Valmo Bellinger (?-1994)

Valmo Bellinger
Fair use image

Valmo Bellinger, a businessman and political leader, was born in San Antonio, Texas, the son of Charles Bellinger. As a young man, Valmo established and published the San Antonio Register beginning in 1931 after G.W. Bouldin, publisher of the only black newspaper, the Inquirer, rejected an ad supporting candidates favored by Charles Bellinger. Valmo like his father supported the political organization or “machine” led by Mayor C.K. Quinn, seeking in return city improvements in African American neighborhoods. That at times led to conflicts with some civil rights leaders in the black community who favored greater independence. Valmo successfully urged the city leaders to build new and better public schools and parks for African Americans. Furthermore, he promoted black business development and, after his father’s death in 1937, assumed much of his political role. He married Josephine Crawford, his bookkeeper, in 1939.

In the 1940s and 1950s he spoke at labor conventions and served on the local grand jury commission. He supported the creation of Texas Southern University, but also aided the Sweatt case that desegregated Texas public colleges and universities. A heart attack in 1978 ended his publishing career and much of his civic activity. He died on January 15, 1994.