Fredricksburg was settled by immigrant families from Germany in 1846, led by John O. Meusebach. Although the settlement was on the Comanche frontier, the Meusebach-Comanche Treaty of the following year established lasting peace.
Many older buildings retain its traditional German styles with several units comprising the National Historic District. German is still spoken occasionally, and old customs are regularly observed; such as, Easter Fires, Schuetzenfests (marksmanship tournaments), Oktoberfest, Weihnachten, and Kinderfest. Visitors are attracted by Fredricksburg's scenic beauty, European atmosphere, historic landmarks, excellent fall and winter hunting, and famous bread and pastries. Fredricksburg is also the birthplace of Fleet Adm. Chester W. Nimitz, Commander in Chief of the Pacific Fleet during World War II.
Fredericksburg is an outstanding spot for sportsmen to find year-round opportunities to hunt native and exotic species of animals. Fall hunting leases are available on many ranches throughout the area, and the Fredericksburg Chamber of Commerce offers a brochure on leases that is available at the visitor information center.
Approximately 40 percent of all Texas peaches are grown in Fredericksburg and surrounding Gillespie County, with more than 60 orchards located within the county. Peach season typically runs mid-late May through early August.
The city was also home to the first volkssporting event ever held in the U.S. in 1976, and the city's Pilgrimage Routes consist of three different sanctioned walking routes and one bicycle route that can be walked/biked year-round.