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Deutschburg Community
Jackson County, Texas

Deutschburg History


Deutschburg Cemetery


Deutschburg Newspaper Articles
1919 - 1920     1930s     1940s     1950s     1960s-70s


Second Engineer Frederick Henry Schmidt, Jr.


Present-day Deutschburg


Across the river from Francitas is Deutschburg, the home of a German colony as satisfied and contented as it is thrifty and prosperous. Of this colony Dr. Herman Gerhard is the father. He planned it and he laid the foundation for it when he built his home on his 120 acre farm there. Dr. Gerhard while editor of a national German newspaper published at Lincoln came here with Colonel Maher on a hunting trip and so delighted was he with the climate and soil that he requested Schwind and Maher to reserve 3,000 acres upon which he desired to locate a German colony. He showed his faith in the country by building a home there and installing his family.

He selected for his building site a most beautiful spot which overlooks the river and commands a view of the country for many miles around. There he has built a residence which he hopes in time will become the gathering place of the many friends that he is now assembling in our suburbs.

Dr. Gerhard is one of the bestů He has been the head of the German-American alliance, and has as editor of one of the most influential German papers published, been a leader among his people. Educated in the best schools of the fatherland and inspired with a love of his adopted country, he is one of our best citizens. He is thoroughly in love with his Deutschburg and the days never grow too long for him to sing its praises. It is his ambition, and his ambition will surely be attained, to build up a Deutschburg a thoroughly German colony of contented, happy people. Recently the census showed 33 person[s] who have homes there solely upon the recommendations of the doctor. Among them is Dr. Eichmann, a German physician and surgeon, who for many years was the head of the department of a hospital in Berlin, who with his interesting family located adjacent to the father of Deutschburg. Dr. Eichmann, who formerly lived in Minnesota, had for some years sought a home where the climate would be agreeable. He selected Deutschburg and there is no better booster or more contented man in all Texas. He has demonstrated that he is a physician and surgeon of more than ordinary ability.

Deutschburg is only a few miles from Francitas and across the river connecting the two has been constructed a substantial steel bridge. So Deutschburg will always be a part of this town and if the settlers continue to raise bountiful crops as they did this year, it is going to be a mighty big part of us.

The Francitas Bee, Francitas, Jackson County, Texas, November 23, 1911, Vol. 1 No. 51

Dr. Gebhardt [Gerhard] Here.
Editor of German Frie Presse Buys a Farm at Francitas and Will Erect Large Residence

Dr. Herman Gerhard editor of the German Frie Presse of Lincoln, Nebraska, one of the most widely circulated newspapers in the United States spent several days in the Francitas district recently and before leaving bought 120 acres of land and left the plans for the erection of a large residence. Dr. Gerhard expects to remove his family here some time in the spring, just as soon as his home is completed.

In company with Colonel John G. Maher president of the Valley Fruit Farm and Garden Company, G. J. Phelps local manager of the company, August Krause, Will Clark, J. M. Young, Captain Alman, Ed Long and others, Dr. Gerhard went hunting for a few days on the Carancahua. The party succeeded in getting many geese, duck, quail, squirrel and other game.

"I have visited the gulf coast and I believe I have made a pretty thorough inspection of the country" said Dr. Gerhard. "The entire gulf coast pleases me immensely, but the Francitas district to my mind is better than the other country which I visited. I think that or I would not have bought my farm here.

"Within a few years this entire Francitas district will be so closely settled that it will be impossible in my opinion to buy any of the land. It will be the orange orchard of the of the United States. There will be much farming done here. It is the ideal place for a home.

"The town of Francitas to me was a great surprise. I had heard that it was growing  rapidly, but had no idea that so many houses had been built or so much land broken and so much business was being done here. It is a beautiful place. I like the ideal of all the houses and the stores being painted white. And the depot, that is white also. It is a white city in every way and it will be a credit to the men who founded it.

"I have decided to cast my lot with the people of Francitas because I have faith in the country and its future. The soil is good. The climate is unsurpassed anywhere in the United States. I have been here a week and I have enjoyed life to the utmost. And the hunting? It is a paradise for the sportsman.

"The orange grove which is now being set out along the railroad right of way will make this city one of the most beautiful in the entire state and I predict that it will be a show place within a year or two and land men will be bringing their prospective purchasers to Francitas to show them what Texas soil and climate will do."

Dr. Gerhard proved himself a good mixer while in Francitas and left behind him many warm friends who will be on hand to extend to him and his family a warm welcome upon their return in the spring.

The residence which Dr. Gerhard will build is to contain 11 rooms. It will be two stories and have wide galleries, screened for sleeping rooms. It commands a view of the beautiful Carancahua to the east and to the west.

Francitas Bee, January 26, 1911

Germans Coming.
Large Number Will be Here Thursday Night to Inspect Francitas Lands.

