24 July 2005

Hubert Wolters, Frontier Brewer

Hubert Wolters Rock Bluff Brewery c. 1878-1888 Hubert Wolters c. 1879

Hubert Wolters was born in August 21, 1846 in Braunsrath, Bavaria. He studied for the priesthood, then studied brewing in Baden Baden, and wound up serving in the Prussian Army in the Franco-Prussian War, where he earned the Iron Cross. In 1879, Hubert had emigrated to Texas, and married Augusta Lindner in Comfort, and set out for San Angelo. Federal records show his brewery in Ben Ficklen in 1878. It is possible that he started the brewery before he was married.

Hubert bought a wheat beer brewery from Eugene McCrohan and moved it to his farm, at 201 South Browning, which explains why the brewery is listed in both Ben Ficklen and Fort Concho. Later, Hubert bought the Star Saloon on East Concho Street and was a prominent citizen for several years. Hubert's daughter, Margaretha (Maggie), recalled, in 1958, that hemade "good beer and all kinds of soft drinks."

In the late 80s, there was a dairy near the brewery and stored the milk in the cellar. In the March 16, 1889 Standard, there was a notice that there would be a cut in milk prices. Two weeks later, the brewery burned to the ground. The report in the March 30 paper said "it is suspected that the recent cut in milk prices had something to do with the fire." In 1958, Maggie would say the fire was set by "envious friends."

After the fire, Hubert's health failed and he took his family on a three-month trip to Germany. Hubert died on March 23, 1891 in San Angelo. Augusta, her mother, died April 7, 1935. In 1919, Maggie married H. C. Voigt of San Angelo and lived in the home in which she was born until she died in 1964.

The interior of Wolters' Rock Bluff Brewery around 1884.

I wrote a book about the pioneer brewers of Texas. You can buy it here.


posted by hiikeeba at 08:29


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