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Serendipitous Discoveries Fredericksburg, Texas




Often described as having a “Texas heart and a German soul”, Fredericksburg, Texas was founded in 1846 by German settlers fleeing from the social and political upheavals of Europe at the time.  The town is in the “heart” of the magnificent Texas Hill Country about an hour’s drive northwest of San Antonio, an hour and a half west of Austin.


The “souls” of these settlers are kept alive by their descendants on the town’s Main Street that is lined with a Pioneer Museum Complex of authentic historic buildings:  homes, a smokehouse, a windmill that pumped water, a log cabin, a one-room schoolhouse, and a “Sunday House” built for rural farmers to stay in when they came to town with their families on weekends to do business on Saturdays and go to church on Sundays.  Many of the buildings of native Texas limestone along the street date back to the 19th century and have continued to be run as retail establishments:  restaurants, fine art galleries, boot makers, and purveyors of superb foods and wines.


Peaches, grapes, wineries, breweries, and fields of wildflowers are among the many highlights of the county.  From mid-May to mid-August there are few greater pleasures than eating the ripe, locally picked peaches.  The 40 wineries in the region produce exquisite wines, and many of the Altstadt Brewery’s beers evoke their German origins.  Restaurants galore offer the very best of German, Tex-Mex, and Texan BBQ delicacies.


Just 18 miles north of Fredericksburg are miles of hiking trails in the 640-acre Dark Sky Park within which the Enchanted Rock waits to be climbed.  It is a huge, 1,825-foot tall, pink-toned, solid granite dome that offers a spectacular 360-degree view of the Hill Country.


Nearby is Stonewall, the birthplace of Lyndon B. Johnson, 36th President of the United States, and the LBJ Ranch, known as the Texas White House during his presidency.  The one-room schoolhouse LBJ began to attend at the age of four is on the grounds, as are the Johnson family home, cemetery, the ranch’s show barn, airplane hangar and garage of Lincoln convertibles.  Of its original 2,800 acres, filled with wildflowers like bluebonnets, Indian paintbrushes and poppies, the Johnsons donated 680 to the State.


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