New life will be breathed into a long-abandoned stone homestead at Boot Ranch this summer as the historic Metzger House begins its transformation into Metzger Market, an artisan general store for Boot Ranch members and guests.
Architect Don B. McDonald has taken a light touch on changes to the structure—striving to retain its character and authenticity while renewing its structural integrity and updating its mechanical systems. Designer Donna Figg’s interior concept is of a modern bistro with a mix of reclaimed grey wood for nostalgia juxtaposed with clean black and white finishes. The Market will include a coffee bar and be stocked with staples and sundries as well as items like wine, beer, cheese, pastries, baked goods and ice cream.
The adjacent stone outbuilding will be refitted with mailboxes to serve the whole community. Outdoor seating, a kid’s play area, restrooms and ample parking for golf carts and cars will surely make this a lively stopping off point. The renovation is expected to be completed by the end of the year.
Nestled between the golf practice park and Hole #9, the Metzger House dates from the mid 19th century. It was home to German settler Peter Metzger, his wife Anna and nine children on a 160-acre homestead Metzger purchased from the State of Texas in what was then known as the Palo Alto community, 4.5 miles north of Fredericksburg.
In February 1865 two of the Metzger daughters, ages 18 and 13, were walking home from town after dark and encountered a small band of Kiowa Indians. The elder girl, Anna Marie called “Emma” by the family, resisted capture and was killed by arrows near “Kreuz Berg” or Cross Mountain. The younger girl, Anna, was enslaved by the Indians and eventually reunited with her family in November of 1865, escorted home by her brother Joe and three friends. She married Fredericksburg resident Charles Wartenbach in 1870 and lived in Mason County until her death in 1917.
The Texas Historical Commission has approved an official Texas Historical Marker for the Metzger House site, thanks to the efforts of Boot Ranch team member Lynn Sample who is an active volunteer with the Gillespie County Historical Society.