Petr Špinler

* 1935  

  • “I was about six and many soldiers and civilians arrived in our living room. My mum was just kneading the dough for bread and walked the room. She always baked about eleven loaves. The soldiers and others came in to check what corn we have in our granary. We were allowed to keep enough corn for sowing and then allocated version per person. Everything else had to be submitted to the authorities. The authorities thought that my dad had everything in order so they sent the control to us. My father had everything neatly divided in heaps, with labels stating the weight. When they weighed everything, they found only a deviation of 50kg. They said this was due to the fact that the sacks were still wet after washing. That’s why there was this deviation, but there was no problem. It had lucky ending. The town’s secretary said after the war that my father should be rewarded, since he saved the village, as the inspections found nothing.”

  • “There was this bench for milk deliveries and we could put food for prisoners on it. Our neighbour was a bit late and when the transport went up, they saw he was carrying bread, so a few prisoners broke free of the transport and ran towards him. The guards started shooting at them. The bullets hit our roof. One of the prisoners was shot directly under our windows. He was taken away by a German farmer as they were stationed in Horní Dobrouč. Some prisoners had terrible shoes, others had their feet bandaged by rags. I was about ten, so I already noticed it.”

  • “Someone said in the pub he knew where partisans were hiding. Although nothing came out of it, he was seen as a traitor. Even [Rudolf] Pohl was arrested as a traitor of the Czech nation, led along the street. In front of the school he was interrogated and slapped. Then he was taken to Petrovická road and shot. I arrived when he was dead already, crouched in the ditch. But my brother was there before me and he said he saw his hat jump when they shot him. Such as rather bad end.”

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    Dolní Dobrouč, 04.09.2018

    délka: 02:11:56
    nahrávka pořízena v rámci projektu Stories of 20th Century
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No one here was in favour of the cooperatives but it was necessary

Petr Špinler
Petr Špinler
zdroj: archiv pamětníka

Petr Špinler was born on February 9, 1935, in Dolní Dobrouč, in a land inhabited for centuries by Czechs and Germans. In his narrative, he talks about life during WWII, when paths to neighbouring villages were cut by the Protectorate borders. He saw, in his own eyes, German guards shooting down one of the prisoners. He also remembers vividly the period immediately after WWII with executions of the so-called collaborators. He talks, too, about the life in the communist totalitarian regime. He remembers his family entering, under pressure, the agricultural cooperative, his brother František Špinler sentenced in a show trial to prison and refused authorisation to work as a priest on his release. With the exception of two years, when he worked on the family farm, he spent all of his life working in the agricultural cooperative. In 2018, he still lived with his wife Blažena in his native house in Dolní Dobrouč.