Born in Zilah, Romania
in 1907. His father, the elder Géza Kádár was protestant priest later
vice bishop. The younger Géza Kádár studied at the Hungarian secondary
school of Zilah but his final exam was unsuccessful, most probably because
he did not speak Romanian. Romanian teachers arrived in the secondary
school and they failed all the students. In 1927 students were forced
to travel to Hungary where they successfully took the final exam in
Géza Kádár started
his studies at the Budapest University of Technology in the same year.
He graduated in 1932 as mechanical engineer, but as Romanian citizen
he had to return to Romania to accomplish the one-year compulsory military
After his military service he came back to Hungary where he started
working at the Hungarian Royal Post in 1934 as scribe. Not being Hungarian
citizen he could only take a lower position. It was very difficult to
acquire the Hungarian citizenship, finally his father (by then vice-bishop
in Kluj at the church of Magyar street) came over to assist his son
with his own connections. Géza Kádár’s career started to skyrocket.
His first accomplishment
is in relation to radio networks and Endre Magyari, with whom he became
good friends. He first got to know the transmitter in Lakihegy then
oversaw the construction of the Fehervar Öreghegy. He traveled to Fehervar
often on his company car (Gero Ormos reminisced that he was his boss
at the Öreghegy…). In the publication “50 Years of Postal Engineers’
Services” he is mentioned as engineer who works at the Radio Operational
department of the Telegraph and Telephone Directorate.
Other sources say that he was heading the Radio Counseling and Radio
Interference Measuring Service. Attila Makkai remembered that Géza Kádár
hired him as intern around 1941-43 when he was 14.
Because of electric interference making radio pickup impossible, the
Post has hired special staff in the 1930s to search and prevent interferences.
By 1936 there were four engineers and 16 operators worked on 32360 reports
in a year. Among their equipment they had one oscilloscope and twelve
interference detectors. On the September 1936 exhibition the Post presented
the method and equipment of interference inspection and provided counseling
and free of charge tube measuring service.
From 1937 the Radio
counseling and Tube Measuring Service received a permanent place and
personnel in the building of the Pos headquarters in the 5th district,
Petőfi Sándor street. This is where Géza Kádár was employed as head
of engineers. In 1943 an article appeared under his name: “Evaluating
the Quality of Radio Transmitters” in the publication “Radio Compass,
Guide for 1943”. He must have been hired as permanent staff, since he
is mentioned as postal engineer of the Hungarian kingdom in the Radio
At the end of the war 28 radio engineers of the Hungarian Post 22 have
left the country together with the German forces to the West. Géza Kádár
was one of the six radio engineers who stayed in Hungary. He survived
the siege of Budapest in their home in Zuhatag street. He was probably
not forced to go West because he worked at the Radio Counseling service
and he was out of sight of the authorities. It was the engineers and
experts of radio stations that were forced to leave the country.
After the war he was still managing the Radio Intermittence Supervision
and Radio Counseling Services, so in 1947 for example he still had a
company car together with a chauffeur. He designed the first tube measuring
equipment for the radio tube inspection. In some parts of surveying
the radio intermittences, you need shielded environment. The first of
shielded measuring room was built on the initiation of Géza Kádár in
the cellar of the Post Experimental Station. From the building in Petofi
Sandor street (where the intermittence inspectors were working) the
people were commuting to the Experimental station even during the end
of the 50’s if they wanted to make a measurement like that.
In the Radio Annals
of 1948 his writing appeared with the title „Spread of Radio Waves and
Interference”. At that time his rank was chief postal engineer. He has
a similar article in the 1948 Radio Compass „Reception Interference
and How to Avoid Them”.
Around 1950 he is commissioned to build the cable network of radio in
Hungary. He does this with responsibility and precision. He must have
thought this was important. Today we think of cable radio as the controlling
mechanism of the Rakosi era, which was created so that people could
not listen to foreign radios only the Kossuth radio, transmitting the
messages of the party. The issue is not that simple however. Laszlo
Zelenka went on a study trip to the Netherlands in 1936 where he studied
cable radio. He wrote an article in Radio Technology about his experiences.
Cable radio was popular in Switzerland, Netherlands, England, Belgium
There were two good
reasons for their existence in these countries and in Hungary: good
voice quality and low price. In villages where there was no electricity,
there was hardly any radio. For cable radio you only needed electricity
in the nodes, not at the end points – the loudspeakers.
After the war, in a poor and looted country people were happy to have
cable radio, because for a monthly fee of HUF 6 they could get cheap
entertainment, knowledge and information in villages. Cable radio was
based on nodes where a receiver got the transmission of a central station
(Lakihegy), then they changed the voice into voice frequency lines with
high-performance amplifiers. There could be 20-30 4-Watt loudspeakers
connected to a 100 watt amplifier. Nodes could be placed in postal offices
or the mayor’s office and postal officers were responsible for their
management. In Budapest the nodes got the voice directly from the studio,
one of the nodes was in the post office in the so-called “Klotild Palace”.
