On March 14, 1845 Prince Carl of Solms-Braunfels, Germany purchased 1,265 acres for $1,112. Thus, the “City of a Prince” was born. Seven days later, on Good Friday, Prince Carl led the first settlers into New Braunfels, named after his ancestral German home.
Prince Carl of Solms-Braunfels,
Germany, circa 1840.
As with most settlements in the New World, the culture became a mix of old and new.
The German founders adapted to their new surroundings, deriving influence from Mexican, Native, and African descendants. With each generation, new layers of culture and tradition were woven into the fabric of this little “burg.”
Though much has changed from 1845 to today, the core principles set forth by the founders—hard work, progress, civic pride, and family devotion—have remained a steadfast way of life here.
Celebrating the anniversary of our founding is a long-standing tradition. The city’s grandest occasions came every quarter-century as New Braunfelsers celebrated with three to four days of great ceremony and jubilation. The 25th anniversary, in 1870, included a celebratory parade, with streets and buildings decorated with mountain laurel and cedar. A cannon the original settlers brought from Germany was fired several times a day during the festival. The 50th anniversary in 1895 was celebrated with more cannons along with fireworks, concerts, and dancing. Proceeds were used to install a fountain on the Main Plaza that same year. Naturally, a curb had to be added two years later to keep folks from watering their horses in the fountain.
It is with great pride that we uphold this tradition as we celebrate 175 years of New Braunfels industry, culture, and fun!