Friday, March 30, 2007

Across the alley from the Alamo.

Mug: Another souvenir mug from San Antonio. Chinese made, generic mug. No complaints, but no raves either. Basic, functional design with the preferred 3-finger handle shape.

What makes this mug special (to me) is its source: The Menger Hotel. The Menger is on Alamo Square in San Antonio, and was opened in the 1850's. It has quite a colorful history.
  • One of Texas' first commercial breweries operated there.
  • General Robert E. Lee lived there when he commanded the U.S. Army garrison in San Antonio. He was there when Texas seceded from the Union, and a mob almost lynched him as they demanded the Union Army leave San Antonio. He left Texas, later to join the Confederacy and lead the Army of Northern Virginia (he was far more commited to Virginia than the Confederancy... had Virginia stayed in the Union, Lee would have led the Federals against the Rebels).
  • Teddy Roosevelt lived there while he recruited his "Rough Riders" in the lobby bar, and trained them nearby at what later became Brackenridge Park.
  • The Battle of the Alamo was fought on this site. The wall that Santa Anna's forces overwhelmed on their four-point assault was the picket wall that would have been next to the Menger's eventual location.

I love to stay there, usually in the old wing that dates back to the late 19th century, but also in the "modern motor court" wing that was built in the booming 1950's-60's. All true Texans love the Menger.

Coffee: Still with the Colombian. Made it too strong this morning. Too strong, but still good. Full bodied? Full body slam!

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