Category: Articles

Andrew Urban, Builder and Craftsman

Andrew (Andreas) Urban, A Wendish Craftsman Introduction by Dr. George Nielsen, Special Features Editor One aspect of Wendish life that is generally ignored in Wendish studies is the daily activity of making a living. While most Wends took up farming, there were also some who became craftsmen. One...

St. Peter Lutheran Church at Serbin and Rev. Johann Pallmer

In the two previous issues of the TWHS Newsletter, I attempted to show how the religious environments of Prussia and Saxony contributed to the creation of the first St. Peter church in Serbin. While this first separatist group remained small and the congregation was short-lived (1858 to 1867),...

The Texas Wendish Renaissance

The Wendish language and the awareness of being Wendish were slowly dying in the minds of the descendants of the Wends who migrated to Texas. Rev. Herman Kilian wrote the last Wendish obituary on the occasion of the death of Emma Christiana Schubert on 15 May 1906. It...

Prussian or Saxon (Part 2)

Prussia It was in 1817 that the Prussian king, Friedrich Wilhelm III, decreed the creation of a single church that merged the two Protestant faiths-Lutheran and Calvinist-although participation was voluntary. Compliance was anemic, and the king did little more than make the change at the garrison church in...

Civil War Soldiers and PTSD

Walter Penk, acclaimed Veterans Administration researcher into Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), will be the speaker at the 16 August 2015 General Membership meeting. Since this year marks the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War, I have asked him to speak to us about what...

Prussian or Saxon (Part 1)

Because some of the Texas Wends originated from Prussia and some from Saxony a question could be asked if origins made a difference. Does political geography influence the way people think and act? If you were asked about your origins, would it make a difference if you said “United...

Eating the Way our Ancestors Ate

Jan Ernest Smoler and Jan Kilian were contemporaries, although not always friendly ones. As editor of a newspaper in Bautzen, Smoler published negative letters sent from the Serbin colony leading to years of tension between Smoler and Kilian. Thirteen years before the immigration to Texas, in 1841, Smoler and a...

The gorgeous sight of Saints Cyril’s interior.

The Painted Churches of Texas

One does not need to travel across the ocean to witness the beauty and craftsmanship of the old-world German churches. Driving for a few hours northwest of the Houston area will bring one to churches of the same beauty. Midway through the nineteenth century, many German immigrants fled...

Texas Country Reporter at the 26th Annual Wendish Fest

See how one woman uses her noodle to keep her culture alive. In September, 2014, Texas Country Reporter visited the Wendish Museum and St. Paul Lutheran Church in Serbin, Texas, and returned for Wendish Fest. The episode was broadcast February 21-22, 2015 and features Hattie Schaustchick and Jack...

It Pays to Advertise – and to Read Ads

Robert Wuchatsch, a researcher and writer of Australian Wends, found about a dozen notices placed in the classified section of the 1854 Budissiner Nachrichten several months prior to the departure of the Ben Nevis migrants. These little advertisements show once again that every bit of evidence, no matter...