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Frank J. Hejtmanek Family



Frank J. Hejtmanek Family

By Martha J. Shimek

Frank J. Hejtmanek was born on July 10, 1888, in the village of Vozovice in Moravia, Czechoslovakia. His father, Josef Hejtmanek, was born on April 8, 1856, in Bratrejov, and his mother Johana Kovar was born in 1851, in Hostalkov. They were married in Vizovice and raised their six children there. Three of their children remained in Czechoslovakia, and three came to Texas. Rosalie and Charles immigrated in 1889, and Frank in 1906. Charles, unmarried, died in 1908, at the age of twenty-two and was buried in the Seaton Cemetery near Temple.

Frank completed his secondary school education in Czechoslovakia at the age of fourteen, and then trained for the shoe making craft for three years. At seventeen he decided to come to Texas. He traveled by train to Germany and boarded the ship, Chemnita, which sailed from Bremenhaven with sixteen hundred immigrants of various nationalities who were traveling to the United States. About eleven hundred disembarked in Baltimore, and the remaining five hundred came to Galveston. The trip from Bremenhaven to Galveston took twenty-one days, the food was bad, and Frank was seasick for many days. From Galveston, Frank traveled to Temple to join his brother, sister, and brother-in-law at Seaton, and lived there for one year. After that we went to Delia, Kansas, to visit an uncle and other relatives. He lived there for two years and worked for area farmers, and at the same time attended night school to learn to read and write English. The class was taught by cousin, George Hejtmanek, who had received his education in Kansas. Frank came back to Texas, spent some time at Rowena with his mother’s only sister, Anna Batla, and then moved to a farm in Needville. Later he moved to Rosenberg, and it was there that he met and, on June 1, 1913, married Albina Wetzel.

Albina Wetzel was born on April 2, 1897, at Rosebud, Texas, of Czech and Swiss descent. She attended school at Travis and Fairchild, Texas. Albina’s father, Fritz Gottlieb Wetzel, was born in Switzerland on February 8, 1862, and died on June 6, 1905. About 1879 he came to Austin County with his mother and stepfather Heffelfinger. Fritz Wetzel had two half-sisters and two half-brothers, Mary, Lizzie, Ernest and Walter Heffelfinger. Albina’s mother, Anna Pitrucha, was born on January 29, 1869, and died on December 18, 1928. She came to Austin County with her parents, Steve and Mary Pitrucha, from Hostalkov, Moravia, about 1880. Mary was widowed and later married Steve Koslovsky. Her children were: Anna, John, Steve and John Pitrucha; and Frank, William, Rose, and Frances Koslovsky. Mary and Steve later moved to Rosebud. Fritz and Anna Wetzel and Mary and Steve Koslovsky are all buried in the Rosebud cemetery.

Frank and Albina farmed for a time near Rosenberg, then moved to Rosebud, and later to Temple where he worked in a shoe repair shop. In March of 1919, they moved to Matagorda County with their three small daughters to a home situated one mile north of Hawley Cemetery. The two older daughters, Anna Mae and Georgia, attended the Macek School. Frank’s sister and brother-in-law, Rosalie and Joe Macek, had moved to Matagorda County from Seaton, and Albina’s sister and brother-in-law, Ida and John Ondresek, owned a farm near El Maton. This had encouraged Frank and Albina to move also.

During the next ten years, a large number of families of Czech-Moravian descent moved to this area and they formed an active community. Frank helped organize, and was the first secretary of local Lodge #148 El Maton of the SPJST, a life insurance and benevolent order. He also helped organize and was first president of Lodge #138 RVOS, a mutual property insurance group. He was active in the church, the Evangelical Czech-Moravian Brethren, now The Unity of the Brethren in Texas. He helped organize the congregation which met for a time at the church near Hawley Cemetery, and he also taught Sunday School there.

In 1928, Frank and Albina and their six children, who ranged in age from nine months to fourteen years of age, moved from the El Maton area to the Ashby community, and the children grew up there. The road from El Maton to Collegeport, now FM 1095, was the first paved road in the county and was completed in 1928. That road was concrete in the middle and oyster shell on each side. The Hejtmanek home was beside that road, and was located about a mile south of the Ashby School. The paved road and the close proximity of the school were factors that encouraged the move to that community. All six children attended the “two-teacher” school. Frank served as a trustee for this school. Frank died on July 17, 1962, and was buried at Hawley Cemetery.

Frank and Albina’s children were:

Anna Mae, born 1914, who married Henry Jurek, resided in Pasadena, and was the mother of Henry, Jr., Glenn, Patricia, and Alice Marie

Georgia, born 1916, who married Arthur Lostak, resided in Highlands, and was the mother of Allen and La Nelle

Alice, born 1918, who married Hubert Jurek, resided in South Houston, and was the mother of Shirley, Karen and Sandra

Frank Henry, born 1920, who married Alice M., resided in Pasadena, and was the father of Frank, George and Louis

Martha Jane, who married Ottmar Shimek, resided in Bay City, and was the mother of Janice, Ottmar, Jr., and Sylvia

George W., born 1928, who married Dovie Spoor, resided in Ashby, and was the father of George, Jr. “Billy,” Ronald and Cheryl.


Historic Matagorda County, Volume II, pages 231-233

Children of George W. Hejtmanek, Sr. and Dovie Spoor Hejtmanek

George W. Hejtmanek, Sr. and son, Ronnie
Ronnie and Billy Hejtmanek, Mary Zarate and unknown

George W. "Billy" Hejtmanek, Jr.


Ronnie Hejtmanek



Ronnie Hejtmanek and George W. "Billy" Hejtmanek, Jr.

Photos courtesy of Ron Hejtmanek


Copyright 2012 - Present by the Hejtmanek Family
All rights reserved

Apr. 23, 2012
Apr. 23, 2012