1920s Fayette County, Texas News

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The La Grange Journal
Thursday, March 4, 1920

Home Wedding

Rev. Jesse Yelvington of Smithville performed the ceremony Wednesday evening which united in marriage, Miss Francis Knigge, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Ernst Knigge and Ambrose Frierson of near West Point, the ceremony being performed at the parental home of the bride and witnessed by immediate relatives of the contracting parties only.

After a short luncheon the young couple boarded the Katy passenger train for San Antonio to enjoy their honeymoon, and will then return to West Point to make their home.

These young people enter upon their matrimonial journey with the best wishes of a host of friends; Miss Francis being reared here has ever been one of our popular young ladies, and the bride-groom, recently returned from over sea service, stands will in his community as a honorable, hard-working young man.  Our congratulations are offered.
Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, April 1, 1920

Married on March the 22nd at 8:30 p. m. Miss Elisa Nolkemper, eldest daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Fritz Nolkemper to Carl Rosenaur, a young business man of Flatonia.  After the ceremony, which was witnessed only by the nearest relatives of the contracting parties, the young couple left for Flatonia their future home.  Justice of Peace, Mr. Doubrova, officiated.  Schulenburg Sticker.

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, April 8, 1920

Home Wedding

Wednesday afternoon of last week, at the home of the bride’s parents, Mr. and Mrs. E. Koehler, Rev. R. Heise united in the holy bonds of matrimony, Miss Hedwig Koehler and Julius Gebhardt, the ceremony being witnessed by relatives and very close friends of the contracting parties.  Mr. and Mrs. Gebhardt left for Galveston the same evening to spend the honeymoon.  Both have a host of friends here who wish them all happiness and a long and useful married life.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, June 24, 1920

Ernest Knigge For Public Weigher

The present incumbent of the office of public weigher for precincts one and seven, with yard at La Grange, again presents his candidacy for re-election to the office of public weigher.  Ernst Knigge has maintained the good will and respect of the cotton grower with whom he has had to deal considerably in the time of his official life, and herewith asks for the further consideration of his candidacy for re-election.  He seeks the nomination on the democratic ticket, and asks that the voters give their endorsement by making his nomination unanimous at the July primaries.  If re-elected, he will remain the same accommodating public weigher which has made his friends and supporters generally give their endorsement to his efforts in the past.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, June 24, 1920

Surgical Operation

C. H. “Boss” Schaefer, one of our eldest citizens, submitted to a surgical operation Sunday afternoon, having suffered from internal ailment.  The operation was performed by Drs. McManus of San Antonio, assisted by Drs. R. H. Knolle of La Grange and O. Luedemann of Schulenburg.  As we go to press this Wednesday afternoon, the patient is doing as well as his age will permit, and friends of the family are much interested and hope that he will entirely recover.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, June 24, 1920

Fritz Vogt For Commissioner Beat No. 1

Submitting his name on the democratic ticket for the nomination to the office of county commissioner for this precinct, number one, Fritz Vogt asks the democratic voters to favorably consider his candidacy.  Everybody knows the big-hearted, ever-accomodating Fritz Vogt, who spends his idle time doing a good deed for another.  Fritz travels over the county frequently, believes in good roads and a business administration of the county’s affairs.  He will make a good commissioner and will devote his time to the duties creditably.  He respectfully solicits your support as well as your vote and will appreciate your endorsement by ballot.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, January 20, 1921

Albrecht – Weber

Chas. C. Albrecht, carrier of mails for route six, and Miss Leila Pearl Weber were united in marriage at Smithville Sunday afternoon, Rev. M. H. Arnold performing the ceremony.  The couple left for San Antonio and other western points to enjoy their honeymoon.

We offer our congratulations and best wishes for a happy married life.  They have a host of friends here where they have lived for a number of years, the bride holding the position of operator at the Southern Telephone Company.  They will make their home here after January 23rd.

Contributed by Rob Brown

Eagle Light Headlight
28 May 1921

Died at Schulenburg from Drinking Home Made Liquor

Frank Hermis, a well known farmer living out on the Moravia road, was found in a dying condition in his yard at home early Tuesday morning, and shortly after passed away, despite efforts of his family to revive him.

Judge Voigt and Constable Cornelson were called by Dr. Clark, who had been previously called, and an inquest will be held to comply with the formality of the law.

