New Braunfels Cemetery

NBCPrince Carl on March 15, 1845 in San Antonio, Texas purchased from the heirs of J. M. Veramendi, land situated on the Guadalupe and Comal Rivers. Lt. Nicolaus Zink surveyed and platted a town site, which Prince Carl of Solms-Braunfels named New Braunfels. At the west end of this town plat, four acres were set aside for a cemetery.  This cemetery was named New Braunfels Cemetery and its name has never changed in its 130 years of existence.

The location had no significance except that it was not near either of the flooding basins of the Guadalupe and Comal Rivers. It is located on U. S. Highway 81, West, which runs parallel at this point of the elevated section of Interstate Highway 35. The cemetery is visible to all traffic on this busy highway.

The first person buried in this cemetery was 50-year old Mrs. Elise Catherine Reh Peter. Her death and burial occurred June 23, 1845 and at this occasion (according to Pastor Ervendberg’s comments column) the cemetery was dedicated. There is no existing gravestone for Mrs. Elise Peter, for her husband Gerlach Peter who followed her in death one month later – July 1845. One might presume they were settlers. Mr. and Mrs. Gerlach Peter came from Bretthausen, Marienburg, Nassau; they had a daughter, Wilhemine, who after her marriage to John F. Russell lived in Bexar County.

The oldest gravestone now existing in the cemetery marks the resting place of Johann Justus Kellner. He was born December 22, 1821 and died on July 31, 1851. A single man, he arrived in 1845 from Braunschweig, Germany. He married Mrs. Wilhemina Elmendorf and they had two sons, Ernest and Wilhelm, at the time of his death. In 1847 Mr. Kellner bought from Adolf von Wedemeyer 32 or more acres of land with the ferry that operated where the Comal River joins the Guadalupe (this crossing is already designated by a Texas Historical Marker). He operated the ferry until his death in 1851. His widow, Wilhemina, married Carl Bardenwerper and they operated this ferry until 1866 when they sold it the Florenz Kreuz family.

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Comal County Historical Commission