Danube Swabian History
1700's |1800's |1900's |2000's
 

"History is the memory of things said and done."
- Carl L. Becker


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Permission to translate & republish
was generously granted by Dr. Hans Dama,
translated by Nick Tullius.

Badge of the Association (1907); the inside inscription: "Bleib Deutsch" ["Remain German"] was a call against the massive tendencies to Magyarization that followed the Ausgleich [Equalization] of 1967).

Three decades after battle of Kahlenberg (1683) and the liberation of Vienna from its siege by the Turks, the Banat, located between Danube, Theiß, Marosch, and the Carpathian Mountains, with an area of 28.523 km², was liberated in 1716 by Prince Eugene, the last Hungarian territory to be liberated after 164 years of occupation by the Osman Turks. It was Prince Eugene’s conception that this important border country be developed as a wedge between the Magyars revolting once again (Kuruz wars) and the Turks that were sympathetic to them. Thus the newly acquired Banat with an estimated population of 85,000 inhabitants became an inalienable domain of the Imperial Crown. In the following years the Vienna Court was determined to transform the Banat into a model territory of the monarchy.

The three Swabian Migrations to the Banat commenced and continued under three Habsburg emperors: The First Swabian Migration under Karl VI 1723-1726; The Second Swabian Migration under Maria Theresia 1763-1773; and the Third Swabian Migration under Joseph II 1782-1787.

The planning and execution of the colonization work itself was directed from Vienna and constitutes, despite its time-related deficiencies, one of the great successes achieved by Austria in the eighteenth century. The majority of the emigrant families came from regions located south of the Rhine, mainly from Lothringen, Elsass, Luxemburg, Franken, Baden, Sauerland and Schwaben. In the year 1734 there were already 46 German villages and towns in the Banat.

In the 1763 to 1770 period the number of Germans increased from 24,000 to 43,000. By 1773, 31 new villages and towns had been established, and 29 settlements had been enlarged. The great achievement of the settlers was the transformation of the Banat into one of the most productive granaries of Europe. But, following an accord signed in 1741 between Maria Theresia and the Hungarian, the Banat was incorporated into Hungary.

Joseph II ordered that 164 Banat communities be sold by public auction to the largest bidder. The German farmers, who had been subordinated only to the Imperial Cabinet, once again became serfs. During the Third Swabian Migration, about 13,500 new settlers came to the Banat.

After the revolution of 1848/49 the “Voivodate of Serbia and Temes Banat” was created and used German as the official language. The new “voivodate”, with Temeswar as its capital, included not only the Banat, but also the Batschka and the districts Ruma and Illok of the Comitat Syrmia, and reported directly to the Imperial Government in Vienna. In the year 1851 the population of the voivodate was about 1.4 million, of which 400 000 were Serbs, 300 000 Germans, 300 000 Romanians, 250 000 Hungarians, and 13 000 Jews. Effective January 1, 1861, the voivodate was dissolved and the Banat was incorporated a second time into the Kingdom of Hungary. With the Austro-Hungarian settlement ("Ausgleich") of 1867 the 1.8 million Germans of Hungary were delivered to Hungarian nationalism. The German School system was gradually suffocated. The number of German newspapers in the Banat was melted down from 37 in 1889 to 12 in 1910.

On December 30, 1906, the "Ungarländische Deutsche Volkspartei“ (~German Popular Party of Hungary) was founded in Werschetz. Its main task was to prevent the assimilation of the Germans, and to obtain for them the rights promised to them by the Law of the Nationalities passed in 1868. The census of 1910 established that of a population of 1 852 439, 512 601 (27.6%) were Germans. 

The conclusion of WW1 brought the end of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy. The peace treaty of Trianon (1920.06.04) cut the Banat into three pieces: 18.945 km² fell to Romania, 9.307 km² came to Yugoslavia and 217 km² remained with Hungary.

In their new fatherland Romania, the Banat Swabians dedicated themselves to the task of reconstruction. After 1933 the government of the German Reich interfered with increasing frequency in the affairs of German ethnic group, until the Romanian government recognized the group, by a decree dated November 21, 1940, as a legal person of public right. Starting in May 1943, on the basis of a treaty between Romania and the Third Reich, the Romania-Germans could be conscripted into the German armed forces. About 8 500 of them were killed in action.

