Photo taken in:DoubraviceCountry name at time of photo:Czechoslovakia, 1918-1938Country name today:Czech Republic
Father had two siblings, Aunt Bedriska and Uncle Josef. Aunt Bedriska and Uncle Josef's families together owned a farm estate in Doubravice, where this picture is from. It was taken at harvest time, sometime in the 1920s. Standing in the foreground in the photograph is Aunt Bedriska (the huskier figure in the middle) together with her husband, Uncle Vilem Vohryzek, and most likely some servant. What's interesting is that Bedriska's and our father's brother, Uncle Josef Munk, married Mr. Vohryzek's sister, Marta Vohryzkova, so everyone was related to everyone. The Vohryzeks had two children, Hana and Helena. The Munks had only one son, who was named Jiri Munk, like me. Uncle Josef Munk was a legionnaire in Russia during World War I. When after World War I land reforms were taking place, and large estates belonging to the nobility were being sold off, legionnaires had priority and thanks to this my uncle came by a large farm estate near Teplice, which was called Doubravice. The estate was in the border region, or the Sudetenland, where back then there lived mainly a German-speaking population. Originally it had belonged to some noblemen from Lothringen, which was foreign nobility. The nobles were forced to sell off their estates; of course it wasn't confiscated for nothing. The estate in Doubravice was relatively large, it was actually this small chateau. Both families - the Vohryzeks and the Munks - bought it half and half, and so owned it together. At the time that they got the estate, about 150 hectares of land belonged to it, and later they most likely bought additional land. Especially the Vohryzeks belonged to the 'better' landowners back then, they used to ride in a carriage to Teplice and their daughters belonged to the so-called rural cavalry. The rural cavalry was this group of, as they would have said back then - Czech village kulaks. It was a big honor to get into the rural cavalry. They took part in all significant celebrations and had their own riding horses. The farm in Doubravice employed dozens of people. There was also an adjunct, that was the estate owner's representative, who was learning his trade. And also 'deputats.' A deputat was actually a share of the harvest, and these deputats received part of their salary in kind. All the relatives that we know of spoke Czech, probably including our grandfathers and grandmothers, even though back then during the time of Austro-Hungary, they of course had to know how to speak German as well. When in 1938 the Germans annexed the Sudetenland, and expelled our relatives from there, the Vohryzeks then lived with us in Brandys and the Munks somewhere in Prague. I suspect that all our relatives that came to Prague from the Sudetenland were among the first to be selected for the transports, which didn't go to Terezin, but straight to Lodz or to Estonia. Among them was Hana Vohryzkova, who was married to Hugo Stein. They both died in Lodz and were already declared dead in 1942. The remainder of the Vohryzek family, Uncle Vilem, Aunt Bedriska and their younger daughter Helena left on a transport, at first to Terezin, and then to Auschwitz, where they died in 1944. The Munks, that is, Aunt Marta, her husband Josef and son Jiri Munk, left on a transport to Estonia, where they were declared dead in 1943.