Authors: Katalin Vadkerty, Juraj Pekarovič, Hildegarda Pokreis, Lóránt Talamon, Varga Ágota, Ľudovít Hallon
Baron Karl Kuffner de Dioszegh In this chapter the author describes the family history of the Kuffner Jewish businessmen, who were originally situated in Břeclav and Vienna, and in 1867 they established a sugar mill in Diószeg. The key person who assured such agricultural and industrial success to the great complex was Karl Kuffner 1847-1924), who was a flourishing businessman, inventor, breeder, Maecenas and a very significant art collector. He married a countess Maria Franziska von und zu Firmian, who gave birth to their son Raoul. Thanks to his great accomplishments, Karl Kuffner was promoted to an aristocratic title and became a prestigious member and a chairman of many occupational institutions. The author maps out the history of a family, who in 1939 immigrated to the USA. Mgr. Hildegarda Pokreis Diószeg sugar mill 1867–1918 Dióseg sugar mill was one of the leading producers of sugar in the area of current Slovakia and in its production implemented the most innovative technologies. Karl Kuffner himself along with his coworkers was the author of many of the inventions, which made the complicated process of sugar production more effective. The author pays attention to the technical aspects of the sugar production, the commercial success of the company and also the labor conditions of workers in the sugar mill, between years and 1967–1918. PhDr. Katalin Vadkerty, CSc. Dioszeg sugar mill 1918–2008 This chapter describes the fate of the sugar mill between the WWI and WWII, when Diószeg was a part of the Czechoslovak Republic and during the WWII, when this area became a part of Hungary. In the last section, the author in detail describes the Socialism era, during which the sugar mill remained to be one of the key sugar producers and a short passage describes an era after the Velvet Revolution, privatization and the infamous destruction of the famous sugar mill. Mgr. Hildegarda Pokreis Kuffner castle and the mausoleum Karl Kuffner built a castle in Diószeg where he lived with his family. The original castle was built in 1885 as a one-story mansion and in 1908 the art gallery was attached to it. The fire in 1919 destroyed the entire fist floor of the main building and in 1921 took place a complex reconstruction of the entire building, during which the castle gained the current look with the middle tower. The author in details describes both the interior and the exterior of the castle. Other eminent building is the mausoleum in thecastle’s park, where the members of the Kuffner family were buried. The mausoleum was designed by a prominent Slovak architect Michal Milan Harminc. Juraj Pekarovič Sugar mill farmsteads An inseparable part of the sugar mill were the farmsteads on which the sugar beet, grains, vegetable and fruits grew. Very successful was also the breeding of animals such as cattle. But the main function of the farmsteads was to grow large amounts of sugar beet. The author describes the work on farmsteads from the time the sugar mill was established, until the separation of individual farmsteads, which took place during the socialization of agriculture after the WWII. Mgr. Hildegarda Pokreis Field narrow-gauge railway ponvagli Within the agricultural and industrial complex, it was necessary to transport great amounts of supplies, materials and waste. For this reason was in the region built the field narrow-gauge railway ponvágli. The author writes about the creation, maintenance, technical parameters and machinery equipment of the railway. This chapter includes a detailed map of all the railways. At the end, the author analyzes the reasons for which the railway became extinct and documents the last small fragments of currently remained tracks. Lóránt Talamon Kuffner art collection Karl Kuffner was a significant art collector. The core of his collection were paintings that Maria Franziska brought into their marriage as her dower. For many years he enlarged this collection by buying paintings and other art objects. This art collection was inherited by his son Raoul, who was also a fair art expert. In 1939 he brought the most valuable art with him to the USA, where he sold them one by one. The author tries to map out journeys of individual paintings, of which many are a part of prestigious museums, galleries and private art collections. Varga Ágota History of Slovak sugar production until 1938 The Diószeg sugar mill was one of several ones in the area of current Slovakia. In this chapter the author describes the difficult beginnings of sugar production, the history of all Slovak sugar mills and the continual improvement of the technological process of sugar production in the era from 1801 util1938. PhDr. Ľudovít Hallon, CSc.