Pioneer Museum Complex
Bookending Fredericksburg’s bustling Main Street scene is the city’s other major history-related attraction, the Pioneer Museum Complex (309 W. Main St., 830/990-8441, www.pioneermuseum.com, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Mon.–Sat., 1–5 p.m. Sun., $4 ages 11 and up). This is the kind of museum many small towns have, but most other rural communities weren’t founded by German settlers who traversed across the hardscrabble environs of the Texas Hill Country to forge a living among the limestone-laden soil, meddlesome cedar trees, and oppressive Texas heat.
This collection of late-1800s and early-1900s buildings is based on the original property—a home, smokehouse, and barn—belonging to Henry Kammlah, one of the city’s early residents. The home is filled with various pieces of furniture and equipment from pioneer life, but several aspects of Kammlah’s home are unique to his heritage—the cool, damp basement contains a large wooden beer keg, and visitors can almost smell the savory scent of sausage emanating from the old smokehouse in the back.
The remainder of the complex contains a barn with old farm and kitchen equipment, a collection of buggies (as in horse-and-buggies), and an old schoolhouse complete with desks and a chalkboard with lessons written in German. Future plans call for the historic St. Mary’s Church to be moved to the location.
© Andy Rhodes from Moon Texas, 6th Edition