San Antonio History Matrix

A searchable bibliography of sources on the history of San Antonio from the early eighteenth century to the late twentieth century.

1860 - 1877 Civil War

 

Ellsworth, Lois Council. “San Antonio During the Civil War.” M. A. Thesis, University of Texas, 1938.
A broad survey of various social, economic and political developments in the city. Topics covered include, the implementation of martial law, the military mobilization, the role of vigilantes, and the public’s morale and support for the war effort.

 

Everett, Donald E. San Antonio, The Flavor of its Past, 1845-1898. San Antonio, 1983.
A series of short vignettes on the interesting personalities, customs and events in the city's past, mostly taken from contemporary newspaper accounts. Lengths vary from a paragraph to a full page or two. Several items discuss the German and Mexican immigrants, tourism, the river and the acequias, and the doings of the city's well-to-do.

 

Everett, Donald E. San Antonio Legacy. San Antonio: 1979.
Short accounts, running two to four pages in length, on various topics on San Antonio as drawn from the San Antonio Express newspaper from 1865 to 1929. Topics covered include: stage coaches and shipping, gambling, barbed wire, women’s organizations, a lynching, and local folklore.

 

Jennings, Thomas A. “San Antonio in the Confederacy.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity University, 1957.
This broad survey covers the struggle over secession and other political conflicts, the lively cattle and cotton trade, and social conditions primarily for the years of 1860 and 1861. Draws from the Alamo Express and other local newspapers. (128 pp.)

 

McLemore, David. A Place in Time, A Pictorial View of San Antonio’s Past. San Antonio: 1980.
A collection of black and white photographs, sparsely annotated. Many photos were taken by Ernst Raba, spanning the late nineteenth century to the early part of the twentieth.

 

Patton, Robert Rouault. “Post-War Texas: The Year of Transition, 1865.” M. A. Thesis, University of Texas at San Antonio, 1980.
San Antonians had become indifferent to the war effort by its closing months. Near anarchy followed the collapse of the confederacy. Widening Indian raids induced locals to welcome the appearance of Federal troops. Morale problems plagued Federal occupying forces who wished to return home once hostilities had ended. Research based on local newspapers (the Express and Herald) and city and county records. (98 pp.)

 

Wallace, James Oldham. “San Antonio During the Civil War.” M. A. Thesis: St. Mary’s U., 1940.
Most of the study covers the early events leading up to the conflict, including the election of 1860, the Confederate capture of San Antonio, and the referendum on secession that was narrowly approved in San Antonio (827 to 709). Thereafter many residents fled the city and others remained under suspicion. Organized politics and campaigning came to a halt, but social functions – some to support the Confederate cause – remained vibrant. A chapter on military affairs describes the ill-fated Sibley brigade, efforts at recruitment and supply. Despite the gradual collapse of the confederate currency and resulting inflation, San Antonio’s economy boomed due in part to the booming cotton trade with Mexico. The Confederate government also established several local industries to support the war effort. (91 pp.)

 

Anonymous. “Central Texas Jewry in 1875.” Western States Jewish Historical Quarterly 13 (4) (1981): 313-16.
This short report on Jewish communities between Dallas and San Antonio was apparently based on the author’s personal tour of the area. About 20 “intelligent, well-educated and hospitable” Jewish families reside in San Antonio with a temple (Congregation Beth-El). They seek a religious leader “whose bearing in society as a representative of American Judaism they need not be ashamed, who can preach a good English sermon, read Hebrew, and instruct a Sabbath school.”

 

Barr, Alwyn. “Black Urban Churches on the Southern Frontier, 1865-1900.” Journal of Negro History 82 (Autumn 1997): 368-83.
A study documenting the experiences of Afro-American churches in San Antonio, Houston, Little Rock and Shreveport following the Civil War. Initially many functioned with poorly prepared former slaves as preachers and with the financial support of white churches of their denominations. Educated black ministers appeared in the 1870's along with the African Methodist Episcopal Church. The churches were very active in the lives of their parishioners – especially the women – and their communities.

 

Belgian American Club of Texas. The Belgian Americans of Texas. San Antonio, Tex.: 1986.
Offers brief family histories – about 60 in all – of Belgians who settled in the San Antonio area, most of them as farmers.

 

Boryczka, Raymond. “’The Busiest Man in Town’: John Hermann Kampmann and the Urbanization of San Antonio, Texas, 1848 – 1885.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 115 (April 2012): 329-63.
German immigrant Kampmann (1819 - 1885) arrived in San Antonio in 1848 and engaged in a variety of trades and businesses: “architect, contractor, politician, fireman, banker, brewer, railroad booster, rancher, soldier, civic leader, manufacturer, hotelier.”  He was active in local politics, promoted various public works projects, donated to various philanthropies and was a pillar of the German community.   This biographical profile serves as an excellent survey of the politics and urban development of San Antonio in the mid-nineteenth century.

 

Bybee, Larry Lane. “Germans in San Antonio, 1844 – 1920: A Study in Cultural Persistence.” M. A. Thesis: University of Texas at San Antonio, 1980.
German immigrants enjoyed prominent status in mid-nineteenth century San Antonio because of their large numbers and comfortable economic status. The arrival of the railroad in 1877 brought more Americans to the community that diluted the German presence and accelerated the process of assimilation. Although Germans increasingly mingled and identified with non-Germans in the workplace and elsewhere, they retained much of their culture into the twentieth century. (106 pp.)

 

Carroll, H. Bailey. “Texas Collection.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 50 (Oct. 1946): 288-90.
A letter from a San Antonio librarian recounts the life of Edward Dixon Westfall, who arrived in San Antonio in 1846. He took up farming and acted as a local guide. He later donated a substantial portion of his estate to the public library.

 

Davies, Christopher S. “Life at the Edge: Urban and Industrial Evolution of Texas, Frontier Wilderness – Frontier Space, 1836 – 1986.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 89 (July 1985): 443-554.
Extensive analysis by a geographer of the San Antonio – Austin corridor along with numerous other cities. Numerous maps, charts and tables focus on economic and demographic changes as urban areas evolve from frontier havens to modern metropolises, coupling monopoly capital to “frontier insouciance.” Current day San Antonio/Austin are characterized as “predator cities” drawing populations and capital from Houston and elsewhere.

 

Dielmann, Henry B. “Dr. Ferdinand Herff, Pioneer, Physician and Surgeon.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 57 (Jan. 1954): 265-284.
Herff, a native of Germany, moved to San Antonio in 1850. At that time there were no hospitals or nurses in town. Herff had a lucrative practice where he proved a skillful surgeon ready to adopt the latest medical innovations until his death in 1912.

 

Du Terroil, Rubye. “The Role of Women in Nineteenth Century San Antonio.” M. A. Thesis: St. Mary’s U., 1949.
Reviews the various mostly middle class occupations women have held since the mid-nineteenth century. The survey includes teachers, shopkeepers (especially millinery), writers, musicians, and hotel keepers. Includes a chapter on women’s clubs and their leaders, especially the San Antonio Women’s Club formed in 1898 and devoted to civic improvement. Numerous brief sketches, largely of  Anglo women, as drawn from newspapers and directories. (135 pp.)

