Fredericksburg, the county seat of Gillespie County, is seventy miles west of Austin in the central part of the county. The town was one of a projected series of German settlements from the Texas coast to the land north of the Llano River, originally the ultimate destination of the German immigrants sent to Texas by the Adelsverein. In August 1845 John O. Meusebach left New Braunfels with a surveying party to select a site for a second settlement en route to the Fisher-Miller Land Grant. He eventually chose a tract of land sixty miles northwest of New Braunfels, where two streams met four miles above the Pedernales River; the streams were later named Barons Creek, in Meusebach's honor, and Town Creek. Meusebach was impressed by the abundance of water, stone, and timber and upon his return to New Braunfels arranged to buy 10,000 acres on credit. The first wagontrain of 120 settlers arrived from New Braunfels on May 8, 1846, after a sixteen-day journey, accompanied by an eight-man military escort provided by the Adelsverein. Surveyor Hermann Wilke laid out the town, which Meusebach named Fredericksburg after Prince Frederick of Prussia, an influential member of the Adelsverein. Each settler received one town lot and ten acres of farmland nearby. The town was laid out like the German villages along the Rhine, from which many of the colonists had come, with one long, wide main street roughly paralleling Town Creek. The earliest houses in Fredericksburg were built simply, of post oak logs stuck upright in the ground. These were soon replaced by Fachwerk houses, built of upright timbers with the spaces between filled with rocks and then plastered or whitewashed over (see GERMAN VERNACULAR ARCHITECTURE).
Fredericksburg at a Glance
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Fredericksburg by the Numbers
|10,875||2020||United States Census Bureau|
|11,529||2019||Texas Demographic Center|
|10,530||2010||United States Census Bureau|
|8,911||2000||United States Census Bureau|
|6,934||1990||United States Census Bureau|
|6,412||1980||United States Census Bureau|
|5,326||1970||United States Census Bureau|
|4,629||1960||United States Census Bureau|
|3,854||1950||United States Census Bureau|
|3,544||1940||United States Census Bureau|
|2,416||1930||United States Census Bureau|