The notes taken by the officers and the doctor's opinion are positive that he died from the poisoning effects of "home brew" whiskey, a partially emptied bottle of which was found near him.

His skin was badly blotched and spotted apparently caused from the effects of a liquid containing wood alcohol. A sample of the fluid has been sent away for examination.

He is well known here, being about 50 years of age, and leaves a wife and several children. The funeral services were held on Wednesday.

This is the first death to be directly traced to the door of home distilled liquor here. It is said that the liquor was purchased while he was in town here on Monday.—Schulenburg Sticker.

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, June 16, 1921

Married Thursday Evening

At the home of the bride’s parents Mr. and Mrs. Victor Sladczyk, with only immediate relatives and a few intimate friends present, Rev. H. M. Arnold of Smithville spoke the words that united the destinies of Miss Hilda Sladczyk and S. S. Sengelmann of Schulenburg.

Miss Hilda was a general favorite with the young people of our little city as was shown by the many social functions given in her honor the past weeks.

Mr. Sengelmann the son of Gus. Sengelmann of Schulenburg is a deserving young man.

The young couple will reside at Schulenburg, where Mr. Sengelmann is in business.

The Journal joined by the many friends of the happy couple wish them smooth sailing over matrimonial sea.

Contributed by Rob Brown

La Grange Journal
January 26, 1922

George Knigge Improving

Mrs. Ernst Knigge, called to Houston last week to see her son George, seriously ill at the Baptist Sanitarium from typhoid fever, has informed her husband, the father, that George’s condition is greatly improved.  For a while it seemed as though George’s life hung by a slender thread, and unceasing vigil failed to produce a change that gave hope, but the message received Tuesday was very gratifying.  We sincerely trust the improvement shown will continue.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, July 12, 1923

Cornelson – Mensing

Larry Cornelson, the possessor of many friends in La Grange, and a member of the Cornelson Happy Six band of Schulenburg, and Miss Ruth Mensing, daughter of Mrs. F. Mensing of La Grange were united in marriage at Columbus Tuesday afternoon.  From Columbus the happy young couple continued their journey to Houston and Galveston for a brief honeymoon.

These young people stole a march on their friends; Miss Ruth left La Grange on Tuesday morning for Glidden, and was there joined by Larry, and in the auto taken to Columbus, where the happy event was celebrated.  Upon their return journey, they will stop at Rosenburg and be joined by the Cornelson Band and after filling the appointment to play in that city, will return to Schulenburg, their future home.

The congratulations of a host of friends here and at Schulenburg are extended.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, July 12, 1923

City Marshal Wm. Loessin is at Galveston in attendance upon the twenty-fifth annual convention of the chiefs of police and city marshals.
Contributed by Rob Brown

The Schulenburg Sticker
Friday, July 13, 1923

Cornelson – Mensing

A big surprise to their many friends both here and at La Grange was the wedding of Mr. Larry Cornelson of this city and Miss Ruth Mensing of La Grange.  They stole a march on their friends and were united in the holy bonds of matrimony at Columbus Monday.

They spent several days honeymooning in Houston.  Wednesday night the couple joined the balance of the Happy Six at Rosenberg where they were filling a date, then returned to Schulenburg where they will make their future home.

While the young lady is unknown to us, we have enough confidence in Larry’s ability to know that he picked one of the fairest and best young ladies of the County.

Larry is to well known throughout this section of the State to need introduction from us.  He is a good, clean, honest and upright young man.

The Sticker extends congratulations and wishes them a most pleasant and prosperous voyage upon the matrimonial sea.
Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, November 29, 1923

Home Wedding

Wednesday evening at the family residence in the southern part of the city, Rev. A. E. Moebus performed the ceremony that united in the holy bonds of matrimony, Miss Lucy, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. F. Nollkaemper and C. E. Greenshield of Schulenburg.  The ceremony was witnessed by relatives of the contracting parties.  A wedding supper was enjoyed after congratulations and good wishes were offered.

The young couple left on the midnight Katy Flyer for Dallas for a few days to enjoy a brief honeymoon, and will return to La Grange at the weekend, to make their home with Mr. and Mrs. Nollkaemper.