 

Green, Rena Maverick. (ed.) Samuel Maverick: Texan: 1803 – 1870. San Antonio: 1952.
This book reprints the correspondence of the San Antonio lawyer, landowner, slaveholder and politician, Most of the letters are to and from members of his family. Maverick arrived in San Antonio from South Carolina in 1835. He participated in the siege of the city that year and other notable events. He served in the Texas legislatures for several years during the 1850's, and was mayor of San Antonio twice. By the time of his death Maverick owned 300,000 acres in West Texas.

 

Griswold del Castillo, Richard. La Familia: Chicano Families in the Urban Southwest, 1848 to the Present. Notre Dame, IN: 1984.
Griswold’s study of Chicano families is based on 4 cities: Los Angeles, Tucson, Santa Fe and San Antonio (by far the largest of the four at the outset). Unlike elsewhere, San Antonio’s Hispanic elite were marginalized as Anglo domination grew during the mid to latter part of the nineteenth century. The patriarchal family structure was in decline but still evident in San Antonio in the 1920's. The census and other data explore various facets of Hispanic family life including the role of women, racial intermarriage, infant mortality, illegitimacy and the role of godparents.

 

Janert, Edwinna Kirkpatrick. “San Pedro Springs.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity University, 1968.
Irrigation ditches attached to the springs serviced the fields of Mission San Antonio de Valero. Janert relates the many public purposes of the surrounding park area from prehistoric times to the present. Spanish authorities designated the site a public space in 1729. The park catered to various forms of popular entertainment, which in the nineteenth century included cockfights, bullfights, picnics, rodeos and zoo. After restoration in the early twentieth century it sported a library and various sports facilities for swimming, tennis and even ice skating. (111 pages.)

 

Kallison, Frances B. “100 years of Jewry in San Antonio.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity University, 1977.
This survey of religious and civic leaders and institutions begins with the arrival of the first adventurers during the Spanish era to the early part of the twentieth century. After 1880 many Jews originated in Eastern Europe and were more “tradition oriented.” Jews were well integrated into the San Antonio community and enjoyed a prosperous existence while they carried on their traditions. Based on oral interviews, city directories, and organization records. (136 pp.)

 

Kiel, Frank Wilson. “Treue der Union: Myths, Misrepresentations and Misinterpretations.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 115 (Jan. 2012): 282-92.
A monument in Comfort, Texas honors Germans who were gunned down by Confederate forces at the so called “Battle of the Nueces.” This short essay aims to correct certain popular misconceptions about the site. It is not the oldest such memorial nor is it the only marker dedicated to the Union located in the South. The German community was not so solidly pro Union as it has been represented.

 

Marks, Paula Mitchell. Turn Your Eyes Toward Texas: Pioneers Sam and Mary Maverick. College Station, Texas: 1989.
Marks portrays two of the most prominent early Anglo settlers of San Antonio, who settled permanently in 1847. Samuel (1803 - 1870) was very active in city politics and acquired extensive land holdings in West Texas. Mary (1818-1898) was involved in relief work and the city’s cultural institutions while raising 10 children. They lived near Alamo Plaza.

 

Mason, Kenneth. African Americans and Race Relations in San Antonio, Texas, 1867-1937. New York: 1998.
Mason argues that the experience of Afro Americans in San Antonio’s more nearly resembled that of other western cities rather than the South. Blacks enjoyed more economic opportunity and an improved social standing – though still subject to Jim Crow and paternalistic white control. The Mexican American presence was particularly important in tempering the racial regime. [Based on the author’s 1994 Ph. D. dissertation at the University of Texas at Austin, "Paternal Continuity: African Americans and Race Relations in San Antonio, Texas, 1867-1937."]

 

Maverick,Mary A. The Memoirs of Mary A. Maverick, A Journal of Early Texas. San Antonio: 2005.
Mary Maverick arrived in San Antonio in 1838 and later moved to a house on Alamo Plaza. She gave birth to 10 children but saw only 5 of them reach adulthood. She recorded her recollections in the 1880's. They mostly dwell on events of the 1840's and 1850's. She furnishes an eyewitness account of the Council House Fight of 1840, the severe cholera epidemic of 1849, and her husband’s varied military, political and economic ventures. Maverick also documents the customs and lifestyles of the Anglos, Germans and Tejanos who inhabited the city.

 

Menger, Johnowene B. Crutcher. “M. Eleanor Brackenridge, 1837 – 1924, A Third Generation Advocate for Education.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity University, 1964.
Brackenridge worked with the Woman’s Club of San Antonio in a variety of programs to promote education for women such as kindergartens and instruction in home economics. She took an interest in children’s issues, such as juvenile delinquency and was very active in the suffrage movement. The sources include local newspapers, club minutes and oral histories. (166 pp.)

 

Nixon, Pat Ireland. A Century of Medicine in San Antonio. San Antonio 1936.
The time frame covered by the book really exceeds a century since it reviews the history of medicine and more particularly the medical profession and its practitioners from Spanish times to the New Deal. Prior to late nineteenth century San Antonio suffered a dearth of doctors but there was no shortage of medical quacks. The book covers epidemics, medicines and forms of treatment, medical facilities and the Board of Health. Nixon documents the appalling living conditions of the Hispanic population after 1910 and their consequently high mortality rate.

 

Paulus. Marjorie. “Fifteen Years in Old San Antonio, 1850 – 1865.” M. A. Thesis, St. Mary’s U., 1939.
A rambling account of the social scene in San Antonio as drawn from secondary works and interviews conducted by the author. A potential source of information on the community’s physical layout and social customs. San Antonio was more of a European than an American city at the time owing to its ethnically diverse population and the many languages spoken. Lengthy quotes describe the modes of transportation, forms of entertainment, the plazas and the acequias. The coverage of the civil war is very brief. (105 pp.)

 

Perrin, Teresa Thomas. “Crime and Order During the Civil War and Reconstruction.” Ph. D. diss.: U. of Texas at Austin, 2001.
A rise in crime rate following the war led to calls for more policing and carved out a larger role for the criminal justice system to maintain order. One half of the study explores the workings of an increasingly professionalized police and a more efficient system of courts. The other half has separate chapters devoted to violent crimes, property crimes, and offenses against public morals (such as gambling). Based on 3,500 criminal cases and city council minutes, city ordinances, and judicial proceedings.



Reeve, Frank D. “The Apache Indians in Texas.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 50 (Oct. 1946): 187 – 219.
Reeve covers the period spanning from early Spanish colonization up to the late nineteenth century. The Lipan and Anglo populations frequently met in or near San Antonio, on friendly or unfriendly terms.

 

Wall, Barbra Mann. “Science and Ritual: The Hospital as Medical and Sacred Space, 1865-1920.” Nursing History Review 11 (2003): 51-68.
Women nurses in religious orders and institutions looked after the city’s burgeoning immigrant population between the Civil War and World War I. They ministered to their patients’ souls as well as bodies and thereby preserved Catholic culture. Among the religious orders chronicled in this study is San Antonio’s Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word.

 

Walraven, Edward Lee. “Ambivalent Americans: Selected Spanish-language Newspapers’ Response to Anglo Domination in Texas, 1830 – 1910.” Ph. D. diss.: Texas A & M U., 1999.
Spanish language newspapers reflected the ambivalence of the Tejano/Mexicano population with their status as American citizens. While many newspapers were established for purely political reasons, those that survived were run by business minded editors who relied on advertising and printing jobs to stay in business. The papers pressed an accommodationist approach to defend the civil rights of la raza, but they also exhibited the same racist, stereotypical thinking about Afro-Americans as the Anglo press. Among the San Antonio editors and newspapers discussed are Francisco A. Chapa of El Imparcial de Texas and Pablo Cruz of El Regidor.

