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The KHOU-TV Collection - News Clips, January 12 - February 19, 1968

Houston Metropolitan Research Center

Sound | 1968

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  •  Ramsey Clark, 02/19/68: At a press conference, United States Attorney General Ramsey Clark commends the effort made by Houston Police Department. His comments are most likely referring to the national conversation about race riots. The National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorders released its report about the causes of and solutions to surging racial violence 10 days after Clark’s press conference. Clark, a Dallas lawyer, served as attorney general from 1966 to 1969.  
  •  Webb/Mancuso-Oliver on Bonds, 02/19/68: Houston City Councilmen Bob Webb and Frank Mann call for bond funding to make improvements to road infrastructure 
  •  Train Fatal, 02/19/68: Police and witnesses on the scene of a fatal train accident 
  •  Amer. Bank, 02/15/68: Detectives search for clues following a robbery at the American Bank and Trust Co. On the morning of February 15, a gunman came up behind bank employee Irene Heine as she approached the bank door. Upon entering, he instructed her to tape the wrists of two other employees. The robber then directed her to follow him to the vault, which had opened via timeclock just minutes beforehand. After collecting $23,000, the assailant ordered Heine into her car, driving away before pushing her out of the vehicle two blocks away from the bank. Authorities found the abandoned car a few more blocks away. The bank robbery was Houston’s twelfth in 14 months, third in nine days, and second in less than 24 hours.  
  •  Heine’s abandoned vehicle 
  •  Mayor on San Antonio Policeman, 02/15/68: Houston Mayor Louie Welch states that the city does not intend to poach patrolmen or firefighters from other departments. On February 16, 32 San Antonio police officers traveled to Houston to inquire about transferring. All but one of the 32 officers applied to join the Houston Police Department. As Welch explains, if the department accepted the officers, they would start over as cadets and have to complete a 16-week training program.  
  •  San Antonio Policeman on Coming to Houston, 02/15/68: A San Antonio patrolmen explains why he and his colleagues considered relocating to Houston, from better working hours to access to professional sports. According to the San Antonio Express, Houston’s top pay for patrolmen was $675 monthly, compared to $530 in San Antonio. The officers organized the trip after the San Antonio City Council refused to meet the police demand for a pay raise.  
  •  Chief Short on Recruiting, 02/14/68: Houston Police Chief Herman Short describes what the department looks for in its cadets and comments on reports of San Antonio officers applying en masse 
  •  Dr. Piford [sic] on Quitting Job, 02/14/68: Dr. C. A. Pigford discusses the challenges facing the Houston Health Department and his reasons for resigning from the position of city health director. Pigford left the post to become a department head at the University of Texas School of Public Health.   
  •  Heart, 02/16/68: An administrator of Houston Methodist Hospital, possibly Ted Bowen, informs the press that there is no plan for Dr. Michael DeBakey to perform heart transplant surgery on either Johnny F. Register or any other patient in the near future. Nevertheless, on February 18, Register—a grocer from Macon, Georgia—traveled to Houston in the hope of undergoing such an operation. The esteemed heart surgeon returned from a State Department tour of Caracas, Venezuela, the same day. While Register did not receive the heart transplant he originally sought, DeBakey and his surgical team did replace an artificial valve in his heart on February 28.  
  •  Narco, 02/16/68: Drugs and drug paraphernalia on display following a bust 
  •  Floods, San Antonio, 01/21/68: Some roadways and crossings remain submerged following three days of rain in South Texas. On January 18, flash flooding in San Antonio killed four people. As rain continued to fall the next two days, rivers across South Texas exceeded their banks. 
  •  Mayor on Skunk Rabies, 02/01/68: Mayor Welch relays a warning by the Department of Public Health about a rabies epidemic in the county and requests all domestic animals receive the appropriate vaccination 
  •  Truck Turns Over, 01/30/68: Crews attempt to right a turned-over tanker truck 
  •  Hi-Jacking, 01/12/68: Police arrest a suspected thief and bring him to the station for questioning 
  •  Narco, 01/12/68: Law enforcement officials show off piles of pills seized during a drug bust 
  •  2-Alarm Fire, 01/28/68: Houston firefighters respond to a fire 
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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 January 12 to February 19, 1968. This series includes news segments about potential police transfers, a bank robbery, and flash flooding in San Antonio. Also included is a press conference with United States Attorney General Ramsey Clark
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.
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. 
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