It’s official! My 3rd great-grandfather Ludwig Schütz put down roots in Texas during the republic years!
Tag Archives: Ludwig Schütz
Friedrich Ludwig his wife, Marie Margarethe, their sons Carl and Louis left their home in Langenbach, which was located in the Province of Hachenburg in the dukedom of Nassau in the fall of 1845. Traveling with the family was Ludwig’s brother, Johann Peter Schütz. This small group traveled to Antwerp to board the ship Harriet that was set to sail on 31 October. Before boarding, Ludwig and Peter signed an Einwanderungs Vertrag or Immigration contract with the Verein Zum Schutze deutscher Einwanderer in Texas, Protection of German Immigrants in Texas. By signing the contract, Ludwig, as a married man, was entitled to 640 acres of land and Peter, an unmarried man, was entitled to 320 acres in the Fisher Miller Grant. For a fee the Verein made arrangements for the sea voyage, land transportation upon arrival, food, housing, grain and implements. The Verein also promised to provide churches and school for the settlers in their new settlement.
The voyage to Texas lasted two months. Not only did the Schuetz family face the hardships of traveling across the Atlantic Ocean, they also faced the death of their son Louis who was buried at sea. In Maria Margarethe Hild Schuetz’s obituary which was published in the Neu Braunfelser Zeitung on 17 November 1904, it was stated “…[Maria] came in 1845 with her husband under the auspices of the Adelsverein to Texas. On December 27, they landed in Galveston and then from there they went to Indianola where they stayed about 8 days.” From Indianola the family traveled in oxen-drawn wagons. They made overnight stops in Agua Dulce, McCoy’s Creek, Gonzales, Seguin and finally to the new village of New Braunfels.
The Schütz family learned that the land in the Fisher-Miller Grant was unsafe for settlers because it was located in Comanche territory. The family stayed in New Braunfels and Ludwig worked as a laborer. In 1848 Ludwig and Peter were issued certificates for the land in the Fisher Miller Grant but the family decided to stay in New Braunfels. By this time Peter had died and the family had increased. Theodore, a daughter, was born 24 July 1847. Three years later their last child, Wilhelm “William”, was born on 24 May 1850.
Ludwig supported his new homeland. In 1849 he signed a document stating his intention to become a citizen of the United States and that his name was Friedrich Ludwig Schütz. He became a naturalized citizen in 1851. In 1847 the Verein was out of money and did not built the churches and schools as promised. So in 1850, the First Protestant Church of New Braunfels was organized by 136 heads of households of which Ludwig was one. Each signer agreed: “We obligate ourselves willing to bring an annual contribution in amounts as set by the church council in order to allot our pastor a reasonable salary and for the present contribute at least 50 cents quarterly into the treasury.” Eleven years later when the Civil War started, he chose to support the Confederacy and served in the 31st Brigade of Texas State Troops as a private in Company A.
By the 1870s Ludwig and Marie were living on a farm in Blanco County near the Little Blanco River. In 1892 Ludwig, now called Louis, died at the age of 78 and was buried on the land where he lived.
Gregory, Rosemarie Leissner and Myra Lee Adams Goff. A Journey in Faith: The History of First Protestant Church New Braunfels, Texas 1844-1995. Austin: Nortex Press, 1994
Immigration contract for Ludwig Schütz. General Land Office, Austin, Texas. October 1845, http://www.glo.texas.gov/ncu/SCANDOCS/archives_webfiles/arcmaps/webfiles/landgrants/PDFs/1/0/2/7/1027493.pdf
“Friedrich Ludwig Schütz Naturalization” Comal County District Court Fall Term, November 1849, p186, New Braunfels, TX