Life in the Camps


  The camp buildings were quite old.  It appears that in the past the camp had served earlier as a holding facility or prison.  Men and women were housed in separate wings of the complex.  There was a heating apparatus inside to heat the rooms.  Bunk beds filled the entire room.  They were hard and had coarse straw filled covers.  The deportees stole coal because that provided the best heat.  There was no kitchen.  The deportees had no food left to eat and they were overwhelmed with hunger and constant demanding work.  Margaret Lerch, who is now married, was eighteen years old at the time she was taken to Russian to do slave labour.  She tells stories of how many Germans from Yugoslavia who arrived there were overjoyed at being deported.  The Partisans and the Russians had such great hatred for the Germans that they had carried out massacres in their villages.  Very often large groups of Germans were driven into a room from which a few were chosen and those left in the room were shot.


  In the first camp where most of the people from our village were assigned were ordered to build a stone entrance way into the mineshaft by a Russian officer.  The stones had been intended for the  building of a provisional kitchen that the deportees were supposed to construct.  Due to the heavy work involved and the poor nutrition they received they quickly began to lose weight.  The following is an example:  Johann Heidt weighed 88 kilos when he arrived in the Soviet Union and on January 16, 1946 a year later he weighed only 48 kilos.  The older deportees died quickly especially the chain smokers because cigarettes were not available.  The deportees received only 400 grams of bread daily and the rest of the daily fare was cabbage soup, sour cucumber soup or rice soup.  It got worse day by day.  They traded their possessions they had brought with them from home like razor blades, leather jackets, underwear and even their dresses at the local market for a ladle of bean soup.  Our villagers were used to an agricultural lifestyle back home and many were outstanding farmers.  By going to work in the mines they were providing the war reparations that would help in the reconstruction of the Soviet Union.  The deportees worked eight hours a day and worked in shifts.  Women as well as men worked in the coal mines.  During the working day they mined coal in tunnels that were less than a meter in height.  They had to mine a certain quota of coal daily.  Explosive devices were used to crack open the seams.  Johann Heidt recalls:


  “There were many accidents in the mines.  I lived through two cave-ins.  The coal pinned down my neck so that I was unable to move my head.  The second time three people next to me were killed.  Two of them were women.  The explosion was so powerful that my head crashed up against the steel trolley used to move the coal.  My legs were broken below the knee and my right arm was injured.  I ended up in the hospital where I lay unconscious for two or three days.  I owe my survival to a good intentioned Jewish doctor.  He used weights and a machine to strengthen my legs.  For a long time I could only walk using crutches.”


  An officer once told him that whoever was unable to work would be sent home and he was allowed to go.  He turned down the opportunity because he did not want to leave his wife behind.  After a short discussion the Russian asked if his wife had sufficient clothing.  She in fact had very little left to wear.  People were only released if they could properly clothe themselves.  They were then taken to a large assembly camp at Stalino with the hope that they might return home to Hungary.  This camp had 50,000 to 60,000 inmates.  They were there for two or three days and then one day they were told that those persons whose names were called out where to proceed to the camp gates.  After his name was called out he waited to see if his wife’s name would be called out and could leave with him or not.  Their paths separated that day.  Only those who were sick were eligible to leave and make the journey home and Johann Heidt was allowed to join the transport.  This occurred during the time frame when train transports taking deportees and prisoners of war went in the direction of Hungary.


  The vast majority of those deported from Gyönk would have to continue to struggle to survive in the Soviet Union.  Conditions in the mines only got worse.  Hunger drove them to steal.  A young woman who had attempted to steal some food was caught by the Russians and beaten to death with the butts of their rifles.  On December 15, 1947 there was a monetary crisis in the Soviet Union.  They no longer received their ration books in order to get food.  A month later, on January 15, 1948 there was new currency and everyone received 1,500 Rubles.  This day also signalled an improvement in their situation.  They were now allowed to go to the nearby city freely and with their new currency they were able to buy sausages, butter and vegetables.  Now in addition to cabbage soup and bread they had other food to sustain them as they continued to do heavy physical labour.  Some of the deportees were forced to leave and go to other camps.  If one was fortunate one could be assigned to work in the fields on a collective farm.  But to speak of good fortune in this regard is perhaps misleading because these deportees were still robbed of their freedom.  This agricultural work was certainly not as dangerous as working in the coal mines in which a cave in could occur at any moment.


