Texas Independence Trail Region

Participant in the Texas Historical Commission's
Texas Heritage Trails Program

Galveston: Kempner Park and Garten Verein

In 1876, a group of German businessmen in Galveston formed the Garten Verein, a social club for Germans or German speakers only. In 1880, the elaborate tiered octagonal dancing pavilion was built and quickly became the social center for the German who’s who.

In 1923, Stanley Kempner bought the property, including the verein and surrounding open space, and opened it to the public. Restored to its former glory, the Garten Verein has survived the devastating 1900 hurricane, and a fire in the 1980s. The Verein is available for tours and rental.

Watch our The German Dance Halls video to learn more about German Texan cultural heritage in Texas.  This video was produced for inclusion in our German Texans mobile tour found in our Texas Time Travel Tours mobile app. Download the app for more videos and travel information:


  • 2704 Avenue O
  • Galveston, Texas
  • 77550