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One Hundred War Letters from Kirkenes


On June 16, 2021, Mr. Josef Hofman's grandson (born 1921) brought war letters and notes from Norway, which lay in the attic of a family house. They were written by his grandfather from northern Norway (Kirkenes) in the years 1942-1945. These are 113 letters sent to parents and 12 letters sent to his dear Agnes, his future wife. Mr. Hofman himself did not know about the letters on the ground and did not find them until the 1980s, after his mother's death.

The estate also contains three diaries from the trip to the North and back, a memorial with messages from friends, 80 photographic pictures, period postcards and a photo album from the battles of Narvik. It is also worth noting the invitations and photographs to the first meetings of Norwegians in the 1980s at Lake Rozkoš. We saw many pictures for the first time.

Thanks to these valuable materials, we can refine further information and look into the fate of another Czechoslovak deployed in the northernmost part of Norway. The materials are also important because Jan Hofman, who was managed as an internal employee of the Organisation Todt, is not registered in the file of foreign workers. This is proof that the number of Czechs in Norway will increase even more. It is a challenge for us to include in the database of deployed and profiles of employees who are not registered in the OT file.

We thank Mr. Pavel Hofman (grandson) and his wife Daniel for providing the materials and for helping to scan them.

We will publish Josef Hofman's biographical story later.


Filozofická fakulta
Univerzita Karlova
nám. Jana Palacha 1/2
116 38 Praha 1