Then and now: …DON’T LET ANYONE GO TO THE CELLAR, SO THAT PEOPLE DON'T KNOW WHAT WE HAVE.

The Holzner has been a place of living history for 112 years. And through all the ups and downs, through all the periods of prosperity and crises, it has grown and become what makes it lovable and special today: a place of joy and peace for all generations, then and now. This time, you will read about how Hans and Mizi Holzner made it through the last year of WWI.
Hans Holzner Senior, 1900
Hans Holzner Senior, 1900
Hans Holzner was drafted in 1915 at the age of 44 when conscription was extended to all men born between 1865 and 1900. He was to remain at his post as a food officer in a camp in Lower Austria until April 1919. About 20 letters from these years, written by him and his wife Mizi, have been preserved. Towards the end of the war, resignation and despair become the main tone in those letters.

Thus, in July 1918 Hans writes: "My dearest Mizi! Isn't it unspeakably sad that instead of uplifting the culture of nations in peaceful competition, we tear each other apart and sacrifice the prime of humanity? The worst thing is to see one's fortune, acquired through long and arduous work, dwindle away. We can only watch on helplessly while everything must perish, while our own people are sucked dry by profiteers who enrich themselves shamelessly. Our old Tyrolean loyalty has been badly rewarded. Now enough of that.

We still have a few hectolitres of wine, as well as several bottles of lighter varieties; we have kept all this over and over again in anticipation of a peace treaty. But our hopes have always been deceived and I believe that the wine will not get better in the long run. For our part, we could certainly sell it well, and yet we would still be able to make a profit that could help us survive for a while. Of course, I do not want to sell the wine cheaply, not to Bolzano, against cash payment, without containers. The barrel would have to be provided by the buyer and the wine would have to be taken away by car. But don't let anyone go directly to the cellar so that people don't know what we have. We only sell to trustworthy people. If you have any doubts about this, wait until I get home. Now I will close for today, be kissed a thousand times by your faithfully loving Hans."

The same year WWI ended, and the faithfully loving Hans was able to return to his family on Ritten mountain in April 1919. And only one year after that, Hans and Mizi were able to welcome guests at the Holzner again. They directed the house through the unexpected bloom of the 1920s and watched their two boys grow with joy and pride.
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