Union Transilvaniei, Banatului, Crișanei și Maramureșului
with the Romanian Kingdom
Banat and the road to Union
Banat, a province with a long history, as tumultuous as Transylvania and Bukovina, was subjected for a millennium to occupation, Turkish invasions and tattooing, foreign domination. It was part of the territory administered by the Hungarian Kingdom, then in the 16th century it was annexed to the Ottoman Empire for two centuries, and at the beginning of the 18th century it became part of the Habsburg Empire.
In 1849, the Banat was reorganized, the Timis and Caras counties were dismantled, and the province was integrated into a new administrative entity – Vojvodina Serbian and Banat Timisan, which depended directly on Vienna and resided in Timisoara.
But the Hungarian aristocrats, dissatisfied with the reorganization, pressed the imperial court, and the Banat Timisan, Crişana, Maramureş and the Solnocul de Medij, Crasna, Zarand, Chioar and Zalău counties joined Hungary as a result of the imperial decision of December 27 1860.
Continue a deaf battle by the Banat, Partium and Maramures representatives in the Diet of Hungary’s Rights for Romanians. Personalities of the Romanian cultural and political life of Banat such as: Emanoil Gojdu, Vincenţiu Babeş, Sigismund Popovici, George Popa, Aloisiu Vlad, constantly demanded the right of Romanians to use their mother tongue in justice, administration, as denied by the Austrian administration and then the Hungarian one.
Among the Banat political initiatives was the establishment of the Social Democrat Party of Transylvania and Banat on 6 January 1906 in Lugoj, a party that wanted to unite Romanians, urban workers and peasants.
The leaders of the party were Aurel Cristea, Ioan Flueraş, Iosif Jumanca, Ioan Creţu, Tiron Albani. Promoted ideas such as class struggle and the dismantling of private property have made the party not a major influence, but its members have been active in the preparation and realization of the Great Union.
On October 19 / November 1, 1918, Colonel Miron Şerb formed the Romanian Military National Council in Timişoara, where all Romanian soldiers were invited to join, the council being in touch with the Romanian National Council in Arad.
Postcard from Lugoj from the beginning of the 20th century – The Communal Theater
Banat joined the liberation movement under Austro-Hungarian domination and the Transylvanian example of organization.
On October 21st / November 3, 1918, a meeting was held in Lugoj in the “Concordia” garden, attended by several thousand soldiers and civilians from the city and its surroundings.
Valeriu Branişte opened the meeting, together with the bishop Dr. Valeriu Traian Frentiu, dr. Trifon Latia, dr. Victor Bârlea, Alexandru Vasile.
George Jirda, the Banat poet, made a speech and appealed for enlistment to defend the Banat territories.
In Lugoj was established the Romanian National Council led by the deputy dr. Teodor Mihali. It was called upon to organize the civilian guards, to keep their peace and order in Banat “without indignation of a conscious nation that respects to all peoples the same rights that they want to affirm for themselves” (Testimonies 1918 La Romani. – State of the Romanian people, vol. II, Bucharest, 1983, p. 93, Report of 3 November 1918, Lugoj appeared in the “Flag”, 18th century, 113 of November 5, 1918.)
Valeriu Branişte (1869-1928) leader of the struggle for Union led the actions of the Romanians from Lugoj in October-November 1918.
It was decided to set up a Romanian battalion from former 8th Regimental soldiers, and Captain George G. Garda appealed to join this first Romanian battalion in Banat. The popular assembly in Lugoj ended with “Awaken Romanian”, sung for the first time in freedom.
On November 12, 1918, a command of the national guards in Timis and Torontal was established in Timisoara, which coordinated the Romanian national guards of 20-60 members led by a former officer or non-commissioned officer. If the guards did not have enough weapons and the ammunition had to announce the Command in Timisoara to buy them.
Throughout the territory of Banat, Romanian National Committees have been organized in towns, communes and villages that have gathered local leaders and military guards who have tried to defend the population from turbulence, robberies produced by the withdrawal of Central Powers troops.
For a short period between October 31 and November 15, 1918, Otto Roth, a member of the leadership of the Social Democratic Party of Hungary – the Republic of Banat, was proclaimed in Timisoara. It was an attempt at the independence of Banat and then its subordination to the Hungarian government.
The Romanians in Banat did not agree with this form of organization, Dr. Aurel Cosma, president of the Romanian National Military Council, indicating that Romanians want to decide their own fate.
When the Serb troops enter Banat, the republic ceases any action, and this is not the case. On November 14, 1918, the Serbian troops occupied Timisoara, dissolved the national guards and took over the military administration and, shortly, the civilian side of Banat.
The issue of Banat will be a subject of the Romanian-Serbian negotiations, mediated by the Entente and solved only after the Banat was divided between the two countries.
The Romanian administration was installed in the bumble Banat, in the part attributed to Romania, only in July 1919.
The representatives of Banat at the Great National Assembly in Alba Iulia encountered great difficulties and were not initially allowed to leave the territory occupied by the Serbian and French armies, only after mediations and negotiations with a train from Timisoara.
Toronto’s delegates did not arrive in Alba Iulia, not allowed to leave.
All the Banat delegates arrived in Alba Iulia voted the Union of Transylvania, Banat, Crişana and Maramureş with the Romanian Kingdom.
Transylvania and the road to Union
The 1848-1849 revolution shook the Habsburg Empire, Hungary and Transylvania alike. Transylvanian Romanians organized and fought for their national rights in the face of abuses, armed occupation, and the forced alliance of Transylvania to Hungary.
Meet Blaj in May 1848, the Romanians applied the principle of applying the principle of national self-determination and democratic organization of the province.
The members of the National Committee of Sibiu have guided the politico-administrative and military reorganization: prefectures and legions, led by Avram Iancu, Axente Sever, Simion Balint, Ioan Buteanu. Anti-Romanian repression was cruel in Transylvania, which was armed by General Josef Bem. The Romanians resisted the Apuseni Mountains where they formed their own army and stopped attempts to conceive.
The restoration of the autonomy of the Grand Principality of Transylvania, including the Partium (Partium consisting of Zarand, Crasna, Middle Solnoc, Zalau, and Chioar district) made two decades after the Revolution of the Principality directly dependent on the court in Vienna,
On May 12, 1851, Transylvania was divided into five provinces, and in February 1854 a new reorganization took place in 10 prefectures and 79 prices, which lasted until 1861 when it returned to the organization before 1848.
After a liberal intermezzo, in which the Romanians in Transylvania gained certain rights, the Austro-Hungarian dualism established in 1867 changed the organization of Transylvania once again in Transylvania and subjected to transformations meant to diminish the majority of Romanians lived in the province.
The Romanians continued their struggle for recognition, national representativeness, school and administration in the national language during the dualistic period. The formation of a strong Romanian intellectuals led to the diversification of the means of this struggle against forced denationalization, ethnic, linguistic and religious assimilation, and the encouragement of emigration, along with the bringing of colonists of other nationalities.
Blajul and the Liberty Plain remained the symbol of the fight for Romanians’ rights. They celebrated on May 3/15, 1868, 20 years after the Great National Assembly, adopting a Decree requiring the return to the liberal legislation adopted by the Sibiu Diet from 1863 to 1864.
The next step made by the Romanian elite in Transylvania, which was more valuable, numerous and vocal, was the establishment of political parties following the general European model (Ioan-Aurel Pop, Ioan Bolovan, History of Transylvania, Transylvania School Publishing House, Cluj-Napoca, 2016, p.304).
In Sibiu, on 12 May 1881, the National Conference of Romanians’ Transylvanian and Banat Electoral Circles took place, and the Romanian National Party of Transylvania, Banat and Hungary (PNR) was founded. His first presidents were Nicolae Popea (1881 – 1882) (Nicolae Popea (1826-1908) secretary of Andrei Saguna, Romanian bishop, historian and scholar of Transylvania, was elected the first president of the Romanian National Party in Transylvania) and Partenie Cosma 1882-1883) (Partenie Cosma (1837-1923) lawyer, Transylvanian politician, second president of the Romanian National Party in Transylvania, deputy in the Diet of Budapest, senator of Great Romania).
Also in Sibiu, in 1884 appeared the first Romanian daily in Transylvania, “Tribuna”, led by Ioan Slavici. “Tribuna”, through its ideas, has built a political trend – tribunism, and the formula “Sun for us in Bucharest rises!”, Launched by Ioan Slavici, became the slogan of the movement for Romanians’ freedom and unity.
