The orderly book of Komárom of the 64th battalion of the1849 Hungarian army has got into the National Archives of Hungary (NAH), the Budapest based institution has bought it with the financial support of the Szerencsejáték Zrt., the largest gambling service provider in Hungary.
At the press conference on Monday in Budapest where the book was presented General Director of the NAH, Zsuzsanna Mikó called the orderly book of Komárom a unique document and emphasized: the archives could not have had the opportunity to buy it from the support provided by the budget. Answering the question of the Hungarian News Agency the General Director said, that the NAH bought the book for HUF 600 thousand from an individual and the whole sum was paid by the Szerencsejáték Zrt.
President and CEO of the Szerencsejáték Zrt., Kálmán Szentpétery said: the company pays one billion forints annually for cultural purposes a social advisory panel helps to select the cases to be supported. This year it was not the first time that they helped a state institution to buy a unique material. The Petőfi Literary Museum could also buy precious relics of Petőfi with the help of this company.
Chief Counsellor and Scientific Deputy Manager of the War Historical Institute and Museum, Róbert Hermann said about the value of the document: although there is a „huge documentation” at the disposal of researchers about the 1848-49 War of Independence the orderly books represent an especially great value, as they are the most important source materials of the Hungarian Army of that period. The orderly book reveals about each unit what it did, what training it participated and in a lucky case the corps path can be traced as well. As he remarked the value of the document now handed over is indicated by the fact that the history science should have been familiar with 1120 of this kind of orderly book, but only 11 ones are available to researchers, and only three of them are considered to be complete.
The Chied Counsellor said about the orderly book of the 64th battalion that the inside history of the Komárom Fortress can be known from it. The unit had been formed in October, 1848 from recruits of the Bars and Zólyom counties and in December they joined the garrison in Komárom. Such important details are revealed by the document for example that the soldiers got acquainted with the Declaration of Independence. As curiosity he mentioned: in the book there are some commands about the compulsory change of underwear every week and about the removal of ‘not married’ woman living in the neighbourhood of the soldiers.
Historian István Pelyach describing the history of the fortress of Komárom said: the castle system which had been developed after the Napoleonic Wars played an important role during the War of Independence. The historian recalled the lunges led by György Klapka, and also mentioned that Klapka was persistent even after the Surrender at Világos and made efforts to seek amnesty for the whole country in exchange for the giving up of the fortress, but it did not have any reality. Finally he was able to obtain amnesty for the Komárom defenders and civilians.
Végül csak a komáromi védőknek és polgári lakosoknak sikerült amnesztiát szereznie.