From Jablonca, Hungary to Birmingham in Toledo, Ohio ~ with love.

A typical Magyar Village Home in the Palocs

       One wonders how they did  it - the housewives. Those Hungarian historic houses were small. How did they bundle everyone in one sleeping room, store the flour, the clothes, the pots and pans in one storage room, kept the animals fed and the floors swept with all the family under their feet. The homes were not that large, even for landowners or the nobilty.

       The homes in these villages at the time were the size of this particular house in this picture from Jablonca. The architecture looks very familiar. A row of these Magyar cottages will stand out out in any working class urban neighborhood in the shadows of the smokestacks of the factories where they worked. They are usually built of brick, one or one and half stories with a flat front facade, two windows and an archway. The archway will either be in the corner or the center of the facade. In the city locations, most of these homes will be built right up to the edge of the sidewalk to permit more yard room in the back for their usual outdoor activities like jam making, soap making, roasting and smoking meats or sausages. Women did laundry and families tended vegetable gardens and many fruit trees. They kept their country traditions intact right in their own backyards.

      Birmingham, the Hungarian section of Toledo, Ohio, is on the National Historic register for it's historic ties to it's Magyar culture. Many of the homes still retain their native forms. You can read about it in this scholarly treatment in AmericaneJournal that I found online. It describes the "Birmingham" ways perfectly  at http://americanaejournal.hu/vol2no2/szentgyorgyi   

     Birmingham is also the host of a yearly summer festival. Updates featured on their own website at http://birminghamethnicfestival.wordpress.com/