Welcome to the home of the Texas Czech Legacy Project!
The goal of our Project is to create a central place documenting the language, culture, and history of ethnic Czech Moravians in Texas. The first stage of our Project involves creating the Texas Czech Dialect Archive (TCDA), a repository of audio-recordings gathered from ethnic Czech Moravians in Texas since the 1970s through the 2000s. We have found our inspiration in the successful Texas German Dialect Project led by Professor Hans Boas of the University of Texas at Austin, which, in turn, motivated John Tomecek, a student of Hans Boas and graduate of UT, to begin documenting the language of Texas Czechs in the early 2000s and call for establishing an archive that would preserve this unique immigrant dialect.
Our Project’s mission is to create a community resource for Texas Czechs, as well as a scholarly resource for anyone fascinated by this population’s language, culture, and history. As a legacy archive, the TCDA will be a central repository for irreplaceable oral histories, spoken in the Texas Czech dialect, reflecting the change in the historically Czech Moravian communities of Texas from the early 1850s to the present.
We dedicate the Project to Professor Svatava Pírková-Jakobson who, fascinated with Czech Moravian communities in East Central Texas, began documenting their rich history by collecting folkloric, language and musical materials during her tenure at the University of Texas at Austin (1967-1978).
The Texas Czech Legacy Project (TCLP) aims:
- To create the Texas Czech Dialect Archive documenting the unique Texas Czech dialect for current and future generations of Czech Moravians in Texas
- To document the history and development of the original settlements to the present day through oral histories and various other cultural artifacts gathered from Texas Czechs
- To aid in any revitalization efforts acknowledging the Texas-grown variety of the Czech language as a resource in language learning by Czech heritage speakers in Texas.
- To inspire more attention to the dying dialect of Texas Czechs in scholarly research both in the United States and the Czech Republic.
- To inspire and nurture concrete collaborative projects between activists in Texas Czech organizations, local educators enthusiastic about bringing the community legacy into the classroom, and scholars at the University Texas at Austin and in the Czech Republic.
Currently we offer several demonstration segments from interview recordings with transcripts in Texas Czech and English. We will post any information on the building of the site, additional recordings and transcriptions, print and other artifacts, and any new tools enhancing the website under Our News.