Romania changed sides on August 23, 1944, and the consequences for the Germans in Romania were severe. Political, economical, religious, and cultural organizations were disbanded and prohibited. The Germans were not expelled. In January 1945 the Germans able to work were deported to the Soviet Union to perform reconstruction work. The agrarian reform of March 1945 deprived the rural population of its livelihood. In the summer of 1951 about 40 000 people living along the Yugoslavian border were resettled by force to the steppes of the Bărăgan.

In the census of 1948 only 343 913 persons in Romania claimed German as their mother tongue, including 171 022 in the Banat. The result obtained by the “Democratic Forum of Germans in the Banat” was catastrophic.

The chances for cultural and ethnic survival of the ethnic German group diminished under the Ceausescu dictatorship. In addition, from 1951 on, and within the framework of family reunification, there was an increased movement of Germans from communist Romania to the west. In the 1950 to 1992 timeframe, about 200 000 Banat Swabians emigrated. During 1990 alone, more than 50 000 returned to the land of their ancestors. Today only about 20 000 Banat Swabians are living in Romania.  

In September 1944 when the battle line came closer, numerous rows of horse carts filled with refugees from the Banat moved toward Austria. Most of them passed the winter of 1944/1945 in the Burgenland, in Lower Austria, Upper Austria and Salzburg. Already in the spring of 1945 a repatriation action was started in the Soviet zone of occupation. Escorted by Red Army soldiers, the treks of ethnic Germans moved from the Vienna Arsenal in the direction of the Banat. The Austrian Federal Ministry of the Interior provides the following numbers for refugees from Romania living in Austria: 56 601 on January 1, 1948; 20 735 on July 1, 1956. About 18 000 Banat Swabians from Romania found a new home in Austria.

The Association of Banat Swabians in Austria proposes, in addition to sociability, to support and further develop the ties established in the old homeland. At the same time, it endeavours to maintain the connection with the Banat Swabians still living in the old homeland and to support them (by sending parcels, transferring money, etc.). In this effort, it is energetically supported by the newspaper "Banater Zeitung" published in Munich and read in 12 European countries as well as overseas.   

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The Banat Swabiansare grouped together with the Swabians from the Batschka, from Syrmia, Slavonia, Swabian Turkey, the Central Hungarian Highlands (Ofner Bergland) and Sathmar under the substantially more recent common designation of Danube Swabians (Donauschwaben in German).

The term Donauschwaben1 was created in 1922 by the geographer Robert Sieger from Graz and had been used two years earlier by Hermann Rüdiger, a geographer from the Deutsches Auslands-Institut in Stuttgart („Donauschwaben in the largest sense of the word are the inhabitants of the areas of German settlement along the middle course of the Danube, about from Ofenpest/Budapest until Orşova“ ) for the ethnic group previously known as Hungary Swabians ("Schwaben Ungarns”). “They had always been called Swabians (Schwaben) in these regions…. After 1945 a part of them found a new home in the FRG and Austria. Only here they called themselves Donauschwaben.“2

Some German Personalities from the Banat3 

1. Arts

Portrait painter Karl Brocky from Temeswar worked at the British Royal Court. Many of his paintings can be admired at the British Museum and other London Art Galleries. Other names are Anton Graf von Bissingen (Großscham), Ludwig von Bersuder (Temeswar), Tibor Bottlik ( Weißkirchen), Josef Brandeisz (Tschakowa), Rudolf Chati, (Triebswetter), Andreas und Rudolf Ferch (Perjamosch), Franz Ferch (Temeswar), Josef Gerstenengst (Tschakowa), Adolf Humborg (Orawitza), Stefan Jäger (Hatzfeld), Emil Lenhardt (Temeswar), Richard Waldemar Oschanitzky (Temeswar), Franz Ringeisen (Steierdorf), Rudolf Sandor (Reschitza), Helmut Schneider, (Temeswar), Peter Schneider (Großbetschkerek), Ottmar Strasser (Weißkirchen), Julius und Viktor Stürmer (Temeswar), Johann Wälder (Großbetschkerek), Anton Thomas (Werschetz), Karl Wetzel (Groß-Kikinda) and others.

