The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 88, July 1984 - April, 1985 Page: 216
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Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Reimer found the only complete extant copy of the portfolio at the
Barker Texas History Center, University of Texas at Austin.) Con-
tained in the republished portfolio are two publications, Instruction
fiir deutsche Auswanderer nach Texas, thirty pages, and the Society's
Comite-Bericht [Committee report], forty-seven pages; a map of Texas
(four color, 1850), maps of the grant area of the Society and the harbor
of Indianola, and plat maps of New Braunfels, Fredericksburg, and
Indianola; and a panorama (two color) of New Braunfels in 1847.
The operations of the Society in bringing many thousands of Ger-
mans to Texas, in establishing the cities of Indianola (first called
Carlshafen), New Braunfels, and Fredericksburg, and in concluding
an unusually successful peace treaty with the Comanches are generally
well known. Nevertheless, the reprinted material is still valuable to the
scholar and student of Texas history. It presents in toto and in an
accessible fashion the unusual promotional efforts on the part of the
Society, which at the time was nearly bankrupt. The original portfolio
was intended to attract immigrants to the Society's largely agricultural-
ly worthless land grant in West Texas and, in so doing, to recover
some of its financial losses. The thirty questions and answers comprised
in the Instruction offer (as do many similar publications of the peri-
od) much valuable information for the Texas immigrant, even if the
pamphlet's spirit of noblesse oblige strikes the modern reader as
rather quaint. The committee report is not a report at all. Rather it is
a glowing description of the settler's life in Texas, where the (inland)
climate, it is said, is much more conducive to pioneer life and specifi-
cally to farming than it is in the Midwest (where many German immi-
grants were also heading at that time). The bulk of this "report" is
an enthusiastic and suspiciously journalistic "letter" to a potential
immigrant purportedly from Louis C. Ervendberg, the Society's Lu-
theran pastor who had come to Texas several years before the arrival
of the Society.
The maps and the panorama are also worthwhile reprints. The pano-
rama itself does not appear in any other available publication, while the
previously published copies of the maps (e.g., in Rudolph L. Biesele's
work on the German settlements in Texas) are greatly reduced in size
and much inferior to the excellent reprints of the portfolio. Accom-
panying this publication is a brief foreword in German and English
by West Germany's leading expert on German immigration to the
United States, Giinter Moltmann of the University of Hamburg.
University of Houston
THEODORE G. GISH
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 88, July 1984 - April, 1985, periodical, 1984/1985; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101210/m1/250/: accessed June 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.