By Tara Voigt Kohlenberg —
School is out and summer is here, heralding the throngs of visitors that will be descending upon our beautiful rivers and lakes. They come because they are drawn by the water, not unlike people who have come here for hundreds of years. Or they come because they like the atmosphere, but they don’t always know about the history of New Braunfels or what New Braunfels went through to become what it is today. In the twenty-six Around the Sophienburg columns a year written first by Myra Lee Adams Goff and now by Sophienburg staff Keva Hoffmann Boardman and Tara Voigt Kohlenberg, we try to share the history of New Braunfels. A lot has happened here since 1845 (173 years), so there is no lack of subject matter. This column will tip its hat to Naegelin’s Bakery, the oldest continuously operating bakery in Texas. One hundred and fifty years ago, Edward Naegelin arrived in New Braunfels. With “a sack of flour and a dollar”, he opened his own bakery on the corner of Mill Street and Seguin Street (aha… not where you thought!). As his business grew he relocated to the current location on Seguin Street. Three generations of Naegelins held the reins before passing them to the Granzin family. This little bakery is not only on the “must stop” list of every tourist, it has remained a favorite of locals.
One local in particular, MacKenzie Minor, wrote about her love of New Braunfels and Naegelin’s bakery. MacKenzie is a Canyon High School graduating senior and recipient of the Myra Lee Goff History Scholarship given by the Sophienburg Museum & Archives.
As a girl born and raised in New Braunfels, Texas, this small town holds a big place in my heart. I have watched the town grow and meanwhile, I have grown up with it. My roots stem from Landa Park, the public library, and Naegelin’s bakery. These are the places I have left small pieces of my heart at, and even as a go on to bigger adventures, I will always remember my roots.
The most infamous piece of my childhood is sitting outside of Naegelin’s bakery once a week underneath the blue umbrella tables eating a chocolate cupcake surrounded by my two sisters and our mom. We would play all morning long at home, and then head to the small rock bakery on the corner of the circle to make memories that, little did we know, would last forever. Every Tuesday was our day to sugar up on our choice of a special treat. My typical treat of choice was a cupcake topped with a plastic ring; I only chose it because being the fashionista I thought I was, I wanted to wear the ring. To this day, although my two sisters are in college and away from us, my mother and I continue to find ourselves grabbing a quick kolache after a doctor’s appointment down the road or satisfying our cravings with a half price donut in the middle of the afternoon. Naegelin’s will continue to be our favorite bakery. Now, as a senior about to graduate and pursue a degree in Fashion, I find myself reminiscing on these sweet moments of laughter, summer days, and stylish plastic rings more than I ever realized I would. With Naegelin’s 150th Anniversary quickly approaching in April, the Granzin Family is more than deserving of a heart felt thank you from myself and the rest of the town of New Braunfels who loves our small little bakery more than expressible.
A “Thank You,” particularly for helping upkeep the atmosphere of the small town I have always known despite the population growth and for letting me reminisce on my childhood memories each time I pass by or through. Beyond Naegelin’s, I am proud to be a frequent customer of Granzin’s BBQ and the Granzin’s Meat Market. Further than the quality of food that is made, the service I receive is always welcoming and worthy of praise. The Granzin family has continued the preservation of their three locations in New Braunfels and continues to spread joy whether it’s by making and serving breakfast tacos on Comal County Parade Day or a sweet tea on a summer day.
With the changes and growth that my beloved town is constantly experiencing I love attending these regular places with the same smells and memories that they have always held for me as the years go by. Whether I’m smiling because it’s a good day or because I’m treating myself to a legendary smiley face cookie, I always have a smile if I’m at one of the three places.”
Happy Birthday to Naegelin’s and Thank You to the Granzin family for maintaining the proud history. You can learn more about Naegelin’s Bakery on https://sophienburg.com/naegelins-bakery-still-baking/ or stop by Naegelin’s to feed your own sweet memories.