Miss Alma Greenshield, sister to the bridegroom presided at the piano and played the wedding march; Miss Viola Sladczyk was matron of honor and Douglas Glass of Schulenburg, a personal friend of the groom acted as best man.  The bride wore a very pretty gown of brown charmeuse, and her going-away gown was of blue poiret twill, with hat and shoes to match.

The Journal wishes to add its sincerest good wishes and congratulations to those of the many friends of the happy young couple.  Both are popular young people.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, November 29, 1923

In Our Bean Guessing Contest

2586 is the guess made by Mrs. C. E. Greenshield (nee Miss Lucy Nollkemper)

Mrs. Greenshield gets the Four-Burner Perfection Double Chimney Oil Stove

Mohrhusen - Schmidt Company

Contributed by Rob Brown

La Grange Journal
Thursday, December 4, 1924

Henry Kiesling Dies from Wound Inflicted by an Assassin

Excitement prevailed to a great extent Monday night when the news spread that someone, in the role of an assassin, had shot Henry Kiesling, as he was in the act of closing the front doors of the grocery store where he was employed as clerk by the owner, F. Mohrhusen.  Officers and citizens responded rapidly and ere long a crowd was collected at the scene of the shooting, but the culprit that had fired the shot that laid low his victim, was gone.

It was shortly after the shot was fired and the cry: “Help, I am shot!” rang out that the officers were notified and quickly responded.  ‘Squire Schleier, who resides on North LaFitte street one block from the Mohrhusen Grocery, heard the appeal of the wounded man, and acted accordingly, telephoning to the city proper and then hurrying to the grocery.  When he reached there, he found the man in an unconscious condition, already made comfortable by those who had preceded him.  As the unfortunate victim opened his eyes, the ‘Squire addressed him as follows:

“Henry, do you know me?”  Receiving the answer that he was recognized, caused him to ask another:  “Henry, who shot you?”  The answer was in the negative, he did not know but stated that he was in the act of closing the front doors of the grocery, and stooping to adjust the floor bolt, received the bullet fired from a pistol in the hands of someone, presumably concealed behind the telephone post near the door.  The assassin immediately fled while his victim uttered the agonizing appeal above quoted.

Wm Loessin, removing the cushions from his Ford car, placed them in the truck of J. T. Holman, and the two carried the wounded man to the La Grange Hospital where he was given prompt aid and every attention by the surgeons and the nurses.  Throughout the next day he labored, and when the curtains of night were lowered, he passed away.

The bullet that ended the life of Henry Kiesling, passed through the body after entering near the left shoulder and ranging upward, penetrated the door of the building and lodged in a cartoon [carton] of Post Toasties on the shelf.  From all gleaned accounts, the assassin must have ran to the rear of the store, thence up the Katy track East and disappeared.  After being shot and issuing his appeal, Mr. Kiesling started out of the store and walked toward the ice plant, then turned and, it is presumed, was bent on reaching the turkey killery of the Peter Company where laborers were busy, a short distance East from the store.  He had gone about sixty feet when he fell to the ground and was there found by those who arrived after the news came to the city square.

Admonished to not talk if it excited or exhausted him, the unfortunate victim nevertheless spoke to “Squire Schleier and, among other things said:  “If it be God’s will that I go, I am ready.”  An illustration of the character of a man who was known as a good citizen.

Funeral arrangements are being perfected as this is being written.  Preparations are being made to place to rest the body of a man who was not known to have an enemy, a man who loved to be classed with the good citizenship of the city, never giving thought to injuring anyone, but on the contrary, living the life of a God-fearing man, believing in his church and the church work.  The city mourns with the bereaved family and in so mourning, drapes its limits with the crepe of deepest sympathy, recognizing that in this hour, there is a darkness that is best understood by those who have had to bow to the visits’ of the death angel.  From the family residence Thursday afternoon at one o’clock, the funeral will be held, and interment will take place at the Trinity Hill cemetery.

Just a week previous to his untimely end, the twenty-fifth anniversary of Mr. and Mrs. Hy. Kiesling was happily celebrated, and on last Thursday at high noon, their daughter became the happy bride of Frank Poston of Houston.  It was apparent and so encouraged that the happiness of the family was complete.  And then came this blow.  The happy young couple, enjoying their honeymoon journey, were located at New Orleans, and left at once for Texas, reaching Schulenburg at three o’clock Wednesday morning and then by auto came home to see silent form of father.

