The Monument from Banesti Bridge
At the exit from Halmagiu, near the bridge over Banesti Valley, the traveler’s attention is caught by a Cross made out of rock, raised in 1936. It was built on a place where five priests and a tribune Alexandru Chendi, were hanged during the revolution from 1848.
It is one of the ten “Cross Monuments” which were built at the initiative of the teachers from “Avram Iancu” High school in Brad for the commemoration of 150 years from Horea, Closca and Crisan’s rebellion.
On the two plaques attached to the Crucifix are engraved the following words:
“This Holly Cross was raised by the Bishop of Arad, D.D.Grigore on 4th September in 1934 for the eternal memory of those priests died in Horea and Avram Iancu’s rebellion and other seven: Ioan Jude Sr. and Ioan Jude Jr., both from Poienari, Eutimie Popovici from Halmagel, Pavel Feier from Steia, Sinesie Grozav from Aciuta, Pavel Farcas from Plescuta and on anonymous, who were hanged in this place”.
This also was the place where during the revolution from1848-1849 were hanged the tribune Alexandru Chendi from Câmpeni, the commander of the Romanian troops from Halmagiu, the Austrian officer Uleric Toni, and Nicolae Todea.
“During the same revolution here were shot: Simion Ungur, Adam Iancu, Olariu Nicolae, and suffered a martyr’s death: Gherasim Bordea and his wife Rafila, Buta Nicolae, Stefan Neamtu, Elisabeta and Maria Roxa, all of
them from Halmagiu, and Adam Butariu from Bodesti. Petru Pacurariu,
Nicolae Ciungan and Arsenie Neamtu were tortured to death”.
The Stone of Torture
On the left side of the street Valicuta, in front of the old church, lasts for more than two centuries a stone, with no inscription. This stone can be seen as a symbol of those who fought bravely against the unjust laws of those times.
For any kind of mistakes, people were found guilty and were laid down on the stone in front of the church where they were beaten with sticks. The tears of the tortured mixed up with the blood that sprang from their flesh wounds. None of those who were punished lost the faith that they were fighting for a grand cause. From then on, this stone, the size of a man, was called “The Stone of Torture”.
The tradition of punishment on “The Stone of Torture” stepped back in history. It also was a common practice during Horea’s revolution, as well as after this period. Thus, the monographist Cosma Pal wrote that Simion Moldovan and Sortoc Giurchi, important merchants from Halmagiu, received 25 lashes each on their bare bodies because, while walking from one village to another, they spread the idea that the serves from Brad were preparing a new rebellion.
Since then enduring time, this stone remained a testimony of the tortures which our ancestors had to suffer along history. They made a history written in tears and blood, handed down from one generation to another.
Nowadays, in order to be preserved, the stone lays in the front of the old
church from Halmagiu.