Paulína Dubeňová (rod. Mladšíková)

* 1922  

  • "The German came. And my grandmother had a chest, in which she stored the clothes. He rummaged through the chest and found... she was wearing thick shirts since she was old. So as he was rummaging through it and shouted out: Partisan, that's a partisan! And I said: There are no partisans here, here's nothing. And he asked, where are they? I replied, search for them in the mountain. There aren't any partisans here, just us. So he left."

  • "We put the flour into the cradle, we took potatoes, prepared yeast - it was called "pomlat". When "pomlat" raised, we started mixing. I mixed the dough until it was pliant. When it was ready, mother said, enough, it's good. So we covered it, floured it on the top and let to rise. I ran to preheat the oven so that it would be ready for the bread. Then they brought the trugs- twelve trugs. They placed canvas onto every trug, floured it and said:" Take a kneading board, I will give you [the dough] so that every bread is of the same size. I will give you [the dough] and you would knead." 44:38 - 45:59

  • "And I rolled- with one hand like this, with the other like that, I rolled [the bread] into a boll and placed it onto the trug. We let the loaves to rise onto the trug. When the oven was heated, we scraped out the coal, mother carried it outside and poured water onto it. With a koeleria from fir branches, which I cut. Father prepared a big stick for me. I made the koeleria from it and I swept the oven with it to clean it from the ashes. After sweeping it, I threw a bit of grit into it. When the grit exploded, my mother said we can start to bake bread. This is how we baked bread." 45:59 - 47:27

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    Kunerad, 25.02.2020

    (audio)
    duration: 01:04:44
    media recorded in project Stories of the 20th century
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Everyone helped how they could. I knew how to bake bread, so I baked

Paulína Dubeňová about 23 years old shortly after the end of World War II
Paulína Dubeňová about 23 years old shortly after the end of World War II
photo: súkromný archív pamätníčky Paulíny Dubeňovej

Paulína Dubeňová(nee Mladšíková), was born on May 8, 1922, in Kunerad in Rajecká dolina. Her parents were small farmers. She had four siblings, two of whom died as children. As a young girl, she worked in Germany on a cow farm before the war. During The Second World War, she lived with her parents and siblings in Kunerad, they were hiding and taking care of twelve partisans in the attic of their house. During the Slovak National Uprising, the rebels and partisans brought them flour and potatoes and she baked for them 12 loaves of bread every day, sometimes she cooked for them. The German soldiers repeatedly searched their house but didn’t found the partisans. After the war, she married Jozef, a former partisan soldier. During collectivisation, communists appropriated family’s fields and cattle. For her whole life, she worked in the forest and planted trees. Together with her husband, they had three sons. Today she is 98 years old, she has nine grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.