Muenster, Texas is a community situated in North Central Texas. The city’s roots date back to 1877 when August and Caroline Pulte, German-Catholics, first settled in Cooke County. In February 1889, August wrote a series of letters to the St. Louis based German periodical Amerika noting the suitability of land in the area. These letters came to the attention of Emil Flusche, who along with his brothers, Anton and August, became the founding force behind Muenster.
The Flusches had experience establishing communities prior to their arrival in Texas. They previously established communities in Iowa and Kansas. Transplants to America from Germany and Catholic in their faith, the Flusches made efforts to specifically attract German-Catholics to their communities. This practice continued with the founding of Muenster.
The Flusches decided to establish their community along the Missouri, Kansas, and Texas (MK&T) railroad. The railroad was built through the area in 1887 with town site being established in 1889. While the railroad no longer runs through the city, it was an important part of Muenster’s early years. Passenger service ended in Muenster in 1959. In 1968, MK&T abandoned a ninety mile section of track that included the line that went through Muenster.
On December 8, 1889, the first Catholic Mass was celebrated in Muenster. Father Henry Brickley of Gainesville served as the celebrant in which twenty-five men, seven women, and six children gathered at the Flusche land office which served as an ad hoc church. While settlement began in Muenster prior to the town’s first religious services, community members commemorate the event as the date of the town’s founding.
The discovery of oil in the area during the 1920s led to new developments. Oil brought economic growth and new people to the community. To accommodate the growth brought about by the economic prosperity, Muenster became a legally incorporated city in 1927.
Residents preserve their German heritage through festivals, cuisine, architecture, and family surnames. Since 1976 an annual Germanfest has been held during the last full weekend in April. An annual Oktoberfest is also celebrated. Local stores such as Fischer's Meat Market and Bayer's Kolonialwaren sell a variety of German inspired sausages and strudels. As one drives through town, several buildings with Germanesque architecture can be found. If one takes the time to look through a Muenster phonebook, one will quickly notice German surnames such as Henscheid, Fischer, Walterscheid, Hesse, and Felderhoff among others.
At present, Muenster’s population consists of approximately 1600 people, most of whom are descendants of the original German-Catholics who first settled the community in the late Nineteenth Century.