Skip To Main Content

Logo Image

Logo Title

About Us

Our History

School Dedication Plaque

  Highland Forest Elementary is located on what was once a 1,000-acre ranch owned by George Dullnig, who immigrated from Austria in 1853. He and his wife had 14 children and dreamed of building a model farm with fruit trees, corn, cattle and horses. After twelve costly attempts to find water, he found only crude oil, natural gas and sulfur water. Finally resigning himself to the production of oil and gas instead of fruit and livestock, his wells produced the first oil in Texas, fifteen years before the Texas oil boom of the famous Spindletop in Beaumont. The natural gas was pumped along a one-inch main into the ranch house, making it the brightest-lit building in South Texas!

      The bubbling sulfuric water was siphoned into tanks and sold as a "cure-all". After Mr. Dullnig died in 1908, his family leased a two-story wooden ranch house nearby and made it into Dullnig Wells Hotel and Bath House, a spa where San Antonians sought cures for rheumatism from its 11 mineral water wells. City dwellers came to the screened cottages for weekend vacations "out in the country". In the 1930's the water stopped flowing and the wells shut down. In the '40's, the buildings burned and the property was sold for housing development.

       Highland Forest Elementary School, serving grades Pre-Kindergarten - 5th grade, was built in 2002 to relieve overcrowding at several of East Central Independent School District's elementary schools. The school is a single story, 75,000-square-foot, limestone brick building composed of five interconnected pods. Highland Forest overlooks a beautifully landscaped courtyard. Centered around a state-of-the-art library and computer labs, the school is designed to accommodate 700 students. Current enrollment is over 500 students.

      On April 18, 2002, the name "Highland Forest Elementary" was selected by the district's Board of Trustees. Since the 1940's, Highland Forest has been the official name of the neighborhood in which the school is located on Southeast Military Drive at IH37 on San Antonio's southeast side.