2. Literature

Joachim Hödl (1725-1803) born in Styria worked as a priest in Werschetz; in his works he transplanted the Vienna Enlightenment to the Banat. Baron Christian von Zedlitz was born in Silesia and worked in Lowrin. A number of writers and poets born in the Banat worked in Austria: Johann Friedel (Schriftsteller und Dramaturg), der Dichter Nikolaus Lenau, (*Tschatad, später in Lenauheim umbenannt); Stefan Milow (Orschowa), Adam Müller-Guttenbrunn (Guttenbrunn), Marie Eugenie delle Grazie (Weißkirchen), Karl Wilhelm Julius Ritter von Martini (Lugosch), Jakob Stein alias Franz Feld (Franzfeld), Hans Wolfram Hockl (Lenauheim); Peter Barth (Blumenthal - Temeswar), Ludwig Bauer (Werschetz), Hans Diplich (Groß-Komlosch), Annie Schmidt-Endres (Lenauheim), Heinrich Erk (Liebling), Zoltán Franyó (Kismargita-Temeswar), Josef Gabriel d. Ä. und Josef Gabriel d. J. (Mercydorf), Peter Gänger (Temeswar), Klaus Günther (Altbeba), Jakob Hirsch (Klein-Schemlack), Rudolf Hollinger (Temeswar), Peter Jung (Hatzfeld), Franz Kleitsch (Neuarad), Bruno Kremling (Weißkirchen), FranzLiebhard (d. i. Robert Reiter, Temeswar), Eugen Probst (Arad), Nikolaus Schmidt (Sigmundshausen), Hilde Martini-Striegel (Arad), Ludwig Schwarz (Dollatz), Franz Storch (Temeswar) and others. 

3. Liberal Arts and Humanities

Stefan Binder (Almen - Temeswar ), Leonhard Böhm (Weißkirchen), Georg Draxer (Pantschowa), Alfred von Domaszewski (Orschowa), Ludwig Grünn-Baróti (Perjamosch), Hans Hagel (Karlsdorf - Temeswar),Koloman Juhász /Jung (Alibunar), Desiderius Jaroschek-Járosy (Lenauheim - Temeswar), Otto Kein (Temeswar), Franz Kräuter (Niczkydorf), Johann Lehrer-Koszo (Neuarad), Alexander Krischan (Hatzfeld - Wien), Felix Milleker (Werschetz), Theodor Orthmayer-Ortvay (Orawitza), Anton Peter Petri (Lowrin - München), Johann Nepomuk Preyer (Temeswar), J. Reichert (Stefansfeld - Tübingen), Heinrich Johann Schwicker (Neubeschenowa - Budapest), Josef Tendler (Tschakowa), Fritz Valjavetz (Werschetz), Hans Weresch (Temeswar), Franz Wettel (Temeswar), Johann Wolf (Bozen - Temeswar) and others.

4. Theologians 

Bishop Alexander Bonnaz (Triebswetter - Temeswar), Nikolaus Cherier (Triebswetter - Temeswar), Josef Groß (Rekasch - Temeswar), Bischof Dr. Nikolaus Hummel (Billed - Wien), Koloman Juhász/Jung (Alibunar; see also under Liberal Arts and Humanities), Michael Lehmann (Stefansfeld - Wien), Aurel Martin (Marienfeld - Budapest), Dr. Augustin Pacha (Moritzfeld - Temeswar), Kardinal Lorenz Schlauch (Neuarad - Großwardein), Anton Schütz (Mastort) u.a. 

5. Medicine and Sciences

Julius Amberg (Pápa - Temeswar), Johann Becker (Billed), Josef Dick (Orzydorf), Johann Fackelmann(Matscha), Ludwig von Graff (Pantschowa - Graz), Adolf Lendl (Orzydorf - Budapest), Emmerich Lindenmayer (Tschakowa), Eduard Kreiling (Arad), Peter Lamoth (Detta), Johann May (Sackelhausen), Alfred Metz (Leutschau/Zips - Temeswar), Josef Reichel (Debreczin - Temeswar), Johann Röhrich (Großsanktnikolaus - Temeswar), Julius Scheff (Werschetz - Wien) u.a.

