San Antonio, Then and Now (Image heavy)

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p_bubel
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I spent a couple of weeks looking through online databases, sanford insurance maps and google street views to put these together for my own enjoyment. (I'm sick that way) And I thought I might as well share some of 'em with y'all while I'm at it.



quote:
Commerce Street Bridge

Commerce St Bridge, upper photo was taken in 1910 before the street and bridge was widened and the river channeled. The iron truss bridge was moved down river to the King William area and now serves as a pedestrian bridge on Johnson Street. It's often called the O. Henry bridge after it's mention in several of his stories.

www.alamo.edu/sac/english/mcquien/htmlfils/commerce2.htm






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Guenther Mill

Guenther Upper Mill, built in 1868 and photo taken in 1920.

Trained as a millwright in his native Germany, Carl H. Guenther (1826-1902) started his San Antonio operation in 1859 at the site of the present Pioneer Flour Mills. In 1868 he built another dam and mill upstream at this location. Because it was closer to town, the upper mill was an outlet for products from both plants. About 1900 the Guenther family began operating exclusively from the downstream facility. The vacated upper mill housed a macaroni factory, an ice cream company, and later a garage. In 1926 the structure was razed to widen the San Antonio River.




[This message has been edited by p_bubel (edited 4/13/2011 3:08p).]
p_bubel
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quote:
Guilbeau House

Guilbeau House, built in 1847. The top photo was taken in 1929. Probably just in time for it to be torn down to make way for parking.





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Pioneer Flower Mill

Guenther Flower Mill, photo taken 1926. The river was moved to the other side of the complex when it was widened and channeled in the 70's.

Trained as a millwright in his native Germany, Carl H. Guenther (1826-1902) started his San Antonio operation in 1859 at the site of the present Pioneer Flour Mills. In 1868 he built another dam and mill upstream at this location. Because it was closer to town, the upper mill was an outlet for products from both plants. About 1900 the Guenther family began operating exclusively from the downstream facility. The vacated upper mill housed a macaroni factory, an ice cream company, and later a garage. In 1926 the structure was razed to widen the San Antonio River.





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San Fernando Catherdral

San Fernando Cathedral, founded in 1731 and extensively renovated in 1868. The upper photo dates from 1861.

p_bubel
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quote:
Veramendi Palace

Veramendi Palace, built by a man born in the city of San Antonio de Bexar in 1798, later governor of the Mexican state of Coahuila y Tejas, married a Canary Islander and had his daughter marry one Jim Bowie of Alamo fame. The above photo was taken in 1860. The building was ultimately demolished to make way for a street widening project in 1912. The doors in the upper photo can still be found in the Alamo grounds.




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Broadway at Houston St.

Broadway at Houston St. (1963)




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Fort Sam Houston
Fort Sam Houston.
Gate at New Braunfels Ave and Grayson St.



[This message has been edited by p_bubel (edited 4/13/2011 3:15p).]
p_bubel
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quote:
Kampmann House. (Pre-1850)

Originally on Nacogdoches St, that section since renamed Bonham, the Kampmanns had a window manufacturing facility across the street just blocks north of the Alamo.

For more images, including some interior details:
http://www.historicmapworks.com/Buildings/index.php?state=TX&city=San+Antonio&id=30455



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Ruiz House (Pre-1800)

Rather than photograph the vacant parking lot that now exists on the original site (Military Square) I wandered down to the Witte Museum. In the 40's this house, plus two others were moved to the site to save it from demolition.

The house was already old when Jose Ruiz became school master in San Antonio and acquired it in 1803. He went on to become a city attorney, began a long military career in 1811 when he joined the Bexar Provincial Militia and later exiled with his cousin Jose Navarro after joining the Republican Army against the crown in 1813. Upon returning in 1822 he busied himself with the workings of Mexican Tejas and eventually became one two native San Antonians to sign the Texas Declaration of Independence in 1836.

