Settlers were in this area beginning in the 1890s, but it was Father Joseph Reisdorff who helped build Nazareth up – just as he’d done in nearby Canyon. Reisdorff moved to the area in 1902 with four farmers, giving the town a biblical name: Nazareth. Reisdorff aimed to start a Catholic community here, so he began taking out advertisements for the new community in German-Catholic newspapers throughout the Midwest. By the fall of 1902, settlers were beginning to heed Reisdorff’s call. By 1904, 71 residents called Nazareth home. The settlers built Holy Family Catholic Church in 1903, followed by a blacksmith shop, a store, a school, and a cemetery. The church remains a central part of Nazareth to this day.
Watch our Religious and Ethnic Diversity in German Texan Communities video to learn more about German Texan cultural heritage in Texas. This video was produced for inclusion in our German Texans mobile tour found in our Texas Time Travel Tours mobile app. Download the app for more videos and travel information: