Veterans Day in San Antonio
Veterans Day observances this year included the annual Veterans Parade downtown, a wreath-laying ceremony at the Alamo, programs at both national cemeteries, and a week of events at the University of Texas at San Antonio http://utsa.edu/today/2014/11/veteransday14.html. We use the occasion to look back at previous commemorations of Veterans Day (known as “Armistice Day” until 1954).
News accounts describe the first observance, November 11, 1919, as a full day of activities that began after a large crowd assembled in front of the Alamo. At the exact time of the signing of the armistice, bi- planes from Kelly Field suddenly appeared high above the city and gradually circled lower until they dropped flowers as a tribute to those who lost their lives during the War. After the planes retreated, there was a program of speakers and musical selections, followed by a large military and civic parade. Later in the afternoon, there was a football game between the Kelly Field and the YMCA teams. In the evening, there was a band concert in San Pedro Park.
While we do not have any photographs of that first Armistice Day, there are images of subsequent observances in San Antonio. Here are a few examples from the San Antonio Light (MS 359) and San Antonio Express-News (MS 360) collections.