Journeys into Czech-Moravian Texas / Edition 1

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Texas today has more Czech Americans than any other state in the nation. Though the total number who can claim Czech ancestry is unclear and disputable, possibly as many as four hundred thousand Texans are of Czech descent. But in the next few decades the ethnic heritage will change dramatically as the number of Czech-language speakers continues to dwindle.

In Journeys into Czech-Moravian Texas, Sean N. Gallup honors the multicultural richness of rural America by revealing a rich and still-flourishing culture that is relatively unknown. Through a combination of more than one hundred poignant photographs and detailed captions, he gives visual evidence of the traditional connections and variety of contemporary Texas Czech life and culture. He also shows the power of ethnic belonging as well as the forces of Texas Czech cultural decline and rejuvenation.

For two years, Gallup criss-crossed the state exploring Texas-Czech communities, during which he spent six months in the Fayetteville area, the so-called "cradle of Czech settlement" in Texas, immersing himself in local culture and everyday life. There, he documented language, religion, music, folk traditions, and other aspects of a culture that has evolved from its Czech-Moravian roots to become uniquely Texas Czech.

With well-written, detailed text based on research and personal interviews and with sensitive, comprehensive photography, Gallup provides a fine portrait of today's Texans descended from Czech immigrants. Texas Czech culture remains strong in Texas, and the author tells hows Texas Czech customs and language survive despite the pressures from mainstream, modern American culture. He also describes Texas Czech ethnic identity, organizations, relations with other ethnic groups, ties to the modern Czech Republic, and prospects for the future.

Those of Czech ancestry as well as others interested in America's ethnic patchwork will find Gallup's journeys illuminating to their understanding of what is America.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780890967515
  • Publisher: Texas A&M University Press
  • Publication date: 8/14/1998
  • Series: Charles and Elizabeth Prothro Texas Photography Series, #6
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 8.95 (w) x 11.37 (h) x 0.77 (d)

Meet the Author

Sean N. Gallup is a photojournalist with Reuters news agency in Prague, Czech Republic.
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Table of Contents

Pt. 1 Early History of Czech Immigration and Settlement 1
The Promise of New Opportunity 3
Early Settlement in Texas 5
Community Structure 6
Everyday Life 8
Assimilation v. Ethnic Preservation 9
The Experience of Rozie Belicek 9
Pt. 2 Journeys 13
Pt. 3 Czech-Moravian Texas Today 85
Population 87
Ethnic Identity 88
Culture 90
Language 94
Fraternals, Sokol, and Press 99
Religion 102
Relations with Other Ethnic Groups 104
Ties to the Old Country 106
Prospects for the Future 107
Pt. 4 Into the Old Country 113
App Settlements in Texas with Czech-Derived Names 127
Bibliography 131
Index 135
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