The widow, the daughter and one son, Freddie of Houston survive.  We extend our hand and beg to express our sincerest sympathy.  Of him, his pastor will have a suitable obituary.

Contributed by Rob Brown

La Grange Journal
Thursday, December 11, 1924

Wish of the Father was Remembered

Just one week prior to the cowardly assassination of Henry Kiesling, the victim was a pleasant caller at the Journal office and mentioned to the editor that he would return at a later date and bring some persimmons that were ripening on the tree, he had saved two for us.  We appreciated his good will, and then the night visitor and destroyed his life.  But before the victim had fallen prey to the assassin, he had mentioned the matter to the good wife and children, and on last Friday, Freddie Kiesling deposited two extra large seedless persimmons on our desk.  “These were intended for you by my father, and I am carrying out his wish.”

Memory shall not fail us, nor will we permit time to efface.  The fruit was the finest we have ever seen, and the fact that our departed friend should have remembered us is appreciated far more than we can state.  The persimmon tree at the Kiesling home has had some extra large fruit this season, one of the persimmons measuring over thirteen inches in circumference.

Contributed by Rob Brown

Weimar Mercury
December 11, 1925, page 2


Naturalization papers were granted to Vincent Petras, Holman; Joe Hanzelka, Holman; Emille Hanzelka, Holman; Joseph Pavel Mensik, Holman; Mrs. Hanszeklka was born at Fayetteville but lost her citizenship through her marriage to Joe Hanzelka. Her citizenship is now restored. La Grange Record.

The Houston Post
Saturday, February 13, 1926

La Grange

Mrs. Robt. Peter entertained the Friday Bridge and the Girls’ Bridge club on Wednesday afternoon.  Miss Viola Sladczyk for holding high score and Miss Lillian Sladczyk for success in cutting were presented attractive souvenirs.  Those present were: Miss Jeanette Alexander, Miss Gertrude Alexander, Miss Annette Killough, Miss Myrta Hermes, Miss Laura Weber, Mrs. Will Morgan, Mrs. Ben C. Diebel, Mrs. J. W. Holloway, Mrs. F. Koehler, Mrs. Frank Reichert Jr., Mrs. H. R. Clark, Mrs. A. Schlafler, Mrs. Earl Greenshield, Mrs. Edwin Reiss, Mrs. Ed Mattingly, Mrs. A. V. Smith, Mrs. Clinton Stotz, Mrs. R. Wilcox, Mrs. A. R. Ehlers, Miss Olivia Schaefer, Mrs. E. A. Scheel, Miss Viola Sladczyk, Miss Lillian Sladczyk, Mrs. A. F. Weber Jr.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, September 9, 1926

Their Twenty-Fifth Wedding Anniversary

Nothing like friends and relatives who want to be friendly.  Last Friday evening, when Louis Bollmeyer, the restaurant man on the north side of the square, in the Kirsch building, and his wife reached home, they found the home had been taken possession of by relatives and friends, quite a large crowd.  And the redeeming feature of their apparent nerve at taking possession of a family home during the absence of the family, came when the guests announced that they had brought an abundance of refreshments and cakes, and that the evening should be a merry one, to celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of Mr. and Mrs. Louis Bollmeyer’s wedding day.

Louis says he was tired when he reached home but that he forgot it all and everybody had a big time.  Which goes without saying when visitors come well-laden and bring the smiles as well.  We congratulate the “newly wedded” and wish for them twenty-five years more of happy married life.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, September 9, 1926

Koehler – Carlton Nuptials

Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Koehler left for Bonham Wednesday morning to be absent for several days.  Their departure for that city was for the purpose of being in attendance upon the ceremony that will unite in marriage their only son, Egon Koehler and Miss Lillian Carlton, a former teacher in the La Grange Public Schools.  The ceremony will take place Thursday, today, at one o’clock in the afternoon.

Egon is now stationed in Bartlettsville, Oklahoma, where he holds a lucrative position, and that city will be the future home of the young couple.

The Journal congratulates them and wishes for them a happy, long and useful married life.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, September 22, 1927

Married Sunday At The Methodist Church

Immediately after the morning service at the Travis street Methodist church last Sunday, Rev. Paul W. Evans, in the presence of Mrs. Albert Witt and Miss Grace Lueders, united in marriage Roy, son of Mr. and Mrs. R. H. Gilliam of Route No. 6 and Miss Georgerine, daughter of George Koehler.

