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Greenway trail on Holbrook Road is open again

21 Mar 2020

After parks officials closed a segment of Salado Creek Greenway between Eisenhower and Rittiman Road so that SAWS could work in the area, the greenway trail is open to the historic Holbrook Road. Parts of the road remained barricaded to motorized vehicles. Holbrook connects Petroleum Drive that leads to a permanently closed gate at Fort Sam Houston.

A cyclist stands inside a large pipe that will be used for the SAWS massive project on Holbrook Road
A cyclist stands inside a large pipe that will be used for the SAWS massive project on Holbrook Road

Holbrook Road at Walzem Creek is the site of the Battle of Salado Creek, a decisive battle fought 18 Sept 1842 that had become the final Mexican invasion of the Republic of Texas. Texas Rangers' Colonel Mathew Caldwell led about 200 militia and defeated an army of approximately 1,600 Mexican soldiers and Cherokee warriors. Subsequently, French-Mexican General Adrián Woll retreated (see battleground map, below).

Nearby, the Dawson Massacre took place at what is present-day Austin Highway at Corrine Drive near the Oakwell Trailhead. Captain Nicholas Dawson and 53 men from La Grange attempted to join Colonel Caldwell when they were surrounded by Mexican forces. Thirty-six of these troops were slain and 15 were taken prisoner; only 3 escaped. A marker notates this historic event.

Markers depict the area where Dawson and his men were captured by Mexican troops
Markers depict the area where Dawson and his men were captured by Mexican troops

Not long after the defeat, Texas joined the U.S. 29 Dec 1845, becoming the 28th state. A marker depicts where Republic of Texas army was positioned.

State of Texas historical marker depicting the Salado Battle of September 1842 when Mexican forces captured San Antonio. The Texans fought back and reclaimed the Alamo City
State of Texas historical marker states that the Salado Battle was fought 18 September 1843 and won by Texas led by Capt. Caldwell

Between the battle site and Petroleum Drive lies John James Park. The park was named after land surveyor John James, a native of Nova Scotia who arrived in San Antonio in 1837. He participated in the Battle of Salado in Sept. 1842 where the Mexican Army invaded San Antonio. James established the city's borders in 1846.

View of Holbrook Road and greenway on other side from behind a historical marker
View of marker from behind

Once that city officials can work an agreement with the U.S. Army, a connector to Salado South Greenway will be constructed. A fence on Fort Sam Houston property must be moved to make way for the greenway pavement.

Fort Sam Houston fence that will require relocating for trail
Fort Sam Houston fence that will require relocating for trail

Map depicts the troop movements of Mexican and Texan armies—U.S. Army

Map depicts the troop movements of Mexican and Texan armies—U.S. Army

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