Sculptor of the Hills, Frank Teich, Loved Texas Granite

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Tony Maples Photography


The Texas Hill Country boasts an abundance of beautiful granite, including Mountain Red Granite which is quarried in Fredericksburg, and Sunset Red Granite which is quarried in Marble Falls. It quite literally litters the landscape, but who was the first to see its potential as building material and artistic canvas? Many would argue that person was Frank Teich, who has been referred to as the father of the Texas granite industry.

Born in 1856 in Germany, Teich was a sculptor, stone carver, and businessman. After immigrating to the United States in 1878, he made Texas his home in 1883. On October 12, 1887, he married Elvina Lang, and eventually, they had three daughters. Around 1900, Teich discovered a large deposit of granite near Llano and opened a quarry. Another site in which he quarried granite was from Bear Mountain (Baeren Berg), located on the Ranch Road 965, between Fredericksburg and Enchanted Rock. The rock here was likely formed by a volcanic eruption occurring ages ago. Oxen were used to move the corpulent granite slabs, which were loaded on wooden skids, then dragged 80 miles into San Antonio.

Sculptor of the Hills, Frank Teich, Loved Texas Granite

Photo: @sy140050 via Twenty20

Also known as the Sculptor of the Hills, Teich was involved in the building of the San Antonio National Bank, and the San Antonio City Hall, as well as the Volunteer Firemen Monument in Austin, and the new-at-the-time capitol building. Other works can be found around Texas and in Mexico. Although some negative attention has been cast upon Teich recently for his ties to Confederate statues, his additional works are mostly free from political association. On January 27, 1939, Teich passed away in Llano, Texas. He is buried in the city cemetery there. All over Texas, the work of Frank Teich can be found. See if you can spot some of his work!