Blanco County News
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Remember When... A Look Back at Blanco County History
Wednesday, October 16, 2013 • Posted October 18, 2013 11:04 AM

October 18, 1995

Water Tower New Blanco Landmark

By Sheryl Smith-Rodgers

A new landmark now graces the Blanco City skyline-- a 140-foot-high water tower.

Begun last week, the 100,000 gallon elevated tank is expected to be completed by Friday or Saturday, according to job foreman Ed McDowell with Brown Steel Contractors of Newman, Ga.

Mayor Ryan Trimble said early next month the tower will be painted “cloud white” and emblazoned with the word “BLANCO” in dark blue letters.

The tower should be online by mid-November, he said.

“The new tower will allow us to balance the water system all over town so people living on the north side will have improved water pressure,” Trimble said.

The $317,000 project is being largely funded by a $250,000 grant awarded last year to the city by the Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs.

The city will pay the remaining $67,000. The tower was needed to put the city back in compliance with state regulations and stabilize the city’s water pressure.

Late last week, a 120-ton crane lifted sections of the tower piece by piece to the top.

The roof section, carried in one lift by the crane, weighed 13,300 pounds, said McDowell, who has erected water towers across the nation for 27 years.

After the Blanco tower is completed, the foreman and his crew of three men will travel to Nebraska for their next job.

“Not many people do this,” McDowell said this week, pausing a few moments from his work to talk. “It’s hard to find people to work up there,” he added, gazing upward to his men.

Two perched on the tank’s encircling catwalk were busy welding while another standing on a scaffold worked inside the huge bubble.

In 1992, Blanco won a $250,000 state grant, which funded improvements to the city’s water treatment plant.

That project totaled $349,934 and was completed under budget in January 1994. Next spring, the city will apply again for a state grant to fund improvements to the city’s sewage treatment plant, Trimble said.

October 21, 1977

Firemen Teach Kids Safety Tips

The Elementary School observed Fire Prevention Week October 9th through October 14th.

The teachers presented a lesson plan explaining that it was necessary to have a plan for the entire family in advance to learn how to get out of their home safely in the event of a fire.

Students were instructed to take home booklets explaining the plan and were advised to practice a fire drill in the home. All possible exits were to be located prior to the fire drill and then the best methods of exits were practiced.

The booklet entitled, “The Hartford Junior Fire Marshall” gave a check list for the family home to prevent fires.

Thursday, October 13 at 10:30 Roy Byars and Jimmy Houck brought the fire trucks to school and demonstrated how they work and how to control fires.

The community service members of the Blanco F.F.A. planned with Mr. Gloor and Mr. Bob Bendele for the Blanco Public School Fire Prevention Program.

Severne Granberg, President of the F.F.A. and other members assisted the Kindergarten, FIrst, Second, and Third grade teachers in escorting the students to and from class to observe the Blanco Volunteer Fire Department demonstration.

This Week in Hisotry

October 20, 1803

The U.S. Senate approved the Louisiana Purchase. The 828,000,000 square miles of territory was purchased from France for about .03 cents per acre, doubling the size of the young republic.

October 22, 1836

Sam Houston was inaugurated as the first constitutionally elected president of the Republic of Texas.

October 18, 1867

The U.S. took formal possession of Alaska from Russia. The land was purchased for a total of 7.2 million in gold. (.02 cents per acre)

October 17, 1888

The first issue of “National Geographic” was released at news stands.

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