For the love of antlers

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — This is the story of a boy born in Erbach, Hessen, Germany. It is about a boy who was fascinated with antlers. It is about that boy growing up and emigrating to Texas and creating his own future. Ernst Dosch was born in 1822. He

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Away in a manger

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — Christmas morning had finally come! Presents, wrapped in shiny red or green paper and topped with ribbon bows, were stacked beneath the Christmas tree. But first, I looked on the coffee table where the Mary and Joseph figures had been reverently kneeling, gazing with love

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Serdinko’s story

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — Request from Fargo, North Dakota: Do you know anything about a New Braunfels photographer named J. Serdinko? “Uhhh…yeah,” I thought to myself, “but not enough to answer this request!” The Sophienburg photograph collections contain several hundred thousand images; about 300 of those are impressed with

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Religious needs of the colonists

The articles of the Verein zum Schutz detscher Einwandrer in Texas (also known as the Society of Noblemen or the Adelsverein) required that the spiritual needs of the immigrants were to be met. The calendar and customs of church life were an important part of the Germanic culture. After their

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Beaked-lid wooden stein, ca. 1885. Property of The Sophienburg Museum & Archives.

Pyrography (wood-burning)

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — Take a look at the photo; it’s of a beaked-lid wooden pyrography stein. Yeah… that’s a mouthful…but the photo doesn’t come close to capturing the awesomeness of this newly-acquired artifact at the Sophienburg Museum. Standing a cool 22 inches tall, there isn’t an inch on

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Affordable housing in the 1850s

By Tara Voigt Kohlenberg — Judging by recent headlines, good, affordable housing in the Austin-San Antonio area is hard to come by, especially in New Braunfels. As is my usual, I was on a mission looking for something else when I ran across this excerpt from the Herald Zeitung. It

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Early jails in New Braunfels

By Myra Lee Adams Goff — According to stories of the Old West, suspected criminals were shot or hung. No jail was necessary. Then as people became more civilized, there arose a doubt as to whether the person accused was actually guilty. Could we possibly say that “those were the

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Willke brothers make significant contribution

By Myra Lee Adams Goff The history of every area reveals that there are many individuals who live lives that help their community without fanfare. They don’t have schools or streets named after them, but they make an impact, nevertheless. People and places come and go, and their significance often

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We owe a lot of what we know to Oscar Haas

By Myra Lee Adams Goff Almost 70 years ago (1947), local historian Oscar Haas was asked by the Texas State Historical Association to compile the origin and history of all name-places in Comal County. Haas’ histories and thousands of others are what make up the Handbook of Texas that can

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The area of Sattler includes many names

By Myra Lee Adams Goff Most of our small settlements in the Texas Hill Country, if they survived, grew up next to rivers and creeks. The Guadalupe River Valley NW of New Braunfels has been hailed by many as the most beautiful area in all of the Hill Country. Part

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