How Luckenbach Got Its Name

Luckenbach was established in 1849.

One of the first settlers in the area was Jacob Luckenbach (1817-1911). A group of German nobility, the Adelsverein, hoped for great riches by establishing a colony in the New World. In 1845 Jacob signed up and sailed with his family on the Johann Dethardt to Indianola in December. Jacob's family was one of the first settlers to arrive in Fredericksburg. He was allocated a town lot and a 10-acre lot southwest of town, where he first settled his family. In 1852, he sold both properties and moved 12 miles southeast of the site that was later known as Luckenbach.
He was instrumental in the creation of Gillespie County and served as county commissioner and school super-visor. Even though he opposed secession, he served in Captain Englebert Rrauskopf's Home Guard during the Civil War. His youngest brother, August, joined a group of Union sympathizers and died at the hands of Confederate forces in 1862. Although Jacob Luckenbach and his family were early settlers, they are not credited with founding the town of Luckenbach. That honor goes to the Rev. and Mrs. August Engel. Rev. Engel was a circuit-riding Methodist preacher and was often away from home. Mrs. Engel, having time on her hands, established a small country store near their home in 1860. When August Engel Jr. applied for a post office, his sister, Minna Engel, agreed to work as his clerk. While they were filling out the postal application, Minna selected the name of her fiancé, Carl Albert Luckenbach, who was the son of Jacob.

In the end, the name simply stuck.

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