The story of Butter Krust Baking Company begins with the Richter Baking Company. Learn more about their story below.
William L. Richter was born in Staunton, Virginia to Prussian immigrants Paul and Emilia Richter in 1859. Paul was employed as a brewer at a local brewery while Emilia kept house and tended to the rest of the Richter siblings: Lizzie, Henry, and Otto. William opted not work in the same field as his father and chose to take on apprenticeship at a local bakery.
William’s older brother Henry convinced him to travel west for more opportunities. According to him, “Texas offered a good opportunity to young men.” William decided to travel to Fredericksburg, Texas, a small town in Texas founded by German immigrants in 1846. Unfortunately, William was unsuccessful in Fredericksburg as a baker. The German women in the area baked their own bread at home.
Fredericksburg, Texas was founded by German immigrants in 1846. The town was originally named Friedrichsburg, but the name was changed to Fredericksburg to honor Prince Frederick of Prussia.
Undiscouraged, William travelled to San Antonio. He was informed that the growing city may have more opportunities for him than the small town of Fredericksburg. He arrived in San Antonio in 1879. At this time, William held several jobs. He worked as a pastry chef at the Menger Hotel and he also worked evenings at the Solcher Steam Bakery.
204 Alamo Plaza, San Antonio, TX 78205
The Menger Hotel was opened by William Menger in 1859. Menger originally operated a brewery at the location, but decided to expand his business to include a boarding house.
His employment at Solcher Steam Bakery would prove to beneficial for his personal and professional life. While working evenings at the Bakery, Richter was introduced to Emma Frances Solcher, the daughter of the owner. Emma and William married in 1882. They opened their first bakery a week later with money loaned to them by Emma’s father, Henry. The rented a building at North Flores and West Houston street. Together, they baked and delivered pastries throughout the city.
In 1885, Richter opened a larger location on Laredo and East Santa Rosa Streets.
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