Development into a town was made possible in the 15th century, when Hód, Vásárhely, Tarján and Ábrány, once independent small villages, were joined and one of the Great-plain’s characteristic large market-town’s came into being. The settlement named as Hódvásárhely in 1437 appeared as a manorial centre in the documents of János Hunyadi, who was the country squire of the town at that time. The town’s location next to the road leading from Csongrád to Csanád was advantageous for the development of trade. Markets and livestock trading fuelled its growth in the Middle-Ages.
It lay on the territory of Csongrád County as a manorial market-town (oppidium). Part of the county was under Turkish control after 1542. The part between the Danube and the Tisza belonged to the Ottoman Empire, while the part beyond the Tisza, thus Hódvásárhely, belonged to Transylvania. Following the military campaign of 1552 the whole of Csongrád County fell under Ottoman rule. The entire area was devastated by the Mongol-Ottoman offensive in 1566.
At the time of the Ottoman expulsion Ottoman and Mongol groups once more laid waste to the whole area, and the town also fell victim. The surviving inhabitants only returned in 1699. The 150 years of Ottoman rule left behind it a sparse population and unmanageable land. Using the advantages of the plain’s pastures and fertile meadows the inhabitants primarily settled down to rough stock-raising. Hungarian grey cows, driven by foot to the distant foreign markets, ensured significant income.
At the time of the Rákóczi’s insurrection the town was under the control of Count Miklós Bercsényi. The royal court confiscated the estate in 1701 and gave it to imperial general Leopold Schlick. During the war of independence, the town was seized back and Bercsényi handed it over to the Kuruts general Sándor Károlyi for leasehold. Following the Szatmár peace agreement the royal court of Vienna did not accept Károlyi’s claim to the territory and he was only able to retrieve it by buying it back some 11 years later. The Károlyi family remained in possession of the town from 1722 until 1818, when landowner jurisdiction was abolished.