The village is 10,165 acres and is at its center is 4,130 feet high. Founded in 1313 on the estates of the Niedzica Castle, the village of Osturna was originally settled by Ruthenians who came from the Lemko region of Southern Poland. Osturna is first mentioned in historical records in 1593. In the 15th and 16th centuries the village was expanded and its population grew. The village of Osturna belonged to the Spis District although Polish nobility claimed the village belonged to their boarder estates. Today, the village is on the Slovak and Polish border. The village is a farming and sheep herding community. During the latter half of the 19th century, cloth was produced in the village. The village is 7 km long and is found in the valley of Osturniansky potok (Osturniansky Creek.) Osturna lies in the Spisska Magura valley by the Osturnianskeho stream. In 1593 the village was overseen by the family Horvath-Palocayovcov. In 1787 there were 200 homes and from 1809 to 1828 there were 252 homes. During the first half of the 20th century a number of trades were conducted such as embroidery, cloth making and rug weaving. The production of shoes was also produced in the village. The village has a climate where July is the warmest month and January the coldest. The most freezing periods of weather are seen in December. September is the average month with the most sunshine. The area land is cultivated with natural vegetation. The surrounding areas are heavily forested. The soil in Osturna is high in minerals. Many of the homes in Osturna were made of wood and remain like this in the present time. Made of timber, the homes generally had one room with a fireplace, a pantry, and two rooms, one for living and one for sleeping. Pitched roofing with plate shingles is now common. Many of the trim on the homes, especially the corners and window frames are painted red with the main lines of the home painted blue. In 1979 the village of Osturna was declared a historical site of folk architecture. Osturna holds the largest historical site designation in all Slovakia.
The Greek Catholic Church of St. Michael the Archangel was constructed in 1796 and later expanded in 1937. The village retains its original construction with a wooden ceiling and was constructed on a hill. Some of the clergy who have served the Osturna Greek Catholic Church are: Augustin Podhajecky (1882 to 1906), Orest Cornak (1906-1908), Ervin Byss (1908-1917), Mihal Sekel (1917-1920), Anton Adamkovic (1920-1930), Juraj Melnik (1930-1931), Jozef Petrasovic (1931-1942), Adalbert Babjak (1942-1950.)
Life Today in Osturna
The present day population of Osturna is approximately 412 residents and the current Mayor (2011) of the village is Mrs. Kristína Gregoričková. The village is very active with social concerns. On September 4, 2011 in conjunction with the Slovak Red Cross and the Slovak National Transfusion Service, a blood donation mobile unit came to Osturna at the Culture House. Many volunteers from the village participated in this drive. On October 9, 2011, the village of Osturna held an official welcome to new residents of the village at the Cultural House. The new born children of Osturna for 2010 and 2011 were Sofia Ihnacakova, Ivan Ihnacak, Michal Kanukova, Michal Kusnirak, Victoria Furconova and B. Kusnirakova. The newborn children and their parents were welcomed by Osturna Mayor, Mrs. Christine Gregorickova. The ceremony was a happy occasion and the children and parents were enrolled in the memorial book of the village.
The following photos provided by, The Greek Catholic Archbishop of Presov
St. Michael the Archangel Greek Catholic Church
Roadside Church Chapel
The Road in Osturna - Part II, May 2011
by, Thom Kolton
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