By the end of the 19th century many Banat Swabians had moved to Vienna. They were tradesmen, especially hairdressers, but also students and merchants that were trying to find their luck in Vienna and found had found here a second homeland. Thus, on January 27, 1907, at 7 PM, in the restaurant "Zum Grundstein" (At the Foundation Stone), in the VIII City District, Josefstädter Straße 28 – currently occupied a branch of BAWAG bank – the "Verein der Banater Schwaben in Wien“ (Association of Banat Swabians in Vienna) was born. Nikolaus Wehner was elected chairman and explained the purpose and the goals of the Association as “helping those coming from the homeland to the foreign large city and being unfamiliar with its conditions, to give them advice [….] On the other hand, even those residing in Vienna should be brought closer to each other [….]” In addition, use of the Swabian dialect, habits and customs should be encouraged [….].

From its foundation, the Association demonstrated an interest in culture, is shown by the function of its elected librarian. Its various sections – culture (homeland history and geography), travel, welfare, sports, and others – conducted and coordinated a variety of activities. [….]

The lectures presented by the Association always found a grateful public; the presenters were Banaters studying in Vienna – such as the later Dr. Fritz Klinger and church president Franz Hamm – as well as recognized authots such Ella Triebnigg-Pirkert and Adam Müller-Guttenbrunn.

During and after WWI, when Vienna was subject to great deprivations and famine was always present, the "action children’s aid" ("Kinderhilfsaktion") was started, which between 1916 and 1930 sent about 40 000 Viennese children to a free stay in the Banat5.

In the “Temeswarer Zeitung” of July 4, 1922, the following can be read: "An important role was also played by the Romania-German social democrat press in the organization of aid to the children of Vienna during 1921 and 1922. This effort started in June 1921. More than 2000 Banat families struggling themselves for their existence, took over the care of these children, whose parents were mainly railway workers. The return transports took place on September 26, October 19, and November 8, 1921. During the summer of 1922, 650 children from Vienna found temporary accommodation in the Banat. Michael Schaut, editor of the socialist newspaper of Temeswar, was a member of the Banat Aid Committee that received the children trains from Vienna and organized the allocation of the children to their foster parents.

The people of Vienna expressed their thanks in an impressive “Swabian Celebration of the Viennese Child” held in the large Musikvereinssaal, through their mayor Karl Seitz.

Between May 1925 and December 1928 the Association “Banat Swabians in Vienna” published the monthly newspaper “Unsere Heimat” (Our Homeland), edited by Karl Kraushaar (*24.05.1858 Hatzfeld; † 08.03.1938 Budapest ), previously editor of the Banat newspaper „Der Landbote“. On the subject of “Aid for Viennese Children”, the January 1926 edition of the newspaper states the following:

“[….] If we look back at the end of the calendar year to the activity of the Association of Banat Swabians in Vienna, we see that for the accommodation of undernourished children in the Banat we owe thanks to the Deutsch-schwäbische Volksgemeinschaft and to the press, especially to Banater deutsche Zeitung, Temeswarer Zeitung, Arader Zeitung, Hatzfelder Zeitung and Banater Tagblatt.[….]

The alarming political developments in Austria in the 1930s and the ongoing tense economical and social situation made the work of the Association more and more difficult, until the measures taken by the Third Reich to enforce political conformity resulted in complete paralysis of the Association’s work.

In the hopeless political situation immediately following WWII it was understandable that the former members of the Association showed no immediate interest in the continuation of the Association. Tens of thousands of refugees from the Banat arrived in Vienna, and a few thousands could barely be accommodated.

In October 1945 the American Military Administration in Austria permitted a “Non-political Representation of Interests of Ethnic Germans from the Former Crown lands of Austro-Hungary”. Dr. Fritz Klingler was responsible for the Germans from Romania. After a year, that committee had to stop its activity. [….]

Martin Endres, who had been acting as chairman of the Association since 1925, was the victim of an air raid. On November 18, 1947, deputy chairman Hugo Butter officially dissolved the Association6.

The announcement of the dissolution focussed public attention on the “Association of Banat Swabians” and caused Hans Franz, member of the Advisory Council for Refugees at the League for Human Rights, to follow the traces of the dissolved Association. After numerous consultations with kindred spirits, he succeeded in setting up a committee to revive the Association and, for simplicity, to restore its old name “Association of the Banat Swabians”. [….] The police department in charge of associations insisted that the new name "Schwabenverein“ (Swabian Association) be used for the new entity. [….]