Our sincerest good wishes are offered to the young couple who begin their married life with high hopes and willingness to do.  They will remain at the home of their relatives for a short while, after which, unless their plans are changed they will go to Waco.

Contributed by Rob Brown

Weimar Mercury
13 Apr 1928


Last Thursday morning the directors of the Bluff Schuetzen-Verein held a meeting and present was D. J. Weikel, who recently purchased the property for the sum of $630, and Geo. Adamcik, who was a bidder for the property heretofore, but lost out.

The statement was made that Mr. Weikel was willing to release the Verein from the sale, and made his statement that, inasmuch as he could not rent the land on which the pavillion and other buildings were located, he would permit them to sell to Mr. Adamcik. Mr. Adamcik offered $750, which was accepted and he will become the owner.

Mr. Adamcik, according to the statement that he made to the eeditor several weeks since, will have the buildings razed nd taken to his newly acquired property and will use the most available timber in constructing a new home for his family. He will be close to the highway, and will also have his demonstraton headquarters of the Crossley Icy Ball refrigerator at this home.

Thus, the mecca for hundreds in the past becomes history. — LaGrange Journal.

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, April 19, 1928

Married At Houston

Sheriff Loessin received a very terse message last Thursday morning; before opening it, however he gave the yellow envelope a careful once-over and became very apprehensive, that is the way of a peace officer.  Visions of reward for the apprehension of an escaped convict, or thief or burglar may have been his, but he was brave and, opening the envelop, found the following terse message: “Viola and I were married here yesterday.”

“Yesterday”, referred to in the message, was Wednesday of last week.  “Viola” referred to, was Miss Viola Sladczyk, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. V. C. Sladczyk of South Jefferson street, La Grange, and the “I” referred to the sheriff’s son, Wilburn.  These two young folks, prominently connected and favorites with the younger set, had just regarded the brightness of Wednesday, after the snow storm, as an advance notice of their future, and down at Houston, joined hands, for better or for worse.

In all sincerity we offer our congratulations and wish them a long and useful married life.  The young bride is accomplished in many ways, and has ever been a favorite with her friends, which practically means everyone who knows her.  She grew to womanhood here.  Wilburn, for whom we have ever entertained a very high regard, and whom we have known since his infancy, have watched him grow to young manhood and noticed his willingness to work and become identified with the farming industry and the community in which he has lived, is a son any parent can point to with the keenest pride.

As they journey through life, may the shadows that cross their path be few, if any, and the horizon be ever bright enough to keep inviolate their troth, so that the sunbeams of happiness will be with them and in their home, during life.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, April 26, 1928

Bride Honored With Kitchen Shower

Mrs. Wilburn Loessin was complimented with a kitchen shower and bridge, having as hostess Mrs. Leo Frede, Jr., Tuesday afternoon at the home of Mrs. Leo Frede, Sr..  The house was beautifully decorated with cut flowers.  After the games delicious refreshments were served, consisting of brick ice cream and cake.

Then the guests were asked to enter the dining room where the bride was seated in a beautiful decorated chair, before a table heaped with gifts.  The gifts were then presented to the bride by Little Miss Virginia Frede, who was dressed as a prim little kitchen maid, with an appropriate verse.

Miscellaneous Shower

Mrs. Earl Greenshield complimented Mrs. Wilburn Loessin, a recent bride with a delightful linen shower and bridge, on Friday, April 20th, at her home.

A delicious salad course was served on trays, carrying out the pink and white color scheme.

High score was awarded to Mrs. Olga Steinbrook, and consolation to Mrs. Walter Stierling, who graciously presented them to the bride with a beautiful gift.

After refreshments were served, a beuatiful basket decorated in pink and white, filled with many beautiful gifts was presented to the bride by Mrs. Arthur Koehler and Mrs. E. H. Reiss.  Mrs. Reiss quoting the following:

“In the beautiful garden of friendship,
I found this basket for you,
May each flower be thought of
As coming from some one who loves you true.
For each of us wish you and Wilburn,
A life of happiness gay,
May each day be filled with sunshine,
With no clouds to drive it away.”

