Air Condtioning Contractor San Antonio TX

What life was like in San Antonio, earlier than air-con

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1of78St. Mary’s University football players wore long sleeves and pants in the 1920s. It was probably hot as hell without cooling air conditioning, but they still had great hair. Courtesy, St. Mary’s University

The San Antonio Transit Company, which later became VIA, didn't have air-conditioned buses until 1948. The windows on this St. Mary's College bus from the 1920s were probably always open.2of78The San Antonio Transit Company, which later became VIA, didn’t have air-conditioned buses until 1948. The windows on this St. Mary’s College bus from the 1920s were probably always open.Courtesy, St. Mary’s University3of78

Check out the long sleeves on the 1910 baseball team at St. Louis College, which later became St. Mary's University. They had no AC, but do you think they complained about the heat?4of78Check out the long sleeves on the 1910 baseball team at St. Louis College, which later became St. Mary’s University. They had no AC, but do you think they complained about the heat?Courtesy, St. Mary’s University

Working next door to the Alamo at Degen's Brewery, San Antonio's first, was probably sweaty business in 1904. They didn't have air conditioning, but at least they had beer.  5of78Working next door to the Alamo at Degen’s Brewery, San Antonio’s first, was probably sweaty business in 1904. They didn’t have air conditioning, but at least they had beer.  Ernst Raba /San Antonio Conservation Society6of78

San Antonio police substation No. 2 was constructed in 1901 on the corner of Guadalupe and South Smith streets. It had one telephone connected to the main police station, and definitely no AC.7of78San Antonio police substation No. 2 was constructed in 1901 on the corner of Guadalupe and South Smith streets. It had one telephone connected to the main police station, and definitely no AC.San Antonio Police Department Historical Society

From the looks of these cooks in 1900, the phrase 8of78From the looks of these cooks in 1900, the phrase “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen” probably originated (or not) at St. Louis College, now known as St. Mary’s University. They look miserable with no AC. 9of78

Stop complaining about the heat. Theodore Roosevelt and the Rough Riders didn't have air conditioning when they were training in San Antonio in 1898, and they turned out just fine.10of78Stop complaining about the heat. Theodore Roosevelt and the Rough Riders didn’t have air conditioning when they were training in San Antonio in 1898, and they turned out just fine.San Antonio Express-News / File photo

Click through the slideshow for stereoscopic views of San Antonio from the 1800s.11of78Click through the slideshow for stereoscopic views of San Antonio from the 1800s. 12of78

In this view of the Alamo Plaza, the Alamo can be seen in the far right. Stereoscopic view, 1876-187913of78In this view of the Alamo Plaza, the Alamo can be seen in the far right.
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

The AlamoStereoscopic view, 1876-187914of78The Alamo
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson/New York Public Library Digital Collections15of78

A list on the back of the cards show the range of stereoscopic views photographers sold.Stereoscopic view, 1876-187916of78A list on the back of the cards show the range of stereoscopic views photographers sold.
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

Breakfast on Military PlazaStereoscopic view, 1876-187917of78Breakfast on Military Plaza
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections18of78

Mexican selling candyStereoscopic view, 1876-187919of78Mexican selling candy
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

Chili-con-carne tablesStereoscopic view, 1876-187920of78Chili-con-carne tables
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Frank Hardesty, New York Public Library Digital Collections21of78

Mexican supper in Military PlazaStereoscopic view, 1876-187922of78Mexican supper in Military Plaza
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

Cathedral access from the Military PlazaStereoscopic view, 1876-187923of78Cathedral access from the Military Plaza
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections24of78

The AlamoStereoscopic view, 1876-187925of78The Alamo
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
New York Public Library Digital Collections

River view of San AntonioStereoscopic view, 1876-187926of78River view of San Antonio
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
 27of78

Western DepotStereoscopic view, 1876-187928of78Western Depot
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

A list on the back of the cards show the range of stereoscopic views photographers sold.Stereoscopic view, 1876-187929of78A list on the back of the cards show the range of stereoscopic views photographers sold.
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson/New York Public Library Digital Collections30of78

Commerce StreetStereoscopic view, 1876-187931of78Commerce Street
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson/New York Public Library Digital Collections

Commerce StreetStereoscopic view, 1876-187932of78Commerce Street
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson/New York Public Library Digital Collections33of78

Commerce StreetStereoscopic view, 1876-187934of78Commerce Street
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson/New York Public Library Digital Collections

Pagarias' (Mexican women selling birds.)Stereoscopic view, 1876-187935of78Pagarias’ (Mexican women selling birds.)
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
 36of78

Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections37of78Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital CollectionsDoerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

