Otok Daksa (Daksa island)

--Informant Info--
Nationality: Croatian
Age: 68
Occupation: retired
Residence: Dubrovnik, Croatia
Date of Performance/Collection: 4/17/2017
Primary Language: Croatian
Other Language(s):

NK is my grandmother who was born and raised in Dubrovnik, Croatia. Being a local she knows a lot about the city and its folklore. She first told me this story in elementary school for a project on islands near Dubrovnik.

“Daksa is a small island near Dubrovnik. For years after World War 2 access to this island was forbidden. The island is haunted and even the owners of the island don’t live on it and have tried to sell it couple of times now. The island is haunted because there were 48 people accused of being Nazi sympathizers and were brutally executed in 1944. Locals say it’s haunted by their ghosts looking for justice.”

 

What’s the real story behind it?

 

“Yugoslav partisans celebrated their victory over the Nazis by rounding up anyone they thought corroborated with the enemy, including the village priest and mayor,

The ‘guilty’ were then rowed out to the island where they were gunned down in cold blood and left unburied. The locals were told that the same fate awaited them if they intervened, so the corpses remained uncovered for decades and it wasn’t until recent years that they were finally laid to rest. So the legend has it that spirits of the dead men haunt the island, demanding justice against those responsible.”

 

The ghost story obviously has some true facts. I’m guessing that because of the tragedy that occurred on the island, the locals had to cope with it some way and said the island was haunted.