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The Alligator Man, a South Texas Killer........
Posted by: Kelley (Texas)
Date: August 26, 2013 06:00PM
The Forum appears to be a little slow at the moment, so I figured I would tell you the story about Joe Ball, known as the Alligator Man in South Texas.

Back in the 1930's, Joe Ball opened a bar over in Elemendorf, Texas, a few miles South of San Antonio. Now this was not a normal bar as folks would later find out. It seems that Joe Ball caught some alligators down at the San Antonio River and put them in a fenced in area behind his bar...they became his pets. On weekends, he would gather his customers and take them out back to his alligator pond to watch him feed his pets live stray dogs and cats that he had caught in the area. Folks would come for miles to see this cruel act of feeding those alligators.

However, there was more to the story that folks did not know. Joe Ball would hire good looking bar maids. They would work there for a few weeks, then disappear. When asked about them, he told everyone that they had quit and moved on. Shortly thereafter, he would hire another one and the story would be repeated. What folks did not know was that they did not move on, he was feeding them to his pet alligators.

A few years ago, I made a trip to Elemendorf, Texas and while there, I found the grave for Joe Ball. Nothing else is left to remind folks about the horrible deeds of this man. The folks around there are tight lipped, and will not tell you where the old bar was located. I have formed the opinion that there may have been a house built on the site. As a matter of fact, it is difficult to get anyone there to even talk about the Alligator Man. It did not take me long to figure out why because there were lots of mail boxes with the last name of Ball painted on them.

I am providing a link to the complete story that was printed in Texas Monthly Magazine a few years ago. Why don't put the coffee pot on, pull a chair out from the table and spend a few minutes reading this story? I don't think you will be disappointed. I am also posting a picture of the grave marker for Joe Ball. Please enjoy yourself. Kelley (Texas) :)

"Try to live up to your dog's opinion of you!"

That is quite a story Fred! Who would have known..Wow..N/T
Posted by: Ron J
Date: August 26, 2013 07:29PM

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Texan all my life and I never heard of this. Thanks, good story.N/T
Posted by: RustyNTX
Date: August 27, 2013 07:32AM

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