Gone But Not Forgotten in San Antonio! - Part I (Alamo: area codes, health)
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When I worked with GWhopper, it was in the med center area. Everyday on the way to work at the corner of Wurzbach and Fredricksburg (the "hooters corner") I would notice there is a small old brick wall with a bronze plaque that says "Nine Mile Hill"...the rest is too small the read from your car. It is on the very corner, it used to be a Diamond Shamrock, then it was Nine Mile Motors, now it is some check cashing place. I always wondered what it was, aparently it is part of the OST (Old Spanish Trail)...this is some interesting reading.
Hamilton Wolfe street in the med center...I wonder if that is related to Wolfe's Inn?
The 300 block of N. Flores has the Robert E. Lee hotel (highly important sponsor of 1920s OST development), cafes, lounges and the new Villa Hermosa apartments.
The 400 block is old established businesses, Alamo Music and an OST 1920s sponsor, S. X. Callahan auto repair, then modern ARTPACE buildings facing Main, and the SAISD complex. Sunshine Laundry and Akers family business are also some of San Antonio's oldest. Fox Tech was San Antonio's first "Old Main" HS.
Passing under IH-35
Homes beginning here were built along El Camino Real cart road from Mexico to Louisiana. From Houston St. to San Pedro Springs the OST was built on this N. Flores section of El Camino Real. This portion of N. Flores is being turned into a true "street of flowers" by Scenic San Antonio. 1108 has historic designation as a Carranza family home. 1219 was the Walsh family city home, with a small caliche building being restored under San Antonio's oldest rose bush. The Walsh's followed El Camino Real back to their large ranch south of town near the new Toyoto plant.
Salvation Army, 900, VFW Post 8132, Refugee & Immigrant League & Education Services, and I Have a Dream Foundation are interspersed among the historic homes with supporting shops: dental, barber, restaurants, etc.
Early cart roads led to San Pedro Springs from Fredericksburg, Laredo, Culebra hill & Blanco. Between Culebra and Blanco Rds. were the OST support Pig Stands, cafes and fuel stations.
Much economic development is needed on this area of Fredericksburg Rd. before inviting motorcades for the OST Centennial. Some has begun across from St. Ann's Catholic parish, 700, at French/Michigan. During the early 1920s Fredericksburg Rd. was named Foch Highway in honor of French Field Marshall Ferdinand Foch, Allied Commander credited with winning the Great World War. He visited San Antonio Dec. 7, 1921.
Passing under IH-10 into area of dairy cattle pastures along Martinez Creek. Note stonework on the west side of the road across from Oak Farms Dairy and then Cool Crest, the oldest putt putt golf course in the nation. Uphill into housing developments and shops built during the 1920s. Then to the Deco District Revitalization Corridor, IH-10 to 2700, where building facelifts and new infill projects are generated by grants and economic development funding. Underground utilities, stone planters and bus shelters, student hanging tile enhancements, HEB palm trees & North Dr., just north of HEB, where new Jack-in-the-Box added stonework matching old stonework. Within the Primrose Senior Community is the restoration of the German style stone Bihl family home, 2803. It indicated to early drivers that the OST was leaving San Antonio and entering the foothills of hill country German settlements. 3326, Walgreens' stone retaining wall leading to bench installed at Vance Jackson by the Daughters of the Republic of Texas in 1936 to commemorate the OST.
Fredericksburg Rd. has been greatly widened removing any enhancements and even old motels, gas stations and cafes supporting the OST. As Balcones Heights is entered, the Siesta Motel, 4441, may be the oldest motel left in Bexar County.
North of loop 410 live oak trees begin to soften the rolling landscape especially at Oak Hills Country Club and subdivision.
Many professionals from the Medical Arts Building (restored as the Emily Morgan Hotel on the OST behind the Alamo) were among the earliest OST highway promoters. Offices, hospitals and other facilities of the medical community are now located in the Medical Center between Louis Pasteur and Hamilton-Wolfe Dr. Famous Nine-Mile Hill; all downhill from here into San Antonio. Stone walls have been saved at 9-mile Motors with a plaque placed by One-Stop Markets. USAA complex, new apartment complexes and a bit of undeveloped land just south of historic Locke Hill Cemetery at the southwest corner of Huebner Rd.
There are two more blocks of Fredericksburg Rd, but from there to 1604 the OST has been paved over by IH-10. It is easiest to enter IH-10 via Huebner Rd. from the south.
This is part of the 32-mile "Headquarters Section" of 1920s OST promotion. The OST Beautification group asked businesses and residents to landscape and decorated their entrances with native stone. Architectural drawings were made available to OST association members to encourage enhancement from coast to coast. Much was lost with the widening of Fredericksburg and overlaying of IH-10.
