BECOME PART OF HISTORY: SARA to host archive and watershed history events
Jul 19, 2012 | 474 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
SAN ANTONIO -- Do you have historic photographs of the San Antonio River or its tributaries? Do you have an interesting story to share about the San Antonio River Watershed? If so, the San Antonio River Authority (SARA) could use your help. As part of SARA’s 75th Anniversary, the agency is hosting a series of community receptions in July and August in Wilson, Karnes and Goliad Counties to gather historic photographs and written stories related to the San Antonio River Watershed from area residents. All photos and written stories donated to SARA at the receptions will become part of SARA’s archives housed at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) in the Special Collections of the UTSA Libraries.

“These events are a great way for SARA to celebrate its 75th Anniversary with residents of Wilson, Karnes and Goliad Counties,” said Gaylon Oehlke, Chairman of SARA’s Board of Directors. “It’s also a great way for residents of the basin to add their stories and memories to the rich history of life in the San Antonio River Watershed.”

The receptions will be held on Saturday, July 21, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Wilson County Library, located at 1 Library Lane, Floresville; Saturday, August 4, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Goliad City Depot, located at 211 East Franklin, Goliad; and Saturday, August 18, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Falls City Community Hall, located on Highway 181 in Falls City. Refreshments will be provided at all receptions.

At the receptions, SARA will accept written family memoirs or community history of a maximum of 1,000 words regarding any person, place, event, occasion or activity connected to the San Antonio River or its tributaries. Type-written submissions are preferred, but hand-written submissions will be accepted.

Additionally, if residents have photos related to the San Antonio River or its tributaries, SARA will have a scanner at the receptions to create a digital copy of the photos. Individuals may donate the actual photo if they wish. SARA must obtain appropriate permission for each donated written story and photograph, including proper attribution for the written submissions and credit for photo donations, in order to accept the donation into SARA’s archive housed at UTSA.

SARA contracted with UTSA to house its archive at the Special Collections of the UTSA Libraries to help commemorate the agency’s 75th Anniversary and to make the agency’s archive materials easy to access by the public. Historical research materials in the collection include photographs and documentation of the flood of 1921, as well as reports, project materials, blue prints, correspondence, maps, surveys, minutes, photographs, newspaper clippings and publications, including SARA newsletters, magazines and brochures. SARA’s oral history collection is also housed within the archives at UTSA. The oral history collection is made up of over 30 recordings made by SARA board and staff, as well as key stakeholders, all sharing their institutional knowledge about specific past and present SARA projects. SARA’s archive program is continuous and is updated every six months, coinciding with the end of SARA’s fiscal year.

The written and photographic materials donated to SARA at these community receptions will add to the agency’s archive collection, growing the information particularly related to Wilson, Karnes and Goliad Counties. For more information about SARA’s archives and how you can become part of history at these receptions, please visit SARA’s website or contact Karen Opiela, Intergovernmental Relations Coordinator at (210) 302-3280 or e-mail

The San Antonio River Authority (SARA) was created by the 45th Texas Legislature on May 5, 1937 and reorganized in 1961 to plan, manage and implement water-related programs and projects within the San Antonio River Basin. The State of Texas empowered SARA to preserve, protect and manage the resources and the ecology of the San Antonio River and its tributaries. To learn more about the SARA visit our website at
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