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HOSTYN, TX

HOSTYN, TEXAS. Hostyn overlooks the Colorado River near La Grange in central Fayette County. In the 1830s the community, then called Bluff, was settled by German settlers. Father Michael Muldoon celebrated Mass in a dwelling at Bluff in the spring of 1831. In November 1856 a group of Czech families arrived at Bluff. Among them were Joseph Janda, Alois and Benjamin Klimicek, Valentin Kolibal, František Koza, and František Marak. The Czechs that moved to Bluff and those that founded Dubina came over on the same ship. During the Civil War John Lidiak, a Bluff resident, was hauling a wagonload of cotton to Mexico when he met friends in Brownsville who talked him into joining the Union Army; meanwhile his father, Joseph Lidiak, fought with the Confederate Army. Both came home to Bluff after the war and lived together on the farm. The two men are buried side by side in the parish cemetery and were honored by the United States government with two Civil War cannons.

After the war the community prospered, and more Czechs moved to Bluff. A post office established there in 1869 remained open until 1904. From 1884 to 1896 the population grew from 400 to 700, and a number of organizations were formed to meet the needs of the community. Catholics erected the first church, built of logs, in 1856, and in October 1889 the first lodge of the Katolická Jednota Texaská (Czech Catholic Union of Texas) was formed. By 1900 Bluff had a gin, a blacksmith shop, and a general store. In 1925 Bluff was officially renamed Hostyn by Father Paul Kasper, after the town of Hostyn, Moravia (in the Czech Republic). In 1966 the fifth church constructed in Hostyn was erected, and Joseph Cardinal Beran, Archbishop of Prague, officiated at the dedication. In the mid-1980s Hostyn remained a community where social and religious life still revolved around the church.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: 

Frank Lotto, Fayette County: Her History and Her People (Schulenburg, Texas: Sticker Steam Press, 1902; rpt., Austin: University of Texas Press, 1981). Clinton Machann and James W. Mendl, Krásná Amerika: A Study of the Texas Czechs, 1851–1939 (Austin: Eakin Press, 1983).

Ed Janecka

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Ed Janecka, "HOSTYN, TX," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/hth18), accessed September 23, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.