Otto Schvalb’s grandparents and family

This family photograph is from the 1930s, and was taken in my paternal grandparents’ apartment in Presov. In the bottom row sitting from left to right: my grandfather Moric Schvalb, his wife Hermina Schvalbova, nee Frankl and my maternal grandmother Jana Kemplerova, nee Reisz. In the top row standing from left to right: my father's brother Eugen Schvalb, my mother Maria Schvalbova, nee Kemplerova, and my father Alexander Schvalb.

My father's parents lived right in the center of Presov, on Main Street. They lived in a spacious house. My parents and I lived in the front part of the house, facing Main Street. My father was a doctor, and also had his office there. My grandparents lived in the back part of the tract, where they had their own house. It was actually an extension to the main house. That's where they lived. There, they had two rooms, a kitchen, pantry and washroom. My grandfather's store was beside my father's clinic. In the time of my youth the building already had electricity, and we also had running water. In the back there was a courtyard that was completely paved with stone tiles. In the time of my father's youth my grandparents had a doggie, but they had the poor thing shot. We later also had a dog.

My mother's parents lived in Trstena na Orave. Grandpa owned a store and family house, which had three rooms, a pantry and washroom. In the courtyard in the back they had a smaller house where the helpers who worked in grandpa's store lived. There were no farm animals in the courtyard, only a large garden.

In my own way I liked all of my grandparents, in that child's way. Despite this, I had a better relationship with the ones in Trstena. Maybe also because I saw them less often. I would go there for summer holidays, and at Christmas, so once, twice a year. I would go there together with my parents. I was together with my father's parents constantly, so I was more used to them. My mother's mother treated me more affectionately, or how shall I put it. It's hard to define. My mother's mother baked excellent goodies.