 

Wheeler, Kenneth W. To Wear a City’s Crown, The Beginnings of Urban Growth in Texas, 1836 – 1865. Cambridge, Mass.: 1968.
Focuses on the early urban development of Houston, Galveston, Austin and San Antonio. The latter was the oldest, largest, most cosmopolitan and poorest urban setting owing to its large Mexican American population. San Antonio’s economy built on its Mexican heritage with its emphasis on trade with Mexico, livestock and the military. Wheeler describes the development of distinct urban cultures around the state that emphasized education, commercial infrastructure and the arts. These characteristics set these cities apart from their surrounding hinterlands.

 

Alonzo, Armando C. Tejano Legacy: Rancheros and Settlers in South Texas. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1998.
This book challenges both Anglo triumphalist and Chicano revisionist accounts of the history of South Texas in the last half of the nineteenth century. Alonzo notes that Anglo dominance in South Texas was generally limited to county governments, whereas Tejanos remained dominant in many other social settings. The bulk of South Texas farms were small – not sprawling haciendas. Many Hispanic farmers and ranchers lost their holdings because of a lack of access to capital, land tenure practices and occasional droughts rather than through the machinations of the Anglo legal system.

 

Austerman, Wayne Randolph. “Sharps, Rifles and Spanish Mules: The San Antonio – El Paso Mail, 1851 – 1864.” Ph. D. dissertation, Louisiana State U., 1981.
The mail route between San Antonio and El Paso continued on to Santa Fe and San Diego and was seen as the precursor to a transcontinental rail line across the region. It presented a variety of challenges and hefty maintenance and manpower costs. Indians who resented the incursions often made the trek very dangerous. The government contracted the mule drawn transportation system to a variety of entrepreneurs who apparently profited very little from the venture.

 

Barr, Alwyn. “Occupational and Geographic Mobility in San Antonio, 1870 – 1900.” Social Science Quarterly 51 (Sept. 1970): 396 – 403.
The study follows a sample of one in every four male wage earners in the 1870 census to see whether their economic circumstances improved or suffered over time. Almost all Negroes were classified as unskilled laborers in 1870 as were almost as many Mexican Americans. European immigrants dominated the skilled and white collar occupations. They also enjoyed the most upward social mobility over the 30 year time period. The native white population also improved its social standing. Afro Americans and Mexican Americans experienced net downward social mobility, but were relatively better off than Afro-Americans in contemporary Atlanta. Lower skilled workers tended to be more geographically mobile, with relatively few of them hanging around from one census to the next.

 

Boryczka, Raymond. “’The Busiest Man in Town’: John Hermann Kampmann and the Urbanization of San Antonio, Texas, 1848 – 1885.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 115 (April 2012): 329-63.
German immigrant Kampmann (1819 - 1885) arrived in San Antonio in 1848 and engaged in a variety of trades and businesses: “architect, contractor, politician, fireman, banker, brewer, railroad booster, rancher, soldier, civic leader, manufacturer, hotelier.”  He was active in local politics, promoted various public works projects, donated to various philanthropies and was a pillar of the German community.   This biographical profile serves as an excellent survey of the politics and urban development of San Antonio in the mid-nineteenth century.

 

Brown, Harry James. Letters from a Texas Sheep Ranch. Urbana, IL: 1959.
George Wilkins Kendall corresponded from his ranch near Boerne with another wool industry enthusiast in New York between 1860 and 1867. The reprinted letters offer a rich account of the perils and possibilities of pioneer life in the midst of droughts, volatile market conditions, and the Civil War. Kendall would later be hailed as “the father of the Texas Sheep Herd Industry.” He was responsible for introducing the Merino sheep that made Texas the nation’s premier wool producer.

 

Campbell, Suzanne. “John W. Twohig, Irishman, Banker, and Texas Patriot.” West Texas Historical Association Yearbook 81 (2005):131-43.
Twohig emigrated to San Antonio in 1830 and was active in many of the major episodes leading to Texas Independence, including the siege of Bexar. He started off as a merchant and later moved into banking, eventually becoming one of the wealthiest men in the state. He also funded a bread line for the city’s malnourished population that continued after his death in 1891.

 

Claude Aniol & Associates. San Antonio and Your First National Bank Through the Years, 1866-1953. San Antonio: 1953.
Cotton trader George W. Brackenridge founded the city’s first national bank in 1866. Most of booklet is devoted to a chronology of San Antonio history, preceded by a 2 page history of the bank. Illustrated, with color postcards of the bank circa 1953.

 

Davies, Christopher S. “Life at the Edge: Urban and Industrial Evolution of Texas, Frontier Wilderness – Frontier Space, 1836 – 1986.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 89 (July 1985): 443-554.
Extensive analysis by a geographer of the San Antonio – Austin corridor along with numerous other cities. Numerous maps, charts and tables focus on economic and demographic changes as urban areas evolve from frontier havens to modern metropolises, coupling monopoly capital to “frontier insouciance.” Current day San Antonio/Austin are characterized as “predator cities” drawing populations and capital from Houston and elsewhere.

 

Du Terroil, Rubye. “The Role of Women in Nineteenth Century San Antonio.” M. A. Thesis: St. Mary’s U., 1949.
Reviews the various mostly middle class occupations women have held since the mid nineteenth century. The survey includes teachers, shopkeepers (especially millinery), writers, musicians and hotel keepers. Includes a chapter on women’s clubs and their leaders, especially the San Antonio Women’s Club formed in 1898 and devoted to civic improvement. Numerous brief sketches, largely of Anglo women, as drawn from newspapers and directories. (135 pp.)

 

Edwards, Emily. F. Giraud and San Antonio: A Biography Based on Recorded Evidence Plus Circumstantial Surmises Based on this Evidence. San Antonio: 1985.
Francois Giraud (1818-1877) arrived in San Antonio in 1847 and served as mayor between 1872 and 1875. He was trained as an engineer and involved in the construction of the Ursuline school and other local religious buildings.

 

Fisher, Lewis F. C. H. Guenther & Son at 150 Years: The Legacy of a Texas Milling Pioneer. San Antonio: 2001.
A richly illustrated business history of the family and firm associated with the Pioneer Flour Mills located near the King William district. German immigrant and miller Carl Hilmar Guenther (1826 – 1902) arrived in San Antonio in 1859 after first setting up business in the Hill country. The family owned business has weathered a century and a half of economic change and remains one of the city’s larger industrial establishments.

 

Fisher, Lewis F. River Walk: The Epic Story of San Antonio’s River. San Antonio: 2006.
The San Antonio River has played a vital role in the community’s past – both good and bad. It has been the source of irrigation, floods and tourist dollars. Fisher especially looks at various technological innovations to control or exploit the river with dams, channels, businesses and beautified walkways.

 

Gross, Kevin J. and Guillermo Mendez. "An Examination of Acequias, Wells, and Cisterns in San Antonio, Texas, Ca. 1850-1930," in Archeology at the Alamodome: Investigations of a San Antonio Neighborhood in Transition. Eds. Anne A. Fox, Marcie Renner and Robert J. Hard. San Antonio, 1997.
An excellent survey documenting the city's shift from the acequias and wells to sewer systems and indoor plumbing at the turn of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The authors note the many health hazards posed by open sewers and contaminated wells. Research is based on an extensive archeological dig in early 1990's conducted in a neighborhood that was destroyed to make way for the Alamodome.

