Construction begins on future Fort Sam Houston
On this day in 1876, construction began on what was to become a permanent major military installation in northeast San Antonio. Citizens had long desired to secure a permanent military post. Over the years the army had leased many small areas of the city, most notably the Alamo and a plot where the Gunter Hotel now stands. A formal proposal made in 1870 was met with political opposition from Secretary of War Belknap. After his resignation in 1876 a contract for construction was let to the Edward Braden Construction Company. The quadrangular fort with only one entry gate was completed in 1878. In 1890 the post was designated Fort Sam Houston. Since that time Fort Sam Houston has grown to an installation of several thousand acres with hundreds of permanent structures. In 2000 it was host to many of the United States Army's major commands.