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The August F. Wittenborn Collection, no. 2 - Holidays and HemisFair (1967-68)

Heidi Wittenborn

Silent | 1967 - 1968

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TAMI Tags
  •  Wittenborn lot in Briarcliff, overlooking Lake Travis 
  •  Christmas  
  •  Sunset over water 
  •  Pool in Acapulco 
  •  Vacation home in Acapulco 
  •  Casa Sarben 
  •  Birthday party 
  •  Tower of the Americas 
  •  HemisFair '68 
  •  Ringling Brothers Circus 
  •  Birthday party 
 
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This home movie features several Wittenborn family events, including shots of their soon-to-be new home in the Briarcliff Area of Austin, Christmas 1967, a family vacation to Acapulco, both children's birthdays, and footage of HemisFair Park in San Antonio and the Ringling Brothers Circus. The Wittenborn Family hails from Austin, Texas and the films of father August Wittenborn include scenes from numerous family vacations, holiday and birthday celebrations, and important moments in the lives of children, Heidi and Warren.
The 1968 Hemisfair was a World’s Fair held in San Antonio to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the city’s founding. It was the first World’s Fair to be held in the southwest, and its theme was “Confluence of Civilizations in the Americas.” From April 6th to October 6th, 1968, the Hemisfair welcomed over 6 million visitors. Famous attendees included Bob Hope, Louis Armstrong, Princess Grace of Monaco, President Johnson and his family, and Texas Governor John Connally. There were many attractions including exhibits, a monorail, a lagoon, and a variety of performances. Perhaps the most controversial was a show called the “Flying Indians of Papantla,” during which four men tied to ropes revolved down a 114-foot pole. The complaints stemmed from a mock sacrifice at the beginning of the show, which involved a chicken and a topless woman. This was swiftly edited out of the show. 
 
The popular River Walk was extended in order to meet the site of the fair, and many new buildings were constructed in the downtown area to accommodate exhibitions from over thirty countries and fifteen organizations. Some of these buildings remain, most notably the Tower of the Americas, which was the main symbol of the fair. The area is now known as HemisFair Park.