Township: Ste. Genevieve
Namesake: Weingarten is German for exactly what it sounds like: Wine Garden

History of Weingarten

According to an “unknown source”

Some of the early Germans settled in Ste. Genevieve by the 1830’s and 1840’s.  More emigrants made their way up the Mississippi and started their way west, including many German farmers who settled at Zell.  As land kept filling up, they slowly moved West.  By 1840, they had settled New Offenburg and Weingarten.  Some of the first farmers were granted large tracts of land from the government.  Records show the names of John Grither, David Vaeth (1844), Andrew Muessig (1849), and more.
By 1850, right-of-way was being bought as plans were made to build a plank road from the lead mines to Ste. Genevieve, which would bring adequate roads to bring crops and supplies to shipping points west.  The farmers were given deeds to use the road free for carrying farm products to and from Ste. Genevieve.
Some of the earliest land owners in the Weingarten area were: Nickolas Munch, Felix Hogenmiller, Philip Staab, Seraphin Donze, Jacob Joerger, Ludwig Isenman, Jacob Garter, Valentine Rottler, and Michael, Joseph, and Thomas Seitz.  These three brothers opened a brewery and winery just east of Weingarten with Mr. Annhauser as chief brewmaster.  In about 1860, they sold out to Wendolin Rottler, and moved west to Middlebrook, where they opened a brewery and winery.
Some of the old brewery foundations still remain, grown up in trees and weeds.  This brewery burned down, and Mr. Rottler moved to Ste. Genevieve, where he build a new brewery, some of which still remains at LaHay and Third Streets.
In 1900, a railroad was to be built parallel to the Plank Road.  By 1903, this road completed, giving all the towns along the road a boost, as stores and houses sprang up.  All these towns, Zell, Weingarten, New Offenburg, Sprott, Miller’s Switch, and Murphy’s landing, had new depots, along this road, picking up travelers at these stops, when passenger cars were added, and delivering mail at the stations.
Yearly excursions on the old passenger cars remain a fond memory.  These trips were usually on Sunday, and the train would pick up people along the way, Weingarten, etc.  The fare was $1 a person.  At Bismarck, the train would get on the main line of the Missouri Pacific Railroad to St. Louis.  The day was spent at the zoo, etc.  Several trips were also made to Poplar Bluff.  Everyone would take lunches along, and we always had a good time.
Many of the first settlers were granted large tracts of land, thousands of acres, which were then divided into small acreages as the families grew up.  We are celebrating our 100th anniversary of the school that was built and had the first classes in September 1887.

Church, Our Lady Help of Christians, since 1872



Ste. Genevieve Herald; February 5, 2003
122 Years with the Ste. Genevieve Herald
100 Years Ago – 1903
Weingarten Church has received a beautiful, life-size statue of the Blessed Virgin, valued at $90, which will be placed in the spire niche over the entrance.

Ste. Genevieve Herald; December 3, 2002
122 Years with the Ste. Genevieve Herald
75 Years Ago – 1927
So pronounced was the success of the performance given by the pupils of the Parochial School at Weingarten on Monday, December 26, that the dreams entitled “One Minute to Twelve,” will upon numerous requests be given a return performance on Sunday.


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