William Koenig, ?-1863 [RG0790.AM]


RG0790.AM:  William Koenig, ?-1863

Papers:  1854-1864

Omaha, Douglas County, Nebraska:  Businessman

Size:  0.3 cu.ft.; 1 box


William Koenig immigrated to the United States from Berlin, Germany, in 1854. The following year he established his home in St. Louis and after working at various jobs, he invested in a grocery business with a fellow immigrant from Germany, H.R. Pundt. In 1855 Pundt moved west and selected Omaha, Nebraska, as a suitable location for a new business. Koenig arrived in Omaha in 1856 and with Pundt established a grocery business between 10th and 11th streets on Farnam Avenue. On August 20, 1861, Koenig married Eleanor Beecher in St. Louis. Their son, William H. Koenig, was to become a successful businessman and a leading citizen of Omaha at the time of his death in 1916. William Koenig, Sr. was actively engaged in his business in Omaha until his death on October 19, 1863.


This collection consists of manuscript material arranged in three series: 1) Correspondence, 1854-1863; 2) Financial File, 1860-1864; and 3) Genealogy.

The material relates to the life of Koenig from his arrival in the United States in 1854 until his death in Omaha. Correspondence includes Koenig’s comparisons of his experiences and life on the frontier with his former life in Germany, along with descriptions of the profits he enjoyed in his grocery business; the conditions in Omaha in the 1850s; and the impact on Nebraska of the gold discovery in the Rocky Mountains in 1858. The correspondence is written in German and a typed transcript of Koenig’s letters is included in the collection. This transcript also contains two letters, probably from Henry Koenig, relating to his experiences as a Second Lieutenant of Company B, first Regiment of the Nebraska Volunteer Regiment during the Civil War.


Series 1 – Correspondence, 1854-1863

Box 1


    1. Correspondence, 1854-1863

    1. Correspondence, 1854-1863

Series 2 – Financial file, 1860-1864

Box 1


    1. Deeds, indentures, mortgages, etc.

Series 3 – Genealogy

Box 1


    1. Genealogical charts of various families, none relating to Koenig


Subject headings:

Businesses — Omaha, Nebraska

Douglas County (Nebraska) — History

Germans — Nebraska

Gold mines and mining — Colorado

Grocery stores — Nebraska

Merchants — Nebraska

Pundt and Koenig Grocery

U.S. — History — Civil War — Personal reminiscences


Revised TMM       12-26-2006

Become a Member!

Our members make history happen.

Join Now

You May Also Enjoy

The Massacre Canyon Oral History and Archeology Project

The Massacre Canyon Oral History and Archeology Project

Lest We Forget:  The Lynching of Will Brown, Omaha’s 1919 Race Riot

Lest We Forget: The Lynching of Will Brown, Omaha’s 1919 Race Riot

Portraits of Omaha’s 1898 Indian Congress

Portraits of Omaha’s 1898 Indian Congress

About History Nebraska
History Nebraska was founded in 1878 as the Nebraska State Historical Society by citizens who recognized Nebraska was going through great changes and they sought to record the stories of both indigenous and immigrant peoples. It was designated a state institution and began receiving funds from the legislature in 1883. Legislation in 1994 changed History Nebraska from a state institution to a state agency. The division is headed by Interim Director and CEO Jill Dolberg. They are assisted by an administrative staff responsible for financial and personnel functions, museum store services, security, and facilities maintenance for History Nebraska.
Explore Nebraska
Discover the real places and people of our past at these History Nebraska sites.

Upcoming Events

View our new and upcoming events to see how you can get involved.

Become a Member

The work we do to discover, preserve, and share Nebraska's history wouldn't be possible without the support of History Nebraska members.

Latest Hall of Fame Inductee

The Nebraska Hall of Fame was established in 1961 to officially recognize prominent Nebraskans.

Become a Member

The work we do to discover, preserve, and share Nebraska's history wouldn't be possible without the support of History Nebraska members.
Nebraska Collections

History Nebraska's mission is to collect, preserve, and open our shared history to all Nebraskans.

Our YouTube Video Collection

Get a closer look at Nebraska's history through your own eyes, with our extensive video collections.

Additional Research Resources

History Nebraska Research and Reference Services help connect you to the material we collect and preserve.

Support History Nebraska
Make a cash donation to help us acquire, preserve, and interpret Nebraska’s history. Gifts to History Nebraska help leave a legacy and may help your taxes, too! Support the work of History Nebraska by donating to the History Nebraska Foundation today.

Volunteers are the heroes of History Nebraska. So much history, so little time! Your work helps us share access to Nebraska’s stories at our museums and sites, the reference room, and online.