An Ostrich-Plumed Hat: Chapter Eight

vote wet or dry

Begin with Chapter One ~ Return to Chapter Seven

Former Governor Thomas Mitchell Campbell, July 1911

Thomas should not have stayed out of the fray so long. The election is too close. Too critical. 

As soon he heard Governor Colquitt was returning to San Antonio, he knew he was morally obligated to counter efforts to rally the wets in San Antonio. A city where there is no shortage of wets.

He sizes up the crowd at the Airdome. There must be more than 1,000 people shaded, ironically, from the late afternoon sun by the towering new Pearl Beer sign facing Alamo Plaza.

Continue reading “An Ostrich-Plumed Hat: Chapter Eight”

An Ostrich-Plumed Hat: Chapter Seven

Above, Beethoven Maennerchor Hall on South Alamo Street

Begin with Chapter One ~ Return to Chapter Six

Andrew Stevens, June 1911

Mr. K, the Colonel and Representative Chester Terrell lean forward in their chairs as Andy’s brother John relates political developments from last evening. “Paul Steffler came through, delivering close to 1,700 union men to the smoker at Beethoven Hall. District Attorney Baker fired them up to join the parade and rally. Chairman Mauermann utilized the information Sheriff Tobin shared with us. He pointed out to reporters that, on Monday morning, July 3rd—a morning following a Sunday with no saloons open—eighteen persons were escorted into police court on charges of being drunk. Every saloon door was flung wide open for the Fourth of July celebrations, yet only two men faced that charge on July 5th.”

The Colonel shakes his head. “Sunday is a sad day for the poor working man who can’t find a saloon open. Of course, it beats North Texas. On Sundays there, a man can’t find a stand open for any kind of cold drink at all. You cannot even buy a cigar.”

Continue reading “An Ostrich-Plumed Hat: Chapter Seven”

An Ostrich-Plumed Hat: Chapter Six

steves homestead

Above, Johanna Steves rocks in front of her home on King William Street. The Steves Homestead is now a House Museum owned by The Conservation Society of San Antonio and is well worth touring.

Begin with Chapter One ~ Return to Chapter Five

Emma Bentzen Koehler, May 1911

Sophie Wahrmund clasps her hands together over her heart. “After Papa’s funeral, I couldn’t bring myself to think of leaving all the family in Fredericksburg. I started weeping the minute they started playing ‘Oh Fair, Oh Sweet, Oh Holy!’ and didn’t stop dabbing at my eyes until we pulled up to the front door. Yet here I am, thoroughly wrapped up in this wedding. How can one so rapidly leap from the depths of despair to a state of bliss? My tears of mourning have been replaced by those of joy.”

“Nothing helps heal loss like births or weddings, Sophie.”

The fireflies are beginning to flicker as servants wander through the yard lighting candles at all the tables. Over Sophie’s shoulder, Emma catches a glimpse of her husband on the dance floor. She smiles. Otto’s partner is none other than the groom’s grandmother, Johanna Steves. While Otto does do a turn or two or more with some of the prettiest women in town, he always takes care to alternate them with the oldest widows available at any social occasion. “And your Jennie just looks positively radiant in that green.”

Continue reading “An Ostrich-Plumed Hat: Chapter Six”