For his whole, truly amazing story:
http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fru11
p_bubel
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quote:
HemisFair Construction(1967)

The Tower of the American being built for the '68 HemisFair. The 250th anniversary of San Antonio.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HemisFair_%2768


[This message has been edited by p_bubel (edited 4/14/2011 3:26p).]
p_bubel
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quote:
The Twohig House (1840s)

John Twohig was one of those people that makes reading and studying history fun. If there was an event of any importance in the area they were guaranteed to have been a part of it in some fashion.
John Twohig, born in Cork, Ireland, became one of San Antonio’s most memorable pioneers. After serving as an apprentice on a British vessel and engaging in the coastal trade between New Orleans and Boston, he came to San Antonio in 1830. He brought a stock of goods and opened a store on Commerce Street and Main Plaza. In 1835, he fought in the Battle of Bexar, in which Texans, led by Benjamin R. Milam and Francis W. Johnson, defeated the Mexican forces under Gen. Martin Perfecto de Cos in house-to-house fighting around Main Plaza.
On March 5, 1842—six years after the battle of the Alamo, the defeat of Santa Anna, and the establishment of the Republic of Texas—the Mexican forces of Gen. Rafael Vasquez returned to Texas and took over San Antonio without resistance. Alerted that the Mexican army was approaching the town, John Twohig invited the poor to take what they wanted from his store, and then blew it up in an effort to keep the gunpowder and other supplies from the enemy. Again, the invading forces came a few months later, on September 11, when Mexican Gen. Adrian Woll led his forces into San Antonio. Captured along with more than 50 San Antonians, Twohig and the others were taken to Mexico and imprisoned in Perote Castle in the state of Vera Cruz. Surrounded by a moat, the castle was a strong government prison. Samuel A. Maverick, Judge A. Hutchinson and William E. Jones were released from prison in April 1843 through the efforts of the U. S. Minister to Mexico, Waddy Thompson. A few months later, on July 2, 1843, Twohig and about a dozen other San Antonians finished digging a tunnel out of the castle and escaped. Twohig was one of the nine men not recaptured. Disguising himself as a peddler, he walked through Vera Cruz, boarded a ship for New Orleans and returned to San Antonio in 1844.
Twohig resumed his mercantile business, which included an extensive trade with Mexico, shipping his goods in mule-drawn prairie schooners. A quarter century later, in 1869, he turned exclusively to banking on the corner of Commerce and Soledad streets at Main Plaza. He had correspondent banks in New Orleans, New York, St. Louis, San Francisco and London, and advertised himself as “banker and dealer in foreign and domestic exchange, coin and bullion.”
The Twohig house stood beside the river, across from the present St. Mary’s church, which he attended regularly. St. Mary’s, founded in 1857, was called by some the “American church,” the “English church,” or the “Irish church.” It was established for the English-speaking San Antonians, but, until St. Joseph’s Church was built in 1868 for the Germans, they also attended St. Mary’s. From his home, Twohig walked to his commercial bank across the river on Commerce Street by a little footbridge he had built near his house.
Twohig, known fondly in San Antonio as “the breadline banker” for his practice of buying bread by the barrel and handing out loaves to poor families at his home each Saturday, was quick to give money to those in need, especially to the Brothers of the Society of Mary who came from France to start a school in San Antonio. A devout Roman Catholic, he became a life-long friend and benefactor of the Brothers.
Twohig advised the Brothers to build their school on land on the East bank of the San Antonio River, fronting on what became College Street. Beginning in 1853 as St. Mary’s Institute, the school served male students of all grades, some who boarded at the school, and some who came to school after crossing the river by boat. Later the school took the name of St. Mary’s University. (later to partially become Central Catholic as well)

In 1941, the Witte Museum moved the Twohig house stone by stone to its campus and reconstructed the large limestone house and its hip roof to make way for a city public service headquarters. (Which in turn has been recently become a Drury Inn)
p_bubel
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quote:
The Uhl Store. (1855)

Once know as the "Irish Flats" neighborhood, this area was not particularly lucky in having most of it's neighborhood structures survive long after the advent of the automobile. It's just north of downtown, and east of Broadway.



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Nathaniel Lewis House (1850)

This estate on the northern banks of the San Antonio survived long after most in the area fell to the wrecker. The structures on the considerably large site included slave quarters.

More images here:
http://www.historicmapworks.com/Buildings/index.php?state=TX&city=San+Antonio&id=30608



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Joseph Boelhauwe House (1877)
AgDev01
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AG
Great thread. it is really interesting to see what used to stand in places i drive past daily.
p_bubel
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quote:
Dr. D. B. F. Kingsley House (Pre-1870)

This interesting structure was one of many that gave way to highway expansion. Elm Street, which this building fronted, later became the access road for I-37 just north of downtown. The lot currently sits underneath I-37 at Houston Street.



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Magnus Seng House (1842)
p_bubel
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I've still have a stack of older photos to go through, so maybe at some point after Fiesta I'll post more.
BoozerRed78
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AG
Nicely done, looking forward to seeing more.
CFrench09
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I want them to bring back the cable car system!
p_bubel
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Street car?



