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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

San Antonio in Bexar County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

San Antonio Spring (The Blue Hole)

 
 
San Antonio Spring (The Blue Hole) Marker image. Click for full size.
By James Hulse, August 18, 2018
1. San Antonio Spring (The Blue Hole) Marker
Inscription.  

The Historic source spring of the San Antonio River, San Antonio Spring, has for centuries provided millions of gallons of crystal clear spring water daily to generations of Native Americans and early Texas settlers. The San Antonio River begins just south of this point, near the campus footbridge, where the Olmos Creek and the San Antonio Spring flow come together and, supplemented by hundreds of smaller springs along the way, begins the journey to the Gulf of Mexico.

At one time the daily flow from the San Antonio Spring was said to be so strong at times that it produced a geyser many feet into the air. In the 19th century banker philanthropist George Washington Brackenridge purchased this property and established the first San Antonio Water Works. The concrete rim around the spring, which goes deep underground to the southern boundary of the Edwards Aguifer in the Olmos Basin, was added by Brackenridge to control the water flow. In time, however, the addition of wells and pumps south of the Brackenridge property made the Water Works less than lucrative. These wells and pumps also reduced the natural spring flow.

The
San Antonio Spring (The Blue Hole) and Marker image. Click for full size.
By James Hulse, August 18, 2018
2. San Antonio Spring (The Blue Hole) and Marker
University added the current walkway to the Spring, and the natural limestone ledge in 1989. This made the spring more available to the campus and general community without the danger of accidentally falling into it. The stones used, with the natural indentations in the limestone, are excellent examples of the limestone formation which is the Edwards Aquifer. San Antonio's sole source of pure drinking water. In recent years San Antonio Spring is frequently dry, except after heavy rains. Natural flow begins when the aquifer water table is around 676 feet above sea level.

This source of pure water attracted settlers from prehistoric and historic times, and these people have left rich archaeological resources for future study. The San Antonio Spring, Brackenridge Villa, and the five distinct Texas Archaeological Landmarks west of this spot are on the National Register of Historic Places as the Source of the River Archaeological District. These sites are protected by State and Federal law, with hefty fines and penalties for tampering with protected sites and/or removing prehistoric or historic artifacts. Look, please, and enjoy it as generations have done before you, but leave it as you found it for generations yet to come.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Natural Resources.
 
Location. 29° 28.132′ 
The inside view of the dry Blue Hole image. Click for full size.
By James Hulse, August 18, 2018
3. The inside view of the dry Blue Hole
N, 98° 28.06′ W. Marker is in San Antonio, Texas, in Bexar County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Broadway and East Hildebrand Avenue. The marker is located on the campus of the University of the Incarnate Word toward the north side of the campus. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: San Antonio TX 78209, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Ludwig Mahncke (approx. ¾ mile away); Alamo Portland and Roman Cement Company (approx. 0.8 miles away); Tether Wall (approx. 1½ miles away); Sam Houston House (approx. 1.6 miles away); M-1905 Field Gun (approx. 1.8 miles away); M-56 Howitzer 105mm Towed (Yugoslavia) (approx. 1.8 miles away); Ft. Sam Houston Quadrangle and Staff Post (approx. 1.8 miles away); M-59 Armored Personnel Carrier (approx. 1.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in San Antonio.
 
Also see . . .  San Antonio Springs and Brackenridge Park. edwardsaquifer.net (Submitted on January 5, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas.) 
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on January 6, 2021. It was originally submitted on January 5, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. This page has been viewed 48 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on January 5, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.
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Mar. 8, 2021