Fredericksburg’s first school was held inside Vereins Kirche – the society church built on Market Square in 1847 – less than a year after the first settlers arrived. By the early 20th century, as many as 44 rural schools dotted the countryside around Fredericksburg and Gillespie County. These school buildings often doubled as community centers, serving as a venue for dances and important community meetings. They still do. Locals can rent several of the school buildings for weddings and other private events.
On the 120-mile Gillespie County Country Schools Trail, visitors can drive between 16 of the remaining schools to learn about education and customs of 19th century German Hill Country, explore the different architectural styles, and experience the beautiful landscape of the area between. Spend anywhere from two hours to half a day immersing yourself in German-Texan education and cultural heritage. Pick up a driving tour map at the Fredericksburg Visitor Information Center.
Watch our Gillespie County Country Schools video to learn more about German Texan cultural heritage in Texas. This video was produced for inclusion in our German Texans mobile tour found in our Texas Time Travel Tours mobile app. Download the app for more videos and travel information: