1917 – World War I
Provision to protect harvesting from shortage of hands due to the mobilization of the National army has been made by the government in regulations going out to the exemption boards. Men needed in fields to complete harvesting will be permitted to remain at work until the need for them passes. Local boards will determine what men are necessary in this class.
Ground is broken for the new Central Library building at 600 Soledad Street.
Singer Kelly Willis plays a concert in Gruene Hall while her brother-in-law Charlie Robison plays the Cabaret in Bandera.
The Texans in the Alamo are summoned by Santa Anna to surrender. He is answered by a cannon shot.
Colonel William Barrett Travis writes his famous letter:
Commandancy of the Alamo
Bejar, Feby. 24, 1836
To the People of Texas & All Americans in the World
Fellow citizens & compatriots
I am besieged, by a thousand or more of the Mexicans under Santa Anna. I have sustained a continual Bombardment & cannonade for 24 hours & have not lost a man The enemy has demanded a surrender at discretion, otherwise, the garrison are to be put to the sword, if the fort is taken. I have answered the demand with a cannon shot, & our flag still waves proudly from the walls. I shall never surrender or retreat.Then, I call on you in the name of Liberty, of patriotism & everything dear to the American character, to come to our aid, with all dispatch. The enemy is receiving reinforcements daily & will no doubt increase to three or four thousand in four or five days. If this call is neglected, I am determined to sustain myself as long as possible & die like a soldier who never forgets what is due to his own honor & that of his country VICTORY OR DEATH.
William Barret Travis,
Lt. Col. comdt.
P.S. The Lord is on our side. When the enemy appeared in sight we had not three bushels of corn. We have since found in deserted houses 80 or 90 bushels and got into the walls 20 or 30 head of Beeves. Travis
The Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort is opened.
Miss Julia Grothaus, a native San Antonian and a graduate of the School of Library Science, University of Illinois, had been appointed assistant librarian of the Carnegie Public Library.
The American Freedom Train arrives in San Antonio for a four-day visit to celebrate the Bicentennial.
Country music superstars (Kix) Brooks and (Ronnie) Dunn perform at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo for the first time.
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.
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.
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.
The three new barless bear pits and Monkey Island at the zoo are completed opened for public viewing.
The Harte-Hanks company buys shares in the San Antonio Express newspaper from the Grice family.
Lanier defeats Fox Tech, 14-7 in the Chili Bowl – the first football game played in the Alamodome.
Beethoven Hall. South Alamo street, San Antonio’s largest auditorium, was partially destroyed by a fire that broke out at 10:45 p.m. this evening. The building, valued at $40,000, suffered damages of $25,000, it was estimated today. The origin of the blaze has not yet been fully determined. Delay in sounding the alarm permitted the fire to gain great headway, as members of the Beethoven Maennerchor in the club room did not heed cries of “fire,” believing practical jokers were intent on making them victims of a Hallowe’en prank.
The mercury plummets to 27 degrees, making for frigid trick-or-treating and setting numerous records for the date:
– The lowest temperature for Oct. 31, breaking the mark of 33 degrees reported in 1980.
– The lowest temperature ever in October, surpassing the 32 degrees recorded Oct. 30, 1917.
– The lowest temperature so early in the season, once again breaking the 32 degrees reported Oct. 30, 1917.
– It was the first time since record-keeping began in 1885 for the lowest temperature in October to drop into the 20′s.
Fleetwood Mac performs at the Alamodome in support of their live album “The Dance.”
With approximately 100 artesian wells pumping hundreds of thousands of gallons of water daily, it is only a matter of time until the San Antonio River dries up, acting Mayor Phil Wright declared today.
All new police cars are being equipped with beacon-ray emergency red lights that flash revolving red beams as a warning to all. Sixteen lights have been installed and are in operation now, said Capt. Frank Mosel. They are replacing the old blinker lights which were much smaller and flashed only forward.
The Dallas Cowboys lose to the Houston Oilers, 23-20, in the Alamodome – a preseason NFL game for the Governors Cup.
The San Antonio Public Library purchases a rare first edition King James Bible and other rare books with money donated by the estate of Harry Hertzberg.
The second annual “Lisle and Hahn Pet Adoption Day” takes place at the Animal Defense League. The day features a concert by the Gin Blossoms who were much more famous by the time the event rolled around than when they were booked, thanks to the 1992 album “New Miserable Experience.”
Officer Frederick Fieldstrup is the first recorded San Antonio Police Officer in San Antonio to die in the line of duty. He is killed on the corner of Market Street and Alamo Street in a shoot-out with Bill Hart, a notorious gambler, and two of his companions. Hart and his two companions were also killed along with Fieldstrup.
Salem Binladen, half-brother to Osama, dies when his ultralight aircraft hits some powerlines and crashes in Schertz.
Paul McCartney brings his “New World Tour” concert to San Antonio. 44, 468 fans see the former Beatle in the first event ever held in the Alamodome.
Playland Park holds its grand opening in its new location at 2222 N. Alamo (at Broadway). It will remain San Antonio’s favorite amusement park until closing in 1980.
The Alamodome opens to the public. “This day was a long time coming, but it’s finally here,” said former mayor Henry Cisneros, now secretary of Housing and Urban Development. “It’s the beginning of a new chapter in San Antonio’s life.”