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KLAERNER, CHRISTIAN (1861–1949). Christian Klaerner, teacher, state librarian, and choral director, was born near Bayreuth, Bavaria, on November 9, 1861. He was the son of Hans Adam and Elizabeth (Foerster) Klaerner. He attended the seminary at Bayreuth before 1880, when he immigrated to the United States and traveled via New York and Virginia to Houston, Texas. He taught school briefly at Nelsonville and from 1881 to 1887 taught at Frelsburg, where he married Emma Schneider on June 23, 1883, and organized a song and musical club.

Klaerner taught in Austin County from 1887 to 1891. After his first wife's death in 1886, he married Hedwig May at New Ulm on August 15, 1889. He taught in a Lutheran college at Brenham from 1891 to 1897, when he established the German American Institute, a demonstration school in teaching methods, which he headed until he became county superintendent of Washington County in 1907. From 1915 to 1918 he was state librarian. He taught at Rogers Ranch from 1918 to 1924 and at Uhland from 1925 to 1931. Klaerner was director of a Brenham singing club from 1897 to 1915, of the Uhland choir from 1925 to 1931, and of the Saengerrunde Club at Austin from 1922 to 1949. He composed music for church and choir use and directed choirs at St. Martin's Lutheran Church and the First English Lutheran Church in Austin. He died in Austin on September 16, 1949, and was buried there at Memorial Park.


Austin American, September 17, 1949. Mrs. R. E. Pennington, History of Brenham and Washington County (Houston, 1915). Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.


The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

"KLAERNER, CHRISTIAN," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed November 25, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.