The Romanian Kingdom, although ally of the Austro-Hungarian Empire under the Treaty of 1883, understood the importance of the support given to the Romanians’ struggle in Transylvania, and Romania’s relations with the Transylvanian Romanians became more and more tense.
The PNR leaders, led by President Ioan Raţiu, Vice-Presidents Gheorghe Pop of Băseşti, Eugen Brote, Vasile Lucaciu, Iuliu Coroianu, Septimiu Albani, drew in the spring of 1892 an act that coagulated all the Romanians’ demands. Thus, the Memorandum of the Romanians in Transylvania and Hungary was drafted, a delegation going to Vienna to make it known to Emperor Franz Josif. Here they struck the refusal of the Imperial Chancellery to receive them, followed by a criminal prosecution process against members of the Central Committee of the Romanian National Party, in which 15 of the 29 Romanian leaders were sentenced to imprisonment between six months and five years.
The Memorandum Process, which united the Romanian nation beyond and beyond the Carpathians, had a wide international echo, demonstrating the fairness of the Romanians’ demands and the lack of justice in condemning them. Outstanding European politicians intervened in favor of the memorandums, and King Carol I’s intervention with Emperor Franz Joseph played a decisive role in pardoning the prisoners who had been imprisoned.
With the help of the program and actions of the members of the Romanian National Party, the national conscience of the Romanians in Transylvania gradually developed. The most important members of the PNR were: George Bariţiu, Ioan Raţiu, Vicenţiu Babeş, Vasile Goldiş, Alexandru Vaida-Voevod, Vasile Lucaciu, Iuliu Coroianu, Eugen Brote, Ştefan Cicio-Pop, many condemned for the Memorandum. All these and many others had a fundamental role in supporting the national rights of the Romanians, courageously and persistently demanding Transylvania’s autonomy and rights for the Romanian nation in Transylvania.
Vasile Goldiş (1862-1934) negotiates the ways of uniting Transylvania with the Iaşi government, reads the Resolution of the Alba Iulia Assembly, member of the Transylvanian Conducting Council on Cults and Public Instruction
In 1903 Gheorghe Pop of Băseşti (Gheorghe Pop de Băseşti (1835-1919) Romanian Transylvanian Prime Minister, deputy, who held this position until 1919) was elected president of PNR, a Romanian rights fighter, a participant at the memorandum movement, sentenced to imprisonment and imprisoned for a year at the Vag, an example for the whole Romanian breath.
At the beginning of the 20th century the Romanian National Party went into political activism, its representatives being elected in the Diet of Budapest where they demanded rights for the Romanians and protested against the increasingly aggressive attempts of assimilation made by the Budapest government.
The Romanian National Party of Transylvania was the most important and influential political force in the province, with a fundamental role in the entire political process that led to the Great Assembly in Alba Iulia, carefully organized and coordinated by the PNR leaders.
Romania’s aid has become more and more consistent, leading over time to the amplification of feelings of belonging to the same nation, to the idea of the unification of all Romanians in one state – the Romanian Kingdom.
The outbreak of World War I provoked an exodus of the Romanians from Transylvania to Romania, who had declared neutrality in order to escape the war and the military service.
Of the Romanians in Transylvania, a large number, according to historians Ioan Aurel Pop and Ioan Bolovan, half a million Romanians, were called to arms in the Austro-Hungarian army (Ioan-Aurel Pop, Ioan Bolovan, History of Transylvania, Transylvania School Publishing House, Cluj Napoca, 2016, p. 353 apud Liviu Maior, Romanians in the Habsburg army).
The leaders of the Romanian National Party asked the Romanian soldiers to be loyal to the Emperor, and many Romanian leaders fought in the Austro-Hungarian army.
Considering that there are a large number of Romanians to be incorporated, Austro-Hungarian authorities have made some important concessions for recognizing the existence of the Romanian population. The Romanian soldiers in the Austro-Hungarian army received orders to call for weapons in Romanian, they were allowed to sing “Wake up!” And wear tricolor cocktails, and they could be identified as Romanians.
The period of neutrality ended on 14/27 August 1916, when the Romanian state declared war on Austria-Hungary. The triumphal march of the Romanian Army in Transylvania, on the night of 14/27 August 1916 and the first days of the war, awakened the Transylvanian Romanians alive.
The Romanian army was received as a liberating one, but after the period of advancement and triumph, with the arrival of the German troops on the Transylvanian front, as well as the Dobrogea, the victories turned into defeats.
Solidarity with the Romanian army has begun reprisals of the Austro-Hungarian authorities against the Romanians in the border area, and after the recapture of Transylvania, reprisals have spread throughout the province.
Several thousands of Romanians were deported to Hungary, and between 400 and 500 people were interned in Hungarian and Transylvanian camps. They were mainly distinguished members of the Romanian intelligentsia: lawyers, priests, teachers (Idem, p. 355 -356).
A new wave of arrests and internment in the camps occurred after the withdrawal of the Romanian Army from Transylvania, many Transylvanian Romanians fleeing to Romania to escape the reprisals of the Austro-Hungarian authorities and the forced recruitment of men between 42 and 60 for work in coal mines, arms factories, agriculture.
Transylvanian refugee Romanians in Iaşi set up a National Committee of Emigrants from Austria-Hungary in January 1917 at the initiative of Octavian Goga and Vasile Lucaciu, declaring war on the Austro-Hungarian monarchy and actively involved in the struggle for the survival of the Romanian state .
Vasile Lucaciu and Vasile Stoica went to the US with the help of the Romanian government in Iasi to make known the problems of the Romanians in Transylvania in order to solidify the Romanian emigration from the ocean in front of the ideal of the union of all Romanians and the creation of Great Romania.
The Austro-Hungarian peoples’ autonomy was backed by US diplomacy and President Woodrow Wilson in his “14 points”, but the Transylvanian representatives in the United States. promoted the independence of Transylvania and then the union with the Romanian Kingdom, their role being capital when, after long negotiations, the Union of Alba Iulia was recognized.
A part of the Romanian soldiers in the Austro-Hungarian army fallen into prison in Russia (The number of Romanian soldiers fallen prisoners was estimated at 120,000, a very large number) wished to fight in the Romanian army. Thus, representatives of the Government of Ion I.C. Bratianu intervened with the Russian government to form a body of Transylvanian and Bucovinian volunteers made up of Romanian prisoners (Romania in the Great War, Romanian National History Museum, Bucharest, 2016, p. 88). They were gathered in Darnitsa, near Kiev, and then went to Moldova. The Transylvanian Volunteer Corps (130 officers and 1,500 soldiers, whose names have been changed precisely in order not to be recognized as prisoners) arrived in Iasi on 27 May / 9 June 1917 to fight in the Romanian Army enthusiastically received by the population of Iasi (Romania in the Great War, National Museum of History of Romania, Bucharest, 2016, p. 88). Lieutenant Victor Deleu, one of the volunteers, impressed the close crowd in Union Square in Iaşi saying: “We owe to come to you today, when you live for such difficult days … Today we became citizens of Romania, but of Romania Mari “(History of Romanians, vol. II, tom II, From Independence to the Great Union (1878-1918), Encyclopaedic Publishing House, 2003, Chapter Unirea, p. 417).
At the beginning of 1918 there was a similar initiative of the Transylvanians and Bucovinians still in Russia, there was also a legion in France, and one in the US that fought on the front in France.
In Italy, the first regiment of the Romanian Legion, organized in October 1918, fought alongside the Italian army until the end of the confrontations on the Italian front in November 1918.
On December 3/16, 1917, Emil Isac launched an appeal from Budapest – “The Romanian National Party to Enter into Action” – in which he demanded the revival of the Romanian national movement at a crucial moment when the Austro-Hungarian Empire was in decline.
Transylvanian and Bucovinian Romanians from Odessa met on January 2, 1918, to organize a National Committee of Romanians subjugated by the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy because the organizations of the Transylvanian and Bucovinian Romanians had been abolished at the pressures of the Hungarian and Austrian administrations, and the Romanians did not have no representative to defend their interests, especially since, as a result of the Bolshevik Revolution, a committee representing the minorities in the Austro-Hungarian Empire was organized in Kiev.
