Hermann Lungkwitz

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Hermann Lungkwitz
Alameda (by Hermann Lungkwitz).jpg
Alameda by Hermann Lungkwitz (14.03.1813 - 10.02.1891)
BornKarl Friedrich Hermann Lungkwitz
(1813-03-14)March 14, 1813
Halle, Saxony-Anhalt
DiedFebruary 10, 1891(1891-02-10) (aged 77)
Austin, Texas
NationalityGerman American
EducationDresden Academy of Fine Arts
Known forRomantic landscapes

Hermann Lungkwitz (1813–1891) was a 19th-century German-born Texas romantic landscape artist and photographer whose work became the first pictoral record of the Texas Hill Country.[1]

Early life[edit]

Karl Friedrich Hermann Lungkwitz was born on March 14, 1813 in Halle, Saxony-Anhalt to hosiery manufacturer Johann Gottfried Lungkwitz and his wife Friederike Wilhelmine (Hecht) Lungkwitz.[2]

Lungkwitz was enrolled at the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts from 1840–1843 and received his artistic training under the tutelage of Adrian Ludwig Richter. After receiving an academy certificate of achievement in 1843 for his sketch of the Elbe River, Lungkwitz spent the next three years honing his artistic skills in Salzkammergut and the Northern Limestone Alps in Bavaria.[3]

Lungkwitz and his brother-in-law Friedrich Richard Petri joined other students in the failed 1849 May Uprising in Dresden,[4] an event at the tail end of the Revolutions of 1848 resulting from the refusal of Frederick Augustus II to recognize a constitutional monarchy.[5]


In 1850, the Lungkwitz and Petri families emigrated to the United States, landing first in New York City. They migrated to Wheeling, West Virginia, but decided on the destination of Texas in 1851.

In 1852, the two families bought a 320-acre farm for $400 in the settlement of Pedernales, Texas near Fredericksburg and took up farming and cattle ranching.[6] The families remained there until 1864, although Petri drowned in the Pedernales River in 1857.[7][8] Lungkwitz continued to create paintings of the Texas Hill Country, one of his favorite subjects being Enchanted Rock, of which he painted at least six landscapes:[9]

I wanted to penetrate more into the interior of the granite mountains. I found and painted a few charming views of the Enchanted Rock and the neighboring mountain ridges from my position on a very precipitous peak called Rauhenkopf. To reach my position of observation, I had to hike one and a half miles every day through mesquite brush and into rocky ground without any path ... Within a radius of six miles, one cannot find any human habitation—one can only camp out. The area at Crabapple near Grebe's and Max's farm is wildly romantic with many beautiful views.

"Split Rock on Shoal Creek", oil on academy board by Hermann Lungkwitz.

The artist created in great detail in both pencil drawings and paintings. In addition to Gillespie County vistas, his Texas subjects were the German settlements of New Braunfels and Sisterdale, the Hamilton Pool and West Cave at Round Mountain, Marble Falls, and areas around Austin and San Antonio. From 1866–1870, Lundkwitz ran a San Antonio photography studio with Carl G. von Iwonski.[10]

In 1870 he accepted an $1,800 a year[6] appointment in Austin as photographer for the Texas General Land Office[11] under commissioner Jacob Kuechler,[12] brother-in-law to Friedrich Richard Petri. He held the position for the entirety of the administration of Governor Edmund J. Davis. His daughter Martha Lungkwitz Bickler[13] also received an appointment as Texas General Land Office clerk in an era were few women worked in state government. In 1877, Martha's husband Jacob Bickler founded the Texas German and English Academy in Austin, where Lungkwitz taught drawing and painting.[14] Bickler became superintendent of Galveston public schools in 1887, and also founded the Bickler Academy in Austin in 1892. Lungkwitz gave private lessons at both Austin and Galveston whenever he visited the Bicklers. In Blanco County, Lungkwitz assisted his daughter Eva[15] and her husband Richard Klappenbach on their sheep ranch near Johnson City.

Personal life and death[edit]

Lungkwitz married Elisabeth "Elise" Petri, sister of Friedrich Richard Petri. The couple had six children. Elisasbeth died in 1880 and is buried at the Oakwood Cemetery in Austin, Texas.[16] Lungkwitz died in Austin on February 10, 1891, and is buried next to his wife.[17]

Selected works[edit]

  • Sunset in Saxony (1846)
  • Old Pinta Crossing the Guadalupe (1857)
  • Crockett Street Looking West (1857)[18]
  • Guadalupe River Landscape (1862)
  • Enchanted Rock, Near Fredericksburg (1864)
  • Texas Military Institute (1874)
  • Taylor's Lime Kiln (1875)
  • Paggi's Mill on Barton Creek, Austin (1876)


  1. ^ "Hermann Lungkwitz Romantic Landscapist". The Alcade. Hooked on Books: 14. July–August 1984.
  2. ^ Fredericke Hecht Lungkwitz at Find a Grave
  3. ^ McGuire, James Patrick. "Hermann Lungkwitz". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  4. ^ Mallgrave, Harry Francis (1996). Gottfried Semper: Architect of the Nineteenth Century. Yale University Press. pp. 167–170. ISBN 978-0-300-06624-1.
  5. ^ Newcomb, W. W. Jr. "Friedrich Richard Petri". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  6. ^ a b Ennis, Michael (April 1984). "Light in the Hills". Texas Monthly: 170, 172, 174, 176.
  7. ^ Kennedy, Ira. "Herman Lungkwitz, Pioneer Artist". Ira Kennedy. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  8. ^ Friedrich Richard Petri at Find a Grave
  9. ^ Allred, Lance (2009). Enchanted Rock: A Natural and Human History. University of Texas Press. p. 29. ISBN 978-0-292-71963-7.
  10. ^ McGuire, James Patrick. "Carl G. von Iwonski". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  11. ^ Johnson, John G. "General Land Office". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  12. ^ McGuire, James Patrick. "Jacob Kuechler". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  13. ^ Martha Lungkwitz Bickler at Find a Grave
  14. ^ Bickler, Ralph A. "Jacob Bicker". Handbook of Texas Online. Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  15. ^ Eva Lungkwitz Klappenbach at Find a Grave
  16. ^ Elise Lungkwitz at Find a Grave
  17. ^ Hermann Lungkwitz at Find a Grave
  18. ^ Fisher, Lewis F; Fenrenbach, T R (1996). Saving San Antonio: The Precarious Preservation of a Heritage. Texas Tech University Press. p. 29. ISBN 978-0-89672-372-6.


  • McGuire, James Patrick (1983). Hermann Lungkwitz, Romantic Landscapist on the Texas Frontier. University of Texas Press, Austin. ISBN 0-292-73026-8.

External links[edit]