University of Texas, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History

A Guide to the Carl Heinrich Herbst Papers, 1710-1905, 1924, 1976, 1979

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Herbst, Carl, 1828-1905
Title: Herbst, Carl Heinrich, Papers
Dates: 1710-1905, 1924, 1976, 1979
Abstract: Writings and materials relating to Carl Heinrich Herbst, early settler and educator of Comfort, Texas.
Accession No.: 87-146, 87-218
Extent: 3 in.
Language: Materials are written in German and English.
Repository: Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical Note

Carl Heinrich Herbst (1828-1905) immigrated to Texas from Germany in 1848. After living in Indianola and New Braunfels, he moved to San Antonio where he worked in a saddlery shop for several years, before becoming an American citizen in 1853. In 1854, Herbst joined Ernst Hermann Altgelt to settle the new town of Comfort, and to populate it with German freemasons, freethinkers, and political activists. The new town lay near San Antonio and the settlers traded raw materials and items such as shingles for the goods needed to help the town thrive. Herbst soon established a farm in then Kerr County (which became Kendall County in 1860) and married Sophie Morhof in 1858. They had eight children, seven of whom survived to adulthood: Albert, Rudolf, Theodore, Robert, Ema, Lina, and Ida.

Following the outbreak of the Civil War, many of Comfort’s men joined the Confederate Army. Herbst was no different, serving in the army under Captain Henry Schwethelm from 1862 to 1865. Upon the war’s end, he became District Clerk and was appointed principle of Comfort’s school. He remained the principle until his retirement in 1887, when he moved to his son Robert’s farm, where he lived until his death. Additionally, Herbst was an Honorary Member of the Order of the Sons of Hermann.


Lich, Glen E. “Comfort, Texas.” Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed July 20,2010.

Schilo, Fritz. “Sons of Hermann.” Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed July 20,2010.

Obituary of Carl Herbst, Comfort News (Comfort, TX), February 17, 1905.

Scope and Contents

The Carl Heinrich Herbst Papers, 1710-1905, 1924, 1976, 1979, relates to the Herbst family history, life in Germany, Carl Herbst’s experiences after immigrating to Texas, the history of Comfort, Texas, and the Civil War in the South. The collection includes genealogical material, speeches about the founding of Comfort, the recently deceased, and other historical matters; manuscripts, certificate, funeral orations of Herbst, clippings relating to Confederate captain Henry Schwethelm, memorials, obituaries, biographical and historical sketches, and newspaper clippings relating to Herbst and Comfort.

Materials are in German and English.


Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research use.

Index Terms

Subjects (Persons)
Altgelt, Ernest, 1832-1878
Herbst, Carl, 1828-1905 -- Archives
Herbst family
Herbst, Sophie Morhof
Holekamp, Daniel, Mrs.
Katze, Karl
Nohl family
Schwethelm, Henry
Seele, Herman
Wiedenfeld, Theodore and Magdaline
Wittbold, Herman
Carpentry -- Germany -- History
Carpentry -- United States -- History
Education -- Germany -- Hildesheim -- History -- 19th Century
Education -- Texas -- Comfort -- History -- 19th Century
Comfort (Tex.) -- History -- 19th century
Confederate States of America -- History
Hildesheim (Germany) -- History -- 19th century
Indianola (Tex.) -- history -- 19th century
New Braunfels (Tex.) -- History -- 19th century
San Antonio (Tex.) -- History -- 19th century

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Carl Heinrich Herbst Papers, 1710-1905, 1924, 1976, 1979, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.

Detailed Description of the Papers



2R37 Photocopies of speeches and writings - materials primarily in German
Seine Reden und Schriften - Speeches and Writings of Carl Herbst
"Carl Herbst Biographie, Family-History, Experience in Texas since 1844, Civil War, etc." - written December 11, 1902
Speech: September 26 & 27, 1879: Tells about the founding (1854) and development of Comfort, Texas
Speech: August 10, 1885: in honor of 25 Civil War soldiers
Speech: April 21, 1880: in honor of Mrs. Daniel Holekamp
Speech: March 13, 1887: in honor of Karl Katze
In Memoram: April 30, 1899
Speech: November 16, 1901: Gold-Wedding Theodore and Magdaline Wiedenfeld
Speech: November 16, 1901: Germas in America
Speech: August 12, 1887: farewell to his school
Speech: April 9, 1893: consecration of the school in Comfort
Several prints about Herbst's death in 1905
About the Herbst-Monument (three prints)
2.325/B51 Genealogical materials relating to the Herbst family
Biographical materials relating to Carl Herbst
Newspaper clippings relating to Comfort, Texas
Manuscript of "Seine Reden und Schriften"