 

Holmes, William Henry. “The Acequias of San Antonio.” M. A. Thesis: St. Mary’s U., 1962.
A historical study of how irrigating canals functioned during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Describes the construction of the acequias to service the missions. The water network was expanded to meet the needs of the Canary Islanders. The turmoil of the Texas Revolution allowed the system to fall into decay. Holmes reviews the city’s efforts to police the ditches during the nineteenth century when they were a source of drinking water. The need for the acequias diminished as residents drilled artesian wells and the San Antonio Water company was formed in 1877. They dried up and faded away rapidly after 1900 except on old mission properties south of the city. Numerous maps and poorly reproduced illustrations. (135 pp.)

 

Houston, Crosby A. “San Antonio Railroads in the Nineteenth Century.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity U., 1963.
Follows the appearance of three railroads that arrived in San Antonio in the late nineteenth century and turned it into a boom town. The Galveston, Harrisburg and San Antonio Railroad (1877); the International and Great Northern (1881); and the San Antonio and Aransas Pass (1885). The rail lines linked the city with El Paso, Kerrville, Austin, Laredo and the Gulf. Also covers the aborted San Antonio and Mexican Gulf line that was attempted in the 1850's. Houston details the financing and construction of the rail links. The railroads made their money by moving freight rather than people. They brought in lumber and grain, and shipped out cotton, wool, pecans and hides. Numerous appendices.

 

Kelley, Leo. (ed.) “Up the Trail in ’76: The Journal of Lewis Warren Neatherlin.” Chronicles of Oklahoma 66 (Spring 1988): 22 – 51.
Neatherlin led a cattle drive from just west of San Antonio to link with the Union Pacific Railroad in Ogallala, Kansas. The expedition departed on March 14, 1876 and did not reach its destination until July 8, commonly making 10 or 12 miles a day. Netherlin’s diary reprinted here records the various hardships and challenges of moving 9,000 cattle across a dry and often barren landscape. He also documents his relatively swift return from Kansas to San Antonio by train from July 9 to July 15.

 

McGill, Allan Cleveland. “100 Years with a Newspaper, The San Antonio Express, 1865 – 1965.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity University, 1965.
A journalism student follows the major personalities involved with the Express, the business dealings and evolving technology, editorial styles and daily coverage. Based on the James P. Newcomb papers, oral interviews and the newspaper itself. (140 pp.)

 

Mayer, J. A. “San Antonio, Frontier Entrepot.” Ph. D. dissertation, University of Texas, 1976.
Mayer attempts a broad survey of the city’s economic development over the nineteenth century. After enjoying relative prosperity during the Civil War due to its cotton trade with Mexico, the local economy boomed further as a commercial center for South and West Texas. The cattle industry expanded as did the military. Local entrepreneurs and government officials provided the infrastructure to ensure urban growth.

 

Miller, Char. “Where the Buffalo Roamed: Ranching, Agriculture, and the Urban Marketplace,” in On the Border, An Environmental History of San Antonio. Ed. by Char Miller. 56 – 82. Pittsburgh, Penn.: 2001.
During the middle to the late nineteenth century the cattle and sheep industry established itself on the Edwards Plateau and the coastal plain. Anglo ranchers pushed Tejanos off the land in many spots and struggled with an arid environment and thin soils. Miller highlights the role of railroads in helping San Antonio better exploit the local ranches and develop as a city.

 

Rogers, Will Chapel, III. “A History of the Military Plaza to 1937.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity University, 1968.
The plaza was first laid out to protect the early settlement. By the mid-nineteenth century its military role was overtaken by its commercial one as it became the locale of the city market, the chili queens and various forms of popular entertainment, gambling, and public events – including hangings. The study ends when city health inspectors closed down many of the market’s commercial establishments in the name of sanitation. Mainly drawn from newspaper accounts. (105 pages.)

 

Shapiro, Harold A. “The Labor Movement in San Antonio, 1865 – 1915.” Southwest Social Science Quarterly 36 (Sept. 1955): 160 – 75.
Highlights some of the major strikes and labor organizing drives in the city. The Knights of Labor enjoyed a brief tenure as San Antonio’s premier labor organization in the mid-1880's with six assemblies (one representing the “colored” workers) before rapidly falling apart. Thereafter, it was mostly the skilled workers who organized. Forty unions in the city formed together to form the Trade Council in 1900. Many of their efforts focused on a reduction of hours. In these early years many strikes won broad support from the public, the city council and even the Business Men’s Club. Businesses began putting up more resistance after the National Association of Manufacturers helped organize a local Citizen’s Industrial Association to press for the open shop around 1903. Unionization thereafter was at a standstill in the city, and its organized labor force was already smaller than in Houston, Galveston or Fort Worth.

 

Sibley, M. George W. Brackenridge: Maverick Philanthropist. Austin, 1973.
Brackenridge was a San Antonio entrepreneur, banker and philanthropist in the cause of education. He arrived in San Antonio at the close of the Civil War after prospering in the cotton trade. He organized the San Antonio National Bank in 1866 and the San Antonio Water Works company in 1883. He donated a portion of his estate for the park bearing his name, and was a major benefactor to the University of Texas where he was a regent.

 

Smith, Horace R “History of Alamo Plaza from its Beginning to the Present.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity University, 1966.
Smith documents the changing appearance and function of the public space in front of the Alamo Mission. It first served as the courtyard of the original mission. After the mission was secularized the grounds were used by Spanish troops. It suffered many years of neglect after the battle. The area’s revival as a commercial center began with the opening of the Menger Hotel in 1859 and later appearance of the streetcar. The Daughters of the Republic of Texas eventually laid claim to much of the space to better preserve the Alamo shrine. The study utilizes newspapers, directories and city records. (90 pages)

 

Strong, Bernice Rhoades. “Alamo Plaza: Cultural Crossroads of a City, 1724 – 1900.” M. A. Thesis, The University of Texas at San Antonio, 1987.
The urban space in front of the Alamo Chapel has served many purposes. It began as an enclosed mission and, following secularization, became a military post for Spanish, Mexican and American troops. Once the army had decamped for Fort Sam Houston in the 1870's the spot developed into a commercial center before becoming the city’s premier historic site. Strong presents profiles of various individuals and institutions associated with the site. Illustrations. (123 pp.)

 

Swaney, Eugene L. “The Cattle Industry in San Antonio, Texas, 1718 – 1961.” M. A. Thesis: St. Mary’s U., 1961.
This extensive survey covers the introduction of cattle under the Spanish, local ranches and dairies, the nineteenth century trail drives, the impact of the railroad, the opening of the Union stockyards in 1889, and, in the twentieth century, the establishment of the Stock Show and rodeo and the consolidation of the cattle industry. Numerous profiles of prominent cattlemen and cowboys. Sources mostly published records and accounts. (287 pp.)

 

Travers, Douglas N. “The Great Chihuahua Cattle Drive of 1868.” Journal of Big Bend Studies 13 (2001): 85-105.
A cattle drive by David Morrill Poor from San Angelo, Texas to Chihuahua, Mexico commenced in October of 1868 and ended in January. Poor documented the ordeal in several letters to his wife in San Antonio, his home town. Gustave Schleicher, also of San Antonio, backed what came to be called the Great Chihuahua Cattle Drive involving 1,100 head. The venture was a financial success, few cattle were lost, and Poor soon led other cattle drives.