The echoes of US President Woodrow Wilson’s statement before the American Congress, “The 14 Points”, have come quickly across Europe, including Transylvania.
Among the actions of the Romanians in Paris, the most important was the appearance on January 17, 1918, of the weekly “La Roumanie”, the press body of the struggle for the rights of the Romanian nation, led by Pavel Bratasanu. The magazine appeared until June 1919, the one that united the Romanian emigration from the West, both during the terrible moments of the negotiations with the Central Powers and at the conclusion of Peace in Bucharest (May 7, 1918), as well as in the happy moments of Bucovina Union and Transylvania.
“La Roumanie” through his articles informed and sensitized the public opinion in France on the problems of the Romanians in Transylvania and Hungary, Bucovina and the Romanian Kingdom reduced to Moldova, cultivated French opinion leaders and other nationalities in Paris who understood and then supported the ideals of Romanians’ union.
On 23 March / 5 April 1918, in Rome, the representatives of the Austro-Hungarian nationalities: Italian, Polish, Romanian, Czechoslovak, and Yugoslavs met and proclaimed their right to “constitute their national unity or to complete it for to achieve its full political and economic independence “(Resolution and Statement, 1918, March 23/5 Sprilie, Rome in 1918 to Romanians, vol. VII, p. 11). The President of the Council of Ministers of Italy, Orlando, welcomed the initiative in Rome.
Simion Mandrescu (Simion Mandrescu (1868-1947), Transylvanian Romanian, runs to the Regat and becomes a militant for the rights of the Romanians in Transylvania, a professor at the University of Bucharest, participates in the founding of the National Council of Romanian Unity in France, then participates in the formation of legions in Italy On June 19, 1918, in Rome, with the support of the Italian Government, organized the Romanian Action Committee of Transylvania, Banat and Bucovina, which fought for the cause of national unity. On August 25, 1918, the Committee, together with the Italian Pro-Romani Committee, organized a demonstration in favor of Romania with a large number of echoes in the Italian and international media in front of the Trajan’s House.
Almost simultaneously, in Paris, the “National Committee of Romanians in Transylvania and Bucovina”, led by Traian Vuia (17/30 April 1918), and its bi-monthly publication “La Transylvania” appeared in France.
European initiatives increased, so that on May 4/17, 1918, a Manifesto of the oppressed in Austria signed by Czech, Polish, Yugoslav, Romanian and Italian was published in Prague, rejecting any treaties that did not recognize the sovereign will of nations.
Over Ocean, representatives of the oppressed peoples of central and eastern Europe: Th. Masaryk, the leader of the Czechoslovaks, J.J. Paderewski, the head of Polish emigration, Hinko Hinkovici, Serbian leader and Vasile Stoica, of Romanians in the US. meet and decide to unite their interests. Vasile Stoica laid the foundations of the “Romanian National League” on 5 July 1918.
“In America, on July 5th, so on the morrow, we will establish a National League, subject to the Council of Paris, comprising all the Romanians in America, who were somewhat disfigured by the wretched intellectuals and confessions wrecked here. It has to be a strong organization, even with good material resources. This League will support here in Washington the Political and Military Council of the National Council in Paris for America. The Bureau, which is under my direction, will work in two directions: a) to give political information and b) to make a military organization, a Romanian legion here, to be transported to Europe, along with the five regiments in Italy and France. Now you understand why I ask you to come quickly. They do not conquer “(Testimonies, 1918 In Romanian, Completing the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. VII, Bucharest, 1983, pp. 26-28,” Letter from Vasile Stoica addressed to Victor Branistea in Vladivostok informing him about the unionist activity of the Romanians in America and France. “), Vasile Stoica wrote to Valeriu Braniste on 3 July 1918.
On September 15, 1918, the meeting of 4,000 representatives of the Austro-Hungarian nationalities (History of Romanians, vol. II, tom II, From Independence to the Great Union (1878-1918), Encyclopaedic Publishing House, 2003, Great Union, pp. 478-479) which demand the abolition of the empire and the liberation of nations.
On September 20, 1918, V. Stoica, Th. Masaryk, J.J. Paderewski and Hinko Hinkovici were welcomed by US President W. Wilson to whom he presented the motion of the New York meeting, the president agreeing that the end of the dualistic monarchy was obvious.
The Romanian National Council, the political representative and the executive body of the Romanian Volunteer Corps concluded a collaboration treaty with the Czechoslovak National Council, on August 24 / September 6, 1918, for Russia in hopes of collaborating in the struggle with the Central Powers the collaboration between the Romanian National Council and the Czechoslovak National Council, 1918, August 24 / September 6, Celiabinsk, in 1918 at the Romanians, vol. VII, p. 29).
In Bucharest and Iasi, the Romanian people were oppressed, and the Romanian state had lost its independence in fact with the conclusion of the Buftea-Bucharest Peace (May 7, 1918) between the Central Powers and the Romanian Kingdom. The diplomatic representatives of the Entente of Iaşi made observations on the draconian conditions of peace, which violated from the outset the provision “without annexes and without compensation”, a phrase that was only part of a hypocritical speech of Germany.
For Romania reduced to Moldova, peace was terrible. The territories that were taken from the Romanian state: Dobrogea and Muntenia, were regions where about one-tenth of the Romanian state lived: 800,000 inhabitants and 26,000 km2.
Antanta diplomats underlined that no tactical reason can bind a country like this.
In the spring-summer of 1918 Romania was treated as a German colony, only the victory of the Entente leading to the restoration of the rights of the Romanians.
Responding to the accusations of the diplomatic representatives of the Entente, the Central Powers declared in May 1918 that the territories taken by Romania are not populated, which is totally untrue.
Only the rectifications done at the expense of the Romanian state at the border with Hungary included 170 villages, which had a population of approximately 130,000 inhabitants.
Among the draconian provisions of the treaty were: the monopoly of timber export and trade, the Romanian state having numerous forests, and the export of wood being an important source of income, as well as the monopoly of grain exports, Romania being celebrated in Europe for its cereals, the two monopolies turned the Romanian state into a colony exploited to the blood by the German state.
Representatives of the Antanta also protested against the simulation of elections that the Germans had made in Romania, choices that were not representative, because parties favoring Entente abstained from participation.
In fact, Germany had not respected its own statements, and the treaty imposed on Romania shows the robbery it has done in all occupied territories, the barbarous exploitation of the resources of the countries. “He makes Romania a real dungeon where the whole population is condemned to hard work in favor of the winner. (Testimonies, 1918 The Romanians, Completing the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. II, Bucharest, 1983) “.
But soon the world war changed its course, the first American troops entering the Western Front and helping the British, French and Portuguese troops in front of the German Army in March and July 1918. The Americans also played a decisive role in the “100-day Offensive” in August-November 1918 that led to the end of the war and the defeat of Germany.
The riots within the armed forces of the Central Powers were increasing, soldiers more than four years old on the front wanting to return home, while the rumors of agrarian and electoral reforms fumigated the imagination of those who had survived this terrible war, and the ideas Bolsheviks spread rapidly in the German, Austro-Hungarian and Bulgarian armies.
The actions of the Romanian National Committee of Transylvania and Bucovina in Paris continued. Take Ionescu’s presence in Paris at the end of July 1918, together with Nicolae Titulescu and other collaborators, and then their visit to London and the meeting with Prime Minister David Lloyd George, stepped up the position of Romanians in the West.
On August 24 / September 6, 1918, in Paris, the heads of the Romanian National Committee of Transylvania and Bucovina wrote a motion, “considering it urgent and necessary to charge some of us, in which we have full confidence, contact with the authorities of the Central Powers to support on our behalf the interests and ideals of the Romanian nation in order to unite all the Romanians in a single free national state “(” Motif “of August 24 / September 6, 1918, Paris of the Romanian National Committee Transylvania and Bucovina in 1918 to the Romanians, vol. VII, pp. 32-34).
Father Vasile Lucaciu and Dr. I Cantacuzino were elected to be the authorized representatives of the Romanians, having to contact the authorities of the Central Powers, but also to establish a National Council “chosen among the Romanians determined to remain in the allied countries until the general peace” (“The Motif” of August 24 / September 6, 1918, Paris of the Romanian National Committee of Transylvania and Bucovina in 1918 to the Romanians, vol. VII, pp. 32-34.) To fight for the rights of the Romanians. In Paris came Octavian Goga and Sever Bocu, just to support the actions of the Romanians.