  Johann Heidt’s wife who had not been allowed to accompany her husband home tells of how she was brought from Dnepropetrowsk to Tschernowitz along with prisoners of war.  She thought she was in Hungary.  One hundred and twenty persons that were part of the   transport had to get off the train and left the station.  The Commandant did not answer the question as to why this group had been left behind.  For the next month they were closely observed to see if they were too sick to work or able to walk.  When the month was over she was put back to work.  The officer saw that she was very depressed and sad and asked her what she wished for.  Her response was immediate, “I want to go home!”  He replied, “You must still work here for a short time and then you will be able to go back home.”  This awakened within her a sense of hope but the short time would last a year.  After one year she had to pack her belongings.  She thought that she would now finally be allowed to go home.  She had to put aside her aspirations.  The next station on her journey was not home but the camp at Lemberg.  Here she planted potatoes and managed to take some back to the camp with her.  While she was there she no longer suffered from the terrible hunger she had known.  She would open a sack of potatoes and take out some to plant in the earth.  It was difficult for her to wait for the new plants to grow and produce new potatoes that she had planted secretly.


  With regard to the conditions under which the deportees lived the survivors reported that the possibility of washing clothes and personal cleanliness was catastrophic for them.  Reports in the documentation of the deportation of the Germans of Hungary substantiate these allegations in the following quotation:


  “There was no soap only what we had bought with us from home.  We did our laundry but dirt from the soiled piece of clothing simply soiled another because we could not really wash them.  Once the soap was gone we all became itchy.  We took baths on Sundays in vain because all we had to use was simply water.  On Sundays when they disinfected us there was warm water there for us but it made no real difference.  On leaving the place we had more lice than we had before.  Lice in our hair and clothing they were just everywhere.  We had all kinds of open wounds due to our scratching.  The scab broke easily and they festered.  They itched terribly and bled profusely.”


  In the first two years, 1945 and 1946 our numbers from Gyönk began to dwindle.  Epidemics, typhus, dysentery, malaria, near starvation, freezing cold, heavy physical labour all contributed to the large loss of life that took place.  As contagious diseases broke out one person after another perished around us.  The lack of medicine and care brought about countless deaths when just a small bit of medicine might have saved their lives.  Sometimes when one awoke early in the morning the person that I shared a bunk with or others around you would never wake up.  The dead would be taken to a room set aside for corpses and would only be buried when enough of them had been assembled for burial details.  In the summer time the chests with the corpses made a terrible stench.


  After 1948 those who were not sick as well as those unable to work were sent back home.  Following the already monetary crisis the situation of our people became more bearable.  In 1949 the bread ration was increased to 1.2 kilos of bread daily a vast difference from the 400 grams of the past.  Clothing could now be purchased.  In place of bunk beds they were iron framed beds with showers for bathing and the lice gradually disappeared.


  Heinrich Forrest took two beautiful sparkling pieces of coal with him when it was time for him to leave and ended up in getting into a lot of trouble because of it.


  “In my childhood I enjoyed studying history and was very interested in it.  I thought I would show them to my teacher, Geza Nethling when I got home.  I meant nothing bad by it.  I had two suitcases of clothing and I wrapped the pieces of coal in newspaper and put them in a corner of my suitcase.  In the last camp we passed through after two others they examined our suitcases again.  From there we were taken to another camp.  We had to go through it again and one of my suitcases was searched again.  A Russian pulled out my clothes along with the newspaper and uncovered my souvenirs.  He immediately threw them in the bushes nearby and yelled at me.  He threatened me with five years of imprisonment in Siberia.  I thought God only knows what’s going to happen to me now.  He called me a spy.  To my good fortune he was called over to see the Commander and with that my troubles were over.”


  It as only after two years after their arrival in the Soviet Union that the deportees were finally allowed to write to their families back home.  Only post cards were allowed.  They were also allowed to receive mail.  Cards arrived from home but not very often but on occasion some had a photo of their family or their children.



The Homecoming Transports


  The first train transports returning certifiably sick persons arrived home in the summer and autumn of 1945.  The camp doctors were not allowed to certify that many of the sick because there were established quotas in that first year.  “If someone was so sick that they would not survive the journey home they were simply kept back.”  The route of the returning train transports were directly to Hungary by way of Máramarossziget.  The deportees had to detrain at the border and be counted.  The journey from the Donets Basin took fifteen days.  On their arrival they were disinfected.  The deportees did not remember the experience with much affection nor the facility where it was done.  The returnees to Hungary knew that many families had been resettled in Germany.  They were brought into a room and asked where they wanted to go.  Johann Heidt’s wife stood in line as two or three deportees answered that they would like to go to Germany immediately because their parents were already living there.  The Hungarian official who sat behind the table screamed, “There you go again.  You all want to go to Germany!”  At the conclusion of his fit they were allowed to join the group going to Germany.