On April 16, 1948, official permission for the new association was received, and on May 22, 1948, the meeting launching the “Swabian Association” was held, and Hans Franz was elected chairman. He was the uniting factor, and always understood how to master the arising difficulties. By this accomplishment he laid the foundation for further fruitful work. [….]

The intention behind the creation of the new "Swabian Association“ was to ensure the survival of the “Association of Banat Swabians”. […] It is worth remembering that this initial step made possible the continuation of association work by the Banat Swabians from Romania residing in Austria. It produced the vital nucleus from which a new consciousness of history would develop. For Banaters, it was the hour of change, and the strong will of insightful persons was required to guide the fate of the participants, through their hard work, into a promising future. [….]

From the perspective of the Banat Swabians, the most important objectives after 1945 were the search for missing persons and family reunification of divided families. Because of the “iron curtain”, the former soldiers were unable to return home to their families in Romania or even to visit them. A reunification of these divided families was exceedingly difficult, as there were no official contacts between Austria and the Romanian People’s Republic. […]

Between November 1948 and April 1949 about 10,000 Banat refugees moved from Austria to France, and were resettled in La Roque sur Pernes, Provence).8  This action was the result of an agreement with the French government under Robert Schumann7 championed by Johann (Jean) Lamesfeld from Großsanktnikolaus.

According to the newspaper "Sozialistische Korrespondenz" on January 20, 1951, about 51,000 ethnic Germans from Romania were in Austria. It was natural that those originating in the Romanian part of the Banat had concerns specifically related to Romania and felt that these were not properly addressed by the "Swabian Association."  They split off from that organization, and on April 22, 1963, they formed the "Interest Community of Banat Swabians from Romania for Family Reunification and Property Compensation". […] At its general meeting on October 24, 1964, it was decided to change the name to "Country Association of Banat Swabians from Romania". [….] Another general meeting on October 4, 1974, decided to change the name of the organization to “Country Association of the Banat Swabians from Romania in Austria”. [….] On April 29, 1983, Franz Klein from Billed was elected chairman. He was a very committed organizer and author, highly decorated even by the Republic of Austria, and he was to run the affairs of the Association for more than 17 years. During the years, Franz Klein organized the dispatch of parcels, not strictly to the Banat and not only for Banat Swabians. Medications, medical instruments for hospitals and many other goods were taken to Romania under his leadership or guidance. [….]

When Franz Klein resigned due to age, on January 12, 2001, long-time deputy chairman Dr. Hans Dama from Großsanktnikolaus took over as chairman. He had been part of the executive committee for more than two decades and, as professor of Romanian Language and literature at the University of Vienna, had become a unifying link between two nations and cultures. [….]

On December 11, 2001, the proposal to rename the association to “Association of Banat Swabians in Austria” was approved by the authority in charge.

Without any doubt, the most important personality of the Banat Swabians acting in Vienna was   Adam Müller-Guttenbrunn (*22.10.1852 Guttenbrunn / Romania; †05.01.1923 Vienna). The illegitimate child born in poor conditions succeeded, through self-education, to become a respected journalist, director of the Raimund Theater (1893 to 1896) and the Kaiser-Jubiläums-Stadttheater (today’s Volksoper: 1898-1903) and celebrated writer. His cenotaph can be found in the Vienna Zentralfriedhof, Gr. 0, Reihe 1, Nr. 98. [….] His death found a great echo in the media of Romania. The Romanian poet and Philosopher Lucian Blaga (1895-1961), an alumnus of the University of Vienna, wrote a commemorative article (in: "Patria," 1923, Cluj/Klausenburg).

Professor Nikolaus Engelmann (*13.08.1908, Warjasch, +5.09.2005, Eisenstadt), teacher, writer, journalist, academic professor in Linz, and long-time chairman of the Country Association of Danube Swabians in Upper Austria, Staff member and from 1976 editor in chief of the Salzburg weekly  "Neuland," decorated in 1980 with the Prinz-Eugen-Pin of the Swabian Association Vienna, from 1981 chairman of the Sankt Gerhardswerk in Stuttgart, author of many literary and pedagogical works, spent his last years in Eisenstadt.