The motion of the Romanian National Committee of Transylvania and Bucovina in Paris was signed by all members of the Committee, dozens of personalities of cultural life, Romanian economic policies known in France and the West, among them: Vasile Stroescu, the head of the Romanian national mission in Bessarabia; Partenie Cosma, member of the Romanian National Committee in Transylvania; Octavian Goga, Prince Vladimir Ghica, G.G. Mironescu, Traian Lalescu, G. Murnu, Prince Basarab Brâncoveanu, Horia Hulubei, I. Lugoşioanu, Jean Pangal, etc.
In Paris, the National Committee of the Romanians in Transylvania and Bucovina felt its presence through various actions, among them, on September 20 / October 3, 1918, organized the “National Council of Romanian Unity”, with Take Ionescu, Vice-Presidents: Father Vasile Lucaciu (former deputy in the Parliament of Budapest), Octavian Goga (member of the Romanian National Council in Transylvania), Dr. Constantin Angelescu (former minister), Ioan Th. Florescu (former Vice-President of the Chamber). The members were: V. Atanasovici (former senator), Sever Bocu (director of Tribuna newspaper in Transylvania), G. Basarab-Brâncoveanu (former deputy), Paul Bratasanu (former deputy chairman of the Chamber and Senate), Dr. Ioan Cantacuzino (President of the Romanian Unionisti Federation, university professor), II Catania (former senator), Partenie Cosma (former president of the Romanian National Committee in Transylvania), C. Costescu-Comăneanu (former vice president of the Senate), C. Diamandy (plenipotentiary minister), V. Dimitriu (professor), D. Draghicescu (former senator), I. Găvănescu (former senator, dean of the Faculty of Letters from Iaşi), Dr. Toma Ionescu (former rector of the University of Bucharest and senator), S. Mândrescu (university professor, Transylvania publicist), DG Many (former deputy, secretary general of the Ministry of Finance), C Mille, G.G. Mironescu (former senator), G. Moroianu (publicist from Transylvania), G. Sipsom (professor), Stroescu (president of the Romanian National Committee in Bessarabia), N. Titulescu (former minister), I. Ursu Transylvanian columnist), Colonel G. Vasescu (former deputy), Traian Vuia (Testimonies, 1918 At Romanians, Completion of the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. VII, Bucharest, 1983).
The National Council of the Romanian Unity in Paris was recognized as the official representative of the Romanians by French Foreign Minister S. Pichon on 12 October 1918 and then by US Secretary of State Robert Lansing at the beginning of November 1918, then by Lord Arthur Balfour, British Foreign Minister and Sidney Sonnino, Italian Foreign Minister.
In September 1918, the fate of the war is changing forever. Bulgaria capitulates after massive internal revolts and mass desertions, as well as the break-up of the Thessaloniki front by the allied army headed by General Franchet d ‘Esperey. King Ferdinand of Bulgaria was fleeing from the country and was fleeing to Vienna, and the Allies crushed the German army.
The oppressed nations have united their initiatives for gaining independence and completing their national territory. Thus, on 10 October 1918 in Paris, the Polish Committee, the National Committee for Romanian Unity, the Czechoslovak National Council rejected the idea of federalization of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and denounced the diplomatic hypocrisy of the dualist empire that had launched the demand for peace addressed to US President Woodrow Wilson. National Committees were challenging “the governments of Vienna and Budapest with the moral and political legitimacy to speak on their behalf” showing that they are tied representatives recognized by the allies.
In October 1918, the actions of the Bukovinian and Transylvanian Romanians multiplied. The Executive Committee of the Romanian National Party drafted a statement inspired by Woodrow Wilson’s 14 points on the right of self-determination of Romanians in Hungary. The statement was written in the house of Aurel Lazar of Oradea by Vasile Goldiş and adopted on October 12, 1918 at the Conference of the Executive Committee of PNR. Thus the Romanian nation of Hungary and Ardeal decided that it was up to itself to decide its fate. The declaration was presented on 18 October 1918 in the Budapest Parliament by Alexandru Vaida-Voevod.
Alexandru Vaida-Voevod (1872-1950) member of the Central Romanian National Council, negotiates in Iasi the modalities of union, member of the Conducting Council responsible with Foreign Affairs and the Press, member of the delegation presenting to the King and Queen the Act of the Union.
“And when we are equal in equality, we will meet as equal nations, we will be able to extend our hand also for the future, but between oppressors and oppressed since the world can not be sincere reports. We must strive, so that we are all equal and free and equal rights and ranks. It does not take long talks for this purpose, but it is enough to give every nation in Hungary the opportunity to establish its national organization … And to know that not my insignificant person, but the whole Romanian nation spoke through me , and that, in these historical moments, every Romanian feels the same with me and the heart of every Romanian is permeated by the same feelings, desires, hopes, to whom I have given expression! “(Alexandru Vaida-Voevod’s Statement in the Parliament of in Budapest, 5/18 October 1918, Testimonies, 1918 In Romanian, Completing the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. VII, Bucharest, 1983, pp. 39-44).
PNR collaborated with the Transylvanian Social Democrats in the Hungarian capital joining forces in October 1918. The social-democratic delegation formed by Ion Flueraş, Iosif Jumanca, Enea Grapini and Ion Mihuţ met with PNR deputies in the Parliament of Budapest and decided to create a new Romanian entity The Central Romanian National Council (CNRC), consisting of 6 representatives of the PNR: Vasile Goldiş, Ştefan Cicio-Pop, Teodor Mihali, Alexandru Vaida-Voevod, Aurel Vlad, Aurel Lazăr and 6 persons from the Romanian Section of the Party Hungarian Social Democrats: Ion Flueraş, Iosif Jumanca, Enea Grapini, Basiliu Surdu, Tiron Albani, Iosif Renoiu. The council was led by Ştefan Cicio-Pop.
Ștefan Cicio-Pop (1865-1934) opens with his speech the Great National Assembly from Alba Iulia, member of the Grand National Council and the Minister responsible for War and Public Safety in the Conducting Council.
The Central Romanian National Council established its headquarters in Arad, at Stefan Cicio-Pop’s home, in early November 1918, and acted as a government of Transylvania.
The rapid changes that took place in the autumn of 1918 led to the emergence of numerous initiatives both among the Transylvanian and Bucovinian Romanians in the West, as well as between those arrived in the Romanian Kingdom or Russia. Thus, at the beginning of October 1918, the National Committee of Romanians emigrated from Austro-Hungary from Iasi, launches a four-point Declaration calling for the liberation from the yoke of the dualistic monarchy, refuses the attempts to federalize the monarchy and demands that the inhabited territories Romanians – Transylvania and Bukovina to join the Romanian kingdom. The statement was signed by A. Lapedatu, the chairman of the committee, and by Octav C. Tăslăuanu, the secretary of “Tinerimea Română” in Budapest.
On October 3/16, 1918, Emperor Carol I of Austria launched the manifesto to my faithful people (Carol I of Habsburg (1887-1922)), in Vienna, proposing to the peoples of his empire to form a federation, a manifest that does not recognize the rights of the Romanian people, and which remained without any echo among the nations wishing to gain independence. Transylvanian Romanians responded to this initiative by rejecting “all attempts to federalize the House of Habsburg.”
Postcard from Arad representing the Central Hotel from the beginning of the 20th century
The actions of the Transylvanian leaders have multiplied. Ştefan Cicio-Pop signed on 18/31 October 1918 on behalf of the Romanian National Council an appeal to the Romanians from Austria-Hungary
“The Romanian National Council is addressing you and asks you the following:
1. Give all good and honest people, regardless of nation and law. And you uphold order, protect the life and wealth of people.
Receive with confidence the men sent by the Romanian National Council among you in order to light and help you.
3. Set up your local guard immediately, in which every man of honor can be received, no matter what the nation or law.
4. Be aware that robberies and murders compromise the holy cause of new democracy, which is called to engage the whole world in a single society where the purest ideas of freedom, brotherhood, and equality will reign.
5. Each Romanian officer and soldier has the duty to present without delay to the office of the Romanian National Council (Arad, 7, Fabian Gabor str.).
Every Romanian has a duty to contribute to the order. The robbers are the biggest enemies of the Romanian people. Give us our help so that we can present to the world the young and beautiful Romanian nation in its complete purity, unspoilt, in all its splendor ”
For the Romanian National Council,
Dr. Stefan C. Pop “.
