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First Feast of the Assumption celebrated in Praha


On this day in 1855, the first Feast of the Assumption celebration was held in the small Czech community that was renamed Praha three years later. Praha, in southern Fayette County, was originally known as Mulberry and Hottentot. During the mid-1850s a Bohemian immigrant named Mathias Novak came to the region. Other Bohemian immigrants followed, and in 1858 the Bohemian settlers changed the town's name to Praha in honor of Prague, the capital of their homeland. In 1865 Joseph Bithowski, a Bernardine father, built a small frame church in the town. An annual celebration of the Feast of the Assumption on August 15 attracts more than 5,000 visitors, many of them Czechoslovakian. Mass is celebrated in the historic church, with its extraordinary interior painted by Godfrey Flury, Czech food is served, and Texas Czech bands play throughout the evening.

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