Lazar Dunđerski

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Lazar Dunđerski
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Born25 March 1833
Srbobran, Habsburg Monarchy
Srbobran, Kingdom of Serbia
  • Merchant
  • Landowner
  • Industrialist
  • Philanthropist

Lazar Dunđerski (Serbian Cyrillic: Лазар Дунђерски; Srbobran, Habsburg Monarchy, 25 March 1833 - Srbobran, Kingdom of Serbia, 13 July 1917) was a Serbian merchant, landowner, industrialist and philanthropist. He was a prominent benefactors of Privrednik.[1]


Dundjerski Family was considered the most respectable and wealthy in Bačka, and perhaps in the whole Vojvodina. Lazar was the third, youngest son of a rich economist and landowner Gideon "Geca" Dunđerski and Persida Dunđerski, née Letić. He had two brothers, Aleksandar and Novak, and a sister, married to the priest Todorović in Pivnice (Bačka Palanka). Novak's son Stevan had 1,000 acres of land confiscated after the World War II when Josip Broz Tito and his Partisan (military) were given power to rule the country. [2]

Lazar finished Serbian primary school in his place of birth, and then Gymnasium (school) in Vrbas. His schooling, interrupted by the Hungarian Revolution of 1848, he continued in Sremski Karlovci, and then pursued higher studies (philosophy) in Bratislava, where he graduated from the Lyceum there in 1853. In Vienna, he studied jurisprudence but after less than a year, he left law studies due to illness, at the age of 20, and devoted himself to trade.

He married Sofija Đorđević (1831–1920), the daughter of a parish priest in Srbobran, with whom he had two sons, Gedeona "Geda" Dunđerski (1875–1939) and George "Đoka" DunĐerski (1873-1950) and daughters Jelena "Lenka" Dunđerski (1870-1895), Emilia "Milka" and Olga.

In 1886, he built in the Srbobran a Serbian Orthodox Church, and family chapel with ossuary. The chapel was decorated by artists Steva Todorović and Marković from Belgrade. The woodcarving of the iconostasis and other carpentry was done by Kisner from Novi Sad. The bones of old Gideon Dunđerski, known as "Deda Goca", were first transferred to the chapel. Lazar's daughter Lenka Dunđerski was also buried there in 1895. [3]

The great Serbian benefactor died in 1917 at the age of 85 in Novi Sad. [4]

Economic work

He started working with the capital of 240 chains of arable land in Sentomaš. In a short time he bought spahiluk [Crna Bara (Crna Bara in Banat, then a large spahiluk with industrial enterprises in [Celarevo in Backa, spahiluk Sirig] ] in Novi Sad , spahiluk in Hajdučica , Čelarevo and Kirti, then Kulpin, Novi Bečej and the great number of spahiluks in Budapest. He built two breweries - in Čelarevo (1892), [Pilara Čelarevo and Zrenjanin (1878), two distilleries - in Čelarevo and [ Srbobran, two mills - in Novi Sad and Indjija and in 1902 he bought a carpet factory - "Serbian carpet factory" in Veliki Bečkerek. In 1873 he bought a large inn "Kod carice Jelisavete" in Novi Sad (for 109,000 Florin) [5]

He kept several thousand chains of land for rent (Jaša Tomić (Sečanj), Sirig, Bácsalmás), he raised pigs and sheep. He was the greatest economist and one of the largest traders in food and livestock in the former Crown Lands of St. Stephen. He had ships on the [Danube], Tisa ​​and [Begej, which transported food. He expanded his work and property to Bosnia and Kingdom of Serbia. He owned a large number of commercial and industrial enterprises, limestone, trade in leather and wool.


He represented the "gray eminence" Liberal Party (Serbia), a group of intellectuals gathered around the political program Svetozar Miletić, which emerged after the dissolution of the People's Party. He was the founder and helper of a large number of industrial and commercial companies. His name is associated with the establishment of several Serbian monetary institutes: the Central Credit Institute in Novi Sad, Srpska banka in Zagreb, the General Commercial Bank in Sombor, the First Sentomaška štedionica in Srbobran, etc. He was the president of the Serbian Bank in Zagreb and an honorary member of the Novi Sad Trade Youth. He was a member of Patronage of Business Benefactors from the very beginning. He was also a member of the Management Board of Matica srpska in Novi Sad and a subscriber to many books, including those of the Serbian Literary Cooperative in Belgrade. During the Balkan Wars, he made a great contribution to the Red Cross of Serbia Red Cross Society in the Kingdom of Serbia.


For the Cathedral Church in Novi Sad, the couple Lazar and Sofija Dunđerski bought a large bell weighing 2,666 kilograms. The bell was removed during the Great War to be poured into Austro-Hungarian cannons. [6] He erected a new theater building in Novi Sad in 1895, after the previous one was gutted in a fire. [7] Dunđersko pozorište (Dunđerski Theater) which sprouted in the yard of his hotel at Carice Jelisavete Ulica (Empress Elizaveta Street) in Novi Sad was donated to the Society of Serbian Dilettanti for the exclusive use of the Serbian National Theater and its membership. The grand opening of the building of the Novi Sad Theater was held on 4 February 1895.

After the death of his beloved daughter Lenka (1895), Lazar turned much more to humanitarian work. Thus in 1896 he made a contribution of 5,000 florin for the "St. Sava Fund". At the same time, he set aside 1000 florin for the Fund of the Serbian Novi Sad Gymnasium - "in memory of his early deceased daughter Lenka". He also founded a three-storey building, the home of the Serbian Girls' Educational Institution in Budapest dedicated to Prosvetni hram Sv. Majka Angelina (Venerable Mother Angelina of Serbia) - better known in Hungarian as "Angelineum". The building was located in Budapest.[8] Dunđerski compiled the "Formal Letter" for his endowment, which was published in 1905. <ref> "Pravda", Belgrade in 1905 <ref> He donated 50,000 crowns to the Queen Elizabeth Sanatorium in Budapest, for tuberculosis patients, and during the Balkan Wars Red Cross of Serbia|Serbian red Cross in Belgrade and the Montenegrin Red Cross 30,000 crown. As a great patriot and donor Serbian Business Association Privrednik (1897—1946) he donated 100,000 crowns. In 1902, he donated 1000 crowns to the Serbian Girls' Boarding School in Zagreb.


  2. 1000-abducted-acres Dundjerski family: Give us back 1000 abducted acres ("Večernje novosti", March 18, 2014)]
  3. "Branik", Novi Sad 1886
  4. "Srbobran", New York in 1917
  5. "Glas naroda", Novi Sad in 1873
  6. Vreme, Belgrade 1928
  7. "Srpski zion", Karlovci, 1895
  8. "Bosanska vila", Sarajevo, 1906

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