Contributed by Rob Brown

The Weimar Mercury
4 May 1928, page 7


Flatonia, Texas, April 25. — Only once before, in 1917, has the number of graduates of the Flatonia High School exceeded that of this years. Of the 15 seniors, only four are girls.

The class list is as follows, Floy Lee Berger, Stella and Alice Freytag, Annie Lee Kelley, John Joe Kolar, Lee Sedlmeyer, Vernon L. Cockrill, Emil Michal, Edward Munro, Emil and George Pechacek, Arvil Hart, William Foytik, William Hanna and Douglas Arnim.

The La Grange Journal
November 15, 1928

“Black Beans of Death”

(From The American-Statesman)

It is a cold, gloomy day in March of 1843.  A dismal wind startles weird echoes in the trees and canons of mountainous country near Salado, Mexico – rising in the mountains and sweeping with vicious insistence down to the little settlement where one hundred and seventy-six men are doomed to die.

In their hearts there is little hope of release.  They sit in the stifling air of a rude shed, converted into a death chamber from a barn, and wait orders to march before a firing line and surrender their lives for Texas.  Awaiting the surrender of their all – these who had scorned all other surrender as not befitting men who had sworn themselves to win freedom for their state.

Their clothes were worn threadbare, their feet were sore and lacerated from those long days and nights on the mountains without food or shelter while they sought the way back to Texas.  Bodies were weak and helpless from the long exposure and in their minds was no thought but the release death would bring.  In the hands of the Mexican general Santa Anna they hoped for no mercy.

Guards enter the room and silently place the men in heavy iron chains, ordering each to stand in line as he was bound.  No word is said – then one of the Mexicans holds an official looking document to the light and reads orders that chill the blood of every man who heard them.  They had expected death – death for them all according to the will of Santa Anna.  Their capturer, General Mexia, had written his relentless commander, asking freedom for the prisoners, and Santa Anna had granted that only one man out of every ten would be shot and that the others might be spared.

In the history of Texas is written many chapters of dramatic happenings, but none more powerful in ironic twists of fate than the scene that followed the reading of the cruel orders.

An officer, holding an earthen mug in his hand, comes into the shed where the Texans were confined and bound in chains.  In the mug were one hundred and seventy-six beans, the number of the prisoners.  One hundred and fifty-nine beans were white and seventeen were black.  The prisoners were each to draw a bean from the mug.  The black beans meant death.

To tell the rest would be only to repeat a story known to all Texans, for the destiny of the Mier prisoners – men who dared to enter the enemy’s country out-numbered many times, to save their comrades captured by General Woll at San Antonio – will be re-told and remembered through many generations.

It is from the lips of Mrs. Franciska Vogt of La Grange that the story was recently recounted with a new and gripping angle on the well known incidents – for Mrs. Vogt is the one person living who was present and remembers when the bones of these seventeen men were brought back to Texas soil and buried on the bluff overlooking her home in La Grange.  And it was on her 93rd birthday that she recalled that solemn ceremony of 1848, when as a child of 13 she rode bareback to the site where the Mier prisoners were re-buried with honor and praise.

“Ah, I shall never forget how it looked – that procession of men riding mules and leading others with the bones of the Texans slung in gunny-sacks across the backs of the animals,” she said, her eyes once more glowing with the amazement she must have felt as a child.  “They came right into town, and when I heard what was going to be done, I remember I ran and jumped on my pony and raced to the top of the hill for the ceremony.”

“I do not remember much of what happened, except that it was all very solemn and quiet as the bones were carefully and tenderly buried up there on the hill.  Then the monument was put up – the big limestone tomb under which are the remains of those seventeen men who drew the black beans of death.”

Mrs. Vogt recalled that she was unable to get astride her horse after it was all over – remembering, as she says, more of the smaller details that made an impression on a young mind.

“I know it was some man from Austin who helped me – some nice man who held my horse and helped me swing up to ride back home again, but I do not know who, though I still remember how he looked that day,” she said.

The little old lady who will soon reach the century mark also told the story of the man who took the black bean drawn by a comrade away from him and died in his stead.  The incident may be legend or true, but Mrs. Vogt states that she has heard it all her life and believes its veracity.  It is told that the first to draw the fatal lot was a man with a wife and children back at home, and that his friend forced him to exchange the beans so that he might live.