  They were entrained again and they travelled on to Debrecen where they were kept under strict guard and control insisting that they had to be examined for lice.  In reality the men were examined to see if they had the SS tattoo under their armpit.  When they heard the command, “Raise your arms!”  Our people knew that they were looking for the SS tattoo.  A man from Belecska was with Johann Heidt when he went through this.  He had tried to have it removed by causing an accident and created a deep wound but when the wound healed it was still noticeable.  All SS soldiers and Volksbund members were ordered to be interned at Debrecen.  After the terrible years in the Soviet Union this welcome they received in Hungary was hardly any better.


  The other leading question asked by the customs officer was whether the individual had been a member of the Volksbund which would have dire consequences for those who were.  Many men from Gyönk were interned at Tiszapalkonya.  They could not tell anyone where they had been taken.  In most cases it was many years before they ever spoke about that chapter in their lives.  A certificate was issued in Debrecen for each deportee with the date of their deportation and when they returned to Hungary.  A small welcoming gift of 20 Forint was presented to each returning deportee.  The last to come home after five years of slave labour were informed that they had now served their punishment for the collective guilt of the Germans of Hungary but that was now behind them.  Heinrich Forresst was among the last to come home.  The returnees were officially designated as prisoners of war for Hungarian government record keeping.


  Order #0060 issued on December 22, 1944 for the mobilization of all able bodied persons of German origin for the purpose of the reconstruction of the areas behind the former front lines in Russia were carried out in Gyönk.  On January 22, 1945 the Superior Court Judge of the County of Tolna authorized the lists of names of those to be deported which would later be compared with those who returned home.  An important report written on June 25, 1945 can still be located in the County archives.  The members of the families of those who were deported were called upon by their community council to report their family members who had been taken to do labour “service” in the Soviet Union.  The children, husbands, wives, cousins and parents reported the names of 39 persons who were deported to the community council and the list they assembled at that time continues to exist.  The report that was compiled indicates that the deportees from   Gyönk belonged to two different groups.


  The one group is described in the following manner:  “The list of names of those who were taken and transported by Soviet troops to do labour service from Gyönk who were members of the Volksbund and according to their own personal claim during the census of 1941 were of German nationality.”  On the other list we find the persons “who were not members of the Volksbund and according to their own personal declaration claimed loyalty to their Hungarian nationality.”  The local political situation in Gyönk played no role and the stricken names and notations are concrete evidence of that.


  Even today there are many people who are still living among us who will never forget these experiences.  The recent local historical research has undone the long held silence on their part due to the fear of political repercussions and shed light on these events of which the younger generation know little or nothing.  All of those who were affected speak of the friendliness of the Russian villagers they met despite what they had to go through and regardless of the misery they had to endure.  They showed no animosity towards the prisoners and helped whenever they could.  Through these difficult times our fellow villagers learned to value the same joys in life and learned to accept the fate that was their lot even though it was difficult and lasted a long time.  The old lists of names in the archives that also note the deaths of those who died in the Donets Basin far from southern Hungary and are buried there are remembered in a new memorial in Gyönk so that they will never be forgotten as the victims of a gruesome war and its aftermath.



The Expropriation, Dispossession and Expulsion


  Before one can say something concrete about the discharging of the expulsion process one needs to take into account the major forces that lay behind it in the past.  Gyönk was a major town in Tolna County with both a German and Hungarian population.  One the basis of the census conducted in 1931 we can find specific data about the community.  The fields under cultivation were 3,814 hectares of land.  The total population was 3,156 of whom 1,787 were German and 1,364 were Hungarian.  The Germans formed the majority of 56.6% of the population while the Hungarians account for 44.3%.


  In the census of 1941 the population had declined and numbered 3,074 persons.  As part of the new Social Democratic take over of the country a National Commission with eleven members was set up in Gyönk made up of members of the party to act as the Land Reform Authority.  This commission was founded on April 1, 1945.  Five persons were appointed to car you the regulations of the various tasks given to it.  This Land Reform Commission had a proposal drawn up in December of 1945 on the basis of the work done by the Commission for National Security that was part of the decree #3820/1945.


