SAN ANTONIO — Down North Hackberry, it's noticeable the East Side of San Antonio is changing. Documentarian Logic Allah says like most urban areas, gentrification is shaking up the look and feel of the Dignowity Hill area.

What You Need To Know

  • The 2019 documentary "Walk on the River" suppered a bus tour of San Antonio's East Side

  • When the coronavirus pandemic derailed the bus tour, a walking tour was established

  • The walking tour highlights areas of historical significance in the traditionally Black part of San Antonio

“The East Side of San Antonio is historically the Black community, “ Allah said. “But as the face of the East Side starts to change and more Black people leave this area we still want the history to be preserved.”

In 2018, Allah, along with his business partner Baba Aundar Ma’at, created “Walk on the River,” a documentary sharing the Black history of the Alamo City. After the documentary came the Freedom Black History Bus Tour in 2019. But that came to a halt in 2020 because of coronavirus.

“When we would show the movie so many people would ask us, how can we find out more about the locations you mentioned in the film?” Allah said. “As people start to move in it is important that we preserve what has been here for years.”

Hopefully with the worst part of the pandemic behind them these guys are back on the East Side sharing stories about the community during walking tours. Stopping at historical markers along the path, while the tour guides fill in the other pieces of the story.

Teaching folks like Irene Rendon, who grew up on the East Side, things she didn’t know about her hometown. 

“I was born here. 1118 North Center Street. That’s was where my mother had all three of us, so this is home,” Irene Rendon said during the tour. “It was wonderful and I think we all learned. You learn so much about our history.”

Sometimes history isn’t hidden. It’s right in front of you. Like an inscription found outside of the Carver Cultural Center from the 1920s. It reads “the colored branch of the San Antonio library and auditorium.”

For Allah it doesn’t matter if you’re Black. The information they are sharing is San Antonio history. You don’t have to be a tourist to learn something new.

“Reminds us of where we come from,” Allah said. “It’s an excellent experience because you get a chance to learn. What better place to learn about than the place you live.”