 

Wheeler, Kenneth W. To Wear a City’s Crown, The Beginnings of Urban Growth in Texas, 1836 – 1865. Cambridge, Mass.: 1968.
Focuses on the early urban development of Houston, Galveston, Austin and San Antonio. The latter was the oldest, largest, most cosmopolitan and poorest urban setting owing to its large Mexican American population. San Antonio’s economy built on its Mexican heritage with its emphasis on trade with Mexico, livestock and the military. Wheeler describes the development of distinct urban cultures around the state that emphasized education, commercial infrastructure and the arts. These characteristics set these cities apart from their surrounding hinterlands.

 

Albrecht, Theodore. San Antonio's Singing Mayor: Wilhelm Carl August Thielepape, 1814-1904. Cleveland, Ohio: 1976.
This short, typed manuscript (17 pages, double-spaced) follows the career of a German immigrant who arrived in the city in the early 1850's. He had a varied professional career as an architect, engineer, surveyor and printer. Thielepape was also very active as a singer and conductor in the local music scene, and a composer. Because he adhered to the Union during the Civil War, federal forces occupying the city appointed him mayor in 1867. During his term he sought to secure the city’s water supply, build bridges and pave streets. The governor dismissed him from the post in 1872 and he soon moved to Chicago.

 

Alonzo, Armando C. Tejano Legacy: Rancheros and Settlers in South Texas. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 1998.
This book challenges both Anglo triumphalist and Chicano revisionist accounts of the history of South Texas in the last half of the nineteenth century. Alonzo notes that Anglo dominance in South Texas was generally limited to county governments, whereas Tejanos remained dominant in many other social settings. The bulk of South Texas farms were small – not sprawling haciendas. Many Hispanic farmers and ranchers lost their holdings because of a lack of access to capital, land tenure practices and occasional droughts rather than through the machinations of the Anglo legal system.

 

Austerman, Wayne Randolph. “Sharps, Rifles and Spanish Mules: The San Antonio – El Paso Mail, 1851 – 1864.” Ph. D. dissertation, Louisiana State U., 1981.
The mail route between San Antonio and El Paso continued on to Santa Fe and San Diego and was seen as the precursor to a transcontinental rail line across the region. It presented a variety of challenges and hefty maintenance and manpower costs. Indians who resented the incursions often made the trek very dangerous. The government contracted the mule drawn transportation system to a variety of entrepreneurs who apparently profited very little from the venture.

 

Booth, John A. and David R. Johnson. "Power and Progress in San Antonio Politics, 1836-1970," in The Politics of San Antonio. Eds. David R. Johnson, John A. Booth and Richard J. Harris. 3 – 27. Lincoln, Neb: 1983.
The essay concentrates on the role of the city’s political and economic elites in shaping the city's growth. San Antonio's leaders evidenced less cohesion, vision and initiative than city leaders elsewhere, such as Dallas and Houston. The authors broad survey covers "Boss" Bryan Callaghan II's political machine of the late nineteenth century, the implementation of commission government in the progressive era, and the later shift to the city manager form of government with the appearance of the Good Government League.

 

Boryczka, Raymond. “’The Busiest Man in Town’: John Hermann Kampmann and the Urbanization of San Antonio, Texas, 1848 – 1885.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 115 (April 2012): 329-63.
German immigrant Kampmann (1819 - 1885) arrived in San Antonio in 1848 and engaged in a variety of trades and businesses: “architect, contractor, politician, fireman, banker, brewer, railroad booster, rancher, soldier, civic leader, manufacturer, hotelier.”  He was active in local politics, promoted various public works projects, donated to various philanthropies and was a pillar of the German community.   This biographical profile serves as an excellent survey of the politics and urban development of San Antonio in the mid-nineteenth century.

 

Edwards, Emily. F. Giraud and San Antonio: A Biography Based on Recorded Evidence Plus Circumstantial Surmises Based on this Evidence. San Antonio: 1985.
Francois Giraud (1818-1877) arrived in San Antonio in 1847 and served as mayor between 1872 and 1875. He was trained as an engineer and involved in the construction of the Ursuline school and other local religious buildings.

 

Elliott, Claude. “Union Sentiment in Texas.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 50 (April 1947): 449 – 77.
San Antonio was a trouble spot for Confederate leaders because of lingering pro-union sentiment in the city. The local economy was not directly tied to slavery. The German population resented the depreciated Confederate currency. Much of the city’s population was concerned only about exploiting the numerous economic opportunities afforded by the war.

 

Kiel, Frank Wilson. “Treue der Union: Myths, Misrepresentations and Misinterpretations.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 115 (Jan. 2012): 282-92.
A monument in Comfort, Texas honors Germans who were gunned down by Confederate forces at the so called “Battle of the Nueces.” This short essay aims to correct certain popular misconceptions about the site. It is not the oldest such memorial nor is it the only marker dedicated to the Union located in the South. The German community was not so solidly pro Union as it has been represented.

 

Miller, Margaret. “A Survey of the Civil Government of San Antonio, Texas, 1731 – 1948.” M. A. Thesis, St. Mary’s University, 1948.
There is no historical analysis here, only outlines of the structure of the government under different regimes based on government documents. It begins with a description of the local political establishment under Spanish rule. Little changed locally when Mexico achieved its independence. The governor appointed a “political chief” to run the city. Miller devotes a mere 8 pages to the aldermanic form of government in place between 1837 and 1915, mostly listing the city’s major offices and their duties. Most of the analysis is given over to an outline of the commission form of government established in 1915. Includes several diagrams outlining the structure of government under the commission format. (91 pp.)

 

Newcomb, J. P. Sketch of Secession Times in Texas and Journal of Travel from Texas. San Francisco: 1863.
Newcomb was the unionist editor of the Alamo Express. His press was attacked by a pro confederate mob. He departed San Antonio for Mexico and California shortly after secession. He would later return to the city to establish the Express News.

 

Perrin, Teresa Thomas. “Crime and Order During the Civil War and Reconstruction.” Ph. D. diss.: U. of Texas at Austin, 2001.
A rise in crime rate following the war led to calls for more policing and carved out a larger role for the criminal justice system to maintain order. One half of the study explores the workings of an increasingly professionalized police and a more efficient system of courts. The other half has separate chapters devoted to violent crimes, property crimes, and offenses against public morals (such as gambling). Based on 3,500 criminal cases and city council minutes, city ordinances, and judicial proceedings.

 

Sayers, Billy Joe. “’That Horrific Tragedy’: The Initial Impact of Secession and the Beginning of the Civil War Upon San Antonio and South Central Texas.” M. A. Thesis, University of Texas at San Antonio, 1982.
San Antonio was a hotbed of Union sentiment despite being the headquarters for the Confederate Military Department of Texas. Sayers depends on local newspapers and the minutes of the city council and Commissioner’s Court of Bexar County to expose waning support for a distant war and abundant profiteering. Robert E. Lee and Sam Houston played prominent roles during the disunion phase. (117 pp.)

