Outlaws, cowboys and armadillos

By Tara V. Kohlenberg — How do we pick topics for Around the Sophienburg? you might ask. Well, a myriad of mysteries and ideas come across our desks, but this one came simply from the question, “Whatever happened to that armadillo guy?” First off, let me tell you how we

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True crime series: Break-in of First National Bank

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman It’s just a little snapshot of three old guys in a back yard. The story that goes with it, however, is a humdinger and you’re gonna love it. It was uncomfortably cold and wet that midnight hour of January 20, 1922. Deputy Marshal W. Nance Meredith

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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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New Braunfels forty-eighters

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — The forty-eighters were refugees of the failed German Revolution of 1848. They were idealists. They fought to establish a liberal and unified Germany using liberty, democracy and unity as their main tenets. The designation “forty-eighter” excludes the hundreds of thousands who emigrated from 1848-1852 for

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Let’s talk chili!

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — An English-language advertisement in the German-language Neu Braunfelser Zeitung caught my eye: Mexican Restaurant Seguin Street — New Braunfels Meals at all times during the day for 25¢ Chili con carne, frieholes, tomales, fresh oysters, hot coffee and chocolate Cruz Gonzales That might sound pretty

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Pittman’s Red & White Store

By Tara V. Kohlenberg — I always looked forward to our weekly trip to the grocery store. Although it was only a short twelve or so blocks from our house (and about the same from the Plaza), it felt like we were traveling to an exotic place with odd sights,

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Backroad bingo

By Tara V. Kohlenberg — After this past week’s historic Arctic storms Uri and Viola had us in winter lockdown, I jumped at the chance to go driving through the Comal countryside under the clear blue skies. It wasn’t just the sunshine and 70-degree temperatures that were so inviting. It

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Three bandits and a big white stripe

By Keva Hoffmann Boardman — After months of media hoopla over presidential candidates and elections results, I thought it might be nice to share a fun old news story. As often happens, I found a photo. It was of three men and a shot-up old car. What? The search for

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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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“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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