On the same day, Romanian students from Oradea Mare adhere to the ideas of the Romanian National Council, declare their solidarity with the Romanian students in Budapest, ask the Executive Committee to contact the Romanian National Council in Paris, and declare the “unity with our brothers in Bucovina” (Testimonies, 1918 In Romanian, Completion of the National-State Unity of the Romanian People, vol. VII, Bucharest, 1983, 1918, October 18/31 Oradea Mare, Statement of Romanian Students, p. 60).
Iuliu Maniu (1873-1953) president of the Grand National Council and then of the Conducting Council and Minister of the Internal Affairs, leads Transylvania until the total union with Romania.
Iuliu Maniu, head of the Romanian National Party and supporter of the national struggle, was incorporated in 1915 and then sent to the Italian front where he behaved exemplary. His ties to the leaders of the Romanian movement in Transylvania had continued during the war. In October 1918, Lieutenant Iuliu Maniu was in Vienna with the 64th Orastie Regiment and had the initiative to organize Romanian soldiers in the capital of the empire.
On October 18/31, 1918, a meeting of Romanian officers and soldiers from Vienna was held, which chaired the president Traian Popa and secretary of the military priest Gheorghe Oprean, and Iuliu Maniu was elected as the representative of the Romanian National Committee Transylvania and Hungary, together with three others: P. Popovici, Traian Popa and dr. Munteanu.
The Assembly decided that: “All Romanian officers and soldiers should stand firm in the service of the holy cause of the Romanian nation”, but also the election of a Senate consisting of 11 members. Romanian officers and soldiers pledged to fulfill the Senate’s orders. Also, the Senate would contact the Romanian officers and soldiers in the entire Austro-Hungarian monarchy to organize and then help repatriate. An Appeal was also launched to Romanian officers and soldiers urging them to contact the Senate for unitary organization, the anarchist and the Bolshevik danger being increasingly big. “Romanian soldiers should not be subjected to foreign purposes by the Romanian nation and not join in irregular circles, driven by particular interests and enemies of the Romanian nation” (Testimonies, 1918 At Romanians, Completing the national-state unity of the Romanian people, Vol. VII, Bucharest, 1983, pp. 62-63).
Iuliu Maniu coordinated the entire action of organizing the actions of the Romanian militants in Vienna and the territory of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire, showing great labor power, diplomatic abilities and political clarity.
Maniu motivated the Romanian officers who had authority and had to advise the soldiers not only to listen to the orders of their Romanian superiors and to swear an oath on the Romanian flag.
A delegation was sent to the War Ministry in Vienna with the request for recognition of the Romanian Military Committee. It was also Iuliu Maniu who sent a delegation to Prague with two Romanian regiments, 2 and 51, in order to organize them similarly to Vienna.
Two other representatives were sent to the German commission to negotiate the transport of the Romanian troops to Transylvania.
In Vienna, the leaders of the Military Senate also organized an intelligence office for Romanian officers and soldiers who had not yet adhered to the committee just to inform them of the Romanian actions.
The Romanian officers co-ordinated by Iuliu Maniu behaved exemplarily in mid-November as the only forces organized and responsible in the former capital of the dualist empire, unobserved by the Bolshevik ideas, which did not rob and did not rely on reprehensible acts and which could defend the population of the city and restore the order if they are required to intervene.
Meanwhile, in Arad, the Romanian political parties in Transylvania and Hungary have taught the importance of solidarity, the renunciation of group pride and the necessity of unification of all Romanian forces. The proclamation from Arad on 18/31 October to the Romanian Nation by which the Romanian National Council was presented “which today represents the whole Romanian nation in Hungary and Transylvania is recognized not only by the great powers of the world but also by the Hungarian government revolutionary “had a great impact on the Romanians in the provinces of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire but also on those in the Romanian Kingdom with wide echoes at the Romanian organizations in Vienna, Budapest, Paris, Rome.
On October 21 / November 3, 1918, Hungary proclaimed its independence. The Austro-Hungarian Empire finally disappeared after half a century of training.
The emergence of the CNR was also asserted in Budapest by a communique called “Revolution defeated”: “The Romanian National Council has been established … Europe is in flames. The subjugated peoples have shaken the yoke of class and race slavery. … The Hungarian people set up their independent national state. Banat has been declared an independent republic. The Romanians in Hungary and Transylvania have constituted the Romanian National Council as the only forum that represents the will of the Romanian people and is based on the free decision provided by the current of the times and by the will of the free peoples. “(Testimonies, 1918 In Romanian, Completing the National-State Unity of the Romanian people, vol. VII, Bucharest, 1983, pp. 62-63.).
The actions of the Romanian Committees in Vienna, Budapest, Cluj, Sibiu, Arad became more and more numerous, the Romanians realized that now is the moment of the action and the unification of all the Romanian forces in Transylvania, Banat, Partium and Bucovina.
On November 2, 1918, in Cluj, the Senate of the Romanian National Council published a manifesto that included guidelines for the civilian and military organization of the Romanians in Transylvania.
The body that coordinated civilian and military organizations, the Military Council, was led by Dr. Amos Frâncu and Dr. Emil Haţieganu. Two county military commissioners were elected in each county, and the Romanian commanders had effective command.
The Romanians first proposed the defense of public order in two types of associations: the National Guard and the Civil Guard, both under the national flag.
National soldiers and officers were co-opted in the National Guard, the headquarters of the General Military Command being in Cluj, and the centers located in the 13 counties: 1. Bistrita-Nasaud: Bistrita and Nasaud; 2. Solnoc-Dabasca: Lapus, Beclean, Dej and Gherla; 3. Salaj: Zalau, Şimleu and Tasnad; 4. Târnava Mică: Sînmartin, Dumbrăveni, Fortress of Balta; 5. Cluj: Mociu, Gilău, Săcuieu; 6. Mureş-Turda: Targu Mures and Reghin; 7. Turda-Arieş: Turda, Luduş, Câmpeni; 8. Lower Alba: Alba Iulia, Teius, Abrud, Zlatna, Blaj, Vintu de Jos; 9. Tarnava Mare: Sighisoara, Rupea, Copsa Mica and Cincu Mare; 10. Braşov and Săcuime: Braşov and Bran; 11. Fagaras: Fagaras, Arpaş, Zarnesti, Porumbacu de Jos; 12. Sibiu: Sibiu, Saliste, Orlat, Miercurea, Sebeşu and Nocrich; 13. Hunedoara: Hunedoara, Orastie, Deva, Hateg, Petrosani, Lupeni, Ilia, Pui and Bradu Zarandului
The civilian guard was made up of older Romanian leaders in each village or town that had moral authority and were able to maintain order locally.
Iuliu Maniu and Captain Traian Popa, in Vienna after organizing a true Romanian Army, took over the property of the Romanian Regiment 64 Orastie and delegated a representative to discuss with the other nationalities present in the regiment to see if they want to stay in the composition of the Romanian regiment or to leave.
The 64th Orăştie Regiment swore faithfulness to the Romanian National Council on October 28th / November 10th, 1918, and the “German commander” of the regiment of that time declared “recognizing the Romanian National Council as the only bearer of the civil and military power of all Romanians and handed over the command, all the wealth and the deposit of the regiment of the Romanian National Council “(Testimonies, 1918 At Romanians, Completion of the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. VII, Bucharest, 1983, doc. Romanian National, 1918, October 28 / November 10, Vienna).
A delegation composed of Iuliu Maniu and the leaders of Bucovina C. Isopescu-Grecul and Simionovici was received in audience by the Austrian War Minister and requested the recognition of the Romanian Military Senate in Vienna and the availability of the Franz Ferdinand Barracks and a section in the ministry for the good functioning of the Romanian military activity. The Minister said he recognized the Romanian National Council and implicitly also the military senate that was a section of the CNR. The military command of the Romanian 64th Regiment in Vienna was entrusted to Captain Octavian Loichita (Testimonies, 1918 to Romanians, Completion of the National-State Unity of the Romanian People, volume VII, Bucharest, 1983, doc. 50, Protocol of the Romanian Senate in Vienna, November 2, 1918, pp. 75-76).
