George Braun was born in Berlin, Germany, on September 9, 1835. He came to the United States at an early age and lived in St. before coming to Denison at the age of 44 in 1879. In St. Louis, George was employed with the Anheuser Busch Brewing, a successor of Mr. W.W. Salisbury. (The Denison Daily News, September 9, 1879, pg.4)
In Denison, he was appointed agent for the company, which at the time controlled nearly all beer sales in the city. Here he established the Depot Saloon near the MK&T. In addition to the saloon enterprise, he also established the Northern Lake Ice Company. There, he sold northern ice at an ice house in Denison. This led to selling fish, oysters, celery, and other rare foods practically unobtainable on the sun-blistered Texas prairie.
The Sunday Gazetteer
Sunday, June 11, 1893
"Sunday, June 4, 1893 - Mr. George Braun's new residence, corner of Austin Avenue and Moton street, is assuming an imposing appearance. When finished, it will be one of the prettiest homes in Denison."
George Braun constructed his home on the southwest corner of Austin Avenue & Morton Street between 1882 and 1883. Braun brought in carpenters from his native Germany to build the house and a Bavarian woodcarver to create the ornate fireplaces and woodwork that grace the interior. The house was completed in the fall of 1883. Mr. and Mrs. Braun entertained a few friends at their elegant residence on Thursday evening, November 1883, to celebrate the completion. The home remained at the corner of Austin Avenue & Morton Street for 108 years.
George Braun's contributions to the growth of Denison ended with his death on November 17, 1903. After his death, George Braun's wife Minna was the sole estate recipient. She lived in the house until 1919, at which time it was sold to Charles J. Harrison. Joseph G. Cain bought the house from C.J. Harrison in 1923 and lived there until 1952. Mr. Cain sold the house to his son-in-law Bryan Steen.
Joe Pollaro purchased the house in 1974 in need of restoration. Today, the house exhibits exquisite Victorian detail, from massive carved pocket doors to heavily carved fireplaces. The house was moved from the southwest corner of Austin Avenue & Morton Street to a sprawling 13 - acre hillside site in 2000 to the north of Munson Park, located in Denison, TX. The tiered front lawn is lush with multiple gardens - 2 long, win rock bed streams, seven waterfalls, a beachfront pool, and a tranquil pond. The yard is an entertaining paradise with tiered Victorian decking overlooking the pond and pool, a separate columned gazebo, and thick Wisteria roofing.
The Braun Manor is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.