A record of a rapidly receding past….

Recently I found an album of my father’s military photos from the Second World War and, maybe, before that time… I don’t know who took the photos. I’m tempted to say my dad took some (because he did enjoy photography many years later), but I don’t remember him saying anything about having a camera back then. Most of these photos are not identified, which is rather unlike him. I recognize my dad in some of them, but in others I don’t who they are. Based on reading I did online, some of these photos were most likely taken at 141st Infantry Headquarters in San Antonio, in early 1940s. All the same, whoever the people are, and where/whenever these photos were taken, these are a record of a rapidly receding past— soon enough, this time will be as remote to us as the Civil War.

Maybe you know the locale or recognize a face?

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My dad, Robert Holmes.

My dad, Robert Holmes.

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Probably a training exercise near San Antonio, 1940. Notice the doughboy helmets, used by U.S. in the First World War and into the early part of the Second World War.

Probably a training exercise near San Antonio, 1940. Notice the doughboy helmets, used by U.S. in the First World War and into the early part of the Second World War.

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175 years: A line in the sand?

Did Col. Travis really draw a line in the sand?

It makes a good story.  William B. Travis gathering his men together and telling them that the situation is hopeless.  He expects the Mexicans to attack soon, and he expects they will win.  He feels certain that all defenders will die.  Drawing a line in the sand, Travis asks that anyone who is willing to stay, fight and, very likely, die, step across that line to stand with him and face the Mexican army.  Anyone not crossing the line is free to leave.

Did it really happen that way?  No one knows for sure.  One survivor, Susanna Dickinson, said that Col. Travis did, indeed, give his men a choice of staying or leaving.  But there is no record of a line in the sand.  In any case, legend has it that only one man chose to leave.

On Saturday evening, March 5, General Antonio Lopez Santa Anna gathers his senior officers together.  He has an announcement:

Tomorrow morning, we attack the Alamo.