The actions of Iuliu Maniu and the Romanian officers in Vienna, the organization of the Romanian soldiers, the order kept in the regiment, the guidance of the soldiers from the territories of the former dualist empire towards Transylvania, their help, offered credibility and authority to both the Romanian leader and his army in a the moment when anarchy, desertions, robberies were the order of the day in Vienna, a former imperial city.
In most cities, as well as in the Transylvanian and Banat villages, the Romanians organized local Romanian National Councils or councils (senates). The teachers, the priests, the military left to the hearth understood the importance of organizing the free Romanian nation, appealed for order, and peacefully joined the representatives of the Hungarian councils. All these local organizations were subordinated to the Central Romanian National Council, and the Military Council Military, part of the CNRC.
For the first time free elections were held where the participants in the public meetings – townspeople, peasants, civilians and former soldiers – were able to elect local leaders from local national councils.
The leaders of Transylvanian Romanians, determined and well-organized militants in their struggle for Romanian rights and for unity were, in Sibiu: Andrei Bârseanu, Silviu Dragomir, N. Balan; in Cluj: Amos Frâncu, Emil Haţieganu, Emil Isac; in Lugoj: Valeriu Branişte; in Oradea: Aurel Lazar; in Nasaud: Nicolae Dragan; in Timisoara: Aurel Cosma and O. Cioban; at Blaj: Ioan Coltor; in Arad: Justin Marsieu; in Saliste: Ioan Lupas and many others whose names have remained in the history of the Great Union.
The national stream was sustained in difficult moments through the little Romanian-language newspapers that appeared in Transylvania and Banat, financially supported by the Romanian leaders and perpetuated with great sacrifices. Among them we mention the “Romanian” by Vasile Goldiş, “The Flag” from Lugoj, “The Voice of Transylvania”, “Adevărul”, “Gazeta Poporului”, “The Romanian Telegraph”, “Unirea”.
In Iasi, on October 27 / November 9, 1918 the Romanian government launched an end to the German occupation army on the Romanian territory to leave the country. With the help of the Allies, the victory and the expulsion of the occupation armies were getting closer.
From Arad, on November 9, 1918, the Romanian National Council sent a final diplomatic note to the Hungarian Government with the requirement, under the right of self-determination and Wilsonian principles, to teach the territories inhabited by Romanians in the name of the right of peoples to self-determination and in the interest of all of the nations of Transylvania. The target communities were: “Torontal, Timiş, Caraş-Severin, Arad, Bihor, Satu Mare, Maramures, Bistrita-Nasaud, Solnoc-Dabasca, Salaj, Cluj, Mures-Turda, Turda-Arieş, Alba de Jos, Tarnova Mica, Tarnova Maramures, Hunedoara, Sibiu, Brasov, Fagaras, Three Chairs, Odorhei and Ciuc and the Romanian territories of the counties of Békés, Csonád and Ugocsa “(The diplomatic endorsement of the Central Romanian National Council sent to the Hungarian government regarding the surrender of the territories inhabited by the Romanians on October 27 / November 9, 1918, in the Testimonies, 1918 at Romani, Completion of the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. II, pag. Bucureşti, 1983).
The Romanian National Council ensures the Hungarian government and the nations of these territories will be respected, that the Romanians can take over the institutions, the official functions in state, political and administrative bodies, justice, education, church, financial, military and transport. The FNCRs guaranteed public order and the security of people and property.
The transfer of the government was to be established by a Romanian-Hungarian joint commission, it was gradually made and the new government had to be installed in Sibiu.
On November 5/18, 1918, the Manifesto of the Great National Council in Hungary and Transylvania addressed to the peoples of the world showing that the Romanian nation “declared its will to form itself in a free and independent state, protesting at the same time against the attempts of the Hungarian Government to to subjugate it to foreign domination “(Testimonies 1918 La Români: Completing the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. II, Bucharest, 1983).
Following the final note sent by the Romanian National Council to the Hungarian National Council, bilateral diplomatic negotiations took place in Arad between 13 and 14 November 1918. Minister of Nationalities Jászi Oszkár together with a Hungarian delegation arrived in Arad to discuss with Ştefan Cicio- Pop, V. Goldiş, Aurel Lazăr, Iosif Jumanca, I. Flueraş, Enea Grapini, Gh. Crişan and Aurel Vlad.
The treaties failed quickly because the Romanians wanted to decide their own fate and refused any subordination to the authorities in Budapest, while the Hungarian delegation insisted on keeping Transylvania in Hungary and cantonal Swiss-type autonomy until the General Conference Peace.
Vasile Goldiş read the official communiqué of the Central Romanian National Council:
“The Romanian National Council has submitted a thorough assessment and appreciation of that response of the government of the Hungarian national council transmitted through Dta [Minister Jászi Oszkár n.n.] which the Government gave to the Romanian National Council’s note addressed to him. I am sorry to inform you that the Romanian National Council considers in this answer the resolute rejection of its note. The Romanian nation claims with all its right full state independence and does not admit that this right is obscured by provisory resolutions, which, on the principally, doubt this right, on the other hand, do not offer any guarantee, which until the solving it could ensure the public order, the security of wealth and life on the territories inhabited by the Romanians. The Romanian nation recognizes the competence of the Peace Congress to establish the definitive boundaries of the territories claimed by this nation for its own state, as well as its obligation to respect the wilsonian principles with respect to the other peoples inhabited on this territory and is ready to ensure for every people the conditions but in the solution proposed by Ms on the one hand it sees the negation of its state independence, on the other hand it believes that such a solution makes it impossible for this nation to support the public order until the final peace is achieved “(Testimonies 1918 La Români, Completion of the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. II, pag. Bucharest, 1983, 297, Official communication, pp. 328-329).
C.N.R.C. affirmed the right of the Transylvanian Romanians to decide their own way of government and especially the state they will be part of. Social Democrat leader Ioan Flueraş, who had discussed with the Hungarian socialists, was staunch saying that the Romanians suffered too much from the masters of the empire to stop being united with Romania.
The representatives of the Maramures who were assembled in Sighet, on November 11, 1918, constituted a National Council of the Romanian People, Volume II, Bucharest, 1983, pp. 242, 268-269) Provisional Romanian Maramureş County that sent an appeal to the entire region to send 3 delegates to the assembly to form a Romanian National Council, a gathering held on 22 November 1918. The final national council of Maramureş County also called for the organization of its rural sections, as well as sections of the Romanian national guards.
CNR of Arad appointed on November 12, 1918, a commander of all Romanian national guards in Hungary and Ardeal, in the person of Major Alexandru Vlad, his deputy lieutenant Romul Râmbaş, and secretary Lieutenant dr. Cornel Albu, who together with the presidential, economic, sanitary, liaison, and souls, military priest Vasile Debu, had to solve all the problems that arose in the organization of defense and public order.
Major Alexandru Vlad made an appeal on the same day to the Romanian priesthood (Testimonies 1918 La Români, Completion of the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. II, Bucharest, 1983, Doc 250, 1918, October 30 / November 12, Arad , Appeal to the Romanian Priesthood) on behalf of the Romanian National Council “as from the pulpit to proclaim to the Romanian people, that besides the help of God and the perseverance and strength of our nation, we only thank President Wilson for the Romanian people now in the line of the free nations … In order for our national gardens to be able to make order in communes, being you priestly brothers, the best people’s connoisseurs, get in touch with this, give them your advice, give them their directions “(Testimonies 1918 to Romanian, Completion of the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. II, Bucharest, 1983, doc. 250, 1918, October 30 / November 12, Arad, Appeal to the Romanian priesthood).
In Budapest, the Hungarian authorities made available to the delegates of the Romanian National Council a telephone room in several stations in order to get in touch permanently with the CNC leaders in Arad and where a car was possible to organize the repatriation of the Romanian soldiers. At the beginning of November 1918, Romanian sailors from Pola organized a subsidiary of the Romanian National Council and sent a telegram to the Romanian Military Center in Vienna to let them know of their existence. They approached the Romanian flag on the warships they were on and sailing in the Adriatic Sea, waiting for action instructions from Maniu in Vienna.
The Romanian National Council in Transylvania decided on 7/20 November 1918 to convene a National Assembly either in Blaj, a symbol of the freedom of the Romanians, in Sibiu, an important cultural center or in Alba Iulia, a symbol of the Union during the time of Michael the Brave . After the discussions, Alba Iulia was elected, where the Romanians were summoned to a Great National Assembly to decide the fate of Transylvania and the other lands inhabited by former Romanians under Austro-Hungarian domination.
