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Alcohol is prohibited, amenities are first come, first serve. Fishing is allowed at Elemendorf Park. Click here to view the trail accessibility map. To rent a pool for an event or special occasion contact 210.207.3299.
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Si necesita asistencia en español para inscribirse en clases o necesita información sobre nuestros programas llame al 210-207-3047.
Elmendorf Lake and Park are located on a portion of the land once known as the Coulson Tract that comprised 687 acres on he San Antonio's west side. Purchased by the New England Syndicate from H.E. Elmendorf in 1889, the land was later conveyed to the New England Land Company of Maine in 1890. After the company experienced financial difficulties, the land was sold in 1893 to the highest bidder, Mrs. Amalie Elmendorf, who evidently was protecting her family's original investment. She sold the property later that year to a New Yorker, and three weeks later, it was acquired by the Lake View Land Company, which like the New England Land Company, was based in Maine.
By 1893 when Mrs. Elmendorf re-acquired the land, improvements had been made to the property. the sale to Mrs. Elmendorf included the stipulation that certain parcels be reserved for parks named Central, Highland, Electrical, Magnolia, Lake side, Little Margaret and two additional unnamed parks. The Lake View Land Company platted the area on December 2, 1893 for a new residential development named Lake View, advertised as "the most desirable suburb in San Antonio."
To spur development, the New England Land Company entered into a contract with the San Antonio Street Railway Company to provide streetcar service to the area, and in 1892, it was advertised that the system was in full operation. However, on December 4, 1893, the City Council revoked the Lake View Rapid Transit Company's franchise for noncompliance with construction deadlines. Though it is unclear how far the streetcar line extended into Lake View, there were other amenities including seven miles of streets and an artesian water supply with "special medicinal virtues." Lake View was restricted to residential buildings, and houses were to maintain ten-foot setbacks from the street and be valued at over $1,000.
In spite of these amenities, Lake View did not develop quickly, due in part to a national recession during the 1890s that slowed land sales throughout the City. Some construction followed the replatting of the area in 1909 by Lake View Townsite Company. Still, as late as 1914, there were only 30 houses listed in Lake View, and seven years later, there were 63 houses. On May 15, 1917, the Lake View Townsite Company conveyed Elmendorf Lake and Lakeside Park to the City of San Antonio for $1. The transfer was made with the stipulation that the City rebuild the dam, re-beautify the property by planting trees and flowers, lay out sidewalks, and maintained the property. The lake and park have been owned and maintained by the City of San Antonio since that time and today comprise 29.60 acres.
Compiled by: Maria Watson Pfeiffer, historian