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The KHOU-TV Collection - News Clips, June 3 - 11, 1968

Houston Metropolitan Research Center

Sound | 1968

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  •  Voodoo Drugs, 06/11/68: KHOU reporter Ron Pierce explores the wares inside Bichon’s Drug Store in the Catfish Reef district on Milam Street. Unlike other pharmacies, Bichon’s specialized in hoodoo, or African-American folk spirituality.  
  •  German Ace, 06/06/68: A German filmmaker discusses how he hopes his motion picture will help inform the German defense minister on how to build a military reserve unit 
  •  Billy Graham, 06/06/68: Christian evangelist Billy Graham lands at Hobby Airport in Houston. At the news conference that follows, he laments the rejection of Biblical laws in the United States. Graham came to Houston to address the Southern Baptist Convention on June 7.  
  •  Grand Jury Assoc-Guns, 06/10/68: A unknown official or legal expert announces the appointment of a committee to study problems with local gun control laws and recommend new legislation. The national debate surrounding federal gun control legislation that began with the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963 reached new heights in 1968 with the assassination of his brother, Senator Robert F. Kennedy, on June 6. Congress ultimately passed the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 and the Gun Control Act of 1968 to ban the mail-order sale of handguns, rifles, and shotguns as well as prohibit certain felons, drug users, and those found mentally incompetent from buying guns.  
  •  Vance on S. Court Decisions, 06/03/68: Harris County District Attorney Carol Vance and Texas Attorney General Crawford Martin comment on the United States Supreme Court’s decision in WItherspoon v. Illinois. The court ruled 6-3 that a state statute that provides grounds for dismissal of any juror with “conscientious scruples” about the death penalty violates the Sixth Amendment guarantee of an impartial jury and the 14th Amendment guarantee of due process.  
  •  Narc Raid, 06/03/68: Police made a series of arrests following a drug bust 
  •  Legislature, 06/03/68: Legislators and staffers return to the Texas State Capitol prior to the start of a special session. The session ran from June 4 to July 3.  
  •  On the floor of the Texas House of Representatives 
  •  Southern Baptist Convention, 06/03/68: KHOU reporter Ron Pierce speaks with a college student about his criticism of the Southern Baptist Convention. The man was one of several students who came to the convention from North Carolina to protest Southern Baptists’ silence on issues related to race, poverty, and the Vietnam War. In response, a member of the convention’s executive committee states the the organization shares his concern. The 111th annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention was held in Houston from June 3 to 7. Nearly 15,000 people attended. 
  •  Mayor on Texas Increases, 06/03/68: Houston Mayor Louie Welch on proposed tax increases and its positive impact on the city. He is likely referring to the $125-million tax bill introduced by Governor John Connally on the first day of the special session.  
 
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This film from KHOU-TV Channel 11 in Houston contains a series of short news segments that would have aired as highlights to news stories. Many are silent and would have been voiced over by the anchorperson during a live broadcast. The titles for each segment are the originals created by KHOU-TV. The clips on this reel all date from June 3 to 11, 1968. This series features news segments about gun control legislation following the assassination of Senator Robert F. Kennedy, the start of a special session, and the Southern Baptist Convention. Also included is a feature of Bichon’s Drug Store, a pharmacy that specialized in hoodoo.
The digital preservation of this collection was made possible by a grant to the Texas Archive of the Moving Image and the Houston Public Library from the Texas State Library and Archives Commission and the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services.
 
Many more films from the KHOU-TV Collection are available on the Houston Public Library Houston Area Digital Archives website.
Crawford Martin served as a Texas state senator and Texas secretary of state until he was elected Texas attorney general in 1966. Martin was the first state attorney general to successfully file litigation against commercial drug companies for fixing prices of antibiotics, and through this litigation, recovered over $4,000,000 for Texans. His office also set up litigation firmly establishing the Sabine River as the border between Louisiana and Texas, protecting Texas oil rights.
Politician Louie Welch was born in Lockney, Texas, on December 9, 1918. He received a degree in history from Abilene Christian College, now Abilene Christian University.
 
Welch began his political career in 1950, serving four terms on the Houston City Council. He unsuccessfully sought the Houston mayoral office three times before being elected to the position in 1963. Houston grew immensely during Welch’s five terms as mayor, from the population topping one million people to the opening of the Astrodome in 1965 and the Houston Intercontinental Airport in 1969. 
 
His tenure, however, was not without its controversy. A 1967 conflict between police and Texas Southern University students created a rift between the local administration and many of Houston’s African Americans. Welch’s reputation also came under fire during his last term over his relationship with well-known crime leaders, leading to suspicions about how his second mayoral bid was financed. 
 
In 1985, Welch ran for mayor again, campaigning in opposition to the extension of job protection rights to homosexuals employed by the city government. He lost to incumbent Kathy Whitmore. 
 
Welch died from lung cancer on January 27, 2008, in his Harris County residence. He was 89.