The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 50, July 1946 - April, 1947 Page: 92
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
President James K. Polk ordered General Zachary Taylor to
move his troops across the Nueces. Every available teamster for
miles around was employed by the government to haul supplies
to the troops west of the Nueces. Only a few settlers could be
moved in the winter and spring of 1846. Unfortunately a long
rainy season set in, whereupon disease broke out at Carlshafen,
from where it spread to New Braunfels when the immigrants
were finally moved inland. How many of them died in Carls-
hafen will probably never be ascertained. Estimates vary on
the total number of victims inland, that is, on the way to New
Braunfels, in New Braunfels, and in Fredericksburg, from
400 to as high as 1,200." Only one list of victims is known to
me, and in it 348 names are listed, but not all of the deaths
recorded resulted from any disease in the epidemic stage. Most
of the deaths were caused by diarrhea, dysentery, and bilious
fever. This record is today mute but convincing evidence of
the seriousness of the epidemic, and this evidence is seconded
by a statement, in many instances, of the places of burial.
Whole families were wiped out, sometimes in the short space
of a week or two, and many children became orphans."6
By the end of the year 1846 the worst days of the settlement
were over. The first settlers had been acclimated during the
year 1845 and had gained the experience of making a crop in
1846. The late fall of 1846 and the winter following brought
an end to the terrible epidemic. The craftsmen began to ply
their trades and to build a reputation for their products. Small
farming communities sprang up around New Braunfels. Some
settlers followed those who had gone to Fredericksburg in 1846
and others went to the lands of the Fisher and Miller grant
above the Llano and founded a few small settlements there in
1847. Gradually the settlers adjusted themselves to the new
surroundings and began to enjoy the freedom and happiness
that Texas had in store for them.
1"Bracht, Texas im Jahre 1848, p. 244; Robert Penniger, Fest-Ausgabe,
50; Roemer, Texas, 218, 220; Moritz Tiling, History of the German Ele-
ment in Texas, 87-88; F. L. Olmsted, Wanderungen durch Texas und im
mexikanisehen Grenzlande, 129; Fritz Goldbeck, Seit fuenfzig Jahren, 13.
(See Biesele, German Settlements in Texas, 130, footnote 43, for writers
who used the epidemic for an opportunity to engage in merciless criticism
of the Adelsverein.)
66Protestantische Gemeinde Transcripts, II, 342a-381. Ervendberg,
who kept this record of deaths, lists other causes of death. Whether he
wrote from hearsay or on the basis of information from Dr. Theodor
Koester and Dr. Wilhelm Remer is not stated.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 50, July 1946 - April, 1947, periodical, 1947; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101117/m1/108/: accessed January 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.