I've got this one waiting in the pile.

Houston Street at Broadway, 1904.

The building is still there today, it's just missing most of it's ornamentation.

Got this one in the stack too:

The trolley stop is still being used on Broadway. It's on the west side of the street immediately north of the HEB Central Market.

(I love this ****)

[This message has been edited by p_bubel (edited 4/13/2011 4:55p).]
CFrench09
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Well they still have some fake ones like that. In the tower picture though they actually have a cable car system!
AAM02
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AG
Oh yeah, in the Hemisfair park/Tower picture they have the aerial cable car system. I remember riding in those at the SA Zoo.
Picard
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AG
GREAT THREAD!


CoolAggie
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AG
This is a great thread. Blue star.
Allen76
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AG
nice.....

I remember watching the house part of the hemisfair tower go up. You could see it from certain points around Castroville. In my memory it took about a month. Every week or so you could tell it had been raised a little higher.

Also remember playing accordian in an Alsatian band on "Castroville Day" at Hemisfair 68.

What I dont' remember is that the construction picture is dated 1963....five years before the actual event.
dg77ag
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AG
Great thread, my dad used to drive those trolley cars briefly in the late 1920's. He grew up in a house that is still standing at hemisfair next to the gazebo,and went to school on the river where the Society of Mary had their school, which today is La Mansion, loved reading about twohig, my great grandfather I'm sure knew him, he helped build that church. Loved hearing stories about how SA was.

[This message has been edited by dg77ag (edited 4/14/2011 12:56p).]
Goodnight Irene
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Love this thread. My dad will still drive us around and give us history lessons of San Antonio, mostly from a construction standpoint.

Coincidentally, that historicmapworks.com is owned by my uncle in portland, maine.
UnderoosAg
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p_bubel
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quote:
What I dont' remember is that the construction picture is dated 1963....five years before the actual event.

Yeah, I goofed. It should either be '67 or '68. I'll have to double check.

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and went to school on the river where the Society of Mary had their school

I went to the school that subsequently was split off and moved to a new campus upriver, Central Catholic. (Graduated in '95)

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Coincidentally, that historicmapworks.com is owned by my uncle in portland, maine.

I absolutely love that site.


[This message has been edited by p_bubel (edited 4/14/2011 3:07p).]
ldmartinez
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AG
ah, the things you have time for when you have no wife and no kids...
p_bubel
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Yep! Louis.
Jeff George
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Very cool. I was just trying to find some interior shots of the HemisFair Arena yesterday, and the Googles were surprisingly unhelpful.
jfro
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Paul, I am with Louis on this one, how do you find time to do posts like this?

PLUM LOCO
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AG
You can see the roof of the Arena in the TOA photos...

Don't forget to show what was allowed to be done to probably the one of the most beautiful theaters in Texas on Houston St.,

The Texas Theater...
PLUM LOCO
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AG
and I forgot "Don't get in the way of progress"...
Fire04
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AG
I was driving down S. Presa the other day and saw this from the road. Hence the name Hot Wells.

http://www.edwardsaquifer.net/hotwells.html

Had no idea this was ever there and of course it looks like a dump now, but there has been talk about restoring it. Maybe someone who's not a rook can post some pics.
Fire04
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AG
To coincide with the OP, here is what you basically see from the road.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/nkerns/2449303327/

Also found this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ax97aGldxTY

Who knew?

[This message has been edited by Fire04 (edited 4/14/2011 8:20p).]
AJ02
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AG
Very cool. Thanks for sharing.
ffco
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I think it was the first Friday of every month, all the fire stations would sound their alarms at 10:00 AM. It was part of a national warning system.

The day the observation deck made it to the top of the Tower of the Americas, all the alarms sounded. Our elementary let all the teachers take us outside for that. We could see the tower from the playground.
ffco
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Also, San Antonians lost a treasure when Fort Sam closed the quad to the public.
AgDev01
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AG
quote:
Oh yeah, in the Hemisfair park/Tower picture they have the aerial cable car system. I remember riding in those at the SA Zoo.


When did they close? I remember them as a kid but being scared of heights the train was a lot more fun.

quote:
Also, San Antonians lost a treasure when Fort Sam closed the quad to the public.


One of my projects for my Master's was looking at the economic effects of the Eastside Gate closing after 911.
rflores91
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This was fantastic! I went to Central Catholic so the history of Twohig was awesome. Thanks
 
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