List of Darmstadt Society of Forty members

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In 1847, Hermann Spiess,[1] Ferdinand Ludwig Herff,[2] and Gustav Schleicher[3] founded die Darmstadt der Vierziger (the Society of Forty), sometimes referred to as the Socialistic Colony and Society. The founders, as well as many of the members, were from Darmstadt, the capital of the Grand Duchy of Hesse. They originally planned to establish socialistic communes in Wisconsin.

Spiess and Herff were approached in Wiesbaden by Adelsverein vice president and executive secretary-business director Count Carl Frederick Christian of Castell-Castell,[4] who made a deal with them to colonize 200 families on the Fisher–Miller Land Grant territory in Texas. In return, they were to receive $12,000 in money, livestock, and equipment and provisions for a year. After the first year, the colonies were expected to support themselves.[5] The colonies attempted were Castell,[6] Leiningen, Bettina,[7] Schoenburg, and Meerholz in Llano County; Darmstädler Farm in Comal County; and Tusculum in Kendall County.[8] Of these, only two survived: Castell and Tusculum, which was renamed Boerne in 1852. The colonies failed after the Adelsverein funding expired, and because of conflict of structure and authorities. Some members moved to other Adelsverein settlements in Texas; others moved elsewhere, or returned to Germany.

The Forty[edit]

The following list is derived from the first-hand account of Louis Reinhardt, as well as other historical records.[9]

Darmstadt Society of Forty
Name Ship Notes
Otto Amelung St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Lawyer [9]
Heinrich Backofen (circa 1804–1872) St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Maker of musical instruments[9]
Peter Bub St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Maker of musical instruments[9]
Unknown Deichert Blacksmith[9]
Christoph Flach St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Mechanic[10]
Friedrich Wilhelm von Wrede, Jr. St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Wrede School in Gillespie County, Texas was established on his land. He was part of the German negotiating team for the Meusebach–Comanche Treaty.[11][12] He served in the Texas House of Representatives Nov 7, 1859 - Nov 8, 1861 (Note: Texas became part of the Confederate States of America on March 2, 1861.[13])
Rudolph Fuchs Lawyer[9]
Adolph Hahn St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Lieutenant of the military[9]
Unknown Heff Carpenter[9]
Ferdinand Ludwig Herff (1820–1912) 1846 Physician[14]
Unknown Herrmann Forester[9]
Christian Hesse Lawyer[9]
Johannes Hoerner [15]
Louis Kappelhoff Ship carpenter[9]
Heinrich Kattmann St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 [9]
Adam Koeppel St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 [9]
Jacob Kuechler (1823–1893) St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Forester[9]
Georg August Lerch St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Architect[9]
Ferdinand Lindheimer (1801–1879) 1834 Naturalist[9]
Louis Friedrich St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Forester[9]
Unknown Merting Minister[9]
Friedrich Michel St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Brewer[9]
Franz Morde [9]
Edward Mueller St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Agriculturalist[9]
Unknown Neff Carpenter[9]
Unknown Neff Butcher[9]
Unknown Ottmer Miller[9]
Ludwig (Louis) Reinhardt St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Botanist[7]
Unknown Rockan American who joined in Victoria, Texas[9]
Phillipp Friedrich Karl Theodore (Fritz) Schenck (1820–1875) St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Forester[16]
Gustav Schleicher (1823–1879) St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Engineer[9]
Theodore Schlenning St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Physician[9]
Leopold Schulz Physician [9]
Anton Schunk Maker of musical instruments[9]
Hermann Spiess (c.1818–1873) Co-founder of the Bettina, Texas, commune in 1847, he became commissioner-general of the Adelsverein after the resignation of John O. Meusebach.[17]
August Strauss St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Mechanic[9]
Adam Vogt (1822–1882) St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Forester; signed the petition to create Kendall County; first Judge of Kendall County[18]
Julius Wagner St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Lawyer[9]
Karl Wundt Lawyer[9]

Philip Zoeller (1818–1900)

St. Pauli, July 4, 1847 Architect who designed the Kendall County Courthouse.[19]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ragsdale, Crystal Sasse. "Hermann Spiess". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 30 January 2011.
  2. ^ Stembridge, Vernie A. "Ferdinand Ludwig Herff". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 20 January 2011.
  3. ^ Heinen, Hubert Plummer. "Gustav Schleicher". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 20 January 2011.
  4. ^ Brister, Louis E. "Count Carl of Castell-Castell". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 16 January 2011.
  5. ^ King (1967) p.122
  6. ^ Heckert-Greene, James B. "Castell, Texas". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 20 January 2011.
  7. ^ a b Lich, Glen E. "Bettina, Texas". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 20 January 2011.
  8. ^ Lich, Glen E. "The Forty". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 20 January 2011.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af Reinhardt, Louis (1900). "The Communistic Colony of Bettina". The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association. Denton, TX: Texas State Historical Association. 3: 33–40. Retrieved July 10, 2017.; "Immigration Database". Galveston Historical Foundation. Retrieved July 10, 2017.; "Indianola Immigrant Database". Victoria Tx Regional History Center. Archived from the original on 2010-11-25. Retrieved July 10, 2017.
  10. ^ "TSHA | Forty". Handbook of Texas Onlinde. Texas State Historican Association. Retrieved 28 June 2021.
  11. ^ Fey, Everett Anthony (1994). New Braunfels: The First Founders. Eakin Press. ISBN 978-0-89015-987-3.
  12. ^ "Wrede, Friedrich Wilhelm Von, Jr". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association.
  13. ^ "Friedrich Wilhelm Von Wrede, Jr". Legislative Reference Library of Texas. State of Texas. Retrieved 28 June 2021.
  14. ^ "Herff, Ferdinand Ludwig". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Society. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  15. ^ "Bettina, TX". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association.
  16. ^ "Schenck, Philipp Friedrich Karl Theodor". Handbook of Texas. Texas State Historrical Association.
  17. ^ "TSHA | Spiess, Hermann". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas Stae Historical Association. Retrieved 28 June 2021.
  18. ^ "Adam Vogt". www.ci.boerne.tx.us. City of Boerne, Texas. Retrieved 28 June 2021.
  19. ^ "Details - Kendall County Courthouse - Atlas Number 4302000191 - Atlas: Texas Historical Commission". atlas.thc.state.tx.us. Retrieved 28 June 2021.

Source material[edit]