Alois Nedvěd

* 1949

  • “Then they came and we were given the order, saying there were mountains in Comănești and our parents were miners, so they took us and deported us. We were there until 1956. I remember when we came to the cross here, the wind had piled the snow up right under my parents’ chins.”

  • “The story was that we were taken away, they left us there, hammered in four stakes and said this is your spot, construct a building there. That’s what our parents said. I was a small child, there was nothing there except bumbac [cotton]… that’s what they said. I was a small child, I was two. They erected a building from the ground up out of wood. They said wood was expensive and money was scarce. They said we were rich, but we were miners… the people here who were rich and had a mill, they stayed and we went to Baragan.”

  • “Even today they complain, mainly the older people, how come us children also get [compensation for deportation to Baragan], saying it was the parents who lived it. I know, but according to my parents we suffered as well. We were there with them… Us children were there with them as well. When they went hungry, so did we go hungry. Or when they weren’t allowed to go somewhere, neither were we.”

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    Eibenthal, 10.09.2022

    duration: 01:02:46
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They dropped us off, hammered in wooden stakes and left us to our fate in the Baraganian steppe.

Alois Nedvěd in September 2022, Eibenthal - Romania
Alois Nedvěd in September 2022, Eibenthal - Romania
photo: Post Bellum

Alois Nedvěd was born on 19 August 1949 in the Czech village of Eibenthal in the Romanian Banat. His father’s name was Augustin and during the Second World War he was drafted by German military units and subsequently deployed to the front, where he was wounded and then captured by the Red Army. In June of 1951, the Communist Party of Romania deported the family to the region of Baragan, at the time the witness’s mother was pregnant and his sister was born in exile. They lived there in wretched conditions, forced to collect cotton in order to fulfil their work quota. According to the witness’s testimony, they spent about half a year in the Baraganian steppe, after which a decision was made to allow miner’s families to leave for work in the town of Comănești in eastern Romania, where his father worked in the coal mines. They were only allowed to return home after the decision of the Ministry of the Interior issued in December 1955. After returning, they lived in the miner’s colony in Ujbányje, where the witness attended four years of school and the next three years in Eibenthal. After completing his engineering trade school, he worked for three years as a lathe operator and after military service, he returned to Eibenthal, where he married and worked in the asbestos and coal mines. After 1990, he began receiving financial compensation from the state for his deportation to Baragan. At the time of recording he was living in Eibenthal (September 2022).