A7 School Child

Karl Stojka was born in 1931 in a small village in Lower Austria. His family belonged to the Lovara, a subgroup of the Roma. They were well-to-do horse dealers and travelled through the provinces of Styria, Burgenland and Lower Austria in the summer. During the winter they usually stayed somewhere in or near Vienna. Following the Nazi occupation of Austria, the family were no longer able to travel in summer and settled in Vienna. The children - Karl and his three sisters and two brothers - went to school in Vienna and soon made many friends there. His father’s offi cial name was Karl Horvath, but everybody knew him as Wakar. His mother’s maiden name was Sidi Stojka, but they often used the surname Rigó, as they were related to that big and famous Lovara family.

Photograph of Karl Stojka at the age of nine taken in Vienna in 1940.