Ing. Karol Bartek

* 1926

  • I came to Přelouč, where radios were made for the whole of Czechoslovakia. A corporal was there on service, red inserts, a German revolver. "Private, where are you going?" I showed him the paper and he said, "Here you will take a bus about fifteen kilometers. If I were you, I'd shoot myself with this gun. 'I didn't know why he was telling me. He already knew where I was going. Although he had red inserts as a a sign of service. He sat me down and told the conductor where to drop me off, because I didn't know where to go. It was already so dark. I remember it was dusk already. To the warehouse, I had a belt from the Wehrmacht, the other boys had trousers. And there were fourteen of us in the room.

  • Those trials were interesting to me because my predecessors at the grammar school, Tunega, three were detained and convicted, and were not pardoned in Prague. In Bratislava they were given life imprisonment and appealed, and in Prague they received the death penalty. Those were classmates older than me. I experienced it, I knew them. Šlink taught me Marxism-Leninism, so I knew him physically, he lectured directly to me. And he was among the nine who were with Slánský. It affects you ... He did not examine, an assistant did, but he lectured on Marxism-Leninism, “VKSB” was called that subject. And suddenly he is sentenced to death.

  • My professor Nemcová left for Banská Bystrica. Five hundred soldiers from Nemšová went into the uprising. František Karas was an active partisan and was wounded. And then he was an actor at the National Theater. In 1945 in February came the front. When I saw that the Red Army and Romanians were coming through Trenčianske Teplice, we were afraid that the Germans would take us, because from Púchov to Nové mesto, the right bank of the Váh was German. To save myself from being taken away to clean the trenches, to dig for cannon trenches, I told my mom I was going to the mountains. I took some potatoes, some bread, bacon, which I had at home, and in the evening I went to the mountains in Horná Súča. There was Lintner, a member of the partisan group of Stalin's brigade - the Carpathians. The commander was Ondruška. Lintner, of course, had a weapon and a walkie-talkie and conducted Russian companies that stood in Piešťany and flew to Dubnica, Púchov and the Nemšov barracks. They bombed 2 times. I was in contact with Lintner. The Germans met me: "Hände hoch!" I intentionally had nothing with me, only a handkerchief. If they found a gun with me, they would shoot me right there.

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    Ateliér Holubník -Bratislava, 23.10.2020

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“Black Baron” Karol Bartek still does not understand why he was sent to the auxiliary technical battalion in 1952

Karol Bartek, from the book “Moja cesta zivotom” (My road through life)
Karol Bartek, from the book “Moja cesta zivotom” (My road through life)
photo: Archív pamätníka

Karol Bartek was born on August 19, 1926 in Nemšová, as the fourth child out of eight. The father’s name was Ján and the mother’s name was Mária, born Patková. He attended folk school in Nemšová, and in 1938 began studying at the grammar school in Šaštín. He later moved to Trenčín and graduated in June 1947 in Zlaté Moravce. He performed theater at home. In high school, he was chairman of the Democratic Party of Young Democrats. After graduation, he studied social work at the University of Social Sciences in Brno (1947 - 1951). After college, he completed a one-year hygiene course and then worked at the Statistical Institute of Public Health in Bratislava. Shortly afterwards, in 1952, he enlisted in the compulsory military service in the 67th Auxiliary Technical Battalion in Zdechovice. He undertook a medical course there. In 1954 he returned to work for the statistical office. Four children were born to him - Ján, Veronika, Elvíra and Karol. In April 1955, he began working for the Trade Commission, where he worked until 1965 as a specialist clerk. Two years later, the family moved to an apartment on Krížná Street. Between the time when the mandates were abolished and the ministries were established, he worked temporarily at the General Directorate in Slovakia or at the Civil Engineering Works as a corporate sociologist. In 1968, he started working at the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs as a chief expert officer - a specialist in the field of human resources. He remained here until his retirement in 1986. From 1986 to 1988 he worked as an assistant professor at the University of Economics in Bratislava at the Faculty of Economics. He wrote three books about his life (1990, 1993, 2006). In 2020 he lived in Bratislava.