Texas Bob Travels

Parish in Clyde Observes Birthday

This article appeared in the Abilene, Texas Newspaper August 12, 1939.


CLYDE - After the 10-o'clock Mass Sunday, Aug. 11, the members of St. Joachim's Parish gathered in Dugan's Grove for a basket picnic, the occasion being the fifty-sixth anniversary of the parish.

Long before the turn of the century, in the year 1883 to be exact, James and Edward Dugan and their families, of Morristown, Pa., heeding the call of the West, came to Texas and settled in Clyde. The town of Clyde at that time consisted of a general store, post office, boxcar depot and some six or eight dwellings. One year later a colony of ten Portuguese families migrated from California and settled in and around the town. Also in 1883 came James and Charles Crowley from Pennsylvania, the latter obtaining the job of local railroad section foreman and from Wisconsin in 1886 came Frank Xavier Prew and his family, who settled on a farm 12 miles south of Clyde.

Pioneer Catholics

There were the first Catholics in Clyde. Mass was said in the section foreman's house four or five times a year by a missionary priest, who traveled over the country in buggies and on horseback.

In 1890 the congregation erected the first church, which was named St. John Berchmans' and dedicated in 1891 by Bishop Fitzgerald of Little Rock, Ark. who also confirmed a class of fifteen children. This church was destroyed by a tornado in 1895. Rebuilt and rededicated the same year by Bishop Duane of Dallas, It was given a new name, St. Joachim's.

This thriving little parish with active choir and Sunday School, and Mass every Sunday, is under the care of Rev. Joseph B. Nelson, assistant to the pastor of Sacred Heart Church, Abilene.


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