Historical photo shows splitting of family so that at least someone survives WWII

Descendants of old Bratislava families share family photos and memories.

Peter Janoviček, left and Juraj Šedivý launching teh book We Are Old Pressburgers.Peter Janoviček, left and Juraj Šedivý launching teh book We Are Old Pressburgers. (Source: Jana Liptáková)

Bratislava city guide and descendant of an old Bratislava family Mihály Brogyányi, has a rich collection of family photos. But he does not own one he would very much like to own.

Brogyányi was stunned to come across the photo during an exhibition in the City Library on Klariská Street in the 1990s. Enlarged to a size covering an entire wall, there was the picture of a young woman with two children and a third on the way. They stood in a meadow, with suitcases at their feet, plumes of smoke rising above Bratislava in the background.

It was June 16, 1944, the day the American forces bombed the Apollo Refinery, the Winter Harbour and the bridge over the Danube. The woman in the picture was was Brogyányi's grandmother. Her husband, his grandfather, was near the place the bombs fell that day, as he had a business meeting at the port as a lawyer.

SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement
SkryťRemove ad
Article continues after video advertisement

“When the bombs started falling, my grandmother, still a young woman, packed the necessary items and ran out with the children to the meadow with other people from the neighbourhood," Brogyányi said. "In the picture she was looking into the distance as if not knowing what was going to happen. Whether their house would be hit by a bomb, whether they survive or not.”

Nobody in the family was aware such a photo existed.

SkryťRemove ad

One thing confused him about the photo. His father, who was a small boy at the time, was not in it.

The rest of this article is premium content at Spectator.sk
Subscribe now for full access

I already have subscription - Sign in

Subscription provides you with:
  • Immediate access to all locked articles (premium content) on Spectator.sk
  • Special weekly news summary + an audio recording with a weekly news summary to listen to at your convenience (received on a weekly basis directly to your e-mail)
  • PDF version of the latest issue of our newspaper, The Slovak Spectator, emailed directly to you
  • Access to all premium content on Sme.sk and Korzar.sk

Top stories

News digest: Slovak National Gallery re-opens after seven-year refurbishment

What are the most popular names of newborns, the reopening of historical currant wine cellars, state aid for companies and households facing high energy bills


55m
This year's ESET Science Award laureats. Silvia Pastoreková is in the middle.

Like building nano Lego. Slovak scientist designs materials that can tackle pollution

A porous material can be designed to help combat inflammation or cancer.


30. nov
More than 44,000 sick cases reported.

A surge of sick children and even pneumonia in Slovakia. Two pandemic years to blame

We will be back to normal, but not just yet, paediatrician says.


1. dec
SkryťClose ad