  The members of the Volksbund and those who served in the SS and their families were the ones who were to be dispossessed of their homes and property.  Their houses and land holdings were to be made available for the proposed settlement of Hungarian refugees.  According to correspondence carried out by community authorities in April 1945 there were numerous exemptions that were proposed contrary to what had been demanded by the Commission for National Security.  In a few cases some families’ exemptions were endorsed.  But it most cases they were denied.


  The Land Reform Law #600/1945 was to be carried out in Tolna County by April 18, 1945.  Naturally enough this did not happen that quickly.  A proclamation was sent to the local Commission by the regional Commission.  In this document it was stated that all Volksbund members, even if they left the organization before June 26, 1941, without exception could not receive any economic benefits or land allotments.  Article I stipulated that the Hungarian population had first call on all of the available land.  The settling of others together with the German families began in the summer of 1945.  We had not Sekler settlers in our village but they did arrive in nearby Varsád and other neighbouring villages.  The first phase of settling them among German families did not involve many people as they would in the next phases.  In one village there were indigenous local Hungarian settlers who were eager to take over German houses and landholdings.  Others arrived from neighbouring communities and in this way the integrating of them with the German population of Gyönk began.


  The listings of property provided regarding the dispossession in the Land Reform Law give us two kinds of information.  In one of the listings one can read that a total 815 Katasraljoch (fields, gardens, orchard, vineyards, meadows and forests) were to be confiscated from 303 persons.  According to the second report 981 Katastraljoch were involved.  More accurate written material from this period of time cannot be found so that the figures that are presented are not trustworthy.


  The extent of the integrating of the new population hinges upon the number of these new settlers who sought to find a better life and existence among us.  (Translator’s Note:  The author’s use of the term integrating to describe what was actually taking place is hardly descriptive of the confiscation and dispossession of families from their homes and property.)


  On July 9, 1945 Prime Minister Rákosi speaking at a gathering of the Land Reform Commission loudly stressed that the Swabians could not be expelled for some time until the until the Communists and Social Democrats had enough votes in parliament to do so.  “We want to make the will of the Hungarian farmers a reality and as we all know their will is:  “Out of the country with the Swabian betrayers of our Fatherland!””


  From the time of the restoration of Hungary following the expulsion of the Turks, Gyönk was a German and Hungarian village and in our case this so-called wish on the part of all Hungarians was simply not the case.  Living in peaceful harmony was the only   way to describe the relationships between our two peoples.  This situation changed radically with the arrival of those who were settled among the two groups and rivalry and conflicts emerged that were unashamedly directed against the Germans and their deteriorating situation.


  The decree #12330/1945 ordering the expulsion upset many in our community but did not apply to many.  As mentioned in previous chapters the strategic carrying out of the ordinance was directed at the regions of the country that were considered most problematic:  the region Budapest, Western Hungary and the larger towns and cities rather than the agricultural communities in Swabian Turkey.  Gyönk was an example of that.  The Commission established by the Minister of the Interior compiled the list of names of those to be deported.  The leaders of the community were naturally involved in this process.  With the appearance of the expulsion regulations the issues around the former politics of the Germans or their proof of loyalty to Hungary were suddenly of little or no consequence.  The inhabitants that had never been members of the Volksbund or had SS soldiers in their families were obligated to give shelter to the families who had been dispossessed of their homes.


  There is little correspondence in the archives between officials in Gyönk with the authorities in Szekszárd in 1946.  Eye witnesses from among the generation that lived through these experiences and the documents that are available indicate there was a large scale migration of settlers from Orosháza in eastern Hungary.  Those carrying out the   Land Reform programme noted that there were not enough Hungarian “takers” in some of the German villages and in response the officials called on those in the neighbouring Hungarian villages to resettle on German property.  There were families like those from Tolna Némedi who came to Gyönk.  The Land Reform Laws set an inner migration in Hungary into motion because it addressed a basic existential question.  In Orosháza the local newspaper reported that in the southern districts of Trans Danubia the houses of the Swabians stood empty and the fields were not being cultivated because the population had been expelled.  As a result many families from Orosháza inquired about getting land.  All of the requests could not be met because the confiscated land was only made available to day labourers who had children.  It is quite understandable why so many came in search of land.  The newspaper reported:  “Their poverty led many young families to respond.”


