Mosonmagyaróvár
Mosonmagyaróvár, Hungary · Mosonmagyaróvár, Hungary
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Every breath was painful

Available in: English | Magyar

Andrea left Budapest with her female neighbour on 27 November 1956. They took a train to Mosonmagyaróvár. The next night they went on foot to cross the border. Andrea and others walked for hours, physically and mentally exhausted. "We reached a deep ploughed land where walking was very difficult. Every step we took was felt like being crushed by the weight of the clog we had been dragging. I suspected it was no one’s land - the frontier line. Though it was dawning we couldn't distinguish one color from another. We were inclined to think that we saw a flag about 50 meters away on the other side of the line, but first of all we had to cross this rough sea of mud where we could still be seen. Heaven forbid them to use searchlights - not now because that would be the end. Poor Julia could hardly walk. Her stamina left her. She wanted to sit down more and more. 'I don't even care if I die here' - She groaned. The men certainly did their best to proceed on their way, so I had to drag Julia single handed. Every breath was painful, we were both wheezing. 'We mustn't stop now-we are almost there' – I comforted her still dragging,” she remembered. It was dawning. This leg was through woodland. They took shelter here in order to have a bit of rest hiding under the trees. By the time they woke up it was morning. “We can see now, but can be seen as well. Being scruffy, tired and muddy we looked pathetic. And our tell-tale looks would have given away the purpose of our journey to anyone. No one would have possibly thought that we were taking our morning walk,” she continued. At that point, they took sight of a house on the clearing below them: "So I set off towards the house. I knocked. – 'Guten Morgen' – I stammered when the door was opened. – 'Jó reggelt!' The man’s face broke into a wide smile. Despair and exhaustion must have been written all over my face, because he quickly changed the language. 'I beg your pardon-he apologized in German. – I was only joking. This is the right place. You are in Austria. You know everybody speaks Hungarian as well -here by the frontier region.' I almost fell on his neck. Then the others also took the risk to come closer. The household was very kind. We could wash our hands and faces and they gave us new bread spread with butter and coffee with milk. I haven’t eaten such delicious food of that sort ever since. At last we were able to warm up.'We are free!' – we shouted with joy.” Then the Austrian farmer took them to the nearest village in his tractor. They converted the school gymnasium to provide shelter for the refugees. “Refugees kept coming and going. The only thing I can recall is that I took off my boots and then I must have fallen asleep before touching ground. I came round for a minute when someone got sick and lay down next to me, but slept back immediately and woke up only at dawn the following day. We set off on 27 November and made it to the “free world” on 29," she recalled.

Nádasdy Nikolits Andrea

Nádasdy Nikolits Andrea

Nádasdy Nikolits Andrea was born in a wealthy bourgeois family in Budapest in 1933. Her father Nikolits Mihály was appointed to be a Lord Lieutenant of Baranya County, so the family moved to Pécs. They moved back to Budapest in 1947. Andrea went to the Secondary School of Arts and Crafts in Budapest in 1948. She left it for reasons of politics in 1950 when his father was B -listed and the rest of her family resettled. She worked as a silk painter and as a bar singer afterwards. She got married in 1952. Her daughter was born in 1953. She escaped to Austria through the green border without her family on 29 november 1956. She stayed in Vienna for 3 months. From 1957 to 1961 she lived in France where she worked as a housekeeper. She relocated in the USA in 1961 where she got to the top as a designer, later as a stylist. In the meantime her husband, (who stayed in Hungary), divorced her and she could manage to take her daughter to live with her only in 1966. Count Ferenc Nádasdy married her in 1982. They lived in Ottawa. She retired in 1995. She returned to Hungary in 1996 and together with her husband she endowed a fund. She worked for their Nádasdy Fund till 2013.

Mosonmagyaróvár

Available in: English | Magyar

Mosonmagyaróvár is situated in the extreme North of Hungary, 15 km off the Austrian-Slovakian border, at the confluence of Mosoni-Danube and Leitha by the M1 motorway. Its significance lies in its geographical location. It was already an important settlement back in the Roman times, when it was called Ad Flexum, and became an administrational center after the Acquisition of the Land, then later a county seat. During the Crusades and then the Turkish Conquest, a major military route ran close to the city. In the summer of 1809, Napoleon and his soldiers stayed in here, and it was where the French-Austrian Peace Negotiation took place. In 1939, the two parts of the city, (Magyaróvár being the industrial and cultural centre and Moson populated by farmers and merchants), united. The turnaround in Mosonmagyaróvár’s history came during World War 1 and 2. In accordance with the Versailles Peace Treaty concluding World War 1, two-thirds of Moson comitat was ceded to Austria, and the Paris Treaty signed following World War 2 ceded 3 further villages away from the county and, consequently, from Hungary. As a result, Mosonmagyaróvár lost its county seat status. Following the erection of the Iron Curtain there had been no development in the city whatsoever, and it became hardly accessible. The opening of the borders worked again in the favour of Mosonmagyaróvár thanks to the vicinity of the motorway and the fact that the capitals of the two neighbouring countries became easily accessible. Today the city has 300,000 inhabitants.

Mosonmagyaróvár

On this place

Every breath was painful

Every breath was painful

Nádasdy Nikolits Andrea
There was dead silence around there

There was dead silence around there

Nádasdy Nikolits Andrea
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