 

Smith, Thomas T. “San Antonio and the Secessionists, 1861-62: From the Reminiscences of Maj. Gen. Zenas R. Bliss.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 110 (July 2006): 69 – 108.
In May of 1861 Confederate forces “captured” Bliss’s Eighth infantry regiment in San Antonio while they were en route to the Gulf to rejoin the Union army in the North. As an officer, Bliss was granted parole, allowing him to reside in the city and travel around Texas. He describes social and political conditions in a generally festive and upbeat San Antonio in the early weeks of the war. He was well treated by his hosts – going to parties, provided hospitality at various homes – but relations got more tense when it became clear that a long and brutal contest was in store. Bliss left San Antonio through an exchange of prisoners arranged in February of 1862.

 

Somers, Dale A. “James P. Newcomb: The Making of a Radical.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 72 (April, 1969): 449-469.
Born in Nova Scotia in 1837, Newcomb arrived in San Antonio as a boy and published his first newspaper at age 16. He was a supporter of the Know Nothings before the war, and his devotion to the Union compelled him to leave the city for the duration of the conflict. He returned in 1867 as co-owner of the Express and a leader of the Republican Party. He was appointed Texas’s Secretary of State in 1870. He continued to establish or edit a number of newspapers after reconstruction (including the Light) and died in 1907. Draws extensively from Newcomb’s papers and newspapers. [Based on the author’s “James P. Newcomb, Texas Unionist and Radical Republican.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity University, 1964. (168 pp).]

 

Wallace, James Oldham. “San Antonio During the Civil War.” M. A. Thesis: St. Mary’s U., 1940.
Most of the study covers the early events leading up to the conflict, including the election of 1860, the Confederate capture of San Antonio, and the referendum on secession that was narrowly approved in San Antonio (827 to 709). Thereafter many residents fled the city and others remained under suspicion. Organized politics and campaigning came to a halt, but social functions – some to support the Confederate cause – remained vibrant. A chapter on military affairs describes the ill-fated Sibley brigade, efforts at recruitment and supply. Despite the gradual collapse of the confederate currency and resulting inflation, San Antonio’s economy boomed due in part to the booming cotton trade with Mexico. The Confederate government also established several local industries to support the war effort. (91 pp.)

 

Albrecht, Theodore. San Antonio's Singing Mayor: Wilhelm Carl August Thielepape, 1814-1904. Cleveland, Ohio: 1976.
This short, typed manuscript (17 pages, double-spaced) follows the career of a German immigrant who arrived in the city in the early 1850's. He had a varied professional career as an architect, engineer, surveyor and printer. Thielepape was also very active as a singer and conductor in the local music scene, and a composer. Because he adhered to the Union during the Civil War, federal forces occupying the city appointed him mayor in 1867. During his term he sought to secure the city’s water supply, build bridges and pave streets. The governor dismissed him from the post in 1872 and he soon moved to Chicago.

 

Anonymous. “The Vanished Texas of Theodore Gentilz.” American Heritage 25 (Oct. 1974): 18 – 27.
The article reproduces several paintings by the San Antonio artist as taken from Dorothy Steinbomer Kendall’s and Carmen Perry’s Theodore Gentilz: Artist of the Old Southwest. A few paragraphs offer a thumbnail sketch of the artist who moved to the city in the 1840's and continued painting until his death in 1906. He had been classically trained in his native France. Although San Antonio was rapidly becoming more “Americanized,” Gentilz chose people and places that reflected its Mexican and Indian past.

 

Barr, Alwyn. “Black Urban Churches on the Southern Frontier, 1865-1900.” Journal of Negro History 82 (Autumn 1997): 368-83.
A study documenting the experiences of Afro-American churches in San Antonio, Houston, Little Rock and Shreveport following the Civil War. Initially many functioned with poorly prepared former slaves as preachers and with the financial support of white churches of their denominations. Educated black ministers appeared in the 1870's along with the African Methodist Episcopal Church. The churches were very active in the lives of their parishioners – especially the women – and their communities.

 

Boryczka, Raymond. “’The Busiest Man in Town’: John Hermann Kampmann and the Urbanization of San Antonio, Texas, 1848 – 1885.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 115 (April 2012): 329-63.
German immigrant Kampmann (1819 - 1885) arrived in San Antonio in 1848 and engaged in a variety of trades and businesses: “architect, contractor, politician, fireman, banker, brewer, railroad booster, rancher, soldier, civic leader, manufacturer, hotelier.”  He was active in local politics, promoted various public works projects, donated to various philanthropies and was a pillar of the German community.   This biographical profile serves as an excellent survey of the politics and urban development of San Antonio in the mid-nineteenth century.

 

Burkholder, Mary V. Down the Acequia Madre: In the King William Historic District. San Antonio. 1976
Short descriptions of the houses in the neighborhood. The oldest were built by German families not long after the Civil War. Wealthy businessmen built large Victorian homes with architectural flourishes and the latest amenities. The area lies just south of downtown and its major thoroughfares include: S. Alamo, Cedar, Pereida, Adams, Wickes, East Guenther, and Crofton. Illustrated. [A revised version of the author’s earlier (1973) booklet, The King William Area: A History and Guide to the Houses.)

 

Edwards, Emily. F. Giraud and San Antonio: A Biography Based on Recorded Evidence Plus Circumstantial Surmises Based on this Evidence. San Antonio: 1985.
Francois Giraud (1818-1877) arrived in San Antonio in 1847 and served as mayor between 1872 and 1875. He was trained as an engineer and involved in the construction of the Ursuline school and other local religious buildings.

 

Escobedo, Santiago. “Mission San Juan S. A. River Tex: A Rare Photographic Gem Comes to Light.” Catholic Southwest 13 (2002): 79-84.
Describes a photograph of the mission taken in 1868/69 and the new facts learned or confirmed from the image.

 

Harding, Jacobina Burch. “A History of Early Newspapers of San Antonio, 1823 – 74.” M. A. Thesis, University of Texas, 1951.
A list of the numerous newspapers published in San Antonio in Spanish, German and English.

 

Ives, Walther John. “The History of Saint John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church, San Antonio Texas, 1857 – 1949.” M. A. Thesis, U. of Texas, 1952.
The church is located at E. Nueva and South Presa, not far from Hemisfair Park. It was established by German immigrants and much of the service was conducted in German.

 

Matovina, Timothy M. “Sacred Place and Collective Memory: San Fernando Cathedral, San Antonio, Texas,” U. S. Catholic Historian 13 (Winter 1997): 33 – 50.
Based on interviews with laity at the Church, the study seeks to understand this sacred site’s role in fostering a collective memory binding a religious community. It covers the eighteenth century to the present. As the size and influence of the Tejano population shrank, the church became the repository for Mexican culture. It lost some of its Mexican character when the church was elevated to a cathedral in 1874, but parishioners carry on many public rituals to preserve its Mexican heritage. The congregation’s biggest religious festival is still Our Lady of Guadalupe, as it was in colonial times.

 

Maverick, James S. (ed.) A Maverick Abroad: Foot Travels in England and France, 1876. San Antonio: 1965.
Albert Maverick, father to future mayor Maury Maverick, traveled to Europe in the spring. The young man walked from Liverpool to Dover and spent several months in Paris. The diary entries record his reactions to foreign cultures and his homesickness.

 

Moore, Harriet Brown. Saint Mark’s Church, Travis Park, San Antonio, Texas: A Parish with Personality. San Antonio: 1944.
Located near Travis Park, the Episcopal Church was constructed during the Civil War. Separate chapters consider the various personnel, organizations, and activities of the church up to 1942. (The story after that date is taken up by Olive Nesbitt Brewster’s St. Mark’s Church.)

