Institute of Texan Cultures' Texans Series
Texans of German descent make up one of the largest cultural groups in the state. The 1848 war in Germany caused many to leave their homeland. Some German immigrants came to Texas hoping to have better lives, while others wanted to leave behind narrow beliefs of the rulers. Many were hoping to find jobs, trying to escape overcrowding of their country, or simply seeking adventure in a new land.
John Friedrich Ernst began the German migration to Texas. He purchased land in AusƟn’s Colony in 1831 and then wrote glowing letters that were published in his hometown of Oldenburg, Germany. These letters made other want to come to Texas.
The largest wave of German immigration occurred in the 1840s when the Adelsverein, The Society for the Protection of German Immigrants in Texas, assisted thousands in coming to Central Texas. These immigrants established the cities of New Braunfels and Fredericksburg.