Alena Crhová

* 1938  

  • “Village tycoon Volný is a saboteur. Good man Volný will not deliver on supplies this year; he is going down the path shown to him by émigrés such as Fehler, Bend and the other traitors who send over murderers like those who killed in Babice with the help of village tycoons. Life was at stake there. It was no fun. People like him are not shy of battling socialism; they cried it was all roguery that made them beggars yesterday, they sabotage farming production today and they will commit even worse crimes tomorrow. And they do it all just so they can remain mayors and profiteers, live on profits without working and force small farmers to toil in their fields. Village tycoon Volný will not escape punishment, for the government will not allow people like him to sabotage the pioneering effort of our people.”

  • “When dad was in prison he met people from the other villages who were in prison too... We were to be evicted; dad bought a big crop thresher where all you did was throw crops in; we used it for one year and they took it away the next year, and the entire village would come to us. We had seven cows, mum had four children to take care of, yet the communists ordered her to go clean up for them; and still, the people did not swear at the communists – they swore at us and said they would not work in a kulak’s fields: the communists set people against each other.”

  • “We did not exploit anyone; my wife and I often worked at night, but then the Nazis came, searching for whatever they could find to eat, they would plunder and even put us in concentration camps for a long time, but we were hoping it would end and Hitler would go to hell; Romanians and Russians shortly after tried to take what they could, and when the comrades took power they were worse than others; they said, we take new care of you, we give you people’s republic, but they took our food and forced us to provide supplies – what care of us! Those unwilling to work set about planning for us. Others, who never knew how to feed a pig, wanted to have a word over pig killings, and they schooled people so well that they were even grateful for that. Skipping school, children would verse with Karel Havlíček: ‘Being a policeman is such fun, I can put anyone I want behind bars.’”

  • Full recordings
  • 4

    Borovník, 16.11.2018

    (audio)
    duration: 04:06:46
    media recorded in project Stories of 20th Century
Full recordings are available only for logged users.

Despite all the injustice, dad remained a merry person

authentic foto
authentic foto
photo: vlastní

Alena Crhová, née Volná, was born in Borovník on 12 March 1938. As the daughter of a “kulak”, she and her entire family faced persecution. She had three siblings who helped out on the family farm ever since childhood. The family owned 28 hectares of land. When communists assumed power in the village after the war, their ideology disrupted the entire community so that neighbours feared each other. The communists accused the witness’s father František Volný of exploiting the people in Borovník by forcing them to work on his farm. They declared him a kulak, a class enemy, and imprisoned him. First, he was kept at the Kounic Dormitory in Brno and then in Olbramovice. He was released from prison early based on an amnesty, but he had to work at a quarry for several years afterwards and contracted tuberculosis. He did not get bitter or take his revenge even though the entire village maligned him after his return from prison. He died at age 94. His daughter Alena Crhová was persecuted with her entire family.