Frederick Kuenemann and his family sailed from Bremen, Germany in September 1845. Once in Texas they faced great hardship, walking epidemic-crowded roads to New Braunfels, suffering the death of one daughter on the way and arriving in newly settled Fredericksburg in 1846. In 1866 Kuenemann bought the 'fachwerk or half-timbered dwelling which comprises the ground floor of the house. Probably built in 1847 by Heinrich Schupp, the frame of heavy timbers and diagonal bracing filled with fieldstone is a classic example of European medieval building method. In 1875 the eldest Kuenemann son, Heinrich, was given the home and three adjoining town lots. The family business complex came to include furniture shops adjacent to the main house, a large lumberyard across the street, and a hardware store on Main Street. By the 1880s a kitchen, second floor with double gallery, and Victorian gingerbread trim had been added to the main house. The evolution of the Kuenemann house from typical early settler's cottage to affluent Victorian grandeur is a classic Texas story like that of the family itself. The last Kuenemann left the house in 1929; it was then used as a nursing home and private residence. (1998)
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