“(Above) B&W photo, 1950. Hungarians in Albany, Louisiana. Written on photo: Couples dance Hungarian ‘Czardas’ Louisiana-style. Dancers garbed in Hungarian folk costume perform the ‘Old Country’s’ traditional czardas and other Magyar dances at the Hungarian Harvest Festival at the town of Albany, Louisiana, largest rural Hungarian settlement in the United States.
The czardas begins with slow, deliberate movements and ends in a fast, exciting whirl of skilled dancers. The Harvest Festival, which in Hungary marks the end of the grape season, honors the preceding strawberry season, for here in Southeast Louisiana is the nation’s leading strawberry-producing region.
Core to the Hungarian Settlement in Albany, Louisiana was strawberries. Farmers for generations, the Hungarians found that the strawberry plant took well to the soil and mild climate of the area.