt accompanied by Mrs. Roosevelt and Governor James V. Allred, stopped in San Antonio long enough to be given a rousing welcome by approximately 75,000 people who line the downtown streets.In an address at the Alamo, President Roosevelt eulogized the “Shrine of Texas Liberty.”

1953
Stonewall Davis becomes the first African-American appointed to the San Antonio Public Library board.

1955
San Antonio Junior Colleges desegregate. Hubert F. Lindsey & Lonnie Deadrick become the  first African-Americans to enroll at San Antonio College. E. C. Obenshain becomes the first Anglo to enroll at St. Philip’s College.

June 7 in San Antonio history…

1927
A steam shovel is used for the first time in San Antonio in construction of Commercial National Bank.

1944
The San Antonio Light reports that a “well-known Major General” has been demoted to Lt. Colonel for stating at a cocktail party in London, “On my honor, the invasion will begin no later than June 15.”  This former General, Henry J. F. Miller, had commanded the San Antonio Air Depot at Duncan Field until 1941. He was demoted by General Eisenhower, a former classmate at West Point.  Miller died in San Antonio five years later and is buried at Ft. Sam Houston National Cemetery.

1953
The historic Nic Tengg home, owned by the Tengg family for over 101 years, has been sold to Joske’s of Texas as an addition to the store’s parking lot.  The two-story wood, brick and adobe house – long a landmark at 326 E. Crockett St. – will end its colorful career as it gives way to progress and a growing, bustling city.

December 23 in San Antonio history…

1820
Moses Austin arrives in San Antonio where he will meet with Mexican authorities to ask permission for 300 Anglo families to settle in Texas.

1921
More than 3,000 children are expected to participate in festivities around the towering Rotary tree on Alamo Plaza tonight.

1953
Suffering from the wheezes, sneezes and general all-around breezes?  If so, forget it becuase you’re probably just another victim of San Antonio’s newest epidemic: “Christmas tree hay fever.”

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.

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.