  “In May 1946 we set out in our open wagons and our destination was Szakadát.  In Keszöhidegkút where the train station for the area is located our surprise was great because the hilly landscape and fields was something unknown to us.  The German dialect was foreign to us.  When we arrived in Szakadát we noticed immediately that there were no empty houses for us to occupy.  The German people were awaiting their re-settlement and were all residing in the houses and had no idea when they would be leaving.  At first we were put up in the haylofts and stables.  Our situation was sorrowful and for that reason the men went to speak to the District officials in Szekszárd.  They returned with their assurance that we were all to be assigned houses and land.  In Gyönk all of the Germans were still living in theirs.  We were constantly surprised by the false information we were given.”  This was written by Susanne Szábo a would-be settler.


  A decree from the Settlement Commission for Tolna County on June 5, 1946 ordered the immediate resettlement of 57 families from Orosháza living in Szakadát to Gyönk.  They would be accommodated within the property of those who were obviously going to be expelled.  Their taking over of the houses and property would take place upon their arrival.  The ordinance was changed by the Land Reform Commission in such a way that the families from Orosháza acted on their own.  Living in the same house as well as forcing German families to live together with other German families brought on a lot of irritation.


  A Mrs. Schmidt relates that she was simply no longer allowed to go into her house as she and her husband returned home from working out in the fields.  The new settler who settled in while they were out stood at the door and would not let them enter. What recourse or alternative did they have?   They moved in with her aunt.  It happened so quickly.  At night they went up to the house and sneaked into the cellar to get a few potatoes and some of the laundry.  Bad blood between the new settlers and former residents and the relations between the two nationalities in the village deteriorated.


  Only a few of the families from Orosháza would remain in Gyönk.  Mrs. Schmidt further relates:  “Our rather adventurous Telepes (Translator’s Note:  This term is pronounced Telepesh and is a Hungarian euphemism for “colonist” that the Swabians used throughout Swabian Turkey to describe the unwelcome newcomers in their midst.)     used up all they were given on settling in Gyönk and then sold the house, all of its furnishings and then moved on.  Working in the fields and farm life was not to their liking.  They did not really know how to farm.”  We cannot simply generalize and say that about all of them for some were industrious and thrifty and they found a new home in our community.  For example we end this subject with some more words from Mrs. Schmidt.


  “We looked at our house every day with sorrowful and heavy hearts as we saw how run down, dirty and unloved it looked.  This settler family from Tolna Némedi did not look after anything.  For a short time they were able to live well here made possible by our former efforts and hard work.  They took the doors off the hinges, tore out the windows and the house looked pathetic.  My husband and I were of the mind to buy it back once our situation improved.  During the harvest we earned a lot and raised some pigs in order to buy back our house again.  We paid for a wagon so that he could leave town because he didn’t have enough money to be able to move out of Gyönk.”  (Translator’s Note:  One has to shake one’s head in retrospect but at the same time recognize the basic grit and determination of the Germans of Hungary who just never give up.)


  In September of the next year several Hungarian families from Slovakia came to our village.  They were not part of an organized resettlement they had simply crossed the border into Hungary and escaped from the deportations that their government was carrying out.  Johann Heidt relates that his house was taken over during the harvesting of the grapes in his vineyard.  They brought the wine home and found the Slovak Magyars sitting on their porch.  They immediately took the wine away and the Heidt family had to leave their house.


  In the year 1947 the majority of the Germans of Gyönk were treated badly.  The new powers that be in the community made life difficult for them in many respects.  On one occasion they set up a gallows in the centre of the village to frighten the German population and said that the Swabians would be hanged for their crimes.  It was now obvious to most that in light of the political situation what the future might hold for them was precarious with the arrival of a great number of Hungarian families from Slovakia.  Most of them came from Zsitvabesenyö, Perbete, Megyercs and Ėrsekúvar.


