History detectives

By Tara V. Kohlenberg – Working in an archive or research library probably doesn’t top the list of dream jobs for very many people, but it is really cool to be a History Detective. In fact, there are more history detectives out there than you would think. While it is

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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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Waters of Cypress Bend Park

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — It was a sweltering hot, end-of-summer, August Sunday in 1894, just perfect for a picnic by the river. Marie and Hugo Kramer gathered up their three children and joined Marie’s siblings, Georg and Lydia Hartman, and their in-laws Wilhelm and Walli Hartmann with their two

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What do you call that street?

By Tara V. Kohlenberg — It’s happened again. While looking for an old house address in the archive, my eyes strayed across the page to an unknown item, and my curiosity got the best of me. I needed to solve the mystery of a street named Pecan. I had no

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“Reflections” on movie history

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — What do New Braunfels and the 1929 Academy Award for Best Production (Picture) have in common? The answer is in Jack Kaufmann’s oral history recording for the Sophienburg Museum’s “Reflections” radio program. Jack’s father, John P. Kaufmann, Sr., owned and ran one of the early

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A flight to remember

Replica of the Wright Vin Fiz, 1911. Keva Hoffmann Boardman — On Saturday, October 21, 1911, James Ogletree and a buddy finished gathering pecans along the Guadalupe River near the Gruene Road bridge and walked up to his grandfather H.D. Gruene’s store. There, they heard the MKT depot manager exclaim

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Die Neunköder and the castor bean

Keva Hoffmann Boardman — When nine young men from Frankfort emigrated to Texas in 1849, they were given the nickname of “Die Neunköder” or “the Nine Lures” or “the Niners.” One of them, George Weber, described the group of adventurers: “Taking a sailship at Antwerpen, we finally landed at Indianola

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Elfendritschenwolpertinger

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — It’s words like this that make the German language so much fun. Actually, this word doesn’t even translate into English…which happens more times than you think. It comes with a great story though. I found a history of Luckenbach, Texas, on the town’s website. Yes,

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The art of history

By Tara Voigt Kohlenberg —History is shared in many formats including art, the printed word and personal stories handed down from one generation to another. Quilts are special commemoratives given for births, graduations, weddings, and anniversaries or to someone who is moving away. Quilts are art. While more practical and

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Charcoal burners of the Guadalupe

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — A year ago, I alluded to a book, Charcoal and Charcoal Burners, published in 1950, by Fritz and Emilie Toepperwein of Boerne. From around 1870 until 1919, the name Charcoal City was given to a region of land in the Guadalupe River Valley that extended

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