Mexican selling woodStereoscopic view, 1876-187938of78Mexican selling wood
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections39of78

Hay PeddlerStereoscopic view, 1876-187940of78Hay Peddler
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
 

Mexican selling candyStereoscopic view, 1876-187941of78Mexican selling candy
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections42of78

CaballeroStereoscopic view, 1876-187943of78Caballero
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

Old Alamo Store, Great StoneStereoscopic view, 1876-187944of78Old Alamo Store, Great Stone
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections45of78

Exterior view of an old churchStereoscopic view, 1876-187946of78Exterior view of an old church
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

Mexican beggar Stereoscopic view, 1876-187947of78Mexican beggar

Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879

Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections48of78

Texas boyStereoscopic view, 1876-187949of78Texas boy
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

Government DepotStereoscopic view, 1876-187950of78Government Depot
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections51of78

S.A. River with St. Mary's ChurchStereoscopic view52of78S.A. River with St. Mary’s Church
Stereoscopic view
Frank Hardesty, New York Public Library Digital Collections

San Antonio RiverStereoscopic view, 1876-187953of78San Antonio River
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections54of78

S.A. River with St. Mary's Church, Doerr & Jacobson: Stereoscopic views, 1876-187955of78S.A. River with St. Mary’s Church, Doerr & Jacobson: Stereoscopic views, 1876-1879Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

San Antonio RiverStereoscopic view, 188056of78San Antonio River
Stereoscopic view, 1880
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections57of78

San Antonio RiverStereoscopic view, 1876-187958of78San Antonio River
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson/New York Public Library Digital Collections

San Pedro ParkStereoscopic view, 1876-187959of78San Pedro Park
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections60of78

San Pedro ParkStereoscopic view, 1876-187961of78San Pedro Park
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

View of four men standing in front of the AlamoStereoscopic view, 1876-187962of78View of four men standing in front of the Alamo
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections63of78

Stereoscopic views, 1876-187964of78Stereoscopic views, 1876-1879Doerr & Jacobson/New York Public Library Digital Collections

The AlamoStereoscopic view, 1876-187965of78The Alamo
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections66of78

San Antonio RiverStereoscopic view, 1876-187967of78San Antonio River
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

The AlamoStereoscopic view, 1876-187968of78The Alamo
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections69of78

The AlamoStereoscopic view, 1876-187970of78The Alamo
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

Window. Mission San Jose de Aguayo. Stereoscopic view, 1876-187971of78Window. Mission San Jose de Aguayo. 
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections72of78

San Fernando CathedralStereoscopic view, 1876-187973of78San Fernando Cathedral
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Frank Hardesty, New York Public Library Collections

Mission San JoseStereoscopic view, 1876-187974of78Mission San Jose
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections75of78

Mission ConcepcionStereoscopic view, 1876-187976of78Mission Concepcion
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections

La Purissima Concepcion de Acuna MissionStereoscopic view, 1876-187977of78La Purissima Concepcion de Acuna Mission
Stereoscopic view, 1876-1879
Doerr & Jacobson, New York Public Library Digital Collections78of78

Not surprisingly to anyone who has lived through a San Antonio summer, the Alamo City has a number of historic firsts when it comes to innovations in air conditioning:  

The St. Anthony Hotel at 300 E. Travis St., which opened in 1909, was the first hotel in the world with fully functioning air conditioning, according to its website.

The St. Anthony Hotel at 300 E. Travis St.The St. Anthony Hotel at 300 E. Travis St.Jennifer Whitney/Express-News

The nearby Milam Building, at 115 E. Travis St., was the first air-conditioned high-rise office building in the U.S. when it was built in 1928.

The Milam Building, at 115 E. Travis St., was the first air-conditioned high-rise office building in the U.S.

The Milam Building, at 115 E. Travis St., was the first air-conditioned high-rise office building in the U.S.

JERRY LARA

When the Majestic Theatre opened the next year in 1929, it was the first theater in Texas to have air conditioning. In fact, it was San Antonio’s first air-conditioned place that was open to the public, according to its registration form for the National Register of Historic Places.

The Majestic Theater is shown in 1954.The Majestic Theater is shown in 1954.UTSA Special Collections

In 1936, department store Joske’s became the first fully air-conditioned store in Texas. It was such a big deal that they featured it in advertisements. 

In 1936, department store Joske's became the first fully air-conditioned store in Texas. Photo circa 1970.In 1936, department store Joske’s became the first fully air-conditioned store in Texas. Photo circa 1970.Express-News

Click through the slideshow above to see how people lived in San Antonio before the air conditioner changed our lives forever.

jruff@mysa.com

Twitter: @julie_ruff