After WWII, which brought unspeakable suffering to many ethnic groups including the Banat Swabians – sweeping accusations “only” because they were Germans – Banaters in Austria stood with their compatriots in the old homeland and maintained its relations with them even under the precarious conditions of the communist era. In Austria, contacts were maintained with the "Österreichisch-Rumänische Gesellschaft" and with the cultural association "Unirea." Over time, even the contacts with the embassy of the Socialist Republic of Romania improved, making visits to the old homeland possible, despite the many formality involved.

During the past decades, our Association maintained friendly relations with other “sister associations,” the members of which came in large part from Romania and/or from former territories of the Habsburg monarchy: Transylvanian Saxons, Germans from Bukowina/Buchenland, Carpathian Germans, etc.

Following an invitation of the society "România," on October 1, 1975, the chairman of the "Country Association of Banat Swabians from Romania in Austria" Dr. h. c. Hans Androwitsch, and the cultural advisor that organization, Prof. Nikolaus Engelmann, and their spouses visited Romania. In addition to their talks with members of "România," the guests were received by the administrations of the city and region, and talked to the editorial staff of the newspapers "Tribuna României," "Neuer Weg" and "Neue Banater Zeitung," as well as the Publishing house "Kriterion." [….]

On May 8 and 9, 1985, former university professor from Temeswar and poet Prof. Dr. Rudolf Hollinger (1910-1997) was honoured on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of his promotion and the bestowal unto him of the Golden Doctorate Diploma by the University of Vienna…. In a two-day symposium the achievements of the honouree were celebrated in presentations by Dr. Herbert Bockel (Universität Passau), Mag. Hans Dama (Universität Wien) Dr. Walter Engel (Heidelberg), Prof. Nikolaus Engelmann (Linz), Dr. Horst Fassel (Universität Tübingen) and Mag. Radegunde Täuber (Nufringen). Univ.-Prof. Dr. Erwin Ringel (Wien), a native of Temeswar, presented the honouree with a copy of his book "Gedankensplitter aus dem Osten. Aus dem Tagebuch eines Südost-Europäers", published by his former student Hans Dama. [....]

In the last decade of the past century, the "Association of Danube Swabians in Austria" demonstrated an active and varied activity, based on the initiative of deserving members, such as chairman Franz Klein and others such as Dr. Alexander Krischan, Mag. Dr. Hans Dama, Dipl.-Ing. Josef Adam, Julius Fikar, Peter Dettar, Josef Kauten, Susanne Hügel-Lacina, Peter Maurer, Mathias Wanko, the tireless honorary chairman, Prof. Nikolaus Engelmann, and others. Parcels and medical goods and installations were expedited to Romania by Maria Ritter from Upper Austria whose husband is native of Perjamosch/Banat.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s help had to be provided to the Banat Swabians emigrating en masse from Romania, and passing through the unavoidable of the Vienna West railway station (Westbahnhof) on their way to Germany. 

 

08.10.1999 Chairman Franz Klein
celebrating his 80th birthday (*17.10.1919)

Congratulating him (from left): Jakob Laub, federal chairman of County Association of the Banat Swabians in Germany, (the honouree Franz Klein), Prof. Nikolaus Engelmann, Dr. Alexander Krischan, Mag. Dr. Hans Dama

Photo: Anton Julius Fikar

To encourage and promote the common bond between Banat Swabians in Vienna, a “home evening” takes place on the premises of the Association every second Friday of the month, to discuss current topics and plan future activities. Mother’s Day celebrations and fall trips also took place, with visits to interesting historic and/or cultural paces. Individual or group tours of Swabians from Germany, USA, Canada, Hungary were thoughtfully supervised by Austrian members.
 

At his 80th birthday, and in recognition of decades of comprehensive work for the interest of the Banat Swabian community in Austria, long-time chairman Franz Klein was given the Prinz-Eugen-Pin by Jakob Laub, federal chairman of the “Country Association of Banat Swabians in Germany”. Other members of the Associations that received the "Golden Loyalty-Pin" were Mag. Dr. Hans Dama, Prof. Nikolaus Engelmann, Dr. Alexander Krischan and Susanne Hügel-Lacina.

