Eight years ago Ted and Lisa Kessel traveled into Georgia and North Carolina to participate in agritourism. Over the years they wanted to bring that into Hernando County. With the decline of construction work Ted and Lisa made that leap and planted Sweetfield Farms in Masaryktown.
My parents; Christina and Paul Kovarcik moved to Masaryktown in 1951. Upon their arrival they stayed in the Wagon Wheel Motor Court in Masaryktown. They loved the water here (the best in the state) and decided to purchase the Motor Court in 1951.
I helped as best I could. I don’t remember anyone else helping my father Otec. We came to have four chicken houses and about 4000 chickens. That was a lot. We picked eggs three sometime four times a day. We did this to minimize breakage in the nests. The chicken houses had to be cleaned of the manure of course. The manure under the roosting areas was much easier to shovel and haul to the manure barn than were the alleys. They packed down hard and we had to use scrapers to loosen it up before shoveling it into the wheelbarrow.
Lauren Dodson, raised in Masaryktown was visiting her father, Larry Dodson, who is acting President of the Masaryktown Community Center back in February. She stumbled upon a foundation sign from a school house that has been long gone.
The sign stated "School founded in 1925." She also remembers a photo that showed around 100 Slovakians with the caption stating, “On December 5, 1925 these Slovaks arrived from New York City.”
I want to share my experience of living in Masaryktown, Florida located 40 miles north of Tampa and 10 miles south of Brooksville on the western coast of Florida. Masaryktown was a small poultry- egg producing farming community, comprised of approximately 300 Slovaks and some Czechs. I say “was” because although the town is the same today, the population and structure are now totally different.