Koenig brothers continue their passions on the farm

Two brothers close to the same age but with diverse and common interests including the Friends of Fort Ridgely and Ridgewater College grads, Alan and Brad Koenig continue their passions from their farmhouse, several miles northeast of Hector.

Alan Koenig collects World War I replica allied and central powers airplanes, like the one pictured here.

A retired U.S. Army Reservist, Lt. Col. Alan R. Koenig taught World War II and Russian/Soviet History, and Western Civilization at the University of Nebraska, Omaha. In the Army Reserve, he is an armorer (weapons maker or repairer), linguist, artillery and historical officer.

Koenig’s active duty military stops included Bosnia, Kosovo, and Iraq.

He collects World War I replica allied and central powers airplanes including a static “circus” of ultra-light and light sport aircraft planes for commemorative and educational purposes. He is looking for an optimal venue to display his completed planes.

A decade ago, Koenig wrote “Mars Gets New Chariots, The Iron Horse in Combat 1861-65” a 286-page book about how during the American Civil War, railroads provided considerable logistical support at the front and veritable no-man’s lands.

World War II historians may be more familiar with Koenig. In June 2015, Woodcut Media of England filmed him in three segments of their documentary “Combat Trains.” He’s the first “talking head” shown on “Nazi Railways.” He reappears 20 minutes into the show in the segment on “Anzio Annie.” a German railroad battery now at Ft. Lee, Va. He also appeared in segments on U.S. Civil War armored trains and the “Dictator,” a railroad mortar (gun).

Brad Koenig looks at some of his ball cap collection.

Athletes may recall Brad Koenig. A retired social studies teacher and football coach at Buffalo Lake and Nicollet High School, he continues to be an avid college sports fan.

Brad Koenig has more than 750 ball caps from many Division I, II, III universities, junior colleges and professional football, hockey and basketball teams. His collection includes ball caps of the Montana Technical University Orediggers of Butte, Mont.

With a unique passion for athletics and a Twitter presence, Brad Koenig said he’d like to see six-man high school football return to Minnesota.

“They had this in Minnesota when my dad was in high school,” Koenig said. “I think they should bring it back to small schools. Everyone is eligible to catch a pass.”

His sports memorabilia collection includes a Minnesota Gopher basketball player figurine.

Alan Koenig wrote a book “Mars Gets New Chariots, The Iron Horse in Combat, 1861-65,” published in 2006 by iUniverse, Inc.

In more recent times, the Koenig brothers came to the aid of a neighbor who had to leave his farm and live at the Buffalo Lake Healthcare Center. The Koenigs assumed responsibility for caring for their neighbors’ two dogs and about 20 cats, few of which were then tame. They are looking for new homes for a number of the cats.