Austin in Travis County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
German Free School
In September 1857, the German-Texans in Austin held a public meeting to establish a German school for the city. Civil engineer Wilhelm von Rosenberg donated land at this site for the school. Within a month, German-Texan volunteers began construction of the school building. The first school in Austin chartered by the Texas Legislature, the German Free School Association opened in 1858 with August Weilbacher and Julius Schutze as its first teachers.
The 1857 building with rammed earth outer walls contained two classrooms and a basement. About 1872, a two-story limestone section was added to provide four additional classrooms. Julius Schutze returned to teach in 1880 and moved his family into the schoolhouse. They continued to live in the building after the school closed in 1881 with the advent of Austin's public school system. Schutze (d. 1904) published the Texas Vorwaerts newspaper
The German Free School building, damaged in a 1919 fire, remained in use as both a single-family and multi-family residence until 1991, when it was deeded to the German-Texan Heritage Society.
Erected 1962 by the Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 12732.)
Location. 30° 16.22′ N, 97° 44.173′ W. Marker is in Austin, Texas, in Travis County. Touch for map. German Texan Heritage Society. Marker is at or near this postal address: 507 E 10th St, Austin TX 78701, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Austin High School (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Saint Mary’s Cathedral (approx. ¼ mile away); Site of Tenth Street Methodist Church (approx. ¼ mile away); Saint David’s Episcopal Church (approx. ¼ mile away); General Land Office Building of 1856-57 (approx. ¼ mile away); Central Presbyterian Church (approx. ¼ mile away); Cactus Theater (approx. ¼ mile away); Site of Samuel Huston College (approx. ¼ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Austin.
Also see . . .
1. German-Texas Heritage Society. (Submitted on December 26, 2009, by Keith Peterson of Cedar Park, Texas.)
2. Handbook of Texas Online - German Free School Association of Austin. (Submitted on December 26, 2009, by Keith Peterson of Cedar Park, Texas.)
Categories. • Education • Notable Buildings •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on December 26, 2009, by Keith Peterson of Cedar Park, Texas. This page has been viewed 685 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on December 26, 2009, by Keith Peterson of Cedar Park, Texas. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.