Three adventurous Hungarians, Julius Bruskay, Adam Mocsary and Theodore Zboray came down south to Louisiana to survey the situation looking for a better life for themselves and their families. They worked in the mill saving as much money as possible from their salaries. It proved to be a better existence than that experienced in the industrial cities of the northern United States. After working here and saving enough money to help pay their fares, they informed their families and friends in the northern cities that the land for sale by the lumber company was suitable for farming and strongly encouraged those families to join them.
The Prokop strawberry farm - 1907
This was a dream come true for many disheartened Hungarians living in the north and east. They were then able to purchase a 20-acre plot of land - "a place of their own" - to farm and make a decent, honest living in their new homeland. The freedom and security of the family-owned farms provided them with a new sense of pride and accomplishment. At last they could live the way they were accustomed to living in the old country and not in the large industrial cities or coal mines of the north and east which was against their nature and so unfamiliar to them. Freedom to be outside and on their own home place was the ideal. They also knew that this meant a lot of hard work, but it would be worth it.
In 1900, there were eleven families living in the Hungarian Settlement and by 1908 there were about forty Hungarian families on new farms in the area. By 1910, there were sixty-five families. In 1920, there were about two hundred families on farms in the area. So one can see the rapid growth within just twenty years.
Of the founders, Julius Bruskay and Adam Mocsary were married and had children. Of these, there are descendants who are living in the settlement today. Tivador Zboray was married but no information about his descendants is available, according to Louis Chemay, a nephew of Julius Bruskay. The three founders of Árpádhon are laid to rest in St. Margaret Catholic Church Cemetery in Albany, Louisiana.
The early Hungarian settlers decided to name their new home after Árpád, a national Hungarian hero, who in 896, united the Magyars (people of Hungary) and conquered the land known today as the country of Hungary. They called their new Hungarian settlement Árpádhon which means the "home of Árpád." Today it is simply called Hungarian Settlement.
Kropog, Royanne 2007, The Story of Árpádhon, Hungarian Settlement 1896 - 2006 by the Residents and Descendants of the Early Settlers as told to Royanne Kropog Printed by Moran Printing and Emprint, Baton Rouge, La. in August 2008.
Mocsary, Victoria Ann 1996, Árpádhon: An Early History of Hungarian Settlement Livingston Parish, Louisiana, Center for Regional Studies, Southeastern Louisiana University, Hammond, LA.
About The Museum
The Hungarian Settlement museum is located in the restored Hungarian Settlement school, and is dedicated to the historical preservation of the Hungarian community in Albany, Louisiana.
In the late 1800s, Hungarian settlers began to move from the harsh industrial environments of the North and East United States to a more desirable and familiar agricultural environment.
Our photo gallery features both historic and recent photos that illustrate the rich history and culture of South Louisiana’s Hungarian settlers. Also includes photos of our museum renovation.