Little Known Facts About Abilene – Shay’s Top 5
I've lived in Abilene all my life. Born at Hendrick Hospital (little known fact!) but there are still a lot of things about his town I'm still learning. We have a lot of history here and in our surrounding areas. So I've found 5 little known facts about Abilene that I want to share with you.
Bank of America/The Enterprise Building
The Bank of America Building or The Enterprise Building as it is sometimes called is the tallest building in Abilene. The building is in South Abilene, 500 Chestnut, and reaches 20 stories. It is 1 of 5 of the tallest buildings located in the western 2/3 of the state.
Texas State Technical College
Texas State Technical College (TSTC) is the only school in the state to offer a degree in Digital Signage Technology. This is a fast growing industry and with TSTC offering the only degree in the program that is a huge draw for Abilene.
“The degree includes courses on digital content creation with animation using Adobe Photoshop and Flash, as well as other animation and video software. You will learn system design and scheduling using well-know industry products. Many of your courses will be taught using simulations in the virtual environment, Second Life.”
Abilene Reporter News
The Abilene Reporter News is the oldest continually operated business in Abilene. It was founded in 1881 by Charles E. Gilbert. The first publication was made from a tent located at S. 1st and Oak and was a weekly at the time. In 1882 William L. Gibbs started his own competitive paper called the Majestic Quill. This led Gilbert to turn his paper into a daily publication in 1885. It was also at this time that Gilbert encouraged an employee to start a 3rd paper in town called Taylor Co. News. This was to add more choice to the market and hopefully pull readers from Gibbs “Quill”. Then several years later Gilbert bought the Taylor Co. News and, combined with his paper, what is now known as the Abilene Reporter News. Gilbert later sold the Reporter News, moved to Dallas and started a paper there that would be known as the Dallas Times Herald.
Roe v. Wade Winning Lawyer
Roe v. Wade was a landmark case argued in front of the Supreme Court in 1971 (the year I was born). It was a pro-bono (unpaid) case for the young female lawyer who would eventually win the historic case allowing legal abortions in the United States. That lawyer was Sarah Weddington and she just happens to be from Abilene and graduated from McMurry University. Weddington went on to earn her law degree from the University of Texas, Austin in 1967. She was also an assistant to President Carter from 1978-1981. She is an author, breast cancer survivor, professor, honorary professor, a former elected official to the Texas House of Representatives, a Distinguished Alumna of McMurry University and that's just to name a few of her accomplishments. She was, until recently, a professor at UT. Her first book ” A Question of Choice” discusses her Roe v. Wade case. I had the honor of meeting Ms. Weddington when I attended Tarleton State University where she was a guest speaker. I was also lucky enough have her autograph my copy of her book. I recommend it to anyone wanting to learn more about the case and history from her point of view; the lawyer who won the case.
KEAN Radio Station
KEAN radio station is one of the “oldest continuous country radio stations” in the U.S. We are also one of the first to broadcast as an FM station. Nineteen-seventy-eight was our date of birth and we've been country ever since. Many stations flip formats after a few years but we've been country for 34 years now. Yes, it's true, Rudy “Fearless” Fernandez has been here for almost all of it, I picked his brain for this and there's not much left now. (I only kid) Actually KEAN has always tried to be community oriented and not JUST play music. We've had food drives, hay drives, water drives, raised money for flood, tornado, and fire victims. We've tried to bring awareness to drug abuse, children's causes, cancer awareness and more. We like to have fun too. We, for years had the Big Bass Bonanza; we continue to have our annual KEAN Cruise Nite. Almost all of our events are family friendly. We love being, not just a radio station, but a huge part of the community. We all have family ties to Abilene, therefore this is a family station and we love our listeners as such. Thank you for making us a part of your everyday lives and helping us keep it country!!