San Antonio College’s official mascot is the “Rangers.” The Ranger has been associated with San Antonio College (SAC) since 1926 when the college newspaper was originally dubbed the "Junior Ranger."
Over the years, several different variations of “Ranger” images have been created and used. However, the images grew to look cruel, harsh and mean. Due to the historical controversy surrounding the Texas Rangers, SAC decided to no longer use a human image to depict the Ranger.
During the 2013-14 academic year, the “Gnome Ranger” idea was developed with student and employee input. The administration wanted the spirit figure to be connected to SAC is a unique, fun way.
Although not widely known, gnome-like creatures have been part of the SAC family for many years. There are paintings in the basement of the Koehler House with gnome-like creatures bowling and enjoying “spirits.”
It is said that the paintings were created by the house’s original owner, Otto Koehler. Koehler was the CEO of the City Brewery (now the Pearl Brewing Company.) He built the Koehler Mansion in 1901 to oversee the brewery from the house’s third floor balcony. The estate was deeded to the College in 1971. Koehler’s paintings still hang there today.
While SAC students are “Rangers,” the Gnome Ranger serves as SAC’s spirit figure. His main purpose is to spread school spirit and to unite the College community.
Gnome Ranger, or “G.R.” for short, is a vigilante who fights injustice and protects the homestead (SAC.) He conducts himself by a strict moral code and serves to be a good role model for all.
The Gnome Ranger is the youngest and the last surviving gnome from the Koehler House. Because he was quite shy in his younger years, he has been hiding out in the Koehler House. All the while, he has been desperately yearning to join the SAC community. Because of his mischievous nature, he is being introduced into society gradually.
Although the exact date of his birth is unknown, we know that a gnome’s average lifespan is around 400 years. Therefore, experts estimate that the Gnome Ranger is around the age of an average SAC student.
His age isn’t his only mysterious fact. He is actually a bit of an enigma in general; we are learning new things every day.