The Albany Hungarian Presbyterian Church
In 1907, Brackenridge Lumber Company donated a 20-acre plot of land at the present location to build the church. In 1908, the Board of Elders established a Reformed Church in the Hungarian Settlement. They diligently worked on the wood frame structure completing it in 1910. Later after some discussion they joined the Presbytere in New Orleans, Louisiana, designating it a Hungarian Presbyterian Church. All the church records were in Hungarian until 1935 at which time they were translated into English.
The Albany Hungarian Presbyterian Church - completed in 1910
Services were conducted in Hungarian every Sunday morning until 1965. At first English language services were offered once per month and later offered twice per month. Since there was a sizable number of Presbyterians who either could not or did not speak Hungarian well enough, Reverend Bartus decided to start another church in Albany for the English-speaking members. The other church, built in 1966, had services completely in English. Being that both churches had all English services for quite some time, they reunited on Christmas Day, 2002, under the name The Albany Hungarian Presbyterian Church. Today, only special programs at Christmas are held in Hungarian.
In the beginning, it was customary for the bell to be rung an hour before services were to begin. The bell ringer left home, rang the bell and returned home to await the proper time for church services.
It was a Hungarian custom that the ladies and girls sat on one side of the church while the men and boys sat on the other, however, the practice slowly faded away and a mixed congregation became the new norm.
Many storms and hurricanes buffeted the church buildings for over 100 years of the Hungarian Presbyterian Church’s existence. The church building itself has survived with only minor damage from Hurricane Betsy (1965) which was quickly repaired.
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.