Franz Klein

 

Honouring chairman Franz Klein on the
occassion of his 80th birthday:

Jakob Laub, federal chairman of County Association of the Banat Swabians in Germany, handing the honoree an honorary document.

 Photo: Anton Julius Fikar

As part of the Association’s cultural activity, it organizes presentations and readings. On the occasion of homeland poet Adam Müller-Guttenbrunn's 150th birthday anniversary, as well as on the 75th and 80th anniversary of his death Dr. Hans Dama spoke at the cenotaph of the poet, and also at the Haus der Heimat and at the Association’s premises. Dr. Hans Dama also takes care of literary bequest of Rudolf Hollinger and read from his work at the cultural conference of the Country Association of the Banat Swabians (Baden-Württemberg, Germany) in December 1999 in Sindelfingen, and also in December, in Vienna.

Dr. Hans Dama’s readings from the works of Adam Müller-Guttenbrunn, Nikolaus Lenau, Rudolf Hollinger and other authors from the Banat, take place in Vienna every six months, and are popular beyond the Banat-Swabian community. In addition, inter-cultural events are organized: In March 2000 Hans Dama spoke at the Romanian Cultural Institute Aula Romaniae in Vienna about the years Romanian poet Mihai Eminescu spent in Vienna, followed by readings from his poetry.

Members of our Association take an active part in cultural conferences in Germany, Austria, Hungary and Romania. At the 19th conference in Freiburg, on October 16, 1999, Dipl.-Ing. Josef Adam presented the activities of Franz Blaskovics and its impact on agriculture in the Banat.

Especially productive was the activity of Dr. Alexander Krischan, whose publications on Banat themes always generated much interest:  "German Period Literature of the Banat 1771 – 1971" (1987); "German Contributions to the Historiography of the Banat 1860-1980“ (1993). For his achievements, Dr. Alexander Krischan received the Medal of Merit from the Country Association of Banat Swabians; the Doctor Diploma in Gold from the University of Economics; and the Golden Badge of Honour for Services to the Republic of Austria; the Golden Medal of Honour for 45 years of work in the service of the Austrian economy; and the Prinz-Eugen-Pin in Gold. On the occasion of his 75th birthday, the Association of Banat Swabians in Austria presented the festive publication “Banatica” with contributions from 54 authors and a  greeting from the Roman Catholic bishop of Temeswar Dr. Sebastian Kräuter. At the same time, the two-volume collected edition of Dr. Krischan’s work "Collected Contributions to Cultural History of the Banat 1942–1996“ was published.

Representatives of our Association regularly take part in meetings and discussions of Banat Swabian organisations. In 1999 deputy chairman Julius Fikar visited Banat Swabians in Cincinnati/Ohio and documented highlights by filming it.

In close cooperation with other Banat Swabians engaged in cultural activities and living in Vienna and the full support of either the Romanian Embassy or the Romanian Cultural Institute Aula Romaniae, many common projects could be undertaken: the Lenau Symposium in October 2002 on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of the birthday of Banat-born poet Nikolaus Lenau (1802-1850); and the 150th anniversary of the birth and 80th anniversary of the death of Banat writer  Adam Müller-Guttenbrunn (1852- 1923).

We continue to maintain our ties with the International Lenau Society and send representatives to its organized events. And we continue to pay attention to our relationships with Austrian, German, Romanian and Hungarian organizations.

As shown in our representation, our Association also has non-Banat members from the Serbian part of the Banat and from Austria, some of whom are acting in leading positions, pointing to a supra-regional community.

Chairmen of the Association from its founding (January 1907) until 2006: 

1907 Nikolaus Wehner

1920 Nikolaus Hilger

1922 Johann Braun * 31.08. 1874 in Tschesterek (Neuhatzfeld)

1925 MartinEndres * 11.11.1882 in Kleck/Torontaler Komitat; † 1944 Wien

1944 Hugo ButterObmann-Stellvertreter: meldete am 18.11.1947 den Verein bei der Vereinspolizei ab.

1948 Dkfm. Hans Franz * 20.01.1912 in Steierdorf; † 26.06.1976 Wien

1950 Dr. Josef Fuchs* 04.05.1908 in Alexanderhausen; † 14.06.1976 Wien

1974 Dr. h. c. Hans Androwitsch * 24.03. 1916 in Philadelphia (USA);† 17.04. 1983 Wien

1983 Franz Klein* 17.10.1919 inBilled

2001 Mag. Dr. Hans Dama *30.06. 1944 in Großsanktnikolaus 

Honorary chairmen: 