 

Paschal, Olive Adelaide Hill. “The First One Hundred Years of the First Presbyterian Church, San Antonio, Texas.” M. A. Thesis, Trinity University, 1979.
The first protestant church established in Texas, appeared immediately after annexation. Paschal profiles the numerous individuals who served as ministers and their efforts in fields of education and social services. The thesis mainly documents the physical and institutional development of the church. Draws primarily from church records and newspapers. (109 pp.)

 

Smith, Blanche Baker. “Legends and Old Tales of San Antonio and Vicinity.” M. A. Thesis, Southwest Texas State Teacher’s College, 1943.
Smith recites the various legends associated with the local flora and wildlife. She also considers stories passed down by various ethnic groups.

 

Sobré, Judith Berg. San Antonio On Parade, Six Historic Festivals. College Station, Texas: 2003.
Each chapter in this book discusses a different ethnic festival and/or parade in San Antonio during their heyday ,between 1866 – 1900, among them: The Fourth of July, Juneteenth, Diez y Seis, German Volksfests and the various events associated with Fiesta.

 

Speiser, Adel. “The Story of the Theater in San Antonio.” M. A. Thesis: St. Mary’s U., 1948.
An overview of a wide range of theatrical entertainment beginning with Los Pastores in Spanish times. Speiser describes fandangos, medicine shows in Military Plaza, the dance hall in the Harris Theater, minstrel shows and grand opera. The Germans played a major role in promoting musical and theatrical productions at their Casino Hall and through the Turn Verein. Many of the most successful theaters in the city, like the Grand Opera House that opened in 1886, were managed by Ernest Rische. The decline of the national theater industry with the introduction of movies opened the way for the “little theater movement” in the twentieth century. The city built San Pedro playhouse in 1930 to house locally produced plays with local talent. The local government also built the Sunken Garden in 1937 as a setting for civic opera. Draws mostly on published sources and the newspapers. (112 pp.)

 

Steinbomer, Dorothy and Carmen Perry. Paintings of Nineteenth Century San Antonio, Texas by Theodore Gentilz. Austin: 1974.
Gentilz was a Parisian trained painter who first arrived in Texas in the 1840's to survey the town of Castroville. He settled in San Antonio in 1852 and later taught painting at Saint Mary’s College before his death in 1906. The artist commonly portrayed aspects of everyday life: street scenes, the local population, and Mexican customs. He was also interested in illustrating notable historic events and landmarks. The book reprints numerous Gentilz sketches and paintings (many in color). The introduction offers extensive background and insights to into each of the paintings.

 

Toepperwein, Herman. Rebel in Blue: A Novel of the Southwest Frontier, 1861 – 1864. New York: 1963.
A historical novel set in San Antonio and Fredericksburg during the Civil War. It includes a number of the characters residing in the city at that time, such as Robert E. Lee, and features the city’s major landmarks.

 

Valentine, Maggie. John H. Kampmann, Master Builder: San Antonio’s German Influence in the Nineteenth Century. New York: 2014.
Kampmann (1819 – 1885) designed or supervised the construction of a number of buildings in San Antonio in the mid-nineteenth century. He was trained as stonemason in his native Germany and applied his skill to the relatively soft limestone he mined locally.  Kampmann is credited with introducing a “vernacular German Texan architecture” that fused the Greek Revival style popular in the United States with German elements.  This biography is written by profiling his many projects: Menger Hotel, Casino Club, St. Joseph Church and St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, and much of the King William District.

 

Wheeler, Kenneth W. To Wear a City’s Crown, The Beginnings of Urban Growth in Texas, 1836 – 1865. Cambridge, Mass.: 1968.
Focuses on the early urban development of Houston, Galveston, Austin and San Antonio. The latter was the oldest, largest, most cosmopolitan and poorest urban setting owing to its large Mexican American population. San Antonio’s economy built on its Mexican heritage with its emphasis on trade with Mexico, livestock and the military. Wheeler describes the development of distinct urban cultures around the state that emphasized education, commercial infrastructure and the arts. These characteristics set these cities apart from their surrounding hinterlands.

 

Barr, Alwyn. “Records of the Confederate Military Commission in San Antonio, July 2 – Oct. 10, 1862.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 70 (July 1966): 93 – 109; (Oct. 1966): 289 – 314; (April: 1967): 623 – 44; 71 (Oct. 1967): 247- 77; 73 (July 1969): 83 – 104; (Oct. 1969): 243 – 274.
Barr transcribes the records of the court established to enforce martial law in San Antonio and the Hill Country. Unionist sentiment was strong. Confederate home guards patrolled the area and turned over to the court anyone thought to be disloyal to the Confederate cause. It was disbanded by Jefferson Davis in the fall of 1862.

 

Becker, Beverly. “Letters from the Front and Other Writings.” El Palacio 96 (2) (1991): 16 – 23.
Henry Hopkins Sibley’s raid into New Mexico territory during the Civil War is recalled through the letters of John Shropshire and the journal of Ebineezer Hanna. The Confederate force was 3,700 strong when it left San Antonio and seized much New Mexico territory (including Santa Fe and Albuquerque) in February and March of 1862. Disaster befell the force at the battle of Glorieta Pass (where both Shropshire and Hanna were killed). The unit straggled back to San Antonio that summer after losing about one-third of its strength.

 

Brown, Russell K. “An Old Woman With a Broomstick: General David E. Twiggs and the U. S. Surrender in Texas, 1861.” Military Affairs 48 (April 1984): 57 – 61.
Following the adoption of the ordinance of secession, Texas authorities negotiated with Twiggs in San Antonio to turn over all federal forts and supplies under his command. Twiggs was old and ill, and expected the Union to be dissolved. After 3 days of inconclusive talks, Texan forces under Major Ben McCulloch seized the arsenal. Twiggs surrendered the next day, even though he had actually been removed from command the day before. He would be denounced as a traitor and dismissed from federal service. Many of the soldiers under his command became prisoners after the firing on Fort Sumter and did not secure their freedom until 1863.

 

Chabot, Frederick C. Life and Memoirs of Emil Frederick Wurzbach. San Antonio: 1937.
Wurzbach arrived from Germany as a child in 1844 and lived in Austin. During the 1850's he served with the Texas Rangers and volunteered for the Confederacy. He later moved to San Antonio, where he recorded his memoirs in 1915. He died in 1930.

 

Conway, Walter C. (ed.) “Colonel Edmund Schriver’s Inspector-General Report on Military Posts in Texas, November, 1872 – January, 1873.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 67 (April 1964): 559 – 83.
The Inspector General visited San Antonio in December and again in January while visiting a number of other military installations in the Southwest. His inspections took inventory of the supplies on hand, the level of efficiency and the condition of the troops. Transportation costs made it especially costly and difficult to properly provision the Texas outposts. Schriver complained that the soldiers were neglecting their mules and horses and he was especially critical of the administration of the Medical Department. Too many soldiers at the posts were being assigned menial tasks as servants to the officers and their families. The reports lists some of the supplies and materials on hand at the Arsenal.

