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New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Jun 25th, 2019 at 11:21pm
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4th of July Royalty Shooting for 170 years
By Tara Voigt Kohlenberg
Fourth of July.  Just those three little words bring to mind a myriad of thoughts: Independence Day. Red, White & Blue. Patriotic Music. Stars & Stripes. Parades. Fireworks. Kings and Queens.  Wait, What?  There are no Kings and Queens on Independence Day, are there?  Oh, but in New Braunfels, there are. 
Our founding families first landed on the coast of the Republic of Texas in the fall of 1844, pushing on to finally cross the Guadalupe and set up camp here March 21, 1845.  Texas was accepted as the 28th state of the Union on December 29, 1845, with Texas formally joining the union on February 19, 1846.  In the course of little more than a year, the immigrants were Germans, then Texans and finally Americans.  Come July 4, 1846, the residents of New Braunfels celebrated with cannon fire and much jubilation. They were overjoyed at being Americans. 
Texas was less hospitable than back home, so almost all of the pioneers had guns for hunting and protection from Indian attack. So why not gather for a little friendly shooting rivalry?  As interest grew, so did the number of members and clubs.  The Neu Braunfels Schuetzen Verein was organized on July 4, 1849.  It was recognized by the National Rifle Association in a 1948 article as the “oldest organization of its kind in America”.  That likely has not changed.  At one time, there were at least sixty-five established clubs within a twenty-five-mile radius of New Braunfels, all coming together for competition.  In 1890, they organized themselves into the Texanishen Schuetzen Bundes (Texas Rifle Association).  Most all have since disappeared.
The New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein has survived many trying times, including wars, droughts and epidemics when shooting activities were severely limited, but shooting continued. During the Civil War, most of the men went off to war and powder was scarce.  In both 1862 and 1863, only three members mustered out to the range to celebrate the anniversary, firing only 2-3 shots each, with the best being named the winner.   During the Spanish American War and World War I, activities were heavily curtailed.  The club conducted “rifle training school” for boys and young men during WWII and were provided ample ammo by the local War Production Board.
The original Schuetzen Verein met in the open air shaded by trees.  The New Braunfels Club range has been located at least five places, having to move each time to be f
  

J. Scott McCash&&New Braunfels, TX&&830-237-2376&&jsmccash@yahoo.com
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830singleshot
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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #1 - Jun 25th, 2019 at 11:27pm
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article continued:
The New Braunfels Club range has been located at least five places, having to move each time to be further out from town.  They include properties near the Comal Springs, at the base of the Balcones Escarpment, further out FM 1863 and out Highway 46.  Club members began shooting with muzzleloaders, then going to breech loading firearms and then fixed ammo. After WWI, members shot standard centerfire cartridges at 200 yards.  Shooting .22 caliber Rimfire at 100 yards became more popular and the 200-yard matches were phased out. With all of the changes over the years, one thing remains the same: the importance of the 4th of July Anniversary Celebration.
Newspaper accounts of the 1850s thru the 1890s tell of three-day “Grosse Schuetzenfeste” (Big Shooting Festivals), which would begin with cannon fire at dawn on the 4th, meeting in the city to listen to a reading of the Declaration of Independence, followed by marching behind a band to the “Schiesplatze” (shooting range).  There were also concerts, fireworks, grand balls and decorations on every house in the city. In 1890, there were forty-three clubs that participated (and you thought New Braunfels was new to the convention/tourist industry). The best part by far, is still the crowning of the Schuetzen-Koenig (Shooting King).  Each shooter fires ten shots at a 25-ring target 100 yards down range.  The silver dollar size target with a shot most at center is proclaimed King.  It is believed the very first Schuetzen-Koenig was Carl Dosch in 1850.  Women were not allowed to shoot early on.  Later, women could shoot as “associate members” in their own category to become Schuetzen-Koenigen (Shooting Queen).  The first Schuetzen-Koenigen was Hilda Rahe in 1949.   It was not until sometime in the late 1970s or early 80s that women would become full members with voting rights.
This year, after enjoying the 2019 Old Fashion 4th of July Parade & Patriotic Program, the New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein will honor our heritage on July 7, celebrating 170 years of food, fellowship and sportsmanship using the same type guns and the same type targets that our members have used for years. And we will crown New Braunfels’ 4th of July Royalty – Schuetzen-Koenig und Schuetzen-Koenigen.  Happy Birthday, America!
If you have an interest in German-style target competition, check out (You need to Login or Register to view media files and links)


Sources:  Centennial History of New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein; Sophienburg Museum & Archives; Gay Wimberley; Jimmy Meckel
  

J. Scott McCash&&New Braunfels, TX&&830-237-2376&&jsmccash@yahoo.com
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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #2 - Jun 25th, 2019 at 11:44pm
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830singleshot
Nice photo and history of the NBSV. Thank you for posting.
Can you share the date of that photo?
  

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JägerWilhelm
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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #3 - Jun 26th, 2019 at 8:38am
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Thanks for presenting the history of this club. I heard many things over the years about the New Braunfels club.

So they stopped all centerfire matches 100 years ago?
  

Gruß,
Willi
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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #4 - Jun 26th, 2019 at 11:21am
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That is a great photograph! I wonder how many of those gents might be Civil War veterans?

Thanks for posting this...   Jim
  
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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #5 - Jun 26th, 2019 at 2:02pm
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An awesome photo and an interesting story to go with it.  Many thanks for sharing it!
  

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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #6 - Jun 26th, 2019 at 4:34pm
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If you go to the nbsv.org website and look at some of the pictures, you will see rifles with an under barrel (bar) of some sort.  Is that for harmonic tuning or to keep the barrel off the standing rest or what is it for. Some may be air rifles but I even see a bolt action with it on. Many of the rifles are definitely purpose-built for some style of shooting.  I like the high wall with the forearm going all the way to the end of the barrel. How is the match shot.  Also many of the rifles I can see, have the hook at the top of the stock rather than the bottom for typical offhand shooting. Definitely a shooting style that I am not familiar.  Just curious. Bob
« Last Edit: Jun 26th, 2019 at 4:49pm by Old-Win »  
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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #7 - Jun 26th, 2019 at 6:00pm
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For a video overview of New Braunfels match go to:
(You need to Login or Register to view media files and links)
  

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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #8 - Jun 28th, 2019 at 6:26am
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Old win,
The bar is attached to the bottom of the rifle, and is placed on the stairstep rest, the upside down hook is on top of your shoulder.
The rifles with the long stocks had a spring loaded ststem in them.
Some just have a bent iece of steel.
All cannot have a contact face of more than one inch square that contacts the stairstep rest.
I shot a rem 40 x in the rest, snd i still have a ballard that was my awful hand gun!
  
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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #9 - Jun 28th, 2019 at 9:23pm
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Nice video! Looks like fun, even if they weakened and let the ladies join in!  Grin
  
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Re: New Braunfels Schuetzen Verein upcoming 170th
Reply #10 - Jul 7th, 2019 at 2:01am
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My great grandfather might just be in that picture. I know he shot there in the late 1800's early 1900's..

See if this works. New Braunfels rifle match scores from The Houston Post, May 16, 1904.
  
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