History calls us into action. The irresistible course of human civilization has brought our Romanian nation out of the darkness of slavery into the light of self-knowledge. We wake up from sleep of death and want to live with the other nations of the world, free and independent. In the name of the eternal justice and the principle of the free provision of nations, the principle now enshrined in the evolution of history, the Romanian nation of Hungary and Transylvania has to say its decisive word on its fate, and this word will be respected by the whole world. He is even expected that at the mouth of the Danube and on the road where the pulse of the economic life between the West and the East communicates, the order and the gentile nations can be accomplished to obtain the necessary peace for the work blessed for human perfection. For this purpose, we convene: THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY of the Romanian nation from Hungary and Transylvania to ALBA IULIA, the historic city of our nation, on the 18th of November v. n. A.C. AT THE ROUTES 10 A.M.
The meeting will include: 1) Romanian bishops from Hungary and Transylvania; 2) all the protopopies in operation of the two Romanian confessions; 3) one excerpt from each Consistory and the Capital; 4) two exits of cultural societies (Association, Theater Fund, Aradan Association, etc.) 5) two excerpts from each female region; 6) from each school, medium (gymnasium, rural school), then from each theological, pedagogical and civil school institute, one representative of the professional college; 7) two delegates from each teaching meeting; 8) The National Guard shall be represented by one officer and one soldier from each county section; 9) two delegates from each meeting of craftsmen; 10) delegates of the Social Democrat-Romanian Party as representatives of the organized working class; 11) university university through two exits and finally, 12) each constituency in which Romanians live, will send 5 representatives (delegates).
The Great Council of the Romanian Nation in Hungary and Transylvania
President Ştefan C. Pop dr. Gh. Crişan ”
The preparation of the Great Assembly had begun long before the call for announcement. A delegation headed to Iasi to discuss with the Romanian government the situation of Transylvania, Banat, Crişana and Maramureş and the strategies through which the union can be achieved.
Ion I.C. Bratianu insisted on all meetings with Transylvanian leaders Al. Vaida-Voevod, T. Mihali, N. Balan, Vasile Goldiş, on the idea of organizing a representative assembly for the Romanian people to assert the national will of those present.
The Romanian Prime Minister entrusted Laurentiu Oanea with a letter to the leaders of the Central Romanian National Council, which contained precisely its arguments regarding the necessity of a national assembly to legitimize any decision taken by the Romanians and to show the other nations that the ideal of union had perpetuated for centuries.
Several Transylvanian and Bucovina delegations came to Iasi to consult with the Romanian officials about the actual steps of unification, unconditional unity being the chosen road.
The foreign diplomats present at Iaşi have witnessed these events, the Count of Saint Aulaire, the Minister of France, the Minister of Great Britain and the United States. informing the governments, in those days of November 1918, of the Romanians’ will to unite.
The Romanian National Council delegated Valeriu Branishte to talk with General Franchet d ‘Esperey, commander of the Allied Armed Forces in Thessaloniki, who had liberated much of the Balkans and had come to Banat, the ways in which the Transylvanian or Banat Romanian soldiers still in the former garrisons Austrian, could return to their homes, respecting the order, without causing incidents and requisitions or other abuses.
On 23 November 1918, the Romanian National Council stated that, according to the armistice between the Romanian and Hungarian governments and the Entente, the line of demarcation was to be occupied by the Entente troops and by the Serbian army on behalf of the Allies. CNR calls on Romanians in Serbian troops to receive and subordinate them, and if the Serbian army calls on Romanian military guards to surrender their weapons, they will carry out the request “without any hesitation or suspicion. This circumstance will not cause any damage to our national dignity. “(Testimonies 1918 La Romani, Completion of the national-state unity of the Romanian people, vol. II, Bucharest, 1983, 436, Appeal of 10/23 November 1918, p. 474 ).
In July-November 1918, there was a sustained effort of civil, military, political, but primarily national, formation of Romanian National Councils in all the Transylvanian and Banat settlements, as well as among Romanians in the West.
The activity of CNR in Budapest was led by Dr. Ioan Erdélyi, Chairman, Vice-Presidents I. Balta and Ioan Mihuţ, the members of the Committee being: Anton Mocionyi, Dr. Pocol, Iosif Vlad, Tiron Albani, George Boieriu, Vasile Dobrescu, Leaders who negotiated with the authorities of the Hungarian state in dissolution. At Gyula, the Romanian National Council was formed by being led by the lawyer Dr. Mihai Marcuţ who, together with the vice-presidents of the priests Alexandru Popoviciu and dr. Ştefan Muntean and the teacher Emanuil Ardelean, swore their faith on the national flag and joined the CNC in Arad.
The local Romanian National Councils have had many problems to solve, including the regulation of the food requisition regime mainly wheat, weapons, ammunition and others, all of which must be handed over to the CNR.
On 9/22 November 1919 the Emperor of Germany, Wilhelm II, abdicated. The old empires collapsed and it was the time of the independent and unified states.
On 13/26 November 1918, in Chisinau, the Country Council voted the text of the Law on Agrarian Reform in Bessarabia, and on the second day, on November 27, 1918, the Councils of the Country canceled the conditions of the resolution adopted on 27 March 1918 and voted for the unconditional unification of Bessarabia with Romania.
The Romanian National Councils formed and legitimated by the popular vote went to the appointment of the delegates for the Great Assembly in Alba Iulia. Each community met in a popular gathering in which democrats were appointed democratically to all social categories: teachers, teachers, priests, peasants, officials, lawyers, students, and military men to go to Alba Iulia and affirm their desire for union. From hundreds of localities of Transylvania, Banat, Crişana and Maramureş, representatives of political, church, women, cultural and professional organizations were delegated to represent their localities, in fact the Romanian people, in Alba Iulia.
Through the credentials, local representatives were delegated from each locality. “As rightful delegates are hereby authorized to take part in a decisive vote at the Romanian National Assembly which will be convened by the Romanian National Central Council on behalf of all the Romanians in this electoral circle and to other Romanian Grand National Assemblies which may eventually be convened during this year or the following year and contribute with their vote to the decision on the future fate of the Romanian people in Transylvania, Hungary and Banatul Timişan. “(Testimonies 1918 La The Completion of the National-State Unity of the Romanian People, vol. VIII, Bucharest, vol. VIII, doc. 86, p. 70, Credential, 12/25 November 1918 Tinca (electoral circle).
The assemblies preceding the Great Assembly adopted motions signed by thousands of Romanians. The peasants were very active and the broad national involvement as well as the popular enthusiasm turned this period into one of the most effervescent and beneficial of the Romanian nation in the provinces dominated for so long by the great powers.
Today, after 100 years, we analyze the histories of the Union of Transylvania, Banat, Crişana and Maramureş, the organizational effort made by each community: village, commune, town for keeping calm and order, avoiding revenge and robberies, but especially designation for the first time in free leaders of some leaders to organize and represent them in the local Romanian National Councils, in the military guards (legions) and then the delegation of persons with full voting rights to Alba Iulia.
The enthusiasm of freedom, the gathering of intelligentsia and personalities in each community led to this central and central institutional structure of all Romanians. The elections took place without major incidents, the ones being given only by the opposition of the people from the former Austro-Hungarian administration, without the excuses of pride or political partisanship. Each locality has nominated representative people who understood the importance of honoring, through their own behavior, national ideals oppressed for centuries.
The thousands of documents preserved from the period of the union organization of the Romanians from Transylvania, Hungary, Banat, Crişana and Maramureş are evidence of the desire for freedom and then union.
100,000 people arrived in Alba Iulia from all parts of Transylvania, Hungary, Banat, Crişana and Maramureş. The delegation of the Romanians in Torontal could not reach because the Serbian Command that occupied the Banat did not allow them to travel, but the Banat was represented in Alba Iulia by 44 delegates, Valeriu Branişte being the one who negotiated with the Serbian Command permission to leave the Banat delegates to Alba Iulia. The problem of Banat remained open after the Great Union and will be regulated for the coming years, Banat being claimed by both Serbs and Romanians.
1228 people have been delegated and mandated – intellectuals, officers, peasants, merchants, women and soldiers. The Romanian bishops in these provinces all came, regardless of worship.
The Romanian kingdom was represented by General Leonte State, along with several French aviation officers.
