Микола Ставничий

* 1927

  • I was born in Kolomyia. My father was an lawyer in Kolomyia and conductor in choir “Boian”. My grandfather was also a lawyer in Kolomyia - is Andrew Czajkowski. I was born in 1927. I spent my childhood in Kolomyia. Then the war began, and brought Bolsheviks with it, and after them the Germans came, but then again advancing Bolsheviks. And because my father was a public figure and very active then, as in Kolomyia was in Hungarians occupation (there was almost an independent Ukraine, for Hungarians behaved quite properly with the civilian population and civilian administration) ... In any case it was necessary to travel, that when the bolsheviks came. We traveled to Vienna, after we drove to Vienna and stayed there for almost a year, and then, as mobilized again Bolshevik invasion, we moved further west.

  • For me policeman in America - that is, a man whom I pay. And secondly: when I need something - something to learn, for example, then I turn to the policeman and ask him if he can show me where there is a street, etc. A very long time, when I was in USA already, I had an uncomfortable feeling everytime with policemen. Because, first was a Polish policeman, who was the enemy for me. Then there was Bolshevyk policeman, then was a German policeman. And each of them was my enemy. And I absolutely do not want anything from them, or to deal with.

  • In Bavaria there were several villages that German authorities appointed for division families. But there's going to be all Ukrainians, so I will say who departing from the bolshevik invasion. Then the war came to an end. And Americans began to collect those so-called "displaced persons" in the camps. There was also a problem that the USSR wanted to get their citizens. And we, those who were from Galicia were Polish citizens, so they have not had... And we began to gather in those camps. Americans began to create these camps at Dachau and created - at Munich, Dachau area (there was a concentration camp - that's one thing, but there was also a factory BMW). There was a large camp for the workers of the factory. Apparently, the factory was not working. They were simple huts, two-storey, wood, and there the Americans began to collect those "displaced persons". It was in the area, called Karlsfeld. We call it "Charles the field." In that Kalsfeld was created such a Ukrainian republic. They gathered - I do not know, now I do not remember - but there were about 7-9 thousands of people, most Ukrainians. There was created the camp council, school: there was a normal school (what is "normal"? 1 to 6 classes. Because they said "abnormal school"). And after the high school, teacher's seminar, trade school. And every kind of fellowships. And obviously came as a youth, the former scouts once established Plast. A promoter of this establishment there was Petro "Peak" Piasetskyy.

  • There [in Kolomyia] is the railway station, and then toward the Ivano-Frankivsk is a road through rail - road to Horodenka. And there was a nice "rampa". You know what the "rampa"? "Shlack-baum", in Ukrainian saying - "shlack-baum" (laughs). So of course it was that someone leave Kolomyia, we quickly run to that gate, and as the train was going, we waved. But when we were still at the station, I stood by the carriage. And look - and through the slats move some green monsters. It was the bolshevik tanks. And then the train started, and we began to ride. And when we were more or less where the road was the following tank shoot out. But it is good that they had the poor cannon - shooted to the road, and only stones shakes. We were lucky that the on the last platform of our train was German anti-tank cannon. And it held those tanks... Tanks were afraid, it seems, we shot out one of the tanks. And so we gradually got to Ivano-Frankivsk.

  • My brother lives in Ivano-Frankivsk. So he taught me to be a scout. We put a tent in the garden and cooked some kind of soups or something - I do not remember because I was still quite small. During the war (under the German occupation) was created the so-called Ukrainian Youth Educational Community. I belonged to them. We went to exercise... It was not quite like a normal Plast. There was no time to make camps... I was - oh, sorry! - I was at a camp in Pasichna. In Pasichna took place at the former camp - in Polish it is called "przysposobienie wojskowe". It was for Polish soldiers, and there were barracks. Sheds on such increase, if it was then a fence, a kind of too high (points), and then a roof. There was so much space between the roof and the fence. I was freezing there! Because I had two poor blankets, and there was a terrible cold. But I went there two weeks of camp...

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    Львів, 16.04.2013

    duration: 01:00:38
    media recorded in project Plast living history
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The first and foremost is I promise to be faithful to God and Ukraine!

Ставн.порт..jpg (historic)
Микола Ставничий
photo: Музей-архів пластового руху

Mykola Stawnychy was born in 1927 in Kolomyia, in a lawyer family Roman Stawnychy and Mariya of Tchaikovsky family. Father studied at the Music Institute named after M. Lysenko in Lviv and was a conductor in “Boyan” choir. Mother was a daughter  Andriy Czajkowskyy, a ukrainian writer and lawyer. She was a writer at magazines “Woman’s Destiny,” “World of Youth”, “Women’s freedom”. Family went in exile since his father, a social activist and lawyer, did not expect anything good coming from the Soviet occupation authorities. The train, which traveled with family Stawnychy from Kolomyia, suddenly came under attack Soviet tanks. Family was in exile in Vienna, then in Bavaria (Karlsfeld, Berchtesgaden) of 1949 in America (Buffalo, Washington). Mykola studied in Munich. Mykola became a member of Plast (ukrainian boy-scouts) during the Nazi occupation. A member of the Plast camp near the village of Pasichna, Halychyna, in 1942, and later in the Bavarian refugee camps. After graduating the high school in 1946 he entered the hut of “Lisovi Chorty”. In America, he was an active organizer of the Plast units, commander of Plast camps (in particular, the first commandant of the Plast camp for boys at the Vovcha Tropa, East Chatham, NY, commandant of “Lisova Shkola” (“Forest school”) in 1972, etc.).