  At this time the trains were already transporting German deportees out of the neighbouring villages.  Whenever there was extra room in one of the cattle cars some families in Gyönk were taken by surprise unable to prepare or take anything with them and were simply taken to the railway station to join the others.  On the basis of archival records from July 28, 1947 there were six persons from Kurd who were included in one of the deportee transports heading for Germany in this manner.  Three people from Gyönk were held back because of health considerations that would prevent them from surviving the journey.  Similar events took place during the deportation at the railway station Szakály-Högyész.  Approximately ten families from Gyönk were forced to entrain there because one cattle car was unoccupied.  A list containing twenty-three names of those from Szakály-Högyész had been scheduled to be deported to Germany indicates they had been exempted at the last minute and needed to be replaced.  Mrs. Müller and her family sat in the cattle car for the whole day before the veterinarian from Gyönk Dr. Zsemlye for whom she worked could arrange for her and her family to be spared.  This was perhaps due to the fact that this was not a planned or organized expulsion.  It was simply a random stop gap method to fill the trains.  In September 1947 the authorities deported ten more families who were only taken as far as Austria.  Some of them came back.


  The confiscation of property and dispossession of families was set in motion in August of 1946 and continued to the end of the expulsions in May 1948.  The orders for the expulsion were put into effect as of October 28, 1947 #12200/1947.  In terms of Gyönk at that time the vast majority of the German population had not been expelled but many families were living together and had to work for others to earn enough to survive and live among those who would be allowed to remain.  In light of the new regulations Germans who had claimed German as their mother tongue in the census but had given Hungarian as their nationality would be exempt if they had not been members of the Volksbund nor had volunteered to serve in the SS and had not changed their names back to its original German form.  There were 500 persons who had been listed who qualified under these conditions.  The second group consisted of the family members of the heads of households who had qualified for the exemption.  The third group consisted of those whose deportation would create economic difficulties to the community because of their skills or profession.  That, however, excluded Volksbund members and those that served in the SS.  A fourth group were the heads of households who were landless.  The fifth group that was listed consisted of those who had claimed German as their mother tongue and German as their nationality.  The confiscation of their property was ordered but those who continued to possess their homes and land were allowed to retain ten Katasral Joch of their land along with their house and garden.


  All of the above lists were posted publicly in the community centre in March 1947.  The filing of a petition for exemption would have to be addressed to the National Commission.  The emotional upset this created was experienced by the entire German population because families, relatives and friends were going to be forced to be separated from one another.  The Swabians who were scheduled for deportation were driven to the train station in Keszöhidegkút on March 24, 1948.  They had to leave their home community on board wagons with teams of horses or oxen and other vehicles that were provided.  Taking leave of the children and their parents was interspersed with loud weeping and crying from one end of the village to the other.  A long column of wagons took the Germans to the train station.  An exceptionally long line of railway cars were assembled on the rear tracks at the station.  There were policemen stationed around the box cars to guard the convoy.  Members of the National Commission were present who could validate any of the exemptions that had been granted.  At the last moment the plundering began by the local communists as the people were being entrained.  The reason given was that they were not permitted to take as much as they had brought with them.


  Forty to fifty persons were jammed into each box car.  Relatives brought a noon meal to the station or they ate the food they had brought with them.  Mrs. Müller reports that she was not permitted to give the food to her parents and siblings personally instead the police conveyed the food to them.  On the day the train left she was not allowed to hand over food for them because by that time the doors of the box cars had been locked.  They did not know exactly where they were being taken knowing only that their destination was Germany.  The train loaded with expellees stood at the station for two days.  The Commission responsible for ordering the train to leave had carried out a final inspection the night before.  Alongside the road into Keszöhidegkút there was a small manor in which the people spent their last night.  The authorities took control of the railway station building for themselves.  After another day of waiting at the railway station the Commission released several persons before the train got underway.  There are some documents with names and notations with several names stricken but there is no factual information in the archives of the actual persons who were onboard the train from Gyönk and so the number involved can only be estimated at about 500 persons who were taken to the processing camp at Pirna in Saxony on the border with Czechoslovakia in the Soviet Zone of occupation of Germany.


  This final chapter concludes with a poem from the times associated with the expulsion that were reputed to have been scrawled on the outside of one of the box cars containing families from Gyönk at the time that the train left the railway station:


  “We wish the best to you,

      Live happily beautiful land of Hungary.

  You have now become our ruin.

    You gave our ancestors

    A wilderness to cultivate

  And for our toils and troubles

    You have reduced us to beggary.”


  With the expulsion the almost three hundred year history of half of the Germans in Hungary comes to an end but the individual fate of each of those affected in war torn Germany is another chapter to be written.  They now live scattered throughout the world or remain in a new and now unified Germany.  The area around Darmstadt and Griesheim in our former homeland in Hess and the District of Dosern in Saxony are the major concentration points of our deportees in their new homeland.  (To Continue)

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