Taste Of Texas

German Immigration To Texas

By: Josh Strong- 4th period

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Map- Homeland and Push Factors

The 1848 war of Germany caused many Germans to move away from their home country. Some of these people wanted better lives in Texas and others just wanted to get away from their rulers. There were other people trying to escape overcrowding in Germany and others that were trying to find jobs.

The picture below is Germany today, not how it was during the the time of German immigration to Texas. After World War 1, Germany's boundaries where changed.

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Map of Texas- Pull Factors

Johann Friedrich Ernst moved into Stephen F. Austin’s colony and sent letters back to Oldenburg, Germany that inspired many other people to go. Lots of other people also helped bring Germans to Texas. Some people offered money to buy land grants and another person named Prince Carl of Solms- Braunfels opened the Indianola port for German immigrants. One other man named Otfried Hans von Meusebach Bought land and let German immigrants settle on it.

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Culture Highlight

Popular German activities are things like target shooting and singing. They would often eat traditional foods like beer, sausage, saurkraut and potatos. After 1853 German communities had annual state Saengerfest competitions. In 1961 the mayor of New Braunfels made the holiday Wurstfest on any saturday of the month of November. This holiday celebrates the culture the Germans brought with them to Texas in the 1840's. Many germans still dye Easter eggs and put up christmas trees during those holidays.
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Significant Individuals

  • Carl Hilmar Guenther was born in 1826 in Saxon, Germany. Throughout his life he created and sold a grinding mill in Fredericksburg and also started the Pioneer Flour Mill that was still used in 2003.

  • William Gebhardt was a German that ran Miller's Saloon in New Braunfels. In 1894 he made the first chili powder and eventually opened a factory in San Antonio that created chili powder.

  • Franzisca Bernadina Wilhelmina Elisabet Ney, born in 1833, was one of the most famous sculptors in the whole state of Texas and was also born in Germany. In 1852 she went to the Munich Academy of Art for sculpturing. Statues she once made of Stephen F. Austin and Sam Houston are in the Austin State Capital.

Did You Know?

  • Almost all Germans opposed slavery yet many still fought for the confederacy during the civil war.
  • Most German immigration to Texas was to the central part of Texas.
  • Over 7,000 German immigrates came to Texas.
  • The German immigration group was the largest group to immigrate to Texas.


The Germans have brought their culture, their traditions, and their influence to Texas in many ways. The Germans not only had the largest immigration group but they also had one of the largest influences on the Texas culture. Because of them new holidays like Wurstfest were made. This not only affected them, but all of Texas because people all over enjoy celebrating these holidays with them.

The Germans generaly opposed slavery. When most people in Texas used slaves the Germans did not. Despite the fact that they opposed slavery, many of them fought for the confederacy during the civil war. Back then, those who spoke out against slavery were often hung in public. This most likely influenced their decisions.

Final Analysis

Because of German immigration to Texas, Texas has become a better place. Without German immigration, many holidays like Wurstfest and competitions like Saengerfest would not be around. They also made foods like sausage and saurkraut more popular. As well, they influenced the way we celebrate holidays introducing traditions such as dyeing easter eggs and putting up a christmas tree. German immigrants have influenced Texas in making it a more diverse and fun place to live. They also led other culture groups in coming to Texas because they had one of the largest immigration groups.


"File:Flag of Germany.svg." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 02 Dec. 2013. Web. 12 Feb. 2013.

"Gone To Texas - Immigration of Cultures." Www.texancultures.edu. Institute of Texan Cultures, 1 Feb. 2003. Web. Fall 2012.

"Map of Germany." Germany Map: Google Map of Germany. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Feb. 2013.

"Research In The Lonestar State." LoneStar Genealogy, Comprehensive Texas History & Genealogy Web Site. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Feb. 2013.

"Your Polka Fix, Braut to You by Wurstfest." San Antonio Express-News. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Feb. 2013.