 

Ellis, L. Tuffly. “Lieutenant A. W. Greely’s Report on the Installation of Military Telegraph Lines in Texas, 1875 – 76.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 69 (July 1965): 66 – 87.
The U. S. Army built a telegraph system linking San Antonio with military installations around the state to keep track of its Indian inhabitants. The wire system connected San Antonio with Brownsville, Stockton and Denison on the Red River. Entry includes a 14 page report from 1876 detailing the construction of the system. Map.

 

Finch, L. Boyd. “Arizona in Exile: Confederate Schemes to Recapture the Far Southwest.” Journal of Arizona History 33 (Spring 1992): 57 – 84.
Following Silbey’s failed incursion into New Mexico in 1861, the territory of Arizona was locked securely in Union hands. Confederate Arizonans made San Antonio their capital and used it as a base to mount another invasion of the territory. The Confederacy, however, never had the resources to organize the venture.

 

Fox, Anne A. The Archeology and History of Alamo Plaza. San Antonio: 1976.
This report details excavations of the Plaza undertaken by UTSA’s Center for Archeological Research during the summer of 1975. Includes several maps and numerous illustrations of artifacts and the trenches dug to unearth them. A chapter is devoted to a history of the Plaza as it evolved from a mission, to a military post, and thence to a commercial center.

 

Hall, Martin Hardwick. “The Formation of Sibley’s Brigade and the March to New Mexico.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 61 ( Jan. 1958): 383 – 405.
A small army gathered in San Antonio in the late summer and fall of 1861 to capture New Mexico for the Confederacy. The venture was viewed as a stepping stone to an invasion of California. The troops trained at Camp Sibley on Austin Highway. The offensive was delayed several weeks because Brigadier General Henry Hopkins Sibley had trouble recruiting soldiers and gathering ordnance. Most of this essay follows the unit’s 700 mile and two month march to El Paso. Hall attributes the unit’s later military reverses to the failure of its commander to properly provision his troops before setting out.

 

Kiel, Frank Wilson. “Treue der Union: Myths, Misrepresentations and Misinterpretations.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 115 (Jan. 2012): 282-92.
A monument in Comfort, Texas honors Germans who were gunned down by Confederate forces at the so called “Battle of the Nueces.” This short essay aims to correct certain popular misconceptions about the site. It is not the oldest such memorial nor is it the only marker dedicated to the Union located in the South. The German community was not so solidly pro Union as it has been represented.

 

Lambert, Joseph I. “The Defense of the Indian Frontier of Texas by the United States Army.” M. A. Thesis, St. Mary’s University, 1948.
San Antonio was at the center of much of the military activity taking place before and after the Civil War. By this time the Apaches and Comanche did not harass San Antonio directly. Federal forces in the Alamo City mostly provided logistical support to the forts located in West Texas. 

 

McCaslin, Richard B. “United States Regulars in Gray: Edward Ingraham and Company A, 1st Regular Confederate Cavalry.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 118 (July 2014): 24 – 45.
The unusual feature of this military unit was that most of its members were recruited from the U.S. Army. They were among the soldiers held captive in San Antonio at the outset of hostilities. Most of the essay describes the incarceration of the soldiers and efforts confederate officials made to recruit to their ranks. This was the main reason confederates held on to the prisoners as long as they did. Ultimately the results were disappointing since only about 60 soldiers changed sides, most of them foreigners. Based in part on newly released letters from the unit’s commander, Edward Ingraham (1830 – 62).

 

McChristian, Douglas C. “Apaches and Soldiers: Mail Protection in West Texas.” Council on America’s Military Past 13 (3) (1985): 3 – 17.
The author examines the U. S. Army’s role in protecting the mail route linking San Antonio and El Paso. He focuses on the operations of Fort Davis, 470 miles west of San Antonio. The fort was established in 1854, but its efforts to control the nearby Apache and Comanche tribes were ineffective prior to the Civil War. Even after the war San Antonio sometimes went weeks without mail from the west because the region was considered too dangerous for travel. In 1867 four companies of the all Black 9th cavalry took up residence in the fort and began providing escorts for the mail. They also mounted an aggressive campaign against the Apaches. By 1881 the arrival of the railroad and telegraph rendered the army’s services superfluous.

 

Poor, David M. “Extracts from David M. Poor’s Military History of Company B, 2nd Regiment, Texas Cavalry Concerning Silbey’s Invasion of New Mexico.” Journal of Big Bend Studies 15 (2003): 83-99.
Poor joined the military unit in San Antonio, and his unpublished journal described his experiences with the failed Confederate incursion into New Mexico in the summer of 1861. He relates the long march through West Texas, and the subsequent retreat back to San Antonio following military reverses. The essay includes letters to his wife, Mary O. Mussey, during their courtship.

 

Smith, Thomas T. “San Antonio and the Secessionists, 1861-62: From the Reminiscences of Maj. Gen. Zenas R. Bliss.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly 110 (July 2006): 69 – 108.
In May of 1861 Confederate forces “captured” Bliss’s Eighth infantry regiment in San Antonio while they were en route to the Gulf to rejoin the Union army in the North. As an officer, Bliss was granted parole, allowing him to reside in the city and travel around Texas. He describes social and political conditions in a generally festive and upbeat San Antonio in the early weeks of the war. He was well treated by his hosts – going to parties, provided hospitality at various homes – but relations got more tense when it became clear that a long and brutal contest was in store. Bliss left San Antonio through an exchange of prisoners arranged in February of 1862.

 

Smith, Thomas. “The U.S. Army and the Alamo, 1846 – 1877.” Southwestern Historical Quarterly (Jan. 2015): 263 – 86.
With the annexation of Texas and the outbreak of the Mexican American War, San Antonio became a major logistical base for the U.S. Army.  Large numbers of wagons made their way from the coast to San Antonio and then fanned out south and west to federal forts on the frontier.  The U. S. Army leased the former mission from the Catholic Church; it was the archdiocese’s main revenue source.  The military made many improvements to the property, including installing a roof on the chapel and its iconic facade, and preserved what was left of the structure.  Quartermaster depot served a similar purpose for the Confederacy and resumed its duties during Reconstruction.

 

Tate, Michael L. (ed.) “A Johnny Reb in Sibley’s New Mexico Campaign: Reminiscences of Pvt. Henry C. Wright, 1861 – 62.” East Texas Historical Journal 26 (2) (1988): 48 – 60.
Wright had been a part of Sibley’s invasion of New Mexico, which was in full retreat by July of 1862. This is a first person account of his ordeal traveling from El Paso to join his family in Moscow, Texas. Wright journeyed with a small caravan wherein he herded mules until becoming mentally deranged in the desert. He describes the hospitality he received from various Hill Country families. Wright stopped briefly in San Antonio along the way.

 

Wallace, James Oldham. “San Antonio During the Civil War.” M. A. Thesis: St. Mary’s U., 1940.
Most of the study covers the early events leading up to the conflict, including the election of 1860, the Confederate capture of San Antonio, and the referendum on secession that was narrowly approved in San Antonio (827 to 709). Thereafter many residents fled the city and others remained under suspicion. Organized politics and campaigning came to a halt, but social functions – some to support the Confederate cause – remained vibrant. A chapter on military affairs describes the ill fated Sibley brigade, efforts at recruitment and supply. Despite the gradual collapse of the confederate currency and resulting inflation, San Antonio’s economy boomed due in part to the booming cotton trade with Mexico. The Confederate government also established several local industries to support the war effort. (91 pp.)

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