Exit IH-10 at UTSA Blvd., cross over UTSA Blvd. and park in the north end of North Point Mitsubishi Motors (Acura, Jaguar) to view across IH-10 the State Historically Registered Moos Home and Smokehouse being restored in the Gunn Auto Complex. Mrs. Moos was National Chair of the OST Beautification Committee encouraging decorative stone walls and landscaping, as still seen north of 1604 at Leon Creek. The Moos home is better viewed from the IH-10 southbound access road.
Upon returning to northbound access road, follow the "LOOP 1604 WEST" signs. Stay in furthest right lanes. IMMEDIATELY after emerging from underpasses, Old Fredericksburg Rd. proceeds north. Watch traffic carefully as you pass under last overpass section, move across traffic to right lane and immediately turn right onto OST. North beyond the Leon Creek low water crossing begins the OST requested 100-foot wide right-of-way, stone walls and decorative entrances of Mrs. Moos' neighbors.
At the north end of Old Fredericksburg Rd. follow IH-10 access south under 1604 following "EAST LOOP 1604" signs left and left onto west bound IH-10 access road. Return to IH-10. Raymond Russell Park and Mission Park Cemetery are nestled among new developments with new stone enhancements. This area enters the aquifer recharge zone placing controls on the many development opportunities. Research on this area of the OST is just beginning. Did the OST followed closely the RR tracks along the northbound access road or follow the hills past 22193 with its stone entrance on the south bound access road ? Much oral, military and TxDoT documentation of the Leon Springs, Camp Bullis & Camp Stanley area needs to be gathered.
Exit IH-10 at Leon Springs Boerne Stage Road. Bear to the right on Old Fredericksburg Rd. The OST leaves Old Fredericksburg Rd. in Rudy's parking lot and follows Boerne Stage Road west and then north into Kendall County. Camp Stanley Historical marker is just before the IH-10 underpass in the "CAR POOL" parking lot. On Boerne Stage Rd., open the windows, enjoy the smell of cedar, sounds of birds and Leon Creek, views of mesquite, cedar, and oak, landscape and both old and new stone enhancements. Boerne Stage Rd. makes a sharp right at the Scenic Loop/Toutant Beauregard stop sign, continues past stables, farms, deer, livestock, beautiful fences and gates and rocky terrain of the hill country.
The Bexar/Kendall County line at Balcones Creek was the first large project of the 1920s OST Beautification Department. The 32-mile "Headquarters Section" of the OST from San Antonio to Boerne was the model for other counties and states to follow. Architectural drawings would be sent for the suggested county line markers, stone or concrete gateways or columns. Balcones Creek Park was created by the joint efforts of civic organizations from San Antonio and Boerne; land, work, material and monetary donations. The stone caretaker's house was built to oversee the park of stone tables, benches and fences. Altho' flooding, utility and road construction has removed many enhancements, parts of the county line marker on the east side of the road, north of the creek and the stone walls and restored caretaker's house south of the creek remain, altho' under private ownership.
Follow Boerne Stage Rd. under IH-10, turn immediately left on Cascade Caverns Rd, right on Cascade Caverns Rd. and immediately left onto Old San Antonio Rd. Proceed past Kendall Middle School into Boerne past many more old and new stone fences.
Some of the pics GW has been posting are from a website called (TheAlamoCity.com a history of San Antonio in postcards) the website name has just been cut out of the pics. Ive been stuck on this website for a month now wasting work time . Its like a visual GBNF. The webmaster has put in a lot of work with over 2000 postcards to look at (some dups).I wonder if he own all these postcards, I've seen a few of these on eBay. A lot of these post cards have the address where these places once or still do stand. I like to look them up on MSN maps birdseye view to see whats left or how it looks now. There is a arial pic of NSM where you can see the HEB (finaly).
There are postcards of :
Hotwells (this is how I found this site I didnt know what it was or how big it was)
The SA floods of 1913 and 1921.
Exposition Park located where Riverside Park is located.
Electric Park......where was this located???
Many of the downtown,Austin Hwy, and Broadway hotels and motels.
and much more (I sound like a commercial)
I hope you guys love it as much as I do. I have dropped the webmaster a e-mail about this GBNF thread. I hope the webmaster or whom ever owns the postcards drops in and becomes part of the group. I would love to know how they obtained so many of these postcards.
I like that you can read the postcards as well. The handwriting was lousy back in the olden days. Two things people seem to write a lot are, the fact they are sorry they havent written sooner and how HOT San Antonio is. One guy described San Antonio as "Hot as Hades"...... havent heard that in a eon.
Bar America downtown is supposed to go on the market in a couple of weeks from what I hear. Better get your $1 Lone Stars while you can.
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