Prof. Nikolaus Engelmann*13.08. 1908 in Warjasch; † 05.09.2005 Eisenstadt

Franz Klein*17.10.1919 in Billed 

*see also Dama, Hans (Hg.): Österreich und die Banater Schwaben. Festschrift. An der Schwelle zum 100-jährigen Jubiläum des Verbandes der Banater Schwaben Österreichs (1907 – 2007). Ehrengabe für Franz Klein zum 85. Geburtstag. 1.Auflage, Wien 2005.

Footnotes: 

* see also Dama, Hans (Hg.): Österreich und die Banater Schwaben. Festschrift. An der Schwelle zum 100-jährigen Jubiläum des Verbandes der Banater Schwaben Österreichs (1907 – 2007). Ehrengabe für Franz Klein zum 85. Geburtstag. 1. Auflage, Wien 2005.

0 "Die Banater‚Schwaben"“. In: Temeswarer Zeitung, Temesvar, Jg. 28 (1879), Nr. 71 vom 27. März, Seite 1. 

1 See also Hermann Rüdiger, Die Donauschwaben in der südslawischen Batschka, Stuttgart 1931, S. 17);

"Donauschwaben", in: Handwörterbuch des Grenz- und Auslandsdeutschtums, Breslau, Bd. II (1936), Sonderdruck, S. 290 ff.; Senz, Josef Volkmar: Geschichte der Donauschwaben, München 1987, S. 19; Senz, Josef Volkmar (Hg.): Bayerische Donauschwaben donauschwäbische Bayern, München 1979, S. 13; Gündisch, G. Konrad: Die deutsche Siedlung in Süosteuropa. Ein Überblick, in: Die Donauschwaben. Deutsche Siedlung in Südosteuropa. Ausstellungskatalog. Herausgegeben vom Innenministerium Baden-Württemberg, bearbeitet von Eberl, Immo u. a., Sigmaringen 1987, S. 11; Scherer, Anton: Vorwort zu: Die Donauschwaben in der Zwischenkriegszeit und ihr Verhältnis zum Nationalsozialismus. Schriftenreihe Geschichte, Gegenwart und Zukunft der altösterreichischen deutschen Minderheiten in den Ländern der ehemaligen Donaumonarchie, Bd. 3, herausgegeben vom Felix Ermacora Institut. Forschungsstätte für die Völker der Donaumonarchie, Wien 2003. 

2 Meyers Enzyklopädisches Lexikon in 25 Bänden. Bibliographisches Institut Mannheim/Wien/ Zürich, 1973, Bd. 7, S. 82. 

3 Lebende Persönlichkeiten – bis auf eine Ausnahme – wurden aus verständlichen Gründen nicht in das Verzeichnis aufgenommen. 

4 See also Kraushaar, Karl (Hg.):Unsere Heimat. Amtliches Organ des Vereins der Banater Schwaben in Wien. Hinterbrühl bei Wien, 1. Folge, 1. Jg. Mai 1925, S. 1, 11, Folge 2, Juni 1925, S. 5, 11, Folge 3, Juli-August, 1925, S. 11, Folge 4, September 1925 S. 3 ff. 

5 Vgl. Koschak, Emil: Werke der Liebe führen zum Frieden, Wien 1948. 

6 Amtsblatt der Wiener Zeitung Nr. 267, Jahrgang 240, 18. November 1947, S. 7. 

7 Deutsche Schreibweise des aus Lothringen stammenden Politikers. 

8 See also Leber, Peter-Dietmar: La Roque sur Pernes und seine Banater Geschichte, in: Dama, Hans (Hg.): Österreich und die Banater Schwaben.Festschrift. An der Schwelle zum 100-jährigen Jubiläum des Verbandes der Banater Schwaben Österreichs (1907 – 2007). Ehrengabe für Franz Klein zum 85.

 


[Published at DVHH.org Oct 2006 by Jody McKim Pharr]


 

 

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