not really a blog -- just a few pictures

Saturday, June 04, 2016

San Antonio

My old friend James and I were tourists in San Antonio over the Memorial Day weekend.  Had a lot of fun - saw the Alamo, the Spanish missions, the U.S.S. Lexington in Corpus Christi, and the pacific war museum in Fredericksburg.  James and I also took a road trip to see Prairie du Chien, WI a few years ago, in 2012.

The key site in San Antonio is the Alamo, where Texan (American and Mexican I think) rebels were killed resisting the Mexican general Santa Anna in 1836.  My picture shows the two remaining original buildings, the church in the center and the long barracks on the left.

San Fernando Cathedral is about a half mile away.  When the Alamo defenders declined the honorable surrender that Santa Anna offered, he flew a red flag from the cathedral signifying "no mercy."  I was surprised by how pretty the cathedral was.  The remains of some Alamo defenders, including Davy Crockett, are inside.

Four Spanish missions from the 1700's, Mission Concepcion, Mission San Jose, Mission San Juan, and Mission Espada, are nearby.  Although maintained by the National Park Service, they still include active Catholic churches.  We saw wedding at San Jose and Espada.  My pictures show the wedding at Espada and the inside of the church at San Juan.

We also took a side trip to Corpus Christi to see the WWII aircraft carrier U.S.S. Lexington, which is now a museum.  Lexington participated at the Battle of the Philippine Sea, which "nearly knocked Japanese naval aviation out of the war," and the Battle of Leyte Gulf, "possibly the largest naval battle in history" and "the climactic American naval victory over Japan."  If you look close in the first picture, you can see a rising sun on the island (tower) where a kamikaze struck the ship in November, 1944.

We also visited the Pacific war museum in Fredericksburg, which had an overwhelming amount of material.  My pictures show a war bonds poster with the autographs of the Iwo Jima flag raisers (including Appletonion John Bradley) and the "Scoreboard from the superstructure of USS Hugh W. Hadley documenting that the destroyer had vanquished 25 Japanese airplanes."


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