Francitas is preparing to welcome in regal style a large number of Germans who will reach here either Thursday night or Friday to inspect lands around Francitas with a view of joining the colony across the river, in the Schwind-Maher addition.

At "Deutschburg" the home of Dr. Eichmen, a special program has been arranged which includes the raising of the American and German flags, speeches both in English and German and music by the famous Riccally String Quartet of Berlin.

The flag poles have already been put up on the Eichman place and all preparations have been made for a glorious good time and outing.

Francitas welcomes the Germans. It believes in German people and is anxious to have them for permanent citizens. It believes in turning its valuable lands over to the colony of Germans it is giving its acres into the keeping of natural farmers of the highest intelligence and for that reason it thrice welcomes the visitors.

The party will be accompanied by Col. Maher and W. F. Schwind president and general manager respectively of the Valley Fruit Farm and Garden company and by Dr. Gerhard, one of the best representatives of the splendid German empire in this great country.

Francitas Bee, March 23, 1911

German Homeseekers.
Party on Way to New German Settlement Will Visit Galveston.

Special to The News.

Brownsville, Tex. March 24.--Two carloads of German homeseekers, comprising fifty persons, arrived in this city today from Nebraska. The party was in charge of Dr. Herman Gerhard of Lincoln, Neb., and their destination is Kolonie Deutschburg, Tex., a new German settlement near Francitas. The party will stop in Houston and Galveston for a number of days on their way home. A land company brought in two cars with thirty-four people from Lincoln, another land company one car with twenty and a third one car with nineteen on board. All these will go to various points on the Fordyce branch tomorrow.

Galveston Daily News, March 24, 1911

Werner Gerhard Shot
Son of Dr. Herman Gerhard Severely Injured by Accidental Discharge of Revolver at Lincoln.

Werner Gerhard aged 14 years was accidentally shot by Fritz Nagle at the home of Dr. Herman Gerhard in Lincoln, Saturday morning.

Nagle was staying at the Gerhard home during the absence of Dr. and Mrs. Gerhard and he allowed young Gerhard to examine his revolver. After the boy had played with it for some time, Nagle took the revolver to see if it was loaded and in some way it was discharged, the ball striking the boy in the stomach. The wounded boy was rushed to a hospital and the bullet extracted. He has a fighting chance for his life the doctors said.

Werner Gerhard is a brother of Mr. Gerhard who is living in Deutschburg, which was founded by his father.

Nagle was recently in Francitas and spent several days across the river with Mr. Gerhard.

Dr. and Mrs. Gerhard were located by wire in Wisconsin visiting relatives and returned to Lincoln at once.

Francitas Bee, April 20, 1911

Gerhard Builds
Editor of Frie Presse Begins Construction of Home in Deutschburg. Children Here Now.

Dr. Herman Gerhard will this week begin the construction of a home at Deutschburg at which place his three daughters and two sons are now living. The contract for the building has been let to George Papineau who will at once begin work.

Dr. Gerhard has plans for a magnificent home which when completed will be one of the most comfortable residences in the gulf coast country. He will have in the center a large room, forming a court and he will build to each side of that, with galleries running the entire length of the building. Of course the building will be modern. Mr. Papineau has orders to rush the construction of the first four rooms, so the family can get into them as soon as possible.--Francitas Bee, June 29, 1911

Dr. Herman Gerhard

Gerhard Family Obituaries

Oswald Richard Kubecka, Sr.

Bertha Augusta Stewart


Former Editor "Frie Presse," Lincoln Nebraska
cultivating 120 rich acres here (Deutschburg)

I gave up my literary work at Lincoln , Nebr., and came to Francitas two years ago. We have here the best farm land in the world; we have abundant rain-fall well distributed and the best drinking water that can be found anywhere; we raise two crops a year and a crop failure is unknown. I am located in a German settlement that is rapidly being developed into paying farms.



Residence of

Fred Schmidt

Who is farming 60 acres here


Residence of

Fritz Naglo

This gentleman is a native German and
is cultivating his 200 acres here



I came here from Ravenna , Nebraska , a year ago and bought 700 acres of this land northwest of town. I am more than pleased with my purchase. I broke out some raw land this summer and have planted some milo-maize. Within three weeks the crop stood 14 inches high. My hogs and cows are going well. The Francitas country is a great country. THERE IS NONE BETTER.



Who has
"10 acres of Poultry"

I was engaged in the poultry business in Nebraska for a number of years with good success. A year ago I came to Francitas and went into the poultry business. I regard this an ideal place to raise poultry. I never had young chicks do better than mine have done here. During the first fourteen days of February 40 hens laid 248 eggs, which is very good for winter laying.

Home of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Schutte - 1915
Anna Eloge, Louise and Mr. and Mrs. Schutte on porch


Erhardt and Elizabeth Johs with children, Albert, Henry and Alice - 1924

Deutschburg School students and teacher



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Jun. 15, 2005
Jun. 15, 2014