Though the names of this Damon and Pythias of Texas history may be lost in the maze of years, what a monument to friendships that face life and death with equal unselfishness!

The burial of the Mier prisoners is only one of the incidents of early Texas history that can be told in the first person by the gray-haired and smiling grandmother and great-grandmother of La Grange.  She came to Fayette county from Germany in 1847 with her mother and brothers and sisters, following the father George Willrich, who had come the previous year and located a home.  Mrs. Vogt tells that the state gave 300 acres of land to every man with a family who settled in that country then – land as wild as if it had never been touched by man.

“These hills were thick with wild animals and rattle snakes, but I got used to them and remember riding all over the country by myself as a child,” she relates.  “I will always remember one time when I was going after the horses for my mother and came up on a lot of commotion in the woods.  When I got to a clearing, I saw six wolves tearing at the body of a deer they had killed.”

Mrs. Vogt’s father was a prominent judge in the “old country,” and came to America with many other immigrants during those years who sought freedom and prosperity in the new land.  He had a large family of children whose children and children’s children are numbered among the settlers of the state.  Mrs. Vogt’s own children are Mrs. Ernest Knigge of La Grange, with whom she makes her home; E. R. Vogt of Schulenburg, Julius Vogt of O’Quinn, Mrs. Fritz Nollkamper, Fritz Vogt, La Grange.

The story of the Mier prisoners will again be placed before the people of Texas during the next legislature, it was recently learned, as the senator and representative from that part of the state, Senator Gus. Rusek of Schulenburg and Rep. James Pavlica of Flatonia, are to ask that 50 acres of land along the top of the bluff where the men are buried, be purchased by the state for a state park and a memorial to their heroism.  The land is available for purchase at this time, and as the location is ideal scenically for a beautiful recreation resort, they will use all their power to pass the bill creating the Mier park for Texas.

A monument already stands on the court house square at La Grange, erected several years ago by the state “to the memory of the men who drew the black beans and were shot at Salado, Mexico, on March 24th, 1843,” and to Capt. N. H. Dawson and his men who were massacred at Salado, Texas, in September of 1842.  The remains of some of these men are also said to rest with the Mier prisoners in the tomb at La Grange, brought back by the group who went by mule train on their errand of such grim homage.

To follow the trail of these one hundred and fifty-six men who were spared in the fatal lottery at the haciendo of Salado would be to wonder whether or not the man who saved his friend did not leave him the worse fate.  Dying of unbearable hardships on their march into Mexico City, wasting away in dungeons, shot while trying to escape and a few finally winning their way back to Texas, the group one by one went the way of their comrades who drew death from the glass of chance that day.  But no matter what followed for them, it would surely be safe to imagine that none experienced deeper agony of suspence, or grief for his comrades, than when they plunged their hands into the little grains of matter, colored black and white, that meant a promised freedom or a black doom.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, July 25, 1929

Pupils of Mrs. Sedonia Rice Presented In Recital

On last Friday evening the pupils of Mrs. Sedonia Rice appeared in a charming program – a musical recital at the former’s studio, when they entertained with instrumental, vocal and violin selections and popular ditties.  There was a splendid attendance of friends of the young people participating.  Those appearing on the program of the afternoon included the Misses Katherine Gebhardt, Genelda Koenig, Grace Lueders, Vlasta Docekal, Annie and Lillian Bordovsky, Evelyn Rudi, and A. F. Weber, Jr., and Thomas Lueders.  Upon conclusion of the program refreshments of ice cream and cake were served.

Contributed by Rob Brown

The La Grange Journal
Thursday, August 1, 1929

Luther League Selects The Delegates For Seguin

At a called meeting of the La Grange Luther League, held at the St. Paul Lutheran church last Friday night, Lee Henry Bollmeyer, Misses Marguerite Schroeder and Robbie Schott were selected as delegates to attend the annual convention of the State League which is to held at Seguin for three days, August 30-31 and September 1.  Alternates named are Gilbert Koenig and Werner Heise.

Through the efforts of the local league a bulletin board, very attractive, was placed at the front porch of the church, which will give to all passersby the program ------.  The board will be on the porch only temporarily, as arrangements are now in force to have the board placed in the yard where it may be readily seen.

Contributed by Rob Brown