In the early 1950s Géza Kádár’s engineer salary was quite low. He earned
HUF 700 a month as the only bread earner in the family. He had to take
a second job in the Orion factory, repairing faulty radio equipment
for HUF 100 a day. (He got married in 1942 and had two daughters).
He repaired stuff around the house but did not make a radio as an amateur.
When the first television experiments started he got a company tv for
try. This was an East-German „Rubens”, for which he made aerials himself
so that he could get the transmission of a further away stations. This
was not successful he could only get some transmission from the South,
Yugoslavia. Their apartment in the foot of Svab-hill was not ideally
placed. Later he was interested in quadforphone experiments and voice
transmitters. He built a large loudspeaker in the corner of their living
As part of his job he conducted postal operator- and sparks training
and wrote textbooks for them entitled „Introduction to Radio Technology”.
This textbook was published four times, last time in 1955 by the Technical
Printing. He also taught at the vocational school on Gyali street, his
name appears in the Anniversary Annals as contract lecturer. In 1951
his book „Loudspeakers” was printed by the Transport Printing Company
and at the time was used as textbook. According to the Preface of the
author he meant to provide practical information to experts, with minimal
mathematical explanation. This was true to his later materials as well,
his drawings and the practices for repairmen became regular handbooks.
In 1956 his textbook „Radio Technology I.” appeared for the third-year
students of Telecommunication Vocational school and then the next edition
appeared with his editorial work, written by others, since that was
about transmission technology.
Géza Kádár worked with receivers mainly. In 1956 his drawings entitled
„Connections of Radio Receivers” appeared and was so popular that in
1957 it was re-printed in an edited and enlarged version. At that time
Géza Kádár was working at Post Headquarters at the Radio Reception Technology
Department as the officer of radio interference prevention. The drawings
were done by two colleagues of his Béla Fazekas and Jozsef Pál.
In 1958 another book was published for repairmen „Radio and Televison
Receivers”, which is quite interesting and valuable, since the first
picture and connection drawing of a television was in, among them the
legendary „Leningrad T-2”.
Until 1979 he published
collections and service-books every year or every other year, but he
also contributed to the „Industrial Library” series as well. His last
published work is „Radio and TV Circuitry 1975-77” in 1979 at the Technical
He was a gracious host and he always liked to entertain his wide network
of friends. The experts of radio receiving from socialist countries
met in the framework of OSZSZ (similar to OIRT) each year in a different
country, and the atmosphere in the 50’s became ever friendlier. Since
he spoke good German and Romanian he contributed to the development
of this friendly relationship. (He did not speak Russian however and
the interpreter caused a lot of problems with her lack of the appropriate
As a result of the conferences the first standard (Postal standard)
appeared in 1960 about the methods and requirements of interference
Before his retirement his last national work was the diffusion of cable
radio. The cheap transistor radios operating on one or two AA batteries
made cable radio obsolete, especially since the maintenance of this
system was far bigger than the subscription fees could have covered.
As the child of a protestant priest he could not proclaim atheist principles
and join the communist party. In October 1956 he was voted into the
“Worker’s Council”. Maybe this was the reason why he never got a passport
between 1967-70 to visit his friends in the US and at 60 he was forced
After his retirement Janos Volgyi asked him to come and work at Gelka
(an electric equipment repair service).This work helped him both spiritually
and financially. In 1975 at the 50th anniversary of the Hungarian Radio
people still thought of him. He received an Arany memorial ring and
plaque. In the anniversary edition of “Modulator”, the magazine of radio
technology, he published an article in which he remembered radio interference
prevention and its history.
He died at age 76 in April 1983 in Budapest. There was a short obituary
published in the July 1983 edition of Radio Technology.
My thanks to Csilla
Székelyné Kádár, Mrs. Klara Pataki, Béla Násfay, Árpád Koós and Ferenc
Kovács for the information they shared with me.
50 Years of Postal Engineer Service Ministry of Commerce of his Highness,
Obituary. Rádo Technology, July 1983, Budapest.
Dénes B. Balás: Dr. Endre Magyari Postal Engineer Worked in Gyali Street.
Tivadar Puskás Telecommunication Vocational School. 2004, Budapest.
Geza Kádár: Interesting Cases of Averting Interference . Modulátor,
1975. 7th year, 1st ed.
Gusztav Sugár: History of Hungarian Radio until 1945. PRTMIG, Budapest,
Istvan Stur: Radio Exhibition of September 1936. Hungarian Post, No.