German-Texan Heritage Society

Housed in the historic German Free School, the German-Texan Heritage Society promotes awareness and preservation of the German cultural heritage of Texas.

The German Free School was the first school in Austin chartered by the state legislature. The building features rammed-earth walls and originally consisted of two rooms, one for boys and one for girls. In the evenings and on weekends the school also functioned as a community meeting place. After Austin opened its public school system, the Free School was used as a business and boarding house, until the late 1940’s when deaf artist Kelly Stevens purchased and restored the building. The German Free School is a Historic Landmark in the City of Austin and State of Texas, and GTHS is a Preserve America Steward.

Among GTHS programs are German language classes for adults and children, the Trenckmann Library, a monthly film series, cultural speakers, Maifest (May 2oth, 2017) Oktoberfest (October 14, 2017), and Christmas Market (1st weekend in December), as well as publishing a quarterly Journal. In recent years, the German Free School has opened for weddings and special events in the beautifully landscaped gardens.

Visit our for dates and current events.


507 East 10th Street (map)


Wednesday & Thursdays 10 am - 4 pm


No charge