Industry in Austin County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
Industry Cotton Gin
German settlers Friedrich Ernst and Charles Fordtran founded Industry, Texas in 1831. The settlement was part of the Stephen F. Austin Colonial Land Grant and was the first permanent German settlement in Texas. Although cigar making dominated the town's early industry, by the 1850s cotton became the area's major crop. Ernst Knolle, who emigrated to Industry from Germany in 1844, prospered as a cotton planter and had a gin built on this location in 1857. Local German craftsmen, Andreas Buenger and Theodore Daum, helped construct the original wood frame gin with a shingle roof. It was one of the area's first of twelve gins built between 1857 and 1890.
In the 1860s, Knolle sold the gin to Daum after suffering from financial difficulties. It was during this period that the gin was converted from mule powered to steam powered energy. Three generations of the Schramm family owned and operated the gin from 1876 to 1963. The Schramms made significant upgrades to the gin including converting it to diesel power, installing a ginning system from the Texas based firm Murray Company, and constructing a galvanized iron structure next to
Erected 2012 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 17283.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Agriculture • Industry & Commerce. A significant historical year for this entry is 1831.
Location. 29° 58.358′ N, 96° 29.4′ W. Marker is in Industry, Texas, in Austin County. Marker is at the intersection of Main Street and Schramm Lane, on the left when traveling west on Main Street. The marker is located in front of the City of Industry building in the West End Community Park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 725 Main Street, Industry TX 78944, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Industry State Bank (approx. 0.7 miles away); Friedrich Ernst (approx. 0.9 miles away); Industry (approx. 0.9 miles away); John Friedrich Ernst, Jr.Industry Methodist Church (approx. 0.9 miles away); Industry Post Office (approx. 0.9 miles away); Industry United Methodist Cemetery (approx. 0.9 miles away); Industry Pilgrims Rest Cemetery (approx. one mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Industry.
Also see . . .
1. Ernst, Johann Friedrich (1796–1848).
In September 1829 Ernst, his wife, and their five surviving children fled Oldenburg; he was subsequently charged by the Duke of Oldenburg with embezzling a large amount of money from the post office. He and his family escaped by way of Bremen, Osnabrück, Münster, and Brussels and eventually sailed from Le Havre for New York, where they arrived in late 1829. For a time Ernst and his family ran a boardinghouse in New York. There he met Charles Fordtran, also a German. They became friends and decided to move together to Missouri. On the ship to New Orleans they read a prospectus about the favorable conditions in Austin's colony in Texas and changed their destination. The Ernst family and Fordtran sailed on the schooner Saltillo for Harrisburg and arrived before March 9, 1831;(Submitted on June 29, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas.)
2. Fordtran, Charles (1801–1900).
Charles Fordtran, early settler and surveyor, son of John H. Fordtran, was born in Minden, Westphalia, on May 7, 1801. He immigrated to America in 1830 and in January 1831 joined Friedrich Ernst to move to Texas, where they began the settlement that developed into the town of Industry. Fordtran surveyed Ernst's grant in Stephen F. Austin's colony for one-fourth of the land. He marked the boundaries of Samuel M. Williams's land. Source: The Handbook of Texas(Submitted on June 29, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas.)
3. Cotton Ginning.
Before cotton can be spun into yarn or thread and woven into cloth, the fibers must be separated from their seeds. In 1793 Eli Whitney had invented the cotton gin, a shortened term for "cotton engine." Whitney's patented machine featured a wooden cylinder with iron teeth or spikes, a grooved breastwork of brass or iron through which the spikes could pass but the seeds could not, and a brush cylinder behind the breastwork to clear cotton fibers from the spikes. Ginned seed cotton, or lint, was carried in baskets or allowed to fall into a lint room for storage. The lint was then packed by foot or wooden pestle into a sack and taken to market. Source:The Handbook of Texas(Submitted on June 30, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 30, 2021. It was originally submitted on June 29, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. This page has been viewed 257 times since then and 80 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on June 29, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas.