“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

New Ulm in Brown County, Minnesota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)

Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender

Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender Marker image. Click for full size.
By K. Linzmeier, May 5, 2014
1. Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender Marker
Inscription.  Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender (1826-1905), born in Heilbronn, Wurttemberg, Germany, came to America as a result of the 1848 Revolution. In Germany he helped found the Turner Societies in his birth-city of Heilbronn and in Ulm. In Cincinnati, Ohio, he co-founded the first American Turner Society, presided over its Settlement Society and, notably, over the German Land Association that pioneered the New Ulm settlement (1856). Besides organizing the New Ulm Turners, Pfaender actively served New Ulm as its first president, and later distinguished himself as a state Senator and Treasurer and during the Civil War, as a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. cavalry. The original Pfaender home was located in Milford Township before the family moved to the city.

In 1860, he cast an electoral vote in the historic election of Abraham Lincoln to the Presidency. In the same year, he was elected Register of Deeds of Brown County and also to the House of Representatives of the Minnesota State Legislature and in 1870 was elected to the Minnesota State Senate. From 1873 to 1876, he served as Mayor of New Ulm, and then as Minnesota State Treasurer in 1876, and
Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender Marker image. Click for full size.
By K. Linzmeier, May 5, 2014
2. Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender Marker
east side of marker
was re-elected in 1880. From 1890 to 1893 he served on the New Ulm City Council.

In September 1861, he was commissioned First Lieutenant of the First Minnesota Battery, and participated in the Battle of Shiloh, but returned to Minnesota because of the 1862 Dakota War. He was then commissioned Lieutenant Colonel in the First Minnesota Mounted Rangers, and placed in command of Fort Ridgley to protect the frontier; later he was commissioned Lieutenant Colonel of the Second Cavalry Regiment. For 16 years he served as Commander of the Hecker Post of the Grand Army of the Republic.

(Continued on other side)

(Continued from other side)

In his History of Brown County, Minnesota: Its' People, Industries and Institutions (1916). Dr. L.A. Fritsche wrote that Colonel Pfaender “always had at heart the interests of New Ulm and its people, and was ever a promoter of the locality and its inhabitants.”

He also wrote that Pfaender “was not only a public spirited citizen and busy man in civil life, but a patriot of high type, as proven by his record in war. The corner stone of Mr. Pfaender’s character was a high sense of justice and honor, and whether in civil or military life, he was always a courteous gentleman.” He further notes that “While he was firm in his convictions
Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender Marker image. Click for full size.
By K. Linzmeier, May 5, 2014
3. Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender Marker
of his rules of life, he was always tolerant of differences of opinion; and he was ever a peace-maker.”

As one of the founding fathers of New Ulm, Minnesota, Colonel Pfaender occupies an honored place in the annals of its history as one of its most admired citizens.

Dedicated April 2009 Sponsored by
Members of the Pfaender-Fritsche Family and New Ulm Area Foundation

Erected 2009 by the members of the Pfaender-Fritsche Family and New Ulm Area Foundation.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Government & PoliticsSettlements & SettlersWar, US CivilWars, US Indian.
Location. 44° 18.579′ N, 94° 29.088′ W. Marker is in New Ulm, Minnesota, in Brown County. Marker is on Pfaender Drive 0.2 miles north of 5th North Street (County Highway 27), on the right when traveling north. Marker is in Col. Wilhelm Pfaender Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: New Ulm MN 56073, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Hermann Monument (approx. 0.6 miles away); Leavenworth Rescue Expedition (approx. 0.6 miles away); Waraju Distillery (approx. 0.6 miles away); Joseph A. Harman (approx. ¾ mile away);
Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender Marker image. Click for full size.
By K. Linzmeier, May 5, 2014
4. Colonel Wilhelm Pfaender Marker
Col. Wilhelm Pfaender Park
Defenders State Monument (approx. 1.1 miles away); John Lind Home (approx. 1.1 miles away); The Pioneers of Brown County Monument (approx. 1.2 miles away); Brown County (approx. 1.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New Ulm.
Also see . . .
1. The Pfaenders. (Submitted on May 13, 2014.)
2. William Pfaender and the Founding of New Ulm. (Submitted on May 13, 2014.)
3. Pfaender Park. Pfaender Park... is presently little more than a shiny brass historical plaque in the southwestern corner of an undeveloped seven-acre, north-south rectangular field. (Submitted on May 13, 2014.) 

4. Col William Pfaender, Sr. (Submitted on May 13, 2014.)
Credits. This page was last revised on October 21, 2020. It was originally submitted on May 13, 2014, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 582 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on May 13, 2014, by Keith L of Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin.
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Feb. 24, 2021