Browse Exhibits (25 total)

Ernst, August House

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August Fredrich Ernst was the grandson of the early immigrant Ernst family who initially settled in New Braunfels, Comal County, TX. His grandparents, John Peter Ernst (born about 1803) and his grandmother, Katherine, (born about 1804) arrived in the U.S. in 1852 from Nassau, Germany. The Ernst’s initially establish residency in Comal County where they were purchased property and established a farm. After several years August and his parents along with other family members moved to Bexar County.  Here they again bought property and established their home in a small community that was thriving at the time, but unfortunately no longer exists.

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Heermann Store

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The Heermann Store stands as one of the few surviving examples of the commercial buildings of rural south Texas.  It has served multiple functions throughout its history.  During the first few years after its construction, this building was a combination general store, post office, and residence (1892 to 1896). As a general store and post office, it would have served the community of Oak Island, with an estimated population of 600 agriculturalists scattered throughout the area. The building later served as a residence for farmers (ca. 1910 to 1939), and between 1945 and 1970, possibly a support building for a cotton gin. In addition to the main building, the Heermann Store site also includes ruins of an historic building reported to have been a saloon, and possibly at one time a gristmill. The saloon likely operated sometime between 1910 and 1920. The overall property may have been the site of commercial activities serving the Oak Island community for much of the time between 1892 and 1920. Rural general stores throughout this area were often short-lived business ventures, and many of them were abandoned after they ceased to be stores.  The Heermann store demonstrates the early rural commercial building’s inherent adaptive characteristics.   (Source: HABS report)

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Heidemann Ranch Complex

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Nine Historic Structures built in the 1860s: Log cabin, barn, smokehouse, water well, workshop, Heidemann-Barrera house, storage house, cemetery, possible early kiln.

  • Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, July 6, 2011.

  • In 2014, Professor Frances Gale of the University of Texas At Austin, School of Architecture, took the Materials Conservation Laboratory class to the Heidemann property to analyze the building materials of the log house and the barn.

  • A Building Award was given to Mr. Roy R.Barrera, Sr. and Mr. Gilbert Barrera by the San Antonio Conservation Society in March 2016 for the restoration of the cabin, the barn and the smokehouse by Gilbert Barrera.

  • In 2016, the Heidemann Family Cemetery was dedicated and designated as a Historic Texas Cemetery (HTC).

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Herff / Rozelle Farm

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The Herff Farm is an excellent example of a Texas Hill Country farmstead built by pioneer German families who settled in and near Boerne in the mid-to-late 1800s.  Located on the eastern outskirts of Boerne in Kendall County, the farm is part of a larger tract purchased by pioneer physician Ferdinand Herff in 1852.  Herff’s holdings eventually expanded to some 10,000 acres which were used for ranching and as a retreat for his large family.  After an earlier house burned, Ferdinand and Mathilde Herff built a two-story limestone house on the site.  The property remained in the family until 1935 when it was acquired by George and Erma Rozelle who farmed and raised livestock.  The house, farm, and domestic structures and surrounding fields remain remarkably intact in light of the rapid urbanization of Kendall County.  Since the Cibolo Nature Center purchased 68-acres of the property in 2007, the Herff house has been restored and the surrounding land is conserved as open space.    The farm was entered in the National Register of Historic Places in 2009.

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Hoffmann, Caroline and Jacob

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Few women owned property in their own right in the nineteenth century. In the Helotes settlement, Carmel Marnoch owned her own carriage, 20 horses and 15 head of cattle; and Teodora Martinez owned 130 acres. However, by 1881, Caroline Hoffmann owned more than 4,000 acres, including horses and cattle, in her
own right. By 1890, Caroline and her husband, Jacob, had amassed more than 7,500 acres. By 1908, five years after Jacob’s death, the Hoffmann estate included 12,667 acres, a substantial portion in present day Government Canyon State Natural Area.

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Huebner - Onion Homestead

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This site was home to two important area families, as well as a stagecoach stop in the 1800s. Development here began in 1858 when Joseph Huebner and his family, who arrived from Austria five years earlier, bought acreage surrounding what is now Huebner Creek and Huebner Road. A successful San Antonio businessman, he soon erected three limestone buildings here and began to acquire herds of horses, mules and cattle. He also opened a stagecoach stop at the family's homestead ranch on the San Antonio to Bandera stage line route. The stop included blacksmith services, change of stock and overnight accommodations if travelers were unable to pass over the flooded creek. Joseph Huebner died in 1882 and was buried on the homestead property.

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Koerbel Place

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Koerbel Place is named after one of the original families that lived and farmed the land on which the house is located. The history of the property tells a tale of settlers from Germany and Switzerland who made their home in Bexar County,Texas during the most
unsettling and difficult years in U.S. history. A Castro Colonist, a Confederate Soldier, reputed use as a Stage Coach Stop and a resident ghost are all part of the narrative of the Koerbel Place story.

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Monken Complex

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The Monken family and their descendants can trace their family history and heritage back to the early German immigrants into Texas in the 1840’s.  They are to be commended for retaining one of the early German homesteads in Texas as well as much of the original land obtained by the early Monken’s. 

The MONKEN house has been beautifully restored and incorporated into the Balcones Creek Ranch development in northwest Bexar County near the Kendall County line.  Also included on the property is the former Monken barn.  The retention of these historic structures are wonderful examples of how a developer can successfully integrate history into a new housing development instead of destroying old structures.

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Munk, Frederick

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Frederick MUNK House

Originally a part of the Ygnacio Perez Spanish Colonial grant issued in 1808, the Frederick Munk structures and site is located on the Christopher Yoacum headright grant and partially on the Jose M. Pereida headright grant.

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Ruempel, Philip - Farmstead

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The Ruempels were among the first European American inhabitants in the area that now comprises Leon Valley, Helotes and other nearby communities.  These families relied on their own ingenuity and resourcefulness although they accepted help from their neighbors when needed.

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