Day 1 December 1918 in Alba Iulia began with solemn Te Deums in the two Romanian churches, then in the Casino Hall, now called the Union Hall, the 1228 official delegates met with the representatives of Bessarabia, Bucovina: Pan Halippa, Vladimir Cazacliu (Vladimir Cazacliu (1890-1950) member of the Country Council, voter of the Union of Bessarabia) and Alexe Procopovici.
The opening word was uttered by Ştefan Cicio-Pop, the president of the Central Romanian National Council, who showed the importance of this historic moment.
The resolution of the Alba Iulia Assembly was presented by Vasile Goldiş and contained 9 points
Resolution of the National Assembly of Alba Iulia on 18 November / 1 December 1918
The National Assembly of all Romanians from Transylvania, Banat and the Hungarian Land, gathered through their representatives entitled to Alba-Iulia on November 18 / December 1, 1918, decreed the unification of those Romanians and all the territories inhabited by them with Romania. The National Assembly proclaims in particular the inalienable right of the Romanian nation to the entire Banat between the rivers Mureş, Tisa and Danube.
II. The National Assembly reserves the above mentioned territories with provisional autonomy until the Constitution is elected on the basis of universal suffrage.
III. In connection with this, as fundamental principles for the composition of the new Romanian State, the National Assembly proclaims the following:
1. Full national freedom for all congregational peoples. Every nation will be trained, administered and judged in its own language by individuals in its own bosom, and each people will receive the right to represent them in the legislative bodies and government of the country in proportion to the number of individuals that make up it.
2. Equal righteousness and full autonomous confessional freedom for all denominations in the State.
3. The perfect realization of a democratically clean regime in all realms of public life. Public, equal, secret, common, proportional vote for both genders, aged 21 years old in representation in communes, counties or parliament.
4. Perfect freedom of press, association and assembly, the free propaganda of all human thoughts.
5. Radical agrarian reform. All properties, especially large properties, will be conscripted. On the basis of this enlistment, by abolishing the fiduciary commissions, and by the right to diminish the landscapes as needed, it will be possible for the peasant to create a property (archer, pasture, forest) at least as long as he and his family can work his. The guiding principle of this agrarian policy is, on the one hand, the promotion of social leveling, on the other hand, the potentiation of production.
6. Industrial workers are given the same rights and benefits as are regulated in the most advanced industrial states in the West.
IV. The National Assembly expresses its desire that the peace congress should bring about the communion of the free nations in such a way that justice and freedom be secured for all large and small nations alike and that in the future war will be eliminated as a means of regulating international relations.
V. The Romanians gathered in this National Assembly greet their brothers in Bucovina, escape from the yoke of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy and united with the mother country Romania.
VI. The National Assembly hails with love and enthusiasm the liberation of the subjugated nations so far in the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, namely the Czechoslovak, Austro-German, Yugoslav, Polish and Ruthenian nations, and decides that this salutation should be brought to the knowledge of all those nations.
VII. The National Assembly with humility worships before the memory of those brave Romanians who, in this war, shed their blood for the realization of our ideal dying for the freedom and unity of the Romanian nation.
VIII. The National Assembly expresses its gratitude and admiration to all the Allied Powers, who, through the brilliant struggles worn by the cerbies against an enemy trained for many decades for war, have escaped civilization by the barbarity of the barbarity.
IX. For the further conduct of the Romanian nation’s affairs in Transylvania, Banat and Ungara, the National Assembly decides to establish a Great Romanian National Council, which will have all the rights to represent the Romanian nation anytime and everywhere to all the nations of the world and to take all the provisions will find them necessary in the interest of the nation.
Notary of the National Assembly
Ştefan C. Pop
Vice-President of the National Assembly
Minutes of the Great Assembly from Alba Iulia, 1 December 1918 – first page
Minutes of the Great Assembly from Alba Iulia, 1 December 1918 – last page
Iuliu Maniu spoke urging delegates to adopt the draft resolution, and Iosif Jumanca presented the Social Democrats’ adhesion to the union. After the speeches, the president Gh. Pop de Băseşti submitted for approval the resolution of the Union which was adopted with the unanimity of the votes.
The National Assembly chose the Grand National Council, a legislative body.
The 100,000 Romanians who came to Alba Iulia acclaimed the Union’s decision, and Bishop Miron Cristea, Bishop Iuliu Hossu, Aurel Vlad, Aurel Lazar, Silviu Dragomir and other leaders gave speeches addressed to the crowd on the field of Horea.
The second day was the meeting of the Grand National Council that chose Gheorghe Pop of Băseşti as president, the deputies being Miron Cristea and Iuliu Hossu, Teodor Mihali and Andrei Bărăseanu. An Interim Government was appointed as the Conducting Council headed by Iuliu Maniu, comprising 15 members: Iuliu Maniu (Interior), Vasile Goldiş (Cults and Public Instruction), Alexandru Vaida-Voevod (Foreign and Press), Ştefan Ciceo -Pop, Aurel Vlad (Finance), Aurel Lazar (Justice), Victor Bontescu (Agriculture and Commerce), Romul Boila (Communications), Ion Flueraş (Health and Social Welfare), Iosif Jumanca (Industry) Emil Haţieganu (Codification), Vasile Lucaciu (without portfolio abroad), Ioan Suciu (safety organization), Octavian Goga (without portfolio), Valeriu Branişte (without portfolio).
List of the Great National Council elected 1 December 1918 – page 1
List of the Great National Council elected 1 December 1918 – page 2
A delegation consisting of Vasile Goldiş, Al. Vaida-Voevod, Miron Cristea and Iuliu Hossu, accompanied by many others, went to Bucharest, re-established the Capital of the Romanian Kingdom to present King Ferdinand, Queen Maria and the Government of the Union Act.
By the Decree Law no. 3631 of December 11, 1918, the unification of “The lands included in the decision of the National Assembly of Alba Iulia on 18 November / 1 December 1918 are and remain united with the Kingdom of Romania”.
For nearly two years Transylvania was governed by the Grand National Council (Legislative Power) and by the Congressional Council (government) and was represented in the Government of Great Romania through Ministers without Portfolio: Al. Vaida-Voevod, Vasile Goldiş and Stefan Cicio-Pop.
The Romanian army entered South East Transylvania at the beginning of December 1918 and advanced in order to the line of demarcation fixed on the Mures River by the Belgrade Armistice of November 13, 1918, without any violation of order and discipline. The Transylvanian Conductor Council, the provisional government asked Romanian guards to work with the Romanian army to avoid armed clashes with Hungarian and Szekler troops, which were disarmed.
On 24 December 1918, the Romanian troops entered Cluj, being allowed by the Allied Command to cross the Mureş line and advance to the Apuseni Mountains line. General Traian Mosoiu, head of operations in Transylvania, met with representatives of the Conducting Council in Sibiu.
“Gazeta oficiala” published by the Conducting Council of Transylvania, Banat and the Romanian Parties in Hungary (ANR, SANIC, fund Conductor Council file 76-1918 f 4.)
In January 1919, the Central Committee of Saxon and the Saxon National Council of Medias adopted a resolution adhering to the decision of the Great Assembly in Alba Iulia. The Transylvanian Jews organized in Bucharest joined on 31 March 1919 “from the heart and with great satisfaction” at the program adopted in Alba Iulia.
The occupation of Banat by the Serbian army led to negotiations, but also the perpetuation of tension in 1919. Gradually, the Romanian authorities took over the administration of a part of the Banat after negotiations with the allies and Serbs who refused to withdraw from the entire Banat. On August 10, 1919, a Great National Assembly was held in Timişoara with the participation of 30-40,000 people, Romanians and representatives of the other nations, who voted a motion by which the whole Banat united with the Romanian state, the Banat Swabians joining them to the Union. Leaders of the Great Powers at the Peace Conference in Paris will establish the division of the historic Banat between Romania and the Serbo-Croat-Slovenian Kingdom.
The union of 1859 through Alexandru Ioan Cuza, followed by the Union of Bessarabia, Bucovina, Transylvania, Banat, Crişana and Maramureş with the Romanian Kingdom, represented the most important moments of the glory but also the most important historical justice experienced so far by the Romanian nation.
The Romanian linguistic, cultural, ethnic and territorial unit of Romania was formed during this centuries-long journey that generated national, cultural and human values and historically and legally justified the existence of a united Romanian state.
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