Dagmar Housková

* 1934  

  • “Now I had this problem, I wanted to get married in a church. And I said, sorry, but I want a church wedding. Because even if I’m not religious entirely… just that, I just want to have a church wedding. And they even lend me a car, a Tatraplan [Tatra 600, a car that was available only as a company car for Communist dignitaries and a regular citizen could not even buy it], for that wedding. But… It was on the 20th December, the day before, I had to have a civil wedding at the city hall, at Praha 7. It was entirely run of the mill. On the 20th, we had a big wedding at the Knights of the Cross and the chauffeur drove us all across Prague, that he has to drive the bride through the whole town. And on the 6th of January, I was told that there’s no way I can go to Berlin and I can’t be the director’s secretary. And if I want to stay in Technoexport any longer, I need to go to some department, and I was transferred to the department for Comecon or some such.”

  • “And they picked me to recite the scout promise to the children who were to také the promise - our Jana was there, too, as far as I know – to recite the promise. It was a fascinating experience. Very strong experience it was. It still gives me goosebumps.” “Strong because it was so serious, solemn?“ „Yes, it was so compelling, so magic, because it was by a bonfire, in the evening, out in the wild. And the children… When you saw how seriously they took it, how fulfilling it was for them, that they really accepted those values they promised to uphold… Whenever everyone got the basics of scouting and promised… I automatically… I did not need to learn the scout promise by heart, I kept it in me for those twenty years. Or how many… it was since then. It simply burst out… It was fascinating.”

  • "You know what? In that 1949, the Pionýr youth organisation snatched all our things. They took all the materials, all the tents, all the meeting rooms. They practically stole our scout programme and stuff. That’s why we didn’t want to join them. Because it was an entirely different… It was an organisation whose ideology was entirely Communist, they were there for Communist instruction. And that’s what we didn’t want under any circumstances.” “And what was the other option?” “There were many scout groups which joined that Pionýr youth movement buthen there were many groups which joined Pionýr but at the same time they stayed… or they were in the Sports Union. It had its advantages, one could get some material or something from those organisations. Many joined the Svazarm [Svaz pro spolupráci s armádou; Union for Cooperation with the Army] or the Woodcraft League.

  • Full recordings
  • 1

    Praha, 17.06.2019

    (audio)
    duration: 01:36:03
    media recorded in project Stories of the 20th Century TV
  • 2

    Praha, 18.06.2019

    (audio)
    duration: 01:31:02
    media recorded in project Stories of the 20th Century TV
  • 3

    Praha, 25.06.2019

    (audio)
    duration: 01:04:11
    media recorded in project A Century of Boy Scouts
Full recordings are available only for logged users.

The Scout values stay for life

Dagmar Housková in 1969.
Dagmar Housková in 1969.
photo: Archiv pamětníka

Dagmar Housková, née Vacková, was born on the 17th January of 1934 in Prague. Her parents had met in Plzeň and they moved to Prague after their first daughter, Milena, was born. Father Josef Vacek was a lawyer and a clerk, mother Hilda Vacková-Mertins was a homemaker. Although her mother’s mother tongue was German, she raised Dagmar and her sister in Czech and during the German occupation, she declined the Reich citizenship. During the May 1945 uprising, Dagmar witnessed fights at Letná and the fire of the football stadium of the Slavia team. Shortly after, her grandpa on her mother’s side was internated in the Bory prison in Plzeň where he soon died. Uncle Fritz was a prisoner of war in the Soviet Union. The other German relatives were … to the American and Soviet occupation zone [of Germany]. In 1946, Dagmar joined the Scouts/Junák, where she was a member until 1948 when the Scout/Junak movement was banned. After her father’s death, she and her sister helped out their mother and the family was also supported by the Plzeň uncle. After the Charlotta Masarykova high school was closed down, Dagmar studied at the Business Academy in Karlin and then worked in various clerical jobs that included, among others, the secretary of the deputy of the Technoexport national company. When the Scout movement was revived in 1968, she was one of those who established the 12th girls’ … in Prague. When scouting was banned again in 1980, she led the 5th girls’... in the Sports Union Orbis in Nusle. After 1989, she participated in renewing the scouts’ movement for the third time, she was a member of the central council of Junák. She is the member of Svojsík’s … and she was awarded the Order of Silver Trefoil.