Olga Havlova

(*11. 7. 1933, Prague, † 27. 1. 1996 Prague)
first wife of the President of the Republic

A public figure, Czechoslovak dissident and activist, and wife of President Václav Havel, Olga Havlová (née Šplíchalová) was born on the 11th of July, 1933 in Prague.

Olga Havlová was raised in a working-class neighborhood of Zizkov in Prague. After grammar school, she apprenticed in the Bata factory, where she was later employed. During the 1950’s, she worked at a number of different jobs, such as saleswoman or accountant. Between 1961 and 1969, she was employed as an usherette at the Na zabradli Theatre, where Václav Havel was also working.

She had already met Havel in 1956 and, after eight years, in 1964, she married him. She would accompany Havel through the most difficult experiences of their lives. The future President would later refer to her as his indispensable source of support.

Following the suppression of the Prague Spring by the Warsaw Pact countries in 1968, she was at Havel’s side in the struggle against the repression of communist “normalization”. The highlight of